Congratulations on your new baby! Holding your adorable bundle of joy in your arms is an experience that brings out feelings you never thought you could have. Of course, this is just the beginning of your long and winding journey into parenthood.
Being a mother comes with a rollercoaster of emotions which includes both good and bad ones. So, if you’re feeling a bit down from the sleepless nights and exhausting first weeks of motherhood, getting back your pre-baby body might just be the thing you need to boost your morale.
Returning to your previous shape – or, at least, getting one that is close to it – is an effective way to regain your self-confidence. Here are three tips you can try to get in better shape after giving birth:
Breastfeed Your Baby
While the best weight loss therapies offer fast results, breastfeeding is the safest option for mommies who want to reduce their waistline. Aside from boosting your little one’s immune system, breastfeeding is also an effective way of getting rid of excess postpartum weight.
Lactating mothers can eat as much as 300 calories more than they usually do every day without showing signs of getting fat. In fact, they can eat that much while still reducing the size of their belly in the process. This is because breastfeeding causes contractions in the uterus, allowing it to return to normal size faster (when compared to non-breastfeeding moms).
Give Exercise a Chance
Feeling exhausted from taking care of your little one? Do some exercise. While this may seem counterintuitive, exercising can actually energize the body and help reduce fatigue.
When you regularly engage in physical activities, you allow your body to efficiently utilize the stored sugar and fat in your body as fuel for energy. This leads to better-regulated blood sugar levels and the prevention of peaks and valleys in it that cause fatigue.
To do this, start by setting a goal you want to accomplish by exercising within a set timeframe. Once you see the fruits of your labor, you will realize that exercise can be enjoyable. This will make you want to do it without dragging your feet.
Also, you must choose an exercise that not only reduces the size of your tummy but is also fun, like power-walking with a pal or joining the local gym with your husband. Just make sure to consult your physician first before doing any strenuous activities after giving birth.
If you’re looking to do some physical activities at home, here are some of the basic workouts you can try to reduce your baby belly:
When doing stomach crunches, start with 10 repetitions and work your way up to three sets of 20 every day. This will allow your stomach muscles to adjust gradually.
Cardio exercises are great for burning calories. There are many options you can choose from, including power-walking, dancing, and even pushing your baby’s stroller up and down a hill. The key is to get your heart rate to increase while moving.
Understand Your Calorie Requirements
Dieting is the last thing new mothers should do after giving birth, especially if they’re breastfeeding. Nutritious food helps the body heal faster and keeps you energized during the sleepless nights of motherhood.
To top that off, you need to eat healthy food so you can give enough nourishment for your baby through breastfeeding. Iron can help prevent anemia while vitamin C helps your body absorb iron better. Folate is an important nutrient for future pregnancies while calcium and vitamin D are necessary to keep your bones strong. Protein is necessary for repairing tissues in the body.
These nutrients are already necessary before pregnancy but you need them even more when you’re breastfeeding. The key is to determine how much is enough for your situation.
Breastfeeding moms need a total of 2,200 to 2,400 calories a day. This comprises 1,000 to 1,300 milligrams of calcium, 280 micrograms of folate, 15 milligrams of iron, 65 grams of protein, and 95 milligrams of vitamin C. If you choose not to breastfeed, you only need 1,900 to 2,200 calories a day, 1,300 milligrams of calcium, 180 micrograms of folate, 15 milligrams of iron, 44 to 50 grams of protein, and 60 milligrams of Vitamin C.
Follow a Safe Timeline of Losing Baby Weight
Losing weight shouldn’t be a rushed process, especially if you’re a new mother.
In fact, it was revealed that mothers already lose roughly 13 pounds or nearly six kilograms after giving birth which is the combined weight of the baby, placenta, and amniotic fluid. The next few weeks is slated for losing water weight.
All in all, you can safely get your pre-pregnancy body back around six to 12 months following your baby’s birth. Soon, you’ll be able to fit nicely into your LBD for date night or for a rare night on the town with friends.
Vandana Luthra founded VLCC in New Delhi, India as a beauty and slimming services centre in 1989. Today, it is widely recognized for its comprehensive portfolio of beauty and wellness products and services and also enjoys a high level of consumer trust. The VLCC Group’s operations currently span 330 locations in over 150 cities and 14 countries across Asia and Africa.