Modern Everyday Superwomen

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How To Lose The Baby Weight

(Please note: If you’re reading this blog, you agree to my disclaimer)

20 MIN A DAY

My guide to losing weight while caring for an infant/toddler:

 

YESTERDAY, we talked about the issues that can arise when attempting to workout after giving birth.  I know how desperate you feel to get back to ‘normal’ after having a baby.  I was affected both mentally any physically and the struggle to get back on track was rough.  I can’t tell you how disappointed I was when I realized my ‘pre-baby’ wardrobe was not going to be an option after my son was born and that I’d have to settle in to my maternity jeans at least for another season.  If you’ve been there or if you’re going through it now, below you’ll find the things I did that actually got be back in regular clothes.

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Sore boobs, back and … ‘ahem’ …??  A light sleeper?  Bladder issues?  Here’s how to handle that:

Forget the HIIT, Insanity, P90x, etc…at least for now.  For all of the issues listed above, I was able to combat the discomfort with things like Pilates and Yoga.  Great for a sleeping baby and great for body pain.  Try alternating between the suggestions below for a full weeks worth of workouts that can all be done at home:

Pilates –

(Grace and Gusto by Ellen Barret, Caroline Sandry…)

Yoga –

(Rondey Yee, Nancy Goodstein, etc)

Fitness Blender –

‘Quiet Cardio’

They offer a variety of ‘low impact’ workouts

Squats –

Squats <— they do more than you think!

Light weight training

(if you’re cleared by Doc )

Here is a very informative article on weights after birth

(Note:  If you have not been active for a while, always view the video prior to actually doing it and definitely consult your doctor.    Pick something you can complete time wise and physically – you’ll feel empowered and be more driven to do it again.  The ‘Don’t quit til you puke, pass out or die’ quotes are NOT for people who haven’t been exercising. (Those are kinda sick quotes anyway). If you were to pass out while baby is sleeping, that is super dangerous.  So, don’t push too hard if you’re a newbie!!  But don’t sit down or take lengthy breaks – keep moving just slow your pace. And remember, if all you can do is 20 minutes – great! 20 minutes a day is 2 hours and 20 minutes a week you spent burning calories!!)

NO BABY-FREE’ TIME?  NO PROBLEM…

2:  Break out the stroller!

Ok, so we’re going to get that cardio in ladies – with baby!!  Put that cutie in the stroller and go for a walk!  My kid was born in the middle of winter – but I didn’t give up my walks! There are all kinds of wonderful inventions out there to keep them warm while you’re out.  I used the stroller, the sling, and the front carrier to make sure I got my walks in. So, summer or winter, take that little one on a walk.  Pushing the stroller gives you added resistance that will help burn a few extra calories.  If it’s too cold/hot – head to the mall and do laps (great idea for early mornings since not many people are there at that time).  For me, I had to work up to a faster pace and longer distance.  So, start small but do a little extra every day.  Add one minute or even just 10 more steps before turning around and heading home.

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3:  Put on a show for baby –

That’s right, fit in a 10, 15 or even 20 minute workout while baby watches.  I LOVED doing this because it made my son laugh to see mommy moving all around.  I did the Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred (which was super hard at the time and I did not make it 30 days – more on this later), but my son thought it was entertaining.  I would put him on one of those ‘Play/Gym’ mats so that he was beside me and could watch everything I was doing.  You may have to stop what you’re doing a few times to adjust your little one but don’t let that stop you!

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4:  Dance –

Oh this one is great!  Babies love it and it definitely works up a sweat!  I danced all around with my son and sang while I did it.  Just be careful not to do jerky movements.  It is a great bonding experience and you’re burning calories while teaching baby rhythm…what’s not to love?  My husband and I also entertained him a lot with dancing all aorund the house while he watched – which was an incredible workout.  Need dance inspiration?  Try belly dance with The Belly Twins ( I LOVED doing belly dancing with Veena!)

On a finishing note:

Obviously naptime is your friend.  Use that time wisely!  My naptime order of importance was as follows: catch up on sleep, workout, cook, clean.  Definitely get the sleep you need, but don’t feel guilty for fitting in a workout instead of washing dishes.  The dishes can wait.

Exercise goes way beyond just getting ‘thin’ again…you are actually doing so much more than JUST LOSING WEIGHT.   You are setting yourself and baby up for success down the road…and I mean from just a few weeks to years down the road.

A happy mama is a happy baby.  A healthy mama is a healthy baby too.

 

Exercising will boost your energy, confidence, ability to fight stress and it will inspire you to eat better.  Obviously, all of that will come in handy with baby/child care.  Exercising also helps you to get a better nights sleep and, lets face it, you need every minute of sleep to count right now.

In addition to all of the positive effects it will have on you, it also creates a healthy atmosphere for baby to grow up in.  SO WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?

In Review

Any suggestions that I didn’t mention?  Please comment below and let me know your experience!  What was the hardest part of losing weight after baby for you?

Tomorrow I’ll have a brief post on food suggestions for the new mom – so be sure to check back!

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The Truth About Exercising After Having A Baby

(Please note:  If you are reading this blog, you agree to my disclaimer)

What is it REALLY like to exercise after giving birth??  Allow me to explain…

 

baby belly

Picture to the left was taken right after the first contractions were felt. Picture to the right was taken exactly one week after he was born. Unfortunately, the second pic was a starting point from where I gained MORE.

#1:  WORKING OUT WITH ‘MOM BOOBS’ IS PAINFUL

Your boobs are probably larger than normal and super sore (especially if you’re nursing) – jumping is an absolutely miserable experience.  A tight sportsbra works pretty well, but if you have sore boobs, squishing them flat is also extremely uncomfortable.  And the pain that accompanies ‘jumping’ is pretty unbearable – that fact alone made me quit tons of workouts.

#2:  ‘POINT OF IMPACT’ STILL HURTS

If you had a vaginal delivery, your lady parts are still going to hurt for weeks and possibly months after giving birth especially when you do physical exercises like running, lifting anything, jumping, crunches, etc.  For me even walking around the block caused me some discomfort and extra bleeding (sorry to be so graphic!).  I experienced pain for a very long time after delivery especially when I attempted anything physical.

#3:  THERE’S A CHANCE YOU’LL PEE A LITTLE

Truth be told, those high intensity workouts that include jump rope, jumping lunges, running in place, etc…might be more than your post baby bladder can handle. If you’re brave enough to hit up a gym to lose your baby belly, just be prepared.

#4:  IT COULD TAKE NINE MONTHS TO LOSE

I know….this is the worst…and you’re going to hate me for saying it.  But, if it took nine months to put the weight on, chances are it will take another nine to lose it all.  It could be less, could be more but this is a good number to keep in mind.  You’ll have a more realistic idea of expected results and hopefully that will keep you motivated.

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Other noteworthy changes:

Your core is weak – Ab exercises will prove to be slightly more difficult than before, but it is possible to regain strength in your core.  It’s also possible to have visible abs again 🙂

Finding time and energy to workout isn’t easy – New mothers are instructed to ‘sleep when baby sleeps’ so your time for working out will feel limited, especially when you have cooking and cleaning to do in addition to attending to baby.  You will feel EXHAUSTED and working out is not going to rank very high on your ‘to do’ list.  You’ll thank me in a few months for suggesting that you take 20 minutes of naptime to exercise regardless of the condition of your house.

What now??

So, you see you’ve got a slew of possible problems to deal with.  And these are problems that can get in the way and block our progress…if we let them.  But we’re not going to let them.  Tomorrow I will be talking about solutions and listing off a few suggestions from my own personal experience to get you on the fast track to losing the ‘baby fat’!

After everything you’ve been through and are going to go through because of that little bundle of joy, you deserve to have the body you want!  And you’re going to get it if you follow me 😉  See you tomorrow!

What changes did you notice about your body after having a baby?  Are there things that still give you a little trouble?

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Know someone who has recently had a baby?  Please share!  Lets help each other out!

Up next:  ‘How To Lose The Baby Weight’

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The Quiet Workout

(Please note:  If you are reading this blog, you agree to my disclaimer)

Look Better Naked

At the beginning of last year, I had purchased two pairs of Yoga pants and two workout DVD’s that were ‘guaranteed’ to help me lose the baby weight (according to another mom on some forum).  I got my Yoga pants and was so excited to use them but wanted to wait until the videos arrived.  I had a plan and it felt SO good.  I kept telling myself ‘This weight is coming off ASAP!’

The first DVD came in the mail, (‘Look Better Naked’), and I hurriedly threw on my new yoga pants and popped that sucker in.  I WAS SOOO EXCITED.  I only made it through five minutes.  No, not because it was too intense (it might have been but I only did five minutes, lol).  And not because it’s not a good workout – I’m sure it is.  My problem was that it was LOUD.  Does that sound insane?  Maybe, but my two month old son was down for his nap and woke up the second he heard all of the ‘jumping’.  Can you imagine my disappointment?!

So, I tried again the next day.  I said, “I’ll just do the movements softly”.  Well that didn’t work.  They move entirely way too fast for me to ‘land soft’ and because of my weight and lack of muscles, I had little control over how I landed anyway.  I gave up again around the five minute mark because of the noise I was making.  Isn’t that ridiculous?  But it’s reality.  It would be a good workout…if I had a basement.  But I don’t.  I have a one story house and my living room (where my TV is located) is right in the middle of the house.  I was so frustrated!  I did try it again a few weeks later – the last attempt – and again, it woke my son up.

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My little man right around 2 months old – when I started my workouts

You’re probably thinking, ‘Your kid is a ridiculously light sleeper!’  And he is.  Some of you may have babies that can sleep through an earthquake or fire alarm…but I know there are other moms out there who have a baby that wakes up if the wind blows…like mine does.  So this post is for other mothers who’s precious little one doesn’t want you to get a chance to ‘Look Better Naked’.  We are going to get you there.  I still recommend watching the DVD, even if you can’t go through the motions – you will probably be inspired AND, if there comes a day when you can do it, you will know the moves a little better.

So, last Monday I did my usual cardio routine for about 20 minutes but instead of following it with a 20 minute cool down walk, I decided to try a ‘low impact cardio’ video that I’ve been wanting to review.  And that sparked a few posts on losing weight after giving birth.  (Crazy how that works right?)  What video started this?  It was Fitness Blenders ‘Quiet Cardio Workout’.  And I loved it.

Quiet Cardio Workout

It is a terrific workout if you are just starting out, have a sleeping baby around, or if you are looking to do a 20 minute cool down after a more intense cardio.  I loved it, my body felt amazing afterwards and I kept thinking, ‘Why didn’t I discover this last year?!’

If you enjoyed this post, please follow me and share!  Thank you!

 

Up next:  ‘The Truth About Exercising After Having A Baby’

 

 

 

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Have FUN While Working Out!

(Having a little posting trouble tonight so forgive me if you’ve already seen this!)

Hey everyone!  I wasn’t planning on posting anything today but I was too excited not to share this with you…

I just discovered Jessica Bass Byrge…and let me tell you what, if you haven’t already, you NEED to check her out!  Oh my gosh!  She is so much fun!  Today was my ‘leg day’ so I decided to warm up with one or two of her videos to see what she is all about…and…I loved it!  Definitely works  your core and quads a lot, but it feels great and it’s a ton of fun!  What’s not to love about a fun workout?



I’m sharing the most popular video of hers, ‘Dark Horse’, (it pops up everywhere), but I have not tried this one..it looks intense.  I really wanted to include her ‘Proud Mary’ one but it wouldn’t let me add it for some reason 😦  So, go check that out when you get a chance!

Trouble viewing the video?  Check her out on Facebook:  Dance Fitness with Jessica.  Or, check out her site and order a DVD (in case your phone or internet has trouble viewing videos):  Dancefitnesswithjessica.com  I bet you’ll enjoy these!

 

If you try it, let me know what you think!  I love hearing from you!

 

And please follow my blog if you enjoyed this post!  Have a great evening!

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Goals…

Happy Monday Everyone! 

I talk about goals A LOT, but today I want to talk about the fun ones…summer goals!  What is not to love about writing down everything you want to do this summer?!  Keep the DIY home projects off this list…you can make a separate one for those.  I want you to focus on the JOYS of summer and how you can get the most out of it this year – after all, you deserve it!  This is fun and easy exercise…all you need is a pen, paper and five or ten minutes.

To help get you started, I’m sharing my own summer bucket list:

Summer Goals

Feeling inspired?  I can hardly contain my excitement to get started!  Actually, I’ve already started:  I painted my nails last night – bright orange!  And my living room is in the process of being ‘re-done’!  So, what are you waiting for?  Go start your list!!!

 

Don’t forget to ‘Follow Me’ if you enjoyed this post!  Thanks!

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What is the Best Workout for My Body?

I absolutely loved this! Please take a moment to check it out. A lot of great points are made here. Thanks Zander Gladish for a terrific post!

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HASfit Stretching

(By reading this blog, you agree to my Disclaimer)

Found this video yesterday after my workout and LOVED it!  This guy has really great energy!  Thought I’d share it with my fellow Superwomen…

I wish the stretches were longer than 15 seconds – buy hey, I’m not sore today so it must have worked fine.  I know it is kind of a beginner routine but it’s always good to refresh our knowledge of stretching.  You might learn new stretches or you might learn how to do the ones you do know better.

Like the videos I share?  Please follow me or subscribe!

 

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Taking A Break

Today is all about taking it easy!  I just wanted to remind all my beautiful Superwomen out there that your body needs that rest day!  I used to get antsy on my rest days and just wanted to be doing something.  I felt like if I took a day off, everything I had worked for would disappear (ridiculous, I know).  Of course that’s not true – we actually need rest to get better results!  I don’t have to force myself to take a day off anymore, I welcome them with open arms!

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*But only for 15minutes unless I am LOADED with SPF!!! Gotta protect that skin, ladies!

But for those of you who have  a hard time getting your brains and bodies to ‘chill out’, here’s my advice:  find a distraction!  Go shopping, go to the pool (which is a sneaky way to stay active on your rest day), just go somewhere!  Reading a magazine or surfing the web on my chill day DID NOT help me.  Just sitting still made me want to move more so I found that staying slightly active helped tremendously.

Sometimes just a walk around the mall or a lap in the pool is enough movement to get that ‘antsy’ feeling out of your system 🙂  Low cardio on your day off is fine, you just don’t want to do ANOTHER HIIT, or overwork your arms, legs or back at the gym.  So whatever you spend your rest day doing, just keep in mind that you are doing your body a huge favor, and it will repay you!

Have a fabulous Thursday!

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Making The Switch: Snacks

Part 2:  Snack Switch

The snack switch is just as important as the meal switch.  I believe that it is essential to eating healthier and lighter meals during the day.  You wont over eat at lunch because you will have had a filling snack beforehand.  But the snacks need to be healthy!!  If you’ve been snacking on junk for years, this might take time to get used to much like the breakfast switch, but you can do it!!

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Your current snack style| Healthier Alternative

Salty Chips and a Soda  |  100 Calorie popcorn and tea (hopefully unsweetened)

Peanut butter or cheese crackers  |  Peanut butter and celery or apple

Poptarts  |  Granola with dried fruits and nuts

Peanut M&Ms (or other sweets)  |  Unsalted nuts and dark chocolate

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The three step process:

Okay, so a few years ago when I was eating junk all the time, my typical snacks included things like cream filled cupcakes, sodas, energy drinks, individual chip bags, cheesy popcorn and definitely lots of chocolate.  I would never have gone from those ‘delicious’ treats to raw veggies – that’s crazy!  If you CAN do that, you are way ahead of me.  I had to take the ‘gradual approach’ much like I did with breakfast.  So I’m listing ideas for a three step process to get you snacking better!

Sample Step 1 Snacks:  Special K bars (or other treat bars with 90 calories), granola bars, Pirate booty, Russell stover’s sugar free candies, peanut butter crackers, sugar free pudding and jello, pita chips, sun chips, trail mix, smoothies…

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Sample Step 2 Snacks:  celery with peanut butter, carrots and broccoli (or any veggie) with hummus, apples and cheese or peanut butter, granola, fresh or dried fruit, kale chips, dark chocolate…

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Sample Step 3 Snacks:  plain raw veggies, plain fresh fruit, cubbed hardboiled egg whites, plain yogurt, unsalted nuts, 80% (or higher) dark chocolate…

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What is YOUR favorite healthy snack?

 

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Motivational Monday

Motivational Monday’s are back!  What’s more motivating than before and after photos??  Time to share 🙂

BEforeafter 2

The picture to the left is a few months before I GOT pregnant, although I look like I am a few months along there!  I was leading a super unhealthy lifestyle and was miserable with myself, the way I looked AND the way I felt.  My stomach hurt all the time!  I was eating ‘junk’ all through the day.  My meals were basically junk – cereal for breakfast, instant noodles for lunch, chips, sodas, pre-packaged cakes for snack.  Our dinners were often just as bad, we ate pizza, hot dogs, fries, way too much pasta and those were always followed by late night desserts.  I started getting heartburn every day.  I was in and out of the Doc’s office for stomach pain and other issues.  What a miserable place to be.

I knew a change needed to be made, but I didn’t want to give anything up.  My body had been doing everything it could to communicate with me that it wasn’t ok, but I wasn’t listening.  Finally, I got fed up with how I looked and felt and decided to do something about it.  The photo to the left is right before I started making better choices.  My mom played a major role in the lifestyle change and I owe her so much for her guidance, inspiration and especially the good ‘this is what you need to hear’ talks that straightened me out.  Changing my habits still took a little time, but it was so worth it.

Reach out to family or friends for support.  Making changes can be frustrating and overwhelming so having a strong support system is crucial to being successful.  But I know you can do it!  It feels incredible to not run out of breath climbing the stairs and it feels absolutely amazing to have the energy to play chase with my son.  I could go on and on about all the awesome things that diet and exercise changes have done for me to make me a happier person, but I’m keeping todays post short.  If you ever need more motivation or want to know more about how my life has changed for the better, just shoot me an e-mail.  I have no problem sharing!

Happy Monday!!!!

 

Personal share: I DO NOT feel comfortable taking ‘selfies’!  But I know that people like to see before/after photos and updated photos, well at least that’s the first thing I look at when I’m on someone else’s blog or website.  It’s inspiring!  If they are super embarrassing, just keep in mind, I am new to the selfie thing

If you enjoyed this post, please follow and share!  Thank you!

 

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