How I lost the baby weight

I’m 6 months postpartum with my second kid and I recognize my body again. After months spent loathing my jeans, most of them now button. I’m about 5 pounds above my fighting weight and it’s close enough for me to call it a day.

When I gave birth, I had gained about 45 pounds, and weighed in at 185.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BkG91fyloHq/

I’m down about 40 pounds, and my weight loss has been fairly steady over the last six months:

Now that I’m looking back at my chart, it looks so steady and consistent. But in the trenches, what a different experience. It’s hard to see the forest for the trees when you feel like you’ll never wear anything but maternity clothes.

But let’s talk about how I got there.

What I didn’t do

Eat well. My diet has been incredibly inconsistent. Most days I’m running on convenience foods and toddler scraps. I also have a major weakness for brownies. None of this is ideal. I’m not sharing this to say diet doesn’t matter, or that you should follow my example. Quite the opposite.

I’m sharing my honest food intake to say that this is my reality, and even if you, too, have not had an organic green smoothie in years (ever?), you are not a lost cause.

I’d like to get back to being more intentional about my diet, especially since I’m breastfeeding and the body prioritizes baby above mom. The good parts of those halved grapes and grilled cheese crusts go straight to baby, and I’m subsisting on … whatever energy and nutrients remain. The scraps of the scraps.

But back to business: now that we’ve established that my diet had zero role in losing the baby weight, let’s focus on what did.

What I did do

Breastfeed

Breastfeeding burns a lot of calories. It also makes me ravenously hungry, to the tune of a consistent fourth meal every day, so this might be a wash anyway.

Accept my reality

I spent most of my postpartum period with my first kid wishing that my life were different: that I could go to yoga class five days a week. That it worked to do 5:30am weekly run club.

I wanted so badly to go to classes or groups because I need accountability. I am not the person who will push myself or work my hardest when left to my own devices.

This is also not ideal. I have spent years wishing I were more self-motivated in the fitness department, but I’ve since given up that dream and embraced that I perform better under pressure.

Beyond that, I’ve leaned into reality with a baby: you just need to be flexible. Once you have something figured out, everything changes.

Accepting your reality instead of wishing for a fantasy might be the most important step of this whole journey.

Find a workout that works for me

You know what they say: the best workout is the one you’ll do. And the ones I do have a healthy level of accountability built in.

The two game changers for me are a run buddy who I can keep up with (or who is gracious enough to slow down for me), and a fitness app I actually like (I think most apps and workout videos are unmotivating and generic).

My routine

Most weeks, I work out 3–4 times. Most of my workouts are less than 30 minutes long.

They are challenging (I never work so hard during a run as I do in Gixo classes) but not hardcore by any measure.

  • 1–2x week: 25 minute interval run with my run buddy. We have a standard 2.5 mile loop that we do around the neighborhood.
  • 2–3x week: Gixo classes. I do a live coached run or strength training workout, on my own schedule. It’s the perfect combination of convenience and accountability. Sometimes my baby comes with me in the stroller, or I do a class while my kids play. Sometimes my toddler joins me for jumping jacks.
  • 1x week, on a good week: power vinyasa class. This has only happened about 5–6 times since my baby was born.

Results

I am more or less at my pre-pregnancy weight, or 45 pounds down from my 41-weeks-pregnant weight. My body still looks different than it did pre-baby, but in ways that probably only I would notice. Most of my clothes fit, and most importantly, I feel like myself. I have more energy to play with my kids and I am a much nicer person to be around because of my regular endorphin boosts.

Join me?

Whatever journey you’re on, whether it’s losing the baby weight or just trying to be more active, I can’t recommend Gixo highly enough. You can try a Gixo workout for free with the event code FITFORWARD. I recommend the run classes especially. They are so motivating, no matter your speed or experience level, because you’re always competing against yourself.

Mostly, wherever you are in your journey, hang in there. You’ve got this.