Getting back into shape post-pregnancy can be as easy as 1, 2, 3

By Ava Africa | Photo by Simon Rae/Unsplash

Mother knows best.

This famous saying holds true whenever you see a pregnant woman. Why? Despite the fact that I like to keep my figure slim and strong, whenever I see a mom-to-be allowing her body to change in order to nourish the growing life inside her, I can’t help but be in awe of her. Her priorities become so focused on her future bundle of joy that it doesn’t even matter whether or not she can still fit into her pre-pregnancy wardrobe.

Sometimes it takes longer than six months post-pregnancy to get your sexy body back. Don’t fret though. Whether you just gave birth yesterday or it’s been years since you had your last baby, there’s always hope. The first step is for you to believe that you can do it, the same way you believed that you can deliver your baby safely.

Exercise: Excuses or results? You can’t have both

We all know this but how many of us are actually doing it consistently? One advice that I give my weight management students is for them to start small then focus on multiplying these tiny acts until they’re able to do it consistently and it becomes a habit.

Here’s a recommended exercise program. But for women who have just given birth, seek approval from your trainer or doctor first before doing any of these exercises.

Day 1: Walk uphill briskly for at least 15 minutes.

Day 2: Lie on your back then carefully put your child on your legs. Lift your legs up and down for 20 seconds. Rest for 10 seconds in between. Repeat until 15 minutes are up.

Day 3: Walk uphill briskly for at least 15 minutes.

Day 4: Squat. Carry your child with both hands and lift him up for 20 seconds. Rest for 10 seconds in between. Repeat until 15 minutes are up.

Day 5: Walk uphill briskly for at least 15 minutes.

Day 6: Go on all fours. Extend your left arm forward and right leg up. Hold position for 10 seconds. Switch sides. Repeat until 15 minutes are up.

Day 7: Rest day

You can increase load every week by doing the exercises longer or faster.

Listen to your body’s needs and think healthy

Whenever your body is craving something to eat, it means you lack nutrients. However, as a mom, you need to be smarter in terms of selecting the right foods to satisfy that craving. Avoid pastries or baked goods if you want to lose belly fat. Focus on healthy proteins from meat and non-meat sources. Have the same care that you had when you were watching what you ate during your pregnancy.

Be part of or start a club

Just as you were surrounded by people who supported you during your pregnancy, it would be good to be in the company of people with the same weight loss goals as you. If it’s not a club, make sure that you have someone who has done it before and is willing to be your accountability partner. Believe it or not, a number of newbie and veteran moms want the same thing as you. All you need to do is go out there and find them.

The truth is, giving birth may be the hardest thing a woman will ever do in her life. Using the same willpower for getting rid of excess fat will give you 99.9 percent chance of success. It’s not as hard as you think. Good luck, moms!

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