Getting my body back

A lot of new moms worry about losing their baby weight. I know I do. There’s a lot of stress on a new mother to get back to her pre-pregnancy state as soon as possible. I received a couple of unsolicited comments from visitors (ahem, mom!) wanting to see the baby saying things like, “Don’t be hard on yourself. It will take a couple of months for your body to go back to normal.” Well, no shit! It took 40 weeks for my body to get as big as it did to carry that nine pound baby you’re holding. I think I should get at least that same time to get it back to normal. Moms can’t be hard on themselves. It’s hard enough to deal with all your emotions and hormones raging. It’s too much to picture yourself trying to workout at the gym when you’re still recovering from ten months of carrying around a baby and then pushing the kid out of you! Relax! All good things take time. Remember that lesson in patience the baby taught you?

When I was in the hospital recovering from my c-section, my body had to reset. I couldn’t eat solid foods for that first night. I subsisted on ice chips, jello cubes, chicken broth and lots of water. When I did get the all clear to eat, I looked at the hospital menu and ordered eggs, fruit and cottage cheese. I slowly reintroduced myself to healthy food, partly in fear of what my digestive system could handle, but mostly because I was now feeding my child everything I ate.

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Breastfeeding is an amazing thing. Your body produces everything your baby needs for nourishment (except vitamin D, did you know that?). My body knows just how much food Leigh needs and makes it on demand. I’m still amazed at the whole design. God really knows what he’s doing. I didn’t want to polute his food with grease and processed sugars. I wanted to give him the best milk I could. So when it came to ordering food, I chose wisely. Fresh fruit, eggs packed with protein, baked chicken and steamed veggies. It wasn’t until that last morning before we headed home from the hospital that I ate bacon with breakfast. It was delicious. No one should cut bacon from their diet. 😉

I continued this eating habit when I returned home. I think the key is to eat home-cooked meals and avoid last resort drive thru restaurants where everything is fried. We were so fortunate to have my dad make us all sorts of home-cooked meals to hold us over those first three weeks home. My mother-in-law knows that a poppyseed salad from Portillos is the secret password to coming over for a visit.

Between eating healthy and breastfeeding, I’ve lost more than 40 pounds in seven weeks. I feel energized. My body is becoming mine again; my milk machines still belong to baby Leigh. I look forward to my running shoes hitting the pavement again. Until then, pacing the floors with Leigh suffice my need to get moving. He’s my 12 pound dumbbell- perfect weight for squats.

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