Hey guys! I cannot believe it, but baby Liam is going to be six weeks old this coming Sunday! I mean, WHERE does the time go? Life is always a blur, but when you add a newborn to the mix, things get strait up crazy! This is my third child, and thus my third time going through the whole pregnancy/labor/postpartum cycle. We were WAY more prepared for the postpartum part this go around, (check out my tips on how to make the post partum period easier for that) but there was one part about this pregnancy that was definitely more difficult. Simply put, I was way bigger this go around.
I started out weighing more than I did with either of my other two pregnancies, this baby stayed in longer than either of my other two, three babies in four years, I’m getting older, whatever you want to blame it on, my body just did not handle this pregnancy the same as the other two. Plus, let’s face it, pregnancy just does a number on your body no matter who you are or what your situation is! So, now that I have done the whole “body after baby” thing three times, I thought I would share a few tips on how I stay confident after that sweet little one arrives, and your pre baby body didn’t come with it! Everyone is different, but even if I help one person have an easier time post-partum, this post will be worth it.
1) No body shaming. Your body just did an amazing incredible thing. In fact, it just did the single most amazing thing it is capable of doing, it helped to create a life, and it grew that life for nine months. Not only does your body deserve your respect for accomplishing that, it deserves your love, gratitude and admiration. As women we are naturally our own worst critics, and sometimes negative thoughts enter our minds subconsciously. When this happens, turn it around. That negative energy doesn’t help you lose weight and it doesn’t help you feel confident in the meantime. If I looked at myself in the mirror and my initial thought was, “I am a whale.” I quickly banished that thought and forcibly said to myself and my body, “we have a ways to go, but we can do this. We can do hard things, look what we just accomplished!” As silly as that sounds, after awhile the negative thoughts don’t come as often, and when they do they aren’t as cruel or unfounded. I found myself feeling confident, happy, and determined, rather than dejected and unhopeful, and that is what a new Mama needs in her life!
2) Get ready for the day. It is really hard to be motivated to get ready when your clothes still don’t fit, you are exhausted from caring for a newborn and you have no plans to go anywhere, trust me I know. I’m not saying you have to get primped like Miss America every day, but put clothes on and do a quick five minute makeup. It is amazing how much more human you will feel. I have found that when I get ready I am way more likely to get out (even if its just a walk around the block) which is healthy for you and baby. The goal is not to overwhelm yourself, but to try to get into a routine. I give myself two “pajama days” a week. So twice a week I can stay in cozy sweats or work out clothes with no make up, but the other five days I have to pull myself together.
3) Work what works (aka: dresses, shoes and accessories). The few months directly postpartum maxi skirts and comfy dresses are a girls best friend! Pair them with some adorable flats or comfy knitted wedges and you look super put together with relatively no effort! It is amazing how a pair of cute shoes can totally elevate any outfit to the next level, and they will always fit you! I try not to buy any clothes the first few months after baby since I am focused on losing weight and so I splurge on shoes instead! They will make you look/feel cute now AND once you’ve hit your goals. I got these adorable flats at Payless.com and I am obsessed! They are having a major sandal sale right now so be sure to check them out and treat yourself! I tend to keep my jewelry simple, but one or two well chosen pieces can also help you feel confident and put together!
4) Set REALISTIC goals. Having a physical plan will not only help you feel more confident after baby but it will help you achieve results! Everyone is different, so your goals will most likely not be the same as mine, but just to give you an idea here is what my plan was for my body after this third baby. First two weeks: rest as much as possible, drink a lot of water. Third week: Cut out sugar. Fourth week: Begin healthy eating plan. Fifth week: Add in walking 5x a week to incorporate light exercise. After six week Dr. Approval: Incorporate work out plan. Continue all these steps until goal is achieved! It helped me to roll out my plan one small change at a time. Although I am still waiting for my six week apt. I have been able to steadily lose weight just implementing the steps so far.
5) Give yourself time. It took you nine months to put on the weight, so it’s not going to come off overnight. Don’t focus on daunting end goals. Celebrate small victories, and be proud of yourself for making the effort to change.
6.) Find your WHY. Bringing a new little person into the world tends to tilt your center of gravity, and it is supposed to! I have found that trying to get skinny to “be a size 2” or fit in a certain pair of jeans just does not work for me, it just seems shallow and unimportant. But taking care of myself and staying healthy IS important, so I had to dig deep and find my reasons for caring. My why right now is that I want to stay physically attractive to my husband, I want to have the energy to chase and play with my sweet children. I want to live a long happy life with them. I want to be able to bear another child. To me, these reasons are important. Focusing on the reasons behind why I care to change my body motivates me to work hard and stick with it.
Becoming a mother is a beautiful gift, congratulations! I hope these tips help you embark on your journey of motherhood with confidence and grace. Remember, we can do hard things!
Special thanks to Payless for sponsoring this post! I am a major fan-girl of theirs, because they basically always have some deal or another going on! Be sure to follow them via social media so you don’t miss out! Instagram | Pinterest | Facebook | YouTube | Twitter
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Payless via Rhythm One. The opinions and text are all mine.