7 Postpartum Weight Loss Tips To Get Your Body Back After Baby
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7 Postpartum Weight Loss Tips To Get Your Body Back After Baby

Our fitness expert is sharing easy-to-follow health and fitness tips for postpartum weight loss to help get your body back after baby!

Published March 24, 2017

by Kate Horney

Certified Pre and Postnatal Fitness Specialist, Nutrition Coach

New moms are often sleep-deprived, overwhelmed, and have many things on their plates, so knowing where to start when getting your body back after a baby is hard. I get it! There is a TON of conflicting information out there, and it can be challenging to figure out if you’re not an expert. But getting back your pre-baby body doesn’t have to be complicated. We’re bringing you some postpartum weight loss, health, and fitness tips that are easy to follow!

Body Back After Baby: 7 Postpartum Weight Loss Tips for Mom

1. Set Realistic Goals

When it’s time to get serious about losing the baby weight, keep your expectations in check. It can be tempting to set unrealistic goals, but we can get frustrated if we aren’t where we “should” be. Although every new mom is eager to look like her old self again, remember to be patient! Give yourself some grace, and remember, you CAN do it. . . but it’s going to take time to get your body back.

About one pound per week is safe to lose postpartum and will not affect your milk supply or your baby’s growth.1,8 With the average woman gaining about 25-35 pounds during pregnancy and typically losing around 20 pounds in the first month, that final 10 pounds will push your postpartum weight loss goal to several months after the baby arrives.2,3

2. Do It at Home

“Getting slim without the gym” has been a favorite motto of mine since becoming a mom. As you know, there are some days when getting out of the house to exercise is not an option. The good news is you can get fit right at home, and even better, include baby in your workouts! Don’t worry if you don’t have time to get to the gym. Remember, our goal is to do SOMETHING. And you can enjoy a fabulous fat-burning workout in the comfort of your home. Here are a few ideas:

  • Hold baby and do squats and stationary lunges (no weights needed!) for your lower body.
  • Lift baby overhead (get ready for giggles) to strengthen your arms and shoulders. Or, lay on your back and do “baby chest presses.”
  • During those precious 30-minute nap times, grab some dumbbells and get in a quick weight-training workout while your little one sleeps!

3. Lift Weights

Speaking of weight training . . . if you’re ready to get your body back, cardio alone won’t cut it. This is the often missed secret in postpartum weight loss. To lose the baby weight, look past the cardio and instead look at the weights.4

A successful postpartum training plan incorporates a balance of activities, including leisurely walks, some HIIT, plenty of stretching, proper core rehabilitation (essential for moms with diastasis recti), and weight training. Cardiovascular exercise may get you to drop pounds, but your body will stay the same shape.

Weight training is the best way to change the shape of your body. I recommend moms do strength training three times a week for 30 minutes. This will boost your metabolism and balance metabolic hormones that burn fat long after your workout.5,10 It goes a long way toward tightening and toning your body!

4. Embrace the Endorphins

Exercise also provides hormonal benefits to new moms. In addition to lowering stress hormones and stimulating fat-burning hormones like HGH, exercise releases endorphins. Endorphins assist in easing the postpartum blues that most new moms encounter. Not only does this help with depression, but I found that just 10 minutes of daily exercise helps me sleep better. It also helps relieve stress. (As incredible as it is, having a new baby in the house can be stressful!)6,7

You can still take advantage of the feel-good hormones even if you don’t have the time or energy to return to a full training schedule. Squeeze in short, 10- to 20-minute walks as soon (and as often) as possible.

5. Eat Right

Postpartum training must be fueled by proper postpartum nutrition! Far too many moms try low-calorie, fat diets to lose the baby weight. These diets don’t work and often make you gain more weight.11

As a new mom, your body needs maximum nutrition to recover from pregnancy and, if you’re breastfeeding, provide fuel for your baby. Immediately dropping your caloric intake to an unreasonable level isn’t healthy and may cause you to gain weight or cause long-term damage to your metabolism.12 However, you don’t have to count calories (I prefer to focus on quality over quantity).

To sustain your baby while breastfeeding and safely lose fat, consuming at least 1,800 calories per day is recommended.8 For a healthy baby AND mama, concentrate on well-balanced, healthy food choices that include foods rich in calcium, zinc, magnesium, vitamin B6, and folate.9 Remember to focus on foods that balance your hunger, energy, and cravings. If you do that, the caloric intake will take care of itself.

6. Find Some Accountability

Social support is vital to reaching your long-term goals, whether through friends, family, or women in an online community). We are social creatures by nature, and we feel good when we have someone who listens and can relate to what we’re going through. Consider joining mommy and baby fitness classes (you can work out and bond with your baby simultaneously) or join a group workout if you belong to a gym. Group training — both online and in-person — allows us to get a great workout and develop and foster friendships, many of which reach beyond the gym’s walls.

If you don’t have a local group, connect with similar moms in an online group. If you need a friend, I’ll keep you accountable! The key is establishing a built-in support system and ensuring you have someone to help you on your journey.

7. Be Happy

You just had a baby — you have much to be happy about! Seriously. You’ll have plenty of time to focus on fat loss. Don’t stress how the latest celeb went straight from the delivery room to size 0 jeans. Instead, enjoy these moments and revel in the miracle of your pregnancy and the birth of your sweet bundle of joy. They say time flies. And it’s true! You’ll never get these first few weeks back, so remember what truly matters!

We hope these tips help with your postpartum weight loss! Remember, this process takes time and will be an ongoing effort, so don’t be hard on yourself. The most important thing is to be grateful for what your body has done for you — it’s given you a beautiful baby to love and cherish! Appreciate this bonding time with your little one, and don’t miss these moments by obsessing over a few extra pounds. 😉

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Kate Horney Certified Pre and Postnatal Fitness Specialist, Nutrition Coach
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Kate is a certified physical trainer and nutrition coach with a C.P.T. & B.S. in Exercise Physiology. She is a health and fitness professional with over a decade of experience… Read more

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