Saturday, September 22, 2012

40 Weeks On...40 Weeks Off!

Exactly 40 weeks ago today was Elyse's due date, meaning it's been 40 weeks and 4 days since her arrival.  It took her 40 weeks to develop and make her arrival into this world and I can't hardly imagine our lives without her.  Wow...how time flies! 

While I was still pregnant with Elyse, I was already thinking about how I would be able get back down to my pre-pregnancy weight.  I made some not so smart decisions as soon as I found out I was pregnant...you know like completely stopping ALL forms of working out, using the eating for 2 excuse at almost every meal, and finishing most evenings with something frozen & sweet like a Dairy Queen Butterfinger Blizzard.  This made the pounds come on quickly & easily and I eventually started to get a little nervous.  Would I ever be able to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight? 
May 22, 2011...My first belly shot, probably about 9-10 weeks along
At some point probably about a year ago I was having a conversation with my best friend (who's had 3 children and now is my Zumba instructor) about baby weight and she reminded me..."Just always remember that it will take your body 9 months to put all that weight on, give yourself at least 9 months to get rid of it." 

My last belly shot...5 days before Elyse's arrival
And as I sit here today, 18 months from finding out we were pregnant, approximately 80 weeks from when this whole mommahood journey began, 40 weeks from Elyse's projected due date, and a bit over 9 months from the arrival of precious baby Elyse...my bestie was oh so right.  I'm back to my pre-pregnancy weight and maybe even just a few pounds under. 
Same outfit, same # on the scale, MUCH longer hair! 
Sidenote...Any hair opinions?  I'd love to cut my hair back off...but it's so easy to just put up in a ponytail when I want to! 

I'm mainly writing this post so that someday I can use this as motivation after our next baby (God-willing), and also maybe someday down the road when I'm lacking motivation to just work out....I'll know that I did it once, I can do it again. However, it seems like practically EVERY single blog I read has an author who is either a new momma, preparing to be a momma, or someday wants to be a momma, so here are a few things that worked for me post-partum! 

1.  Breastfeed, breastfeed, breastfeed!
~Now I know that not all momma's can nurse, want to nurse, or have enough milk to nurse; however, I really think this was a huge help for me!  I was back down to within 10lbs of my pre-pregnancy weight very quickly. It's been the last 10 pounds that I've had to work for.  I always thought it was awesome to think about the fact that I was burning calories just by feeding my baby.  While breastfeeding burns calories, that means it also makes me hungry...so I've had to work on having some healthy snacks around and also staying hydrated.  I've tried to continue drinking water like I did when I was pregnant & I keep almonds, Greek yogurt, fruit, and low-calorie frozen fruit bars (we LOVE Blue Bell's Strawberry bars...only 70 calories!) on hand almost all the time. 

2.  An awesome hubby--(or other support system)!
~Along with conversations with friends & family, Hubby was supportive even before Elyse arrived about helping me get back to where I wanted to be.  He has been incredibly supportive & encouraging when it comes to eating just a little more healthy and allowing me to take time for myself to workout.  I absolutely know that I wouldn't be where I am today if it wasn't for him.  He's training for another 1/2 marathon in November so we've also given up all pop together as well (unless we're eating pepperoni pizza, because you just can't have pizza without a nice cold Dr. Pepper!)

3.  Find something you LOVE!
~I remember watching Biggest Loser back in the Spring and Bob Harper was telling the contestants that it didn't have to be running, and it didn't have to be weighlifting, or going to the gym, or a combination of all of those things...just find something you enjoy!  Because if you don't enjoy it you'll never keep it up.  Thanks to my bestie, I started going to a Zumba class and fell in LOVE!  I've never been a dancer (yeah, my body just doesn't move like that!), but Zumba is so fast-paced that no one has time to tell if you're doing it perfect or not. Burning 700-800 calories in an hour...I'll take it!  And back to point #2, Hubby is always pushing me out the door to go...which also gives him some fabulous one-on-one time with Elyse. 

4. Find good substitutes! 
~Hubby & I love to have something sweet as we relax in the evening watching tv...so I've really been trying to find some sweet treats that are yummy & not so full of calories & fat!  They have tons of low-fat frozen treats @ Walmart & we've tried a lot of them, they give us just the amount of sweetness we need for less than 100 calories.  I've also had to start keeping healthy items on hand for my lunches when I'm at home.  Some weeks I just eat leftovers, but otherwise I try to eat a turkey sandich or wrap with avocado...Elyse loves avocado too so we share a lot!    

5. Give yourself some credit! 
~As my body has started to bounce back it feels so great to be back in my pre-pregnancy sizes again! I'm working hard and it's actually showing. However, there are still certain areas that don't seem to be bouncing back quite as quickly. I may always have that little pooch above my scar or a little bit more weight in my face...and I think I've finally gotten to the point where that's ok, because all I have to do is look at this sweet face & know that every single pound was worth it...even if some of those pounds are staying put in places they didn't used to be.
My precious baby girl!
I'm certainly not going to sit here and act like I'm a fitness guru because I still love my pizza, ice cream, pasta, etc., etc., etc.!  Enjoy your pregnancy but don't go overboard, give your body time to adjust to this crazy new life you are leading, and finally, pat yourself on the back when you do a good job.

7 comments:

Kate @ Daffodils said...

Good for you! You look amazing!

Kerry said...

love this post! it has given me hope!! thanks :) lol! xx

Amanda Anderson said...

Lauren, you look amazing!! Well done hun! I'm so proud of you and I hope that once Baby Anderson has made their appearance (hopefully within the next couple of years) I'll be able to do as well as you have! I'll also keep in mind your little tips during my pregnancy! :)

As far as your hair, I love it the length it is now! Like you said it's easy to pull up (mines as short as yours used to be, and when I go running that's one thing that drives me nuts...the little short pieces that float all over the place) and I think for the Fall/Winter season the longer hair is really pretty! Maybe keep your length until after Christmas time and then give it the chop for a new look during a new year!? :) Either way, whatever hair style you have, I think you're gorgeous.
xoxo

Emma McCartney said...

I think you look blooming amazing! Growing a human is hard work, but I think you're one of the lucky ones who seems to have lost most of the weight already! I still look about 4 months pregnant and Alice is 7 months! haha! xx

myprettymummy.com

Callie Nicole said...

You look great! I love your tips too - good job on getting the weight back off!

Sara said...

Oh, I so needed this post. It's good to hear that it all does eventually come off. I'm only 4 months out, but it sure isn't just "falling off" like I thought it would. I need to cut myself a little slack in this department and give myself some additional time. Great tips and great advice.

Mrs. Pancakes said...

Woohoo this total motivation for me...kudos Lauren!!! Congrats! Elyse has an awesome mom!