Easing Back into a Fitness Routine After Pregnancy

Easing Back into a Fitness Routine After Pregnancy

Hi there!

Hope you all had a great weekend!  We had a low key weekend at home which was great since it was so hot!  We did get out for a quick park playdate with some good friends.

These boys have been buddies since birth and are on their way to Kindergarten!

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Aren’t they precious?!? 😉

Anyway, today I wanted to share a little about how I’ve been easing my way back into fitness after my delivery.  With my first pregnancy, I made the mistake of going too hard, too soon with my exercise.  I began running at 4 weeks postpartum and started training for a half marathon the week after.  On top of doing too much too soon, I was ignorant about the amount of calories I needed to consume and did major damage to my hormones as well as my milk supply.  I naturally don’t produce a lot of milk so this tanked my supply.  We had to start supplementing at 2 months and after s 6 months we switched primarily to formula.  Not ideal but it worked out fine.

This time around I made it a goal back when I was pregnant to do things differently.  Ideally, I’d like to breast feed for as long as possible.  In order to do this I know that I need to be eating enough calories to support my milk production and my activity level.  Which is also important to me.  Even though people will say that I should just relax and wait to do any exercise, it’s just not in my nature and is easier said than done.  As a very active person it is extremely hard for me to not exercise.  However, I definitely learned my lesson with overdoing it so I’m taking things at a much slower pace.

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Here’s what I’ve been doing so far.

Week 1 – Started walking around day 4 as I was feeling really good!

Week 2 – Continued walking and started doing some daily planks, squats and push ups.

Week 3 – After being cleared by my doctor at my two-week check up, I started to follow the 21 Day Fix at a modified pace.  I was very careful to listen to my body and not overdo things.  I began by using very light weights and kept my exertion level at a minimum.  Similar to what I was doing before I delivered.

Week 4 – Feeling stronger I upped my weights a little and intensified the workouts slightly.  I felt okay doing some jumping jacks, jogging in place, skaters, etc. so I did them just very cautiously.  I also continued walking at least 5 days a week.

Week 5 – Feeling much stronger but still listened to my body and was cautious about overdoing it with the workouts.  I continued walking as much as I could as well as doing some planks and core work.

I’m now at week 6 and am feeling really good!  I still have a little pelvic pain which was something that I struggled with a lot towards the end of my pregnancy.  Most the time it feels really good but some days it bothers me a little more so I just try to pay attention to my body and take it easy when it’s hurting.

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Throughout the past 6 weeks of easing back into fitness I’ve made sure to do the following things,

  1. Drink a TON of water.  If I don’t get up to pee at least two times a night I know I’m not drinking enough.  I keep a pitcher of infused water in the fridge and my hydroflask filled at all times.  I also hydrate with coconut water for the extra electrolytes every day.
  2. Eat enough calories.  I’ll admit this is one that hasn’t been easy for me.  I find myself not very hungry or just plain busy and forget to eat.  I thought I was doing an okay job but around week 5 I noticed that my weight loss had stalled so I started to track my calories on My Fitness Pal.  I found that I wasn’t eating enough calories so have been really making an effort the past week to up my daily caloric intake.  The last thing I want is a repeat of what I went through after my first pregnancy!
  3. Get enough sleep.  You’re probably thinking, “yeah right, you have a baby.”  So far we’ve been lucky (knock on wood) with the little guys sleeping habits at night.  I try to feed him around 8:30/9:00 then we both go to bed.  He wakes up between 11:00 – 2:00 then again between 4:00 and 7:00.  The other night he slept from 9:45 to 3:30 then didn’t wake up again until almost 7:00  it was great!  He’s a pretty quick eater too and I’m usually only up for 15-20 minutes at a time.  So I’m getting a decent amount of sleep which definitely helps!
  4. Taking supplements.  As recommended by my doctor I’m still taking my prenatal, a vitamin B12, Vitamin D, Fish oil, CoQ10, and Calcium/Magnesium blend.  I’m also taking Fenugreek for lactation support.  On top of my daily supplements, I’m drinking my superfood shake everyday which really helps my with my overall energy.
  5. Balance my workouts.  A huge mistake I made the first time was focusing on cardio, cardio, cardio.  Of course I’ve since learned that cardio is the best way to get results and can actually do more damage than good.  Especially when breastfeeding.  So I’ve been very careful to make sure I’m balancing my weekly workouts with a little bit of cardio, strength, and stretching.  This has been easy to do as I’ve been following the 21 Day Fix exercise and nutrition plan for the past three weeks.

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As I said I just finished three weeks following the 21 Day Fix at a modified pace.  So you may be wondering how I’m feeling and what my results are.  I’ll be honest, at first when I got on the scale to see how much weight I had lost I was disappointed.  Just 3 pounds in 3 weeks after having a baby!  What!?!  Then I took my final measurements and saw that I had lost a total of 8 inches through my hips, waist, thighs and arms.  I of all people should know to pay attention to the inches, not the scale.  It’s hard though when you expect to see the pounds just melting off like everyone says they will when you’re breastfeeding….

I’m ignoring those little voices in my head that are telling me I should see the scale moving and focusing on what’s really important.  Nurturing my body and my baby by eating healthy foods.  AND eating enough food!   I’m also celebrating the little triumphs I’m seeing and feeling.  I am eating MUCH better than I was and definitely feel a difference. My crazy sugar cravings are gone, I have more energy, my skin looks better, and I’m not retaining water like I was before.  Obviously I know some of those were pregnancy side effects but many were still lingering weeks after giving birth and were also from the splurges I was indulging in even after delivery.

So where will I go from here?  My plan for this week is to continue with daily exercise then start the 21 day fix workout plan again next week on August 8th.  Want to join me?  There’s still time!  Message me at ahealthyhappyhome@yahoo.com for more information.

QUESTIONS – 

  • If you’ve had a baby, did you start exercising soon after delivery or wait a few months?  
  • How long did it take you to lose the baby weight?  
  • If you’re struggling to lose weight, get your eating on track or start exercising, would you be interested in joining a challenge group?

Disclaimer – Please check with your doctor before beginning any new exercise program or taking any supplements especially when pregnant or nursing. 

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Comments

  1. I am actually shocked how much my stomach just snapped right back to normal! Amazing! I am actually having a lot of trouble eating and drinking enough, it’s really weird to not be peeing all the time lol. I am having worse vegetable aversions than I did in my first trimester! 😫 I just want carbs! Not even really thinking about exercise yet besides getting back into yoga. I think I can shortly.

    • Giselle Schroer says:

      The second time is so different! I snapped right back with my first besides the extra 10 pounds but this time it’s going much slower. AND I’m okay with that 🙂 I’m doing good so far with my production (at least I think) so sticking with how things are going. I started craving veggies etc. after I started doing the 21 Day Fix. Up until then I was eating lots of carbs still. I think I needed to reset my system after the splurges during pregnancy 😉 When you’re ready, you should join me in a round of the fix!

  2. Thanks for sharing your journey! So glad to hear you are all getting in to a little routine. I love your approach to exercise and food. Ignore those voices, you look amazing! 😀