I really struggled with weight loss for the first six months after having had a c-section, ebf, working, pumping, having to supplement with formula and try to increase my supply, while also trying to shed the last 25 pounds from my 50 pound weight gain. When I was pregnant, one of my friends who also happened to be pregnant told me of the power of breastfeeding for weight loss. She said that the baby weight would just fall off once I started breastfeeding (heretofore bfing). Eureka! Once I learned this I was stuffing my face with all my usual sometimes foods. Hamburgers every day, why not! Second cupcake? I thought you'd never ask. Curiously, it seemed my baby had decided to take up residence in my rearend because my belly never got that big. Alas, after my 6lb 4oz baby was born and I had left 20 lbs in the O.R., I awaited my weightloss miracle. One week passed and nothing. Two weeks, nothing. Three weeks, nothing. By my daughter's one month well-baby visit I learned that she was not getting enough milk and that all that screaming and pulling off during breastfeeding was actually reflux. So, one bottle of formula at night with her meds and I was prescribed to eat more and drink horrible herbal tea and take these godawful herbal supplements to up my supply. If any of you remember this time, I carried around with me a lovely odor of maple syrup. I mainlined mothers milk tea, fenugreek, blessed thistle, and ate oatmeal every morning. Just so you all know I hate oatmeal and tea. The things we do for our children.
By two months and a couple pounds of weight gain, I figured I probably wasn't going to be able to eat donuts and get those coveted six pack abs. Damn it. Why me?
Around my daughters weaning time after a nasty encounter with a stomach bug that forced my body to expel things I didn't know possible, I finally started to loose a little weight. At the same time, I started tracking what I ate using a food and exercise ap. This coupled with the realization that if I was ever going to get out of my fat pre-pregnancy clothes, I needed to seriously step up my game. Yoga was no longer an option because my husband had sold his soul to a big law firm and my daycare put my daughter out on the street at 6:00 pm. Being a working mom with an absent husband* severely limited my chances of success.
I got another wake-up call after I had the amazing opportunity to have dinner with the First Lady, Michelle Obama and other fit moms (and dads) in the DFW area. By this time I could fit in my pre-pregnancy clothes, but the mommy pouch had not disappeared. A picture taken of Mrs. Obama and I solidified in my mind that walking around the neighborhood with my daughter in my Ergo was not going to do the trick. I needed more, but I didn't know what.
To make a long story short, some of the moms from a postpartum fitness group I belong to were starting up a program called Insanity, and I thought what the hell, why not try it! OMG, after doing the fit test, I knew that I was beyond out of shape. How did I let myself get like this? Oh yeah, spending almost the entire third trimester on the couch and eating hamburgers. I remember now.
Here are my results after completing one round of Insanity. I am about a week into Asylum in these three photos. I went from beached whale to this by thirteen months postpartum.
I am not posting these photos to toot my own horn. Rather, I'd like to hopefully encourage some new mom who maybe has recently had a c-section and is worried about whether their abs will ever come back. They will, but it takes a lot of effort on your part.
I did Insanity and I'm currently doing Insanity Asylum. Before I was a yoga studio rat. I would practice four or five times a week. However, baby made it impossible to get to the studio and I eventually jumped onto the workout video bandwagon. It's not for everyone, but for my family it made sense. I think in general, the key is to find something you enjoy and that you will stick with. Insanity has been that for me. I loved pushing myself harder than I had in a long time. I even got my husband to join in with me (kicking and screaming of course). I've completed the Insanity program once and I am currently in the thick of the Asylum.
One of my greatest tools during this journey is a group of moms who are all trying to stay active. I communicate with them daily about my ups and downs. We encourage each other to keep fighting, we post pictures of our little ones, and we swap healthy recipes. These ladies have been one of the key ingredients to my success and I am truly grateful that I am lucky enough to have such an amazing support system.
I hope if you are reading this post baby you feel encouraged. You will get your body back if you work hard! I started slowly working out and didn't truly get back to my pp weight until close to my daughter's first birthday. Now I'm a size smaller! I've never been this thin as an adult. I'll write more later, right now it's time to pop that DVD in and dig deeper! Goodnight ladies :)
*My husband is a great father and was absent because of his job. He is a fantastic provider and I am so grateful for his sacrifices everyday.