Losing the Baby Weight : How to do it (Part 3 of 4)

Gaining weight from pregnancy is perfectly normal.  When you are pregnant, you need the extra weight to nourish and physically carry a growing baby.

The amount of weight you gained during those nine months will dictate how much weight you will probably want to lose. Or if you were overweight to begin with, this is a great time to set new goals.

How to Eat

If you are nursing, know that nursing burns extra calories so even if you feel like you are not doing very much, your body is working extra hard. This does not mean you should overeat. On the contrary, use this time to burn those calories so you shrink down to your normal self naturally.

Start by eating as healthfully as possible. In order to lose weight, you will also need to cut your calorie consumption, unless you are breastfeeding.   If you are thinking you can’t do this because you don’t want to give up your favorite foods, it is not a problem. You won’t have to. Just eat smaller portions of everything you normally consume. But if you want to make a more significant nutritional change, our book Change Your Mind: Lose Weight can coach you through the transition.

 How to Exercise

Your body has changed and it is your core that has mostly been affected. You want that flat stomach back, but targeting only one body part never works.  We touched on this in a previous post titled “Attaining the “Perfect” Body is All About Changing Your Mind.” Basically, you need a holistic approach in order to get to your new healthy normal, and getting your pre-pregnancy shape back will require more than a walk in the park.

So you will need to do an all around good workout that includes stretching, aerobics and strength training.

There is No Hurry

If you just had your baby a few days ago, you are not ready to implement anything. Relax. Read Part 1 of this series where we talk about the necessity to nurture the self.

When will you be ready to get back to it? There is no magic formula.  Listen to your body, and follow your health care provider’s recommendations. You will soon be at a place where you can start to get your body back.

Attaining the “Perfect” Body is All About Changing Your Mind

Do you want to target certain areas of your body like your abs or thighs? There are many DVDs on the market to help you do that, but the truth of it is that targeting a particular body part and getting it to where you want is not so easy.

The reason why target toning is not a good idea is that often the parts of the body we like least are those that are genetically inclined to be that way. We may not like carrying extra weight around our hips or stomach, but that is where some of us will find that extra bit of weight. And remember, the places where you gained weight first, are the places where the weight will come off last.

It is true that supermodels and athletes with seemingly perfect bodies have gotten past the genetics, but you may not realize that along with eating virtually perfect diets, they work out about two hours each day. If you want a perfect body, you can have it, but the truth of the matter is that you will have to do the work.

Realize that no matter how much you weigh, you may not be completely happy with all of your body parts, but you need not become an athlete to be happy. You can change your mind. It is a whole lot easier than putting in two hardcore hours at the gym every day.

Of course, our desire for the perfect look is tied to the culture’s conception of beauty. What people think is beautiful today is attached to extremes. How flat can we get our stomachs? How toned can we get our arms? But the truth of the matter is that these extremes are just extremes. As long as you are healthfully exercising and eating well, you are doing what is best for your beautiful body.