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The Postpartum Belly

My plan is not going the way it was, well, planned.   I didn’t lose a full pound this week so there’s no way I’m going to lose 6 total by May 19.  That’s okay.  I was surprised at my reaction because I honestly didn’t care.  I’ve had a huge realization this week.

I need to love my postpartum body.  A pregnant belly is seen as something so beautiful, and it’s celebrated because a life is growing inside.  When pregnant, the belly isn’t obvious until well into the second half, so there’s several months of work in there before people begin celebrating it. 

For some reason our culture thinks that as soon as the baby’s born, the mother needs to look exactly the same as before.  I was really hating my saggy, stretch marked belly and then I came across an article about postpartum weight loss.  It said it can take up to a year before your belly skin shrinks back down.  A full year!  That’s longer than I was even pregnant.

So this got me thinking… if a pregnant belly is seen as something so beautiful, why shouldn’t a postpartum belly be beautiful as well?  After all, it’s the same belly, only better because I endured the 40 weeks of pregnancy and I pushed him out with my own strength.  Not only that, but I’m a small person and I had a large baby and too much amniotic fluid.  It literally looked like I was carrying twins at the end. 

As long as I’m trying to better myself (to me this means eating healthy and exercising) then I can love my body and especially my beautiful and still round belly.  It hasn’t even been 6 months yet and I’m already back to below my pre-pregnancy weight. 

And for the stretch marks?  I thought I was going to hate them.  In fact I did so well and didn’t get a single mark until 38 weeks.  Then one day I felt my skin tear and now my belly is covered in them.  But I earned them.  I lovingly call them my “mama marks”.  And I don’t care if someone else thinks they’re unsightly.The first pic is pre-pregnancy, then 40 weeks pregnant, and almost 6 months postpartum.

I did have a few things happen this week that I am so proud of.  I lost an inch off my waistline!  Now I have 2 more inches to go until I’m all the way back.  I’ve been doing push ups and sit ups followed by yoga in the evenings and I can’t believe how well my body is toning up.  This extra workout is making such a huge difference.  I’m very excited about it.

Because I lost another inch off my waistline, I had to put away my pregnancy underwear!  This was a really big deal to me.  I wasn’t fitting in my pre-preg ones because my belly still needed the extra room to be comfortable.  Well, I’m excited to say they’re put away for good, or if I get pregnant again.

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Some new goals

I’ve only managed to lose another pound in two weeks.  It’s totally my fault though.  I missed an entire week of the gym because I was sick.  I’m better now and I was so happy to dance in Zumba this morning.  I also have strayed very far from my diet.  My husband and I tag teamed a chocolate ganache cake for a party we hosted.  Luckily it was mostly eaten by our guests, but I have eaten too many of the leftovers. That’s just one thing, but for the past 2 weeks I haven’t really cared about what I’ve been eating.

So anyway, my parents are coming to visit in a little over 3 weeks.  I originally wanted to do an 8 week thing, but now I have more motivation for my weight loss.  My new goal is to lose 6 pounds by the time they come.  Is it realistic?  Yes, but not probable.  I think now that I have a reason I can really work harder and have a strong motivation.  I’m actually going to cut calories now.   I need to track my food and keep a close eye on what goes in my mouth.  Honestly eating a strict vegetarian diet and going to the gym has been enough to lose a pound a week, so now if I pay close attention to my food I could maybe lose 2 pounds a week.

I’m not doing this so I can impress my parents.  I just think that with a deadline I can work harder.  It’s nice to have an end in sight anyway.

Well, wish me luck!

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Week 1; a review

I have successfully completed the first of 8 weeks for my cleanse.  I have to say, this week was just amazing.  I don’t know if it was working out again and getting all those endorphins, or going vegan, but I felt great.  We had some wonderful food this week, I can’t believe none of it had any animal product in it.

I honestly think most of it was taking the animal product out of my diet.  I was vegan prepregnancy and during that time I felt great too.  I didn’t go all out vegan this first week though.  My husband is into chocolate making and he made his first truffles.  He infused the cream with coffee and it was TO DIE FOR!!  He’s such an amazing chocolatier.  I know it isn’t the best to stuff your face with homemade truffles while on a cleanse diet, but hey, what can you do?

I attended a yoga class this week.  It was great and I was more flexible than I thought I was going to be.  So I didn’t make a total ass of myself, lol.  I have been to a few yoga classes where I did.  My gym rocks, childcare has been great and the baby has just loved it.  I love my hour a day of alone time. 

This week has been the beginning of something wonderful.

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