It’s been a year since Zachary came into our lives and its time to focus on getting in shape post-baby.
During my pregnancy, I kept working out. I was very disciplined and kept to a schedule of three workouts per week and walking 5kms per day right up until eight months. Then the thought of even walking up one flight of stairs sent me into a ‘hell no’! haha.
Even though the old wives tales say you should be eating for two, I had a similar eating plan as previous and just added an extra serve of protein and carbohydrates along with pregnancy vitamins. But once little Zachary was with us, combined with the sleepless nights, the motivation levels dropped significantly. There were so many complications during birth and as such, I am on strict doctors orders not to do any high impact cardio work.
When I was told this, I was gutted and my self-confidence hit an all-time low.
Keeping fit and running in particular prior to being pregnant, was my one thing that I loved to do just for me. I loved to get up early on Sunday mornings and run along the banks of the Thames river.
The news hit me hard.
For the past five months, I haven’t been taking the best care of my health. I stopped walking and was eating unhealthy foods and the weight started to pile on. I just wasn’t feeling myself, I was slow and sluggish and indulging on deserts a bit too much. As each day passed I keep getting that nagging feeling that there has got to be a way to workout without doing any high impact cardio which wouldn’t bore me to tears.
The greatest gift you can give your family and the world is a healthy you. – Joyce Meyer
Here’s how I’m planning on getting in shape post-baby:
Walking. One of the easiest ways I’m planning on getting in shape post-baby is to start walking. Each day I walk along the beach and take Zachary with me. As we have been travelling for the past three months and went through an international move, I’ve only had a lightweight travel pram. It was great for getting around the tiny villages of Lake Como, but not so good when there were any bumpy roads or long distances to cover.
I recently purchased a new sports pram, Phil & Teds Sport, and I have to say it fits all our needs. It’s easy to navigate as it has three wheels instead of four and fairly easy to fold up and put into the car boot. It can also be modified into a two-child pram for the future.
Weights and Low Impact Cardio. Another way I am getting in shape post-baby is following the SWEAT program by Kayla Itiness. I think everyone knows about this app, Kayla has over 7 million followers on Instagram. What isn’t so well know is that within SWEAT there are also two other fitness programs; a post-pregnancy program by Kelsey Wells and also a yoga program by Sjana Elise.
The Post Pregnancy program is perfect for me, its low impact whilst still being challenging. I’m now onto the 10th week and things are starting to get challenging. A typical week includes two LISS (low-intensity exercise like walking or swimming) and three toning sessions (using low weights in a set of four repetitions like squats, lunges, deadlifts etc). Have to say this program really works for me. I can work out at home when Zachary takes his morning or afternoon nap and no hefty gyms fees. For what the program offers, it’s very affordable at $AUD2.31 per week!
Cleaning Up My Diet. My food intake is reasonably good – excluding said past five months – I typically eat healthy foods with the odd sweet treat or take away but this can be cleaned up for sure. I’m planning on getting in shape post-baby by eating clean and lean foods and one of my favourite books on this is by James Duigan called the Clean & Lean Diet. It really shouldn’t be called a diet as its more way of life and the tools he teaches to eat clean and lean dramatically helped me get in shape prior to being pregnant. And what really was the key selling point was for me, is that the food was tasty! Often times I find healthy food can be really bland and lacking in flavour, but the Clean and Lean recipes are all SO tasty. He recently released the Clean & Lean Diet Cookbook with 150 recipes and I just ordered it from Amazon.
Pilates. Then the final way I am getting in shape post-baby is by doing a Pilates class per week. I’m on doctors orders to strengthen my core and was recommended to start doing Pilates. I’ve signed up for a 10-week beginners course at my local surf club and have done three classes already. Have to say, I’m really enjoying it. I did hot yoga years ago and this is very similar where you use your own body weight to strengthen your core, yet it also includes using a medicine ball, stretch band etc to lengthen and strengthen your muscles. After just three classes I can feel the tightness in my shoulders and neck release.
When it comes to getting in shape post-baby, I know I need to give myself a bit of self-love and care as well.
I had this huge expectation that I would get my body back within a few months after giving birth. Whilst this is true for some women, who I’m just a tad envious of, I know that it will take hard work each day. I’m making the promise to myself to be in the best shape of my life by the end of December and be ready for bikini season.
I know that when I’m strong and healthy that I feel better about myself and with all those endorphins the motivation levels are much easier to maintain.