Having a baby after weight loss surgery is exciting. Unfortunately, losing excess weight and getting back in shape after having a baby can be a difficult process filled with ups and downs. For starters, the motivation to change doesn’t always last as a mom. Also, losing weight doesn’t always translate into fitting into smaller clothes.
The goal after weight loss surgery is to eat between 1,000 to 1,200 calories per day if you are not breastfeeding. We recommend that breastfeeding moms should have at least 300 more calories daily.
So if you are having a baby after weight loss surgery and are struggling to get back in shape, there are a few ways to lose the excess baby weight. Here are 3 simple yet practical strategies to lose baby weight and get back in shape.
1. Practical Ways to Exercise
Don’t worry, as you may probably already caught on – nothing is easy for moms. Remember, most moms take some time before rerouting themselves into their old workout routine. Walking a little bit on a daily basis can make a massive difference in how you look and how you feel. Exploring different routes can keep your walks interesting and prevent boredom. Consider walking in parks, nature trails, or even exploring your neighborhood. Changing scenery can also provide mental stimulation and make your walks more enjoyable.
It is recommended that new mothers get 150 minutes of aerobic activity every week. The 150 minutes can be broken into 30-minute intervals 5 days of a week.
After having a baby, diving right back into your exercise routine isn’t usually plausible.
At first, you can start by walking around the block. Even for 10 to 20 minutes a couple of times, a day can benefit you more than you think. Having a purpose to get out of pajamas and go out with your newborn can bring a lot of positive attributes. As you continue re-gaining energy, go for long walks each day. Monitoring your steps or using a fitness tracker can help you track your progress and set goals. Aim for a certain number of steps per day or gradually increase your step count each week. This can provide a sense of accomplishment and keep you motivated.
2. Practical Ways to Cut Calories
It’s easy to care about your weight, but it is hard to do something about it. Many moms stop caring about their weight after having a baby. Life’s greatest miracle can take a toll on you, don’t let it overcome your sense of self.
Start by cutting back on food and calories slowly. This literally means to just take ONE less bite of your meal each day. Diets aren’t always the remedy because of the strict guidelines you have to follow. Start small, and every day take one less bite. The changes may be unnoticed, but over time it can make a huge difference.
We recommend that you reduce your daily amount of carbohydrates intake and focus on protein, fruits, as well as vegetables. Eat small snacks between meals every 2-3 hours. Make sure you get a minimum of 1800 calories a day.
Here are some healthier food alternatives that taste good and contain fewer calories.
- Healthy, lean proteins
- Whole grains
- Fruits and vegetables
Alongside your dietary and exercise adjustments, it’s crucial to stay well-hydrated by drinking an adequate amount of water throughout the day. Water helps with digestion, boosts metabolism, and keeps you feeling full, which can aid in managing your food intake. While the focus should be on sustainable changes, it’s also important to cultivate a positive mindset and practice mindful eating. Be present during meal times, savor each bite, and listen to your body’s hunger and fullness cues. Avoid distractions such as television or electronic devices, as they can lead to mindless overeating. Remember, healthy weight loss is a gradual process, and it’s normal to experience fluctuations along the way.
3. Get Out in the World
Your life doesn’t stop when you have a baby, so why should you? Staying active and finding ways to incorporate past hobbies into your new life. Whether it’s joining a local sports team, taking up a new exercise class, or joining a book club, finding activities that you enjoy can help you regain a sense of identity outside of being a parent.
Although you have new responsibilities, it’s really important to have some time for yourself. Getting back into life can really help make you feel better about yourself and also find the motivation to focus on yourself.
With the baby: Obviously taking care of your baby should always be a top priority. When the baby is sleeping and it is possible, find ways to
- Take care of yourself
Without the baby:
- Get your nails done
- Get your hair done
- Go shopping
Taking care of yourself also means prioritizing self-care. This can include activities such as practicing mindfulness or meditation, indulging in a relaxing bath, or simply taking a few minutes each day to do something you enjoy, like reading a book or listening to music. Taking care of your mental and emotional well-being is just as important as taking care of your physical health.
Remember, finding a balance between your responsibilities as a parent and your own personal needs is key. It’s okay to ask for help when you need it and to set aside time for yourself. By staying active, pursuing your passions, and taking care of yourself, you’ll not only feel better about yourself, but you’ll also be better equipped to handle the demands of parenthood.
Set a Goal
Having a baby after weight loss surgery feels amazing. Your body has gone through a lot of changes not only from bariatric surgery but throughout the entire pregnancy. Losing excess baby weight and getting back in shape is a challenge, but setting deadlines and weekly targets to meet your goals work great as motivation. Set a realistic goal after having a baby!
Alongside your weight loss goals, consider setting non-scale goals as well. These can be related to your overall well-being, such as improving your energy levels, reducing stress, or enhancing your self-confidence. Focusing on non-scale victories can help you maintain a positive mindset and appreciate the other positive changes that come with a healthier lifestyle. Remember that the postpartum period is a time of adjustment and caring for a newborn, so be kind to yourself and be flexible with your goals. It’s normal for progress to be slower during this time. Celebrate every milestone, no matter how small, and don’t be too hard on yourself if you experience setbacks. The key is to maintain a balanced and sustainable approach to weight loss while prioritizing your physical and mental well-being.