Do you want to lose weight?
I don't usually talk about losing weight in my blogs or on social media as it's not my primary focus. My aim is to empower you to be strong and pain-free, and to help you achieve your goals. However, the topic comes up a lot amongst my mums so I wanted to add my two cents' worth.
Why can't I shed the baby weight?
For new mums, remember that it took 9 or so months to grow the baby so you might have to allow that time (or more, and occasionally less) for the body to recover. New mums often don't get enough sleep which disrupts their metabolism, releases stress hormones and makes them crave sugar during the day. Eating well is often not the primary goal of a new mum; I remember eating on the go, wolfing down whatever I could in-between feeds, or meeting mums for a coffee and having a croissant. The early days and months with a newborn are hard so I always tell mums to be kind to themselves, allowing the body time to repair. If you feel self-conscious about wearing a bikini to the beach, buy a beautiful full swimsuit if that makes you feel better.
I train all the time but I still look pregnant - why is that?
Some mums eat well and exercise but still struggle to lose the weight around the midline. It's helpful to look at how well you're activating the deeper abdominal muscles to spot any lack of muscle tone. The underlying cause could also be abdominal separation (diastasis) or hernia so it may be worth seeing your GP or a women's health physio if you think this could be you. It also makes sense to look at what you're eating, for example some foods may make you bloated, or you may be lacking in specific nutrients that can help such as omega 3.
Are certain body types more prone to putting on weight?
We all have different body types and metabolic rates. Some people are full of energy and can't seem able to sit still, and stress makes them lose weight, whilst others are calmer, stress less and are in general more sedentary and therefore have to work harder to lose weight. If you are in the latter category, I would recommend focusing on increasing your daily movement. This could be aiming for 10,000 steps a day, taking the stairs, doing 10 squats when you go to sit on the toilet, etc. What we eat, and how we eat (eg chewing food slowly) has a bigger impact than exercise on our bodies, however daily movement is an important part of the equation.
If you feel that you're overweight, I would start by looking at why you're potentially overeating as there's nearly always an emotional underlying cause. Identify the cause and work on solving that, and you may find that you no longer need to reach for food to fill that emotional need.