Any mom that's tried (perhaps more than once) to get back a pre-pregnancy figure knows just how difficult it can be to find the energy, time or motivation to focus on yourself and be successful.
That's why we've put together a huge roundup of blog posts and articles from around the web of everything from great recipes to motivational stories to some exercises for new moms that are our faves. Follow us on Facebook to follow more tips and articles like these throughout the week.
Bodies After Baby Success Stories
How 2 Women Waved Goodbye to the Mommy Tummy: After 12 weeks of focused effort on diet and exercise, two 40-year old women found the success they were looking for in spite of each having a diastasis and several pregnancies between them. Read how they did it here.
image via www.redbookmag.com
Fit Mommy Proves a Rock Hard Body Can Still Be Done: Read how one woman shows and tells about her incredible transformation not only after pregnancy, but also a lifelong struggle with her weight. Her story shows what it took physically & emotionally to achieve her results, and she thinks they can help others do the same. Read more at Diary of a Fit Mommy.
Motivation & Inspiration
Find the Motivation to Be Healthy by Thinking About Why: Many can relate to the feeling of comparing themselves to others and thinking they are not in "bad" shape. Maybe you go to the gym regularly and don't consider yourself overweight. That's exactly what Danielle had been thinking yet still having this creeping disappointment when looking in the mirror. She was always jealous when women her age said they were in the "best shape of my life" and secretly wanted to be able to say the same thing.
Read how Danielle made a few simple changes in her thinking and habits that put her on the path of exercising and being healthy at Extraordinary Mommy.
Perfectly Imperfect Postpartum Bodies: Check out this photography project developed by a woman who wants to reverse the negative mindsets or body shaming coming both externally and internally from even our own selves about a body that has been through pregnancy. View the slideshow of her photography of 10 moms here, at The Stir.
Heartwarming: Doctors Use 3D Printer to Show Blind Expectant Mother an Ultrasound: This is just an inspiring meme that anyone with a child can appreciate.
Exercise Tips to Help Shed the Baby Weight
Remember, be sure to consult your doctor before trying any exercise or dieting tips from the sites linked below (and in general).
Basic Postnatal Exercises to Get You Started: Nearly everyone seems to have trouble finding enough (or any) time/energy to exercise as much as they'd like. Multiply that by (??!) for moms with new babies. That's why we really liked this Undercover Mama overview that not only gives a few specific benefits of exercise for new moms (and they're not all physical), but offers a few realistic ideas for busy moms to help get in shape. Check out the 4 Benefits of Postnatal Exercise post here, or see a few of our favorites below:
The Trickiest Challenge: Losing the Mommy Muffin: Even if you're getting in decent shape, the dreaded muffin top is one of the stubbornest spots to get rid of in your workout. With the right combination of exercises and diet (some tips on that later) the popular SkinnyMom site says you could be on your way to a six pack in weeks. While we're not so sure about that claim, the site has put together an excellent list of 16 exercises (plus how to do them) that target, trim and (hopefully) say goodbye to that muffin top, including:
...and 13 more. See the full list and and detailed workout instructions here at SkinnyMom.com.
Take it to the Next Level with Total Body Toning: The kettleball can offer a terrific workout to help get your entire body toned up and includes tons of information on what you need to do, including some visuals and videos. While getting 'ripped' may not be your cup of tea, if it is you could get there by doing 2-3 rounds of the 17 featured exercises as a routine, but there's plenty of toning to be had by anyone with a routine that includes just a single round of each exercise. Click here to see 17 Kettlebell Exercises for Total Body Toning from Skinny Ms.
Last (But NOT Least) Healthy Diet Advice for New Moms
What a Dietitian Says About Weight Loss & Nutrition After Pregnancy: We asked nutrition expert and author Kimberly Tessmer, RDN, LD, what the key things to know about dieting and nutrition after pregnancy are. She developed a comprehensive guide based on the concept of re-evaluating your goals and habits with a focus on increased energy and overall good health, especially for breastfeeding mothers. Her guide to weight loss and nutrition after having a baby is comprehensive, but easy to grasp. In it, she covers:
- Postpartum nutrition lists and the consequences of following unhealthy habits
- Key recommendations in the recently released 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans
- Healthy eating patterns and list of food types to include and others to limit
- Most important vitamins and nutrients for new moms
- The different needs for nursing versus non-nursing mothers
It's an incredibly helpful article and includes tips that you can start using immediately. Read Kim's guide "You and Your Body After Pregnancy" here.
Stock the Pantry for Healthy Lunches: This is a great, simple list of items to have on-hand to help limit the times your mid-day meal choice is "the closest drive-thru" or "the vending machine". View the shopping list and start writing your own here.
Also, don't forget about those sneaky beverage calories that can add-up from sodas, sweet tea or whatever is in your precious little one's sippy cup ;-). Instead of just drinking diet drinks or using artificial sweeteners, try these 14 fruit-infused water recipes, like strawberry/lemon/basil detox water, orange/blueberry and many other beautifully tasty ones you probably haven't thought of. See the full list here over at Buzzfeed.
As Promised...Foods That Fight Back Against the Muffin Top: Almost no one can avoid the challenge of dealing with the dreaded muffin top. With the right dual-edged attack plan of diet and exercise, success is possible. Above we posted great workouts to zero in on this area. Combine that with this list of foods- not ones you shouldn't eat, but ones you should- and hopefully you'll be back in whatever jeans you've been wanting to be back into soon enough. This list of foods that fight midsection weight may surprise you, including:
- Hot peppers
See the full list of foods to add to your diet here.
We hope you can use some of these great tips and workout routines to help you on your postpartum fitness journey. Don't forget, exercising and eating right day-in and day-out can be tricky, so be sure to consider using a regimented, balanced weight loss meal plan like MommySlim®. Our portion-controlled program is easy to follow and designed to help new moms lose weight in an effective, yet healthy way while meeting the unique nutritional needs of them and their newborn.
Learn more about the customizable MommySlim Weight Loss Program options here.