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By the time your baby is 1 year’s old, you may still have a few pounds of pregnancy weight that doesn’t seem to be shifting.
If this is you, then now is the time to think about getting rid of it, particulary if it’s affecting your self-esteem or you’re thinking about becoming pregnant again soon.
The first thing you need to do is to get organised and get a diary or notebook. Work out a realistic target weight and a realistic timescale to lose it in. Note the use of the word ‘realistic’ here. If you tell yourself that you want to lose a stone in 2 weeks, then this is both unlikely and dangerous to your health. Not to mention that you’ll be likely to fail and commiserate by stuffing your face to make you feel better.
Set your target weight
So instead, choose to lose a small amount of weight each week. You could safely and realistically aim to lose 1-2 pounds a week. This is quite an achievable target for most women and means that you could lose a stone in between 7 and 14 weeks. Put the date in your diary (perhaps your baby’s first birthday!) and work towards it.
The next thing you need to do is be honest with yourself about your eating habits. If you’re having trouble facing up to what you eat, then keep a food diary for a couple of days to see where your food problems lie. Go through your food cupboards and get rid of your unhealthy foods. If you’re not sure, then check the nutritional information on the back of food packets, tins or cartons. You’ll be amazed at the nutritional breakdown of what you deem to be a healthy snack. If you’re not all that keyed up on nutrition, then most information tables will tell you the percentage of fat/sugars/carbs that this product will give you towards your daily allowance.
When you’re next food shopping, plan your meals before you go and never go to the supermarket on an empty stomach, you’ll be amazed at the cr*p that finds itself flying into your basket when your stomach is rumbling. Actually, it’s often better to shop online. This serves two great purposes for mums. One, you don’t have to drag your little one around the shops, which isn’t always the easiest of outings. Secondly, if you plan meals online and buy your food from a supermarket such as Sainsburys, then you’re more likely to shop just for your necessities and not browse as much as you would when you’re wandering the aisles. This is also good for saving money too.
If you’re a member of a gym, then great. Dust off your trainers and get on the treadmill or book yourself in for a class. Some gyms have a creche where you can leave your child whilst you go for a workout. Phone your local gym and see if they have childcare facilities available.
If you can’t afford gym membership, then that’s not a problem. You only really need to be able to afford a good exercise DVD and you can sweat it out in your own front room. If possible, try and get a range of different DVDs so that you don’t get bored of one routine.
If you have Sky TV, then see if you have access to the Fitness channels, which have a great line-up of exercise shows that you can participate in from the comfort of your own room. If you don’t have time to watch a specific show, then just Skyplus it and save it for later!
It might seem like a mammoth task, but you know that if you make small changes to your lifestyle then you’ll be back on track in no time at all. Plenty of women manage to return to their pre-pregnancy weight, so there’s no reason why you have to be miserable with your post-baby body – get started today and you’ll feel great about yourself in no time!