Gaining weight during pregnancy – and having some of it stick around after giving birth – is common. Even if you were careful about what you ate and stayed active during pregnancy, it is still possible to end up holding on to some extra weight. Losing the baby weight can be a challenge – especially when you are caring for a new baby. Losing the baby weight is not complicated but it does require you to identify a few priorities and be consistent in your efforts.
Make nutrition a priority
The food and drink that you put in your body both have a significant impact on your weight loss. Take a close look at the type and amount of food you are eating. Are you still consuming the extra calories you ate during pregnancy? Are you regularly eating highly processed foods? In order to lose fat, you must burn more calories than you consume. Finding the right balance between fueling your body and maintaining a calorie deficit is key. An easy place to start is with processed foods. Highly processed foods are typically high in calories and super palatable. When a food is super palatable it means that the food is very easy to eat. You can easily eat excessive amounts of calories when you have a diet that includes a lot of processed foods. Cutting out most or all processed foods will help you reduce the number of calories you consume each day. If the food comes in a plastic wrapper, has a long shelf life, and/or can be microwaved, there is a good chance it is a processed food. Making nutrition a priority is a foundational part of losing weight after you have a baby.
Make sleep a priority
Getting advice to make sleep a priority when you are a new mom may seem comical. Quality sleep can feel elusive when you have a new baby. It is true that you are going to be living off of less sleep than usual when you are caring for a newborn. However, you can take steps to improve the quality of the sleep you do get. Poor sleep can make it more difficult for you to have energy to exercise and willpower to make good food choices. A few tips for better sleep during this stage of life include: nap when your baby naps, cut off caffeine consumption early in the day, avoid watching television while in bed, and shut off devices a couple hours before bedtime if possible. Developing these good sleep habits can help you improve the quality of the sleep you do get. Every minute of sleep counts when you have a newborn – take steps to make your sleep high quality. Anything you can do to improve the quality of your sleep will have a positive impact on your weight loss efforts.
Make resistance training a priority
Resistance training should be your priority as you try to lose the baby weight. Building muscle through resistance training will help you increase your metabolism and keep the weight off long term. It can be tempting to choose a cardio-based training program in an effort to burn as many calories as possible. However, your body quickly adapts to that type of training program which will lead you to eventually reach a plateau. The muscle you build through resistance training will burn more calories throughout the day and, in the long run, help you keep the weight off much more effectively than a cardio-based program.
It may take some time, but you can lose the baby weight. If you are looking for a plan that includes information on nutrition and training, check out the programs and bundles from MAPS Fitness. The Fit Mom Bundle includes a nutrition guide and three different resistance training programs to choose from. It is a great place to start your journey of losing the baby weight.