Recently, a reader asked me for a fitness plan to help her take off the weight she gained after giving birth to two beautiful children. I thought I would use the opportunity to reply to her question in the form of a blog rather than private message. Weight loss is a subject of special interest for lots of mommies out there.
In essence, before starting any food & exercise plans it’s more important to set a solid foundation of good habits. Here are six great examples straight from me to all you hard working mothers out there struggling with new-baby weight.
Rest & Repair
This is a really tough one for moms, but they need to take steps to get as much sleep as possible. On days where I’m really sleep deprived, I find it extremely hard to eat healthfully. When you’re exhausted, you’re more likely to feel hungry and reach for food you wouldn’t want if you were awake and active. Get a nap in here and there, and find people who will help you adjust to a life of irregular sleeping habits for a while.
Easy Liquid Calories
Stop drinking anything with calories! Super important. Soda, frappucinos, juice, sports drinks; no more. Keep a container that holds approximately 8-10 cups of water and sip on it constantly. This practice will all but eradicate cravings and unnecessary hunger. It's not easy to overeat when you’re drinking enough water. Oftentimes we misinterpret thirst for hunger, and hey, try real lemon or lime juice (that you yourself squeeze) for flavor.
Weight Loss Snacking for Moms
Keep healthy snacks on hand and ready at all times. Dice up apples, carrots, celery sticks, make small salads (watch the dressing!), or steam some veggies. A bag of raw & unsalted nuts in your purse is useful for combating cravings, but keep in mind that 12 almonds is a meal-sized serving. When you’ve got healthy calories with you at all times and are prepared it's much harder to make bad decisions on the fly.
Progressive & Practical Approach
Why come out swinging or hit the road running? Think progressively and don’t expect drastic results to materialize before you’ve had a chance to develop good habits. Start out by taking a brisk walk for 20 minutes each day for the first week and watching your food intake. You can only live your life one choice at a time, and changing habits takes determination.
If you can't stop eating it, don't keep it in your house. This is a big one! Set yourself up for success. If it's in your house you’ll eventually scarf it down. First, go through and clean out the kitchen of everything you can do without. Then, it’s just a matter of maintenance.
Enjoy either a fruit or vegetable with every meal. Seriously, through your food I want you to leap headfirst directly into nature. Fill the grocery cart with a rainbow of vegetables and fruits, and then munch away!
Congratulations to all you new mommies out there and rest assured that once good habits are set in stone, not only will you be looking more like your old self, but you’ll be happier and healthier for your children.
Love yourself too! :)