My mum, my sister and myself are all size 8 always have been, always will be, even if we have wine and cake. These genes are just another example of one of the things mother hen has done for me.
I’ve been spoilt, I’ve never had to actively try to lose weight. Until of course Edie came along and the weight just would not shift. This photo is of me 4 months post Edie and as you can see she could still be in my tummy!
I thought I was doing everything right I was breastfeeding, exercising for 30 minutes a day, eating clean but the weight just would not budge.
Massive respect to anyone who has ever gone through a weight loss journey I found it draining, frustrating, hard work and all consuming.
So what was I doing wrong? I think my biggest mistake was I was training like I knew how to train (for ultra marathons or crossfit) ate like I knew how to eat (no carbs hello sweet potatoes) but the reality is my body was very different to what it used to be pre baby and should have been treated as such.
Mumawell what do you think?
1. How do I know I’m safe to exercise after giving birth?
The first thing to do before exercising after birth is get signed off by your GP. This would be at about 6 weeks postpartum for vaginal birth, and 8-10 weeks for C-section. These timings are just a guideline though, you may not feel ready to work out for some time after. If you had a ‘complicated’ birth that involved deep tearing, forceps or prolonged pushing then you might want to get checked out by a women’s health physio before starting exercise again. They will be able to assess your pelvic floor and abdominals which will in turn assist you in knowing what moves to avoid.
When you work out, a great indicator of whether you’re ready is to observe and be mindful of each movement. For example, if you feel pressure in your pelvis, or experience leaking, then your pelvic floor needs more strengthening.
2. What are your top 5 tips for healthy and gradual loss of baby weight?
My main priority with my clients is to exercise safely and build up strength from within, as that is where the biggest changes have occurred. Following on from that basis, strong toned bodies that allow you to function in the most optimal way in your busy life should be the next goal. Cardiovascular fitness is also key as a healthy heart and lung capacity is vital. Weight-loss, though important to many, should be the happy outcome of these other factors, but not necessarily the primary goal.
My top tips are:
1. Get exercise into your daily life. If you can be active every day you will feel so much better mentally and physically. Having a new baby is very exhausting, and of course you don’t always feel like doing an exercise class. It’s also sometimes very hard to get out of the door on time for anything. But just a 30-minute brisk walk every day is enough to get some positive endorphins flowing and keep you active.
2. Do circuits. If your goal is to tone up and lose weight, then focus on quick circuits that activate the whole body. You want to make sure your body doesn’t get complacent and know what to expect, so test it in lots of different ways to keep it burning.
3. Be careful with cardio.It’s great to get it into your fitness routine, but some people go way too hard too fast, which can result in lasting damage. If you’d like to get running again, then build up slowly being mindful of your pelvic floor. If you don’t feel up to running, there are lots of high-intensity cardio moves that are also low-impact.
4. Get some healthy snacks in.When you’re fatigued, it’s definitely harder to make healthy food choices and looking after a baby is exhausting work. Make it easier for yourself to snack healthily when hunger strikes, rather than reaching for the cookies. Good ideas are fruit, energy balls, granola, natural yoghurt and hummus with veg. Of course, biscuits etc are fine if you need them – but have options available to you.
5. Find your crew.A group of ladies who are going through the same thing as you will help so much in those early days postpartum. They will understand the highs and lows, fatigue and frustrations. If you can arrange some exercise times with them – whether it’s a walk, mum & baby yoga class or mini home workout – then you’ll be able to encourage and keep each other accountable.
3. Do you have any go to work outs (maybe videos) that we can share for people who are looking to work out at home?
I created The MAMAWELL Method to provide all women who have become mothers with the opportunity to work-out at home when it suits them. The Method aims to educate women on the changes their bodies have gone through and how to train in the most beneficial way for them. We focus on providing you with energy and strength at this most physically and mentally demanding time of your lives.
I would recommend this video series for anyone looking to get strong from the inside out, work on their core and pelvic floor, get more fitter and toned – but at home, when it suits them.
For more info and to purchase visit https://www.mamawell.org/the-mamawell-method. And as an extra treat enter code ‘beingfest15’ to receive 15% off.
Mamawell will be sharing her top tips to get back to your pre baby fitness level in person at Being Fest – www.beingfest.com– She’ll also be leading fitness classes for you to try. Check out the full Speaker List & Timed Agenda.