|Little Minnow (AKA Trek) now at 10 wks|
I had our 5th child January 6th Trek Anderson Neeley. I LOVE HIM TO PIECES! He is so precious. The one thing I do not love is the extra weight he left me with! Now that he is a few months old I am working to take it all off. I had 17 pounds to go when he was around 6-7 wks old. I now have 14 lbs and am so glad it is not more! One thing I noticed when searching the web for post natal weight loss ideas was that a lot of the tips were only helpful if you weren't already making healthy choices. Suggestions to give up soda and fast food although good ideas aren't that helpful if you already subscribe to a healthy lifestyle. So if you haven't already start by eliminating the obvious junk like soda, candy, and processed foods. Now if you are already past that I discovered there were not a lot of new ideas really, just the same tried and true stuff that applies to all of healthy living. So here is where I am at in the process and what I am doing to shed this weight as fast as possible!.
Make time for you!
The first thing I did to start that process was to get my sweet little minnow on a 2 1/2 to 3 hr feeding schedule so that I have the freedom to leave "little minnow" with daddy while I work out. A bit of set aside time makes a big difference. If you plan exercise ahead of time it will happen. If you expect it to just happen it won't.
Drink to your healthI try to drink a lot of water and herbal tea and throw in some lemon to keep bloating at bay and detox the system. I know you have all heard this a million times! However keeping track of how much you drink a day and using a sports bottle with a straw really helps me.
ExerciseI joined a gym... That was a biggy for me as we don't have extra cash lying around with 5 kids, but it allows me to focus on working out and keeps me from having to stop every few minutes to help kiddos. I try to go early before my husband leaves for work. He is great about filling in for me that hour and gets the kids fed and going on their morning routine. One thing that helps in that department is to have the kids know what is expected of them. Every day is the same in that they all know to get dressed, make beds, and clean rooms up before breakfast. Then they eat and do their chores (bathroom and dishes) before we start homeschool at 8 to 8:30. So whether it is me or dad they can keep the morning moving along.
Find alternates to the gym that you can do if you can't get help with the kids. Here are a few I like..
|SHAPE magazines Top 10 Moves to Tone Your Trouble Zones|
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Work out with a video series like Turbo Jam, Insanity or P90X
Work out with free online workout videos from netflix, hulu, youtube, etc,,
Visit six sisters stuff a great blog for a complete list of 25 workouts you can just click on! Thanks girls!
Grab your dumbells and throw a few reps in between commercials while you are watching TV at night. Take the kids for a hike, push that huge stroller all over town, dance with the kids to pandora, or just set the timer for 30 minutes and do whatever exercises come to mind till it goes off.
Take advantage of FREE APPS that help you with free workouts, diet and exercise logs, motivate you or track your progress. I like the free Nike Training Club app from itunes so far the best, but there is A LOT out there!
|Photo from Total Beauty|
Exercise is a HUGE component to weight loss, and body shaping, but so is diet. By diet I do not mean to go on one! Just adjust the quality of what you eat. I follow these rules to keep me on track..
Try to skip as much as possible packaged pre-made foods.
When you do by packaged foods read labels. All natural is a good start but even sugar can claim that so look a little deeper. Keep in mind if it is not organic and it is from a large company like kraft or gm the grains may be genetically modified since they are not required to label it as such. So try to stick to organic. I can't afford to do everything organic so I usually make a homemade version wherever possible
I add extra veggies and beans to soups, casseroles, eggs, and most any dinner dish to up the nutrition, fiber and taste factor. This is easier to do if you have a fridge stocked with veggies. Right now I have cucumbers, carrots, beets, onions, garlic, celery, kale, spinach, mixed field greens, zucchini, mushrooms, and Tons of fruit in my fridge. That gives me and the kids a ton of snack options... I have lots of recipes here on this blog just check out this link to see the recipes from healthy egg rolls on the grill, homemade tortillas, to granola and other staples. There are lots to be inspired by and they are all simple if I made them!
Focus on what to eat not just what not to eat.
Go quality and eat those super foods!
I love adding quinoa, chia seeds, barley, nuts etc.. into snacks, muffins, smoothies, and meals to bump up the nutrition level. I have a whole list of "newer" super foods on a previous post here "10 new super foods!"
Avoid white flour and white sugar
Choose whole grains and healthier sweeteners like stevia, xylitol, sucanat, and honey or date puree. I have a whole article on all natural healthier sweeteners HERE at "The Sweet Stuff Line up" and it gives you the low down on chemical sweeteners as well. Stevia, xylitol, sucanat, and honey are all big hits at our house.
Make it! don't buy it!
Lots of unwanted ingredients can easily be avoided by simply skipping the packaged version and making it yourself. I make tortillas, ranch dressing mix , biscuit mix , pancake mix, tomato sauce, yogurt, granola bars, granola, humus, berry pancake syrup, smoothie packs for the freezer, Popsicles, frozen burritos, coconut milk ice cream, cough syrup, pizza sauce and crust, pumpkin spice lattes, you name it we make it! You can find all these recipes HERE or search DIY kitchen at the side of the blog. It saves a ton of money too!
Eat often and don't skip meals.
If you eat less you will weigh less right? Well not exactly... You need to eat to fuel your nursing if you are a new mom, or to fuel your life and exercise. Eat 6 small meals a day rather than 3 large ones with lots of snacks. This keeps you full, helps you make better choices and keeps your blood sugar in check.
Learn to cook! It makes healthy eating so much yummier and creative!
Eat fat and love it!
That is right... I said it...eat fat and like it! The right fat that is. You still want to skip that hydrogenated fat, but go for it with organic unrefined coconut oil. Coconut oil is a delicious alternative to margarine and butter that you can bake and cook with. We butter our toast with it and use it on everything. It is so good for you I throw some in my smoothies! Here is a longer explanation of all the health benefits of coconut oil and how to use it Here at an earlier post "One of nature's best healers! 20 NEW reasons to love coconut oil!
Keep a food and exercise journal.
By keeping track of what you eat and when you get a real picture of your overall nutrition and can easily spot your weaknesses. You can also spot when you tend to lapse in judgment and prep yourself for the next time. I gotta say you think twice about that bite of chocolate cake if you are going to have to write it down. Get a free printable fitness journal from my blog here fitness freebie -free printable fitness journal.
Rule out food intolerances.
Many people find gluten, wheat, dairy or other food intolerances to really hinder weightloss and their well being. My digestion hasn't been good since baby arrived so I am avoiding lactose, and wheat for a while to see if I feel better and to get rid of the bloating. These irritants often hamper weight loss as well. Many people on gluten free diets have shown remarkable weight loss progress and great gains in their overall health.
Quit stressing about it!
I have to admit I struggle with this one. Stress will slow your metabolism, increase the hormone cortisol which tells your body to retain weight around your belly, cause you to crave sweets, and sabotage your efforts to make healthier choices. So find an activity that helps you relax, take your B vitamins that stress depletes as well as your regular supplements, take a few deep breaths and find a few moments to thank the Lord for all the good in your life. Gratitude melts stress, negativity and draws you closer to your creator.