Are you struggling to get back on track with your health and fitness goals after having a baby? You’re definitely not alone! Most new moms find it difficult to juggle workouts with taking care of a new baby, but you don’t need tons of time or effort to succeed. All you really need are a few essential health and wellness tips, like the ones below, to reach your long-term goals.
Small Changes Can Lead to Big Successes
If you’re looking to get back in shape, you may think that making major changes to your diet and fitness routines is the best way to go. In reality, drastic changes rarely lead to long-term results, so consider taking it easy on yourself by making micro-changes to improve your health and fitness. For instance, you could buy ankle weights, which, according to Fitter Living, can help build extra muscle. Ankle weights are much less expensive than a gym membership or home fitness gear but they can turn just about any activity into a chance to fit in some extra exercise. You can wear them while you do chores, work at your desk, or even out for evening strolls.
Other small exercise steps you can take to improve shed unwanted pounds like taking jump rope breaks, walking your dog, or planning more active date nights with your partner. Those tiny little changes can add up to major differences in the calories you burn each day, but you can also try making small changes to your diet. Simple food swaps that can get you back on track include trading soda for seltzer or dried fruit for fresh.
Self-Care Can Make Weight Loss Less StressfulWhile it’s hard for new moms to avoid stress, it’s important to understand how stress can impact weight loss. You may already know that eating more when you feel stressed can lead to weight gain and other health issues, but what you may not know is that those chronic feelings of stress can actually change some of the chemical processes in your body that are responsible for fat loss and metabolism.
When you feel stressed, your body tends to produce more cortisol that works to slow your digestive, immune and reproductive processes. That means in addition to feeling tired and sluggish, you are also more likely to crave processed foods and fats. Stress can also directly impact your metabolism, and you may end up burning fewer calories when you are feeling stressed out about parenting responsibilities or other issues.
So, how can you combat stress and fuel your health and weight-loss efforts? According to What to Expect, you can start by adding more self-care to your daily routine, which can include more mindfulness, online journaling or relaxing walks.
Self-Acceptance Can Make Staying Healthy a Focus
Honestly, there’s nothing wrong with taking steps to shed the baby weight, so long as the measures you take are also beneficial for your health. The thing is that you may never be able to get your pre-baby body back and that’s totally okay! Rather than feeling disappointed or defeated by those body changes, try to focus on the purpose of them to begin with: bringing life into the world.
Seriously, that should be considered a superpower, so if your belly or breasts or thighs take on a new shape consider them badges of courage and strength. Cultivating this all-important positive body image can also take some work and time, so try to be patient with yourself as you adjust to your new body and your new parenting responsibilities. If it helps, try connecting with body-positive social media accounts or reach out to friends for added support. Just make sure you are avoiding dangerous diets and fitness fads that can wreck your health.
Having a baby changes everything, and that can include your body. That doesn’t mean you need to take drastic measures in an effort to reverse all of those changes. Try to focus on making smaller steps instead so you don’t get overwhelmed and watch as those tiny changes begin to add up to major successes for your body and your mind!
About Dr. Thais Aliabadi
As one of the nation’s leading OB-GYNs, Dr. Thaïs Aliabadi offers the very best in gynecological and obstetric care. Together with her warm professional team, Dr. Aliabadi supports women through all phases of life. She fosters a special one-on-one relationship between patient and doctor. We invite you to establish care with Dr. Aliabadi. Please click here to make an appointment or call us at (844) 863-6700.
Written by Emma Grace Brown, who lives her life by her rules; and it works! She promotes female empowerment through her website. Her mission is to help those who live with self-doubt to realize they don’t have to mold themselves to conventionality – she does by the philosophy “My Life. My Rules.”.