It’s been about 3.5 months since I have given birth and I thought now would be the perfect time to share what I have been up to in regards to fitness and getting back into shape 🙂
I gave birth 28lbs heavier on March 16, 2016. I gained 20lbs in the first trimester with lack of energy and eating way more than I should; the other 8lbs came on steadily throughout the second and third trimester. I made sure to keep my weight in check by staying active and trying to make the best food choices possible.
I REALLY credit staying active during pregnancy to my ability to get back at it post pregnancy.
Now, this doesn’t mean that I popped Rian out and got straight back on the bandwagon. I took 6 weeks to heal – my body had been through 35 hours of labor, a small tear and way more pressure down below than anything I could have imagined! I could barely walk or sit for weeks, let alone think about completing a workout.
By about 2 months, I was ready to get back at it. I planned to take the first month and work on my endurance and getting back into the groove of things. I went for walks, eventually started jogging (hello baby belly flab bouncing like a bowl full of jelly!) and then really started to work on body weight exercises. Progress for me was slow at first. Walking was hard for me, but I kept pushing and eventually things got easier.
I didn’t want to jump straight to the weights for the first month. I had lost a lot of strength and flexibility while pregnant; these things won’t just come back in a flash (even though I wish they did!). So, instead, I focused on cardio and body weight. I did a lot of push-ups, planks, squats, etc – think going back to the basics 🙂
As my endurance started to come back, I was able to incorporate some sprints and more time on the step mill. I also started getting back to lifting lighter weights and strengthening my abs. At around 2.5 months, I felt comfortable to start lifting heavier.
Now at a little over 3 months, my plan is pretty similar – build strength, continue with endurance work and keep it fun.
My ideal schedule typically looks like this (as long as Rian is doing ok):
(Side note – my husband works graveyards 6pm-6am Saturday through Monday so he spends Sunday-Tuesday sleeping most of the day. If he isn’t able to watch Rian, I usually don’t get a workout in unless my amazing mother or older sister is available to babysit.)
Sunday – workout in the afternoon if family can babysit
Monday – typically no workout
Tuesday – morning work out if my husband can watch Rian (he is usually tired and wants to sleep)
Wednesday – Saturday – cardio + weights
My cardio + weight sessions usually look like this:
10 minutes on the step mill or a round of sprints
40 minutes of weight work (a good mix of body weight & equipment circuits)
10-15 minutes on step mill
For me, I really want to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight. This is why I try to incorporate as much cardio into my workouts as possible. My circuits are done in such a way that I keep my heart rate up while achieving my goals – better endurance and building back strength. I also try to get in one day where I run (I am unofficially training for a half marathon).
With my nutrition, I am focusing on getting in higher amounts of protein while keeping my carbs lower. I try to eat mostly complex carbs (think leafy greens, berries, etc) and have an occasional beer when I want. I live by the 80/20 rule and enjoy chocolate (or other indulgences) daily.
So there ya have it… my game plan when it comes to post pregnancy weight loss & fitness!
Some tips to remember when thinking about your own plan:
What is your goal?
How much can you realistically do?
Take time to let your body heal.
Focus on nutrition while you recover.
You just gave birth to a tiny human, cut yourself some slack!
Enjoy your workouts.
Don’t fret about having to miss one or two.
Happy planning and training!