Once I gave birth, my world was turned upside down! I was so used to being on a schedule, but then I realize that the schedule that I once had was simply not going to work anymore-I was on my son's time. But hey, I wouldn't have had it any other way! However, this meant that I had to create a new plan of attack.
Shortly after I had given birth, I lost the 30lbs that I had gained during pregnancy, but my body was still soft and the definition that I once had was far from sight. I didn't start working out hardcore till around 12 weeks postpartum, though I was given the clear at six weeks. Why? Life got in the way: my husband had to have surgery, we had to make a 9 hour trip to his hometown for a family emergency, and then we decided to move into a bigger home. As you can see, working out was the last thing on my mind.
Once things finally settled down, I created a home gym consisting of an ab bench, two medicine balls, a battle rope, a fitness ball, two kettlebells, a dumbbell, resistance bands, and yoga mats and I created a plan. Since I knew the gym was not an option anymore, I decided to improvise and workout from home as my son slept. But... as you can imagine, even that did not always go according to plan.
So, what did I do? I incorporated him into my workouts! This way, I killed two birds with one stone and we had a blast, together, and I toned up slowly, but surely. I even take him out for runs in our jogging stroller and even created a stroller workout! I have learned that when you are crunched for time, you must get creative.
Here is what I do in my home gym, weekly, before my son wakes up (if I am lucky, but I do change things up very often):
Monday: Abs (crunches, situps, russian twists w/medicine ball) + 15 minute jog with jogging stroller
Tuesday: Legs (sumo squats, kettlebell squats, walking lunges)
Wednesday: Abs (plank, side plank, leg lifts) + 15 minute jog with jogging stroller
Thursday: Legs (wall sit, side lunges, butt kicks, high knees)
Friday: Arms (tricep dips, pushups, plank, dumbbell curls, kettlebell swings)
He enjoys watching and learning, but sometimes I will even incorporate him into my yoga days.
I am still currently breastfeeding today and I try to improvise even when little one gets hungry. Multi-tasking is a mom's best friend!
My favorite exercises for total body workouts that I like to do each morning upon waking up (since I LOVE high interval intensity training) are:
- 20 Burpees
- 30 Mountain Climbers
- 20 Jump Squats
- 30 Jumping Jacks
- 20 Plank Jacks
And this is pretty much it. I believe that diet is 75% of why I look the way I do. I eat clean most of the time-though, yes, I am human and I like a glass of wine or a beer every now and then. I also love BREAD. Ah! It's the devil! So I try to stay away. I have really good willpower that I have developed over the years luckily.
If you tweak your diet, you will be amazed at how much better your body can get.
My daily diet looks somewhat like this, on a good day:
- ½ cup whole grain oats
- ½ cup fresh berries
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 packet Stevia
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 2 scrambled eggs
- ½ grapefruit sprinkled with cinnamon
- 1 cup Green Tea or black coffee
Mid Morning Snack
- ½ cup almonds with 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
- 1 low-fat mozzarella string cheese stick with an apple
- 1 salmon filet
- 2 cups Spinach leaves
- Homemade dressing created by mixing apple cider vinegar, olive oil, and garlic powder.
- Homemade tuna salad in a whole wheat pita created by mixing one can tuna, ½ cup Greek yogurt, ¼ cup mustard, sliced pickles, onions, apple, or celery, pepper, and Mrs Dash seasoning. Enjoy with a side of homemade sweet potato slices. To make this simply slice up a sweet potato, toss in a zip lock bag with 1 tbsp olive oil, Mrs Dash seasoning, and pepper. Bake at 425 degrees till done.
Mid Day Snack
- Strawberries with cottage cheese
- Carrots with hummus
- 1 chicken breast-baked or grilled. I marinate mine in fat free Italian dressing and it is delicious! Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until juices run clear. Broccoli-I toss mine with sesame oil, sesame seeds, and garlic pepper. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
- 6 oz sirloin-grilled or baked. I season mine with Mrs. Dash, pepper, garlic, and a little reduced sodium soy sauce. When I bake it, I do so at 375 degrees for 20 minutes. Asparagus-Marinate in olive oil and lemon juice. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes
- 1 cup plain Greek yogurt mixed with 1 tbsp peanut butter
- 2 scoops of protein mixed with 1 cup almond milk
It is easy to get discouraged sometimes, especially after giving birth and when your world is turned upside down. But, if you do your best and use your free time wisely, you won't regret it!
Always remember: NEVER GIVE UP!