9 Months On 9 Months Off: Losing The Baby Weight
So I confess, during pregnancy, I loved potatoes. It didn’t matter what type of potato, because for this mommy in the making any form of potato would do! Add weight here. Oh and I gained an obsessive love for Bdubs. I find this so strange considering that I hated it when my husband worked in professional baseball and we frequented there way too much. Add weight here. Oh and my sweet husband loved cooking his pregnant wife “healthy veggie dishes” with olive oil. A whole lot of olive oil. Cups of olive oil. Say goodbye to calorie moderation and add a whole lot of weight here. We live on an island. A hot, sticky, humid island. Add some buckets of water weight here. Yes, and I have issues stemming from an accident, which made me move slower than that of molasses, so go ahead, you get it. Add weight here. Add it all up and what do you get? Me. Pregnant. Relatively huge (for me). On the BMI scale, you can say it: morbidly obese. Oh and don’t worry, I was well aware, because people were kind enough to tell me, “You are SO big.” Well geez, “Thanks, I guess?” With all of my past experience in nutrition, exercise, psychology, and medicine, you would think that I could curtail the weight gain, right? Well, maybe if those dang pregnancy hormones would have gotten out of the way, then it would have been possible; but lo and behold, those hormones are a work of the Devil. You would have thought that I was carrying twins. Oh and that lovely question was asked too. Insert evil pregnancy thoughts here. Oh no, our little miracle was born healthy and a whole 6 pounds 2 ounces.
So now post-pregnancy begins…
In 3 days, I dropped about 20 pounds. Fastest weight loss ever! However, this still left me with a whole field of potatoes to burn off and of course, the gallons of olive oil consumed.
So, how did I burn off that baby belly? Well, first I started with prayer. Yes, that is right. I prayed. Anyone who attempts weight loss knows about temptation, impatience, and the “I want to be at my goal now” feelings. So, I gave it to the big man upstairs.
About 1-2 pounds per week, every week, the weight started coming off. That is, with healthy food choices and very limited light exercise. I remember being in undergrad at Wayne State University and my organic chemistry professor saying, “You know why there are so many diet books out there on the market? Because, they don’t work.” Give this man an award, please. This is so true. There is no quick and healthy fix to weight loss. This goes back to Physics 101 and the law stating that every action has a reaction. I saw this desire for quick fixes with my personal training clients too. Some who even made the unfortunate mistake of attempting to lose the fat with liposuction. I will spare you the details, but what a disgusting procedure lipo is and the results can be downright unflattering. As for the procedure itself, those are visual memories from medical school that I could do without. My advice, don’t do liposuction unless it means sucking those poor food choices out of your hand and placing them back into the processed food aisle where they came from in the first place.
So, what is one to do? What did I do? How did I achieve my pre-baby body (minus a scar that is “ugly” in one way, but so beautiful in another way)? How did I shed 60 pounds in less than 9 months?
Well, this is what I did:
I breastfed. I still breastfeed and my baby is almost 9 months old. #normalizebreastfeeding
I ate. I still eat. I love to eat and I eat as much as I want. I even eat potatoes, although they no longer have the same appeal. If you want to increase your metabolism, starving yourself is not the way to do it. You must eat.
I ate an abundance of fruits and vegetables. It is amazing how you can ditch calorie counting when you choose food that is loaded with water. Oh, and add a decreased need for that facial here; because, the added hydration just makes your skin look so much better.
I eliminated dairy and soy. This one was not necessarily by choice, but rather by necessity. You see my baby and these do not get along. Jack is intolerant to dairy and soy and apparently, I had the same intolerances all of my life and I was unaware. As time goes on and I am still dairy and soy free, I continue to see the added benefits of this lifestyle; and there is a wealth of information out there on just how detrimental dairy and soy are to your health. More importantly, I am experiencing the positive benefits of eliminating this junk from my diet. Oh, and I am not deprived, because there are so many options for substitution that I can even enjoy chocolate, which is one thing my life slightly depends on for inner peace 😉 My new favorite place on island is called Island Naturals Cafe and I have found delight in knowing that they make the most delicious chocolate macaroons. YUM. Thank you Jessica a.k.a. CoCo Nut Rose for your holistic nutrition knowledge and mad skills at creating decadent treats! If you are on island, then check them out for a Vegan’s delight!
I ate meat, but not just any meat. Personally, I have not ate red meat since I was a child. I stick to turkey, chicken, and fish; but again, not just any turkey, chicken, or fish. When I rotated in plastic surgery as a medical student, the plastic surgeon that I had the pleasure of working with said, “You want to know where I think gynecomastia comes from?” This doctor strongly believes that gynecomastia, a.k.a “man boobs”, comes from “Costco chicken!” Yes, those evil little hormones once again. All those hormones are added to plump up your chicken and as a consequence, consumers plump up too. So with that said, no Costco brand chicken for me and no hormone-fed, antibiotic infused chicken either. I search for chicken that was raised in as natural of an environment as possible. Smaller chickens with less ‘roid rage for me, please. As for fish, I skip the farm-raised options and opt for some wild salmon.
I ate beans, nuts (mostly walnuts and almonds), and grains like quinoa, brown rice, and oatmeal.
I sparingly used olive oil and coconut oil.
I switched to almond milk in my coffee.
Add all of this to my sheer determination of not wanting to waste money on or even consider becoming comfortable in post-pregnancy clothes, my desire to look good naked (in my eyes) for my husband, my strong family history of heart disease, my Dad’s untimely passing due to a massive stroke at the age of 53, my desire to be alive as long as possible for my gorgeous baby boy, and there you have my personal motivation for losing the pregnancy weight. My goal is health. I already have been given enough medical issues to contend with due to unfortunate circumstances, so I had to regain a sense of control and do what I could do with what I had to work with.
With that said, what is your goal? Beauty surely is in the eye of the beholder and it comes in all shapes and sizes. Living on this island has been living proof (another day, another blog) of that truth. If your goal is better health, then I hope that my story of success has been or will become a source of inspiration. You are capable of achieving your own weight loss goal. I hope that you will find your source(s) of motivation and that you too, will gain better health and better quality of life.
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Thank you for taking the time to read about my weight loss experience. I hope my story will help you along your own journey. Feel free to like/share/comment/ask questions in the response section below. I would love to hear from you! Also, if you enjoyed this post, then I would love for you to join me at my Facebook Writer’s Page!
“A Healthier” Nicole