Fighting to lose the postpartum weight begins haunting me the second my babies are born. Though I have lost 50 pounds, 50 pounds and 45 pounds in my first three pregnancies, my twin pregnancy left me with 72 to go. Daunting. However, 9 months later (fitting number, right?), the last pound was off… and I was a tad in shock I actually did it. And though I would have loved to afford a meal delivery plan (ahhh… how nice that would be?) and a personal trainer, I did it allllll by myself. If you have some baby weight to lose, always first check with your doctor, but here’s a 9 month break down of how I did it.
PHASE ONE – 0-8 Weeks After Delivery
Alex had told me after my C-Section to start to walk immediately. Knowing she had had a C-Section only 2 years prior, I planned on listening. There I was in the hospital after giving birth to my twins, barely able to walk the hospital halls, but that is exactly where I got started. Yes, I know my 100 feet (if that) walks (more like extremely slow, painful shuffles) weren’t going to do much for me as far as calorie burning, but I did know I needed to start somewhere for my body’s sake.
When I returned home, I was working on a piece for Breezy Mama with Gabby Reece and her advice really stuck with me: “Start by taking daily walks with your new baby just around your neighborhood. Not only will this be a safe way to begin exercising, but it will also prove to be quality time with your new bundle.”
In my case, this meant first attempting to make it around the block. Though not easy at first, it was great to feel sunlight and also walk hand in hand with my other children. And at my pace at that time, they could definitely keep up!
As the days progressed, so did my walking ability and by week two, I printed out exercises Cindy Furey, owner of Comprehensive Therapy Services, sent me for Breezy Mama and followed those daily. These moves were excellent for getting a feel for what my body could do again.
PHASE TWO — 8 Weeks After Delivery
After eight weeks of walking and easy-on-my-body exercises (more like yoga poses), I was ready! However, I had been told by another physical therapist friend that jogging at this point was a bad idea. When I asked why, he asked, “How do you feel about going to the bathroom in your pants?” And I followed up by asking “#1 or #2?” And I was kinda serious… I kid. SO, I stuck strictly to workout DVDs. In fact I even wrote about my testing here.
Listen, I can give you every excuse in the book, but workout DVDs really are an easy answer for moms – especially while the baby naps – to fit in exercise. At this point I stuck to walking with my stroller and an exercise DVD 4 days a week. The weight was now coming off.
PHASE THREE — 6 Months After Delivery
At long last the 6 month mark hit and I was ready to run! Though I was about 50 pounds lighter at this point, it was still VERY uncomfortable to jog with 22 pounds of added weight. And I was slooooow! But Gabby Reece’s advice would pop into my head “…start out by putting one foot in front of the other. That’s all it is.” In fact, at this point my 7 year old was even able to keep up with me (well, actually pass me), which was win-win because we got some alone time together. And before long, I was at my usual pace and on my usual routes, quickly headed toward losing the rest of my weight with roughly 4 mile jogs, 3 times a week and a workout DVD one day a week.
PHASE FOUR — 8 Months After Delivery
If there’s one thing my closest friends will tell you about me, it’s that I like to eat. A lot. Dieting is not my thing, because I would much rather exercise than get too caught up in worrying about scarfing down a pizza at a girl’s night. Don’t get me wrong, I generally try and eat healthy and watch what I eat, however, when it comes time to indulge, I’m not one to miss out.
However, I was now down to my last 10 pounds to lose, had finished breast feeding (since I had twins and had to supplement with formula, they only would have formula at this 8 month point and refused to breast feed. This sucked for me because I had breast fed all my other kids for a full year, but I digress…). So, done with breast feeding – the ultimate calorie burner — and 10 pounds to go, I had no idea how to drop the final weight.
At this point, I had been asked by Health Magazine to try their diet. Before you get excited and think this gave me an edge over anyone else, it didn’t. I had to buy all the groceries and make all the food by following the recipes just like anyone could with my eye on the prize: the promise to lose my final weight. If you by chance followed along with my blogs for them, you know it was not fun! However, eating a pretty strict diet – though it did allow for wine! – got the last 10 pounds off in one month!
Though I’m coming off the heels of the holidays and could easily stand to lose 5 pounds gained from pumpkin pie and over doing my gravy, I have for the most part adopted several of the Health elements into my day to day habits during the week. But weekends? All bets are off… as long as I get my exercise.
Getting to write about losing 72 pounds is awesome! It was definitely in the back of my mind when I was getting started and throughout the adventure that losing all the postpartum weight would be amazing to post about on Breezy Mama. And there were plenty of times I didn’t think it was ever going to come off. But I just kept telling myself, exercise and eat healthy now, and a year from now you will be happy you did. Sure enough, I am!
And that is how I lost 72 pounds.
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