Thursday, 13 June 2013

A Slimmer Me

Becoming a mother is one of the most rewarding experiences in life (supposedly but the jury can be still out on that sometimes ha!).  But it did mean waving goodbye to my washboard tummy (and my social life).  Gyms, diet plans, coaches, even friends and relatives, all offer different advice on the best way to lose weight.  Everyone seems to know what is best, but caring for my boys full time means joining any structured exercise class or gym can be tricky!

Here I am improvising with tins of baked beans:

For new mums, the best weight loss aids need to be quite accessible and slot into busy home life:

1) Healthy Foods
2) Breastfeeding
3) The Pram/Pushchair (especially if you push them up steep inclines!)
4) The Sling (as they get bigger that is quite an exercise, actually getting a wriggly baby in there in the first place must burn heaps of calories…)
5) Housework (sorry to mention that dirty word!)

Maintaining a healthy diet including fresh fruit and vegetables can help your body to repair the damage caused during pregnancy. Your baby will also benefit from your good example and be less likely to suffer from obesity in the future.  I definitely need to work on my good example setting – so far the boys must think cake and chocolate are a key part of mummy’s five a day!

Remarkably breastfeeding can burn an extra 500 calories per day!  On top of passing on your antibodies to your child providing them with a ready-made immune system, which can protect them from all kinds of bugs and illnesses, not to mention that it’s free!  Although it can take a little getting used too, to this day I wish I had managed to succeed at it.

All diet coaches agree that walking is one of the best forms of exercise available, and you don’t have to be a member of a swanky gym or book a class to do it!  Just load your child into their pram or sling and get out into the great outdoors! Pushing a loaded pram (with plenty of shopping underneath) or carrying the weight of a sling is great exercise, and you can choose when to have breaks and how far to go – often the baby nods off and you get some peace in the fresh air!  Older children love walks, finding all kinds of interesting things along the way.

Housework, believe it or not is still a great way to work up a sweat! Though it may not be enjoyable, pushing the vacuum, picking up toys and even standing to do the dishes is all more exercise than you would get sitting on the sofa. For most mums, caring for their child is a full time job and keeping on top of the housework is a continuous challenge, so don’t feel bad if your home has cereal stuck to the surfaces and an overflowing laundry pile!  Mine is always one step away from being featured on “How Clean is Your House?”, so I am in no position to judge! But I do get the boys to help occasionally...

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