Having a baby is a definitive time in a woman’s life and should be experienced with nothing but happiness. However, your bundle of joy often comes at the expense of your own body and gaining weight after pregnancy is one of the unfortunate after effects. Many woman find themselves struggling with postpartum weight loss and this is mainly because there are so many overwhelming factors involved during this process. Looking after your new-born involves late nights and early mornings which leads to sleep deprivation, skipped meals and an overall lack of motivation. Considering that, it’s easy to see why it’s so difficult to lose weight after having a baby!


My Postpartum Struggle with Weight Loss

Funnily enough, my postpartum weight gain was not a typical pregnancy related process. I gradually gained weight after having my son due to lack of sleep (as my son had colic) which caused poor eating habits. I was also working shifts at the time and this worsened the effects of gaining weight after pregnancy as I was unable to breastfeed for more than 4 four months due to being away from my baby for too long during the day and night. Additionally, I underestimated the impact stress had on my postpartum struggle and did not actively do anything at the time to manage my anxiety as my focus was solely on the wellbeing of our baby. Needless to say, it was a recipe for postpartum disaster and I progressively found myself buying bigger clothing sizes due to weight gain.


My Journey to Get Back to Full Health after Giving Birth

Postpartum struggle with weight loss

My first step was a reality check to accept that I might not be able to return to my pre-pregnancy weight and that’s okay! The second step was to realise that postpartum weight loss is a journey of health and not a race to lose weight in the shortest possible amount of time to be ‘summer ready’. The third step was to develop a plan of action with doable steps which would be able to fit into my busy lifestyle.

Embrace the Great Outdoors

I love the outdoors and cannot bear the fact of having to go to the gym every day in order to see weight loss results.  I firmly believe that if you don’t enjoy an activity then you won’t be consistent with it so naturally I started taking walks in the park and doing easy hiking trails to lose the postpartum weight. Getting a fitness watch and pairing it with my smartphone also helped with setting a schedule and keeping track of my activity levels. Also, don’t underestimate small efforts like simply choosing a parking spot that’s further from the entrance – every little bit of activity helps when it comes to your weight loss journey!

Everything in Moderation

I found that cutting out food groups simply made me binge and fall-off the wagon thereby worsening my postpartum struggle. So I simply ate everything but in moderation and by tracking my food intake on a calorie counting app, this also helps to keep cravings at bay. Chocolate, bread, wine, pizza – you can have it all, just not all at once!

It’s a Journey not a Race

Considering all the things that life throws at us, I’ve accepted that my postpartum weight loss is a journey and not a race. Putting pressure on myself will just hinder my progress anyway as stress does not pair well with weight loss. Take small steps, make healthier choices, keep working on yourself, the results will eventually have no choice but to show!


**This post was done in collaboration with Re-Centre.


Author: Gaynor

Half city dweller. Half road trip explorer. Full supporter of local South African travel!

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