The most effective way to lose weight after pregnancy. Find out 21 expert tips on losing the baby weight.
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If there’s one question that almost every new mom who just had a baby wants to know, it’s how to lose the baby weight after pregnancy? This is the secret that all postpartum moms want the answer to but just can’t seem to crack the code. Well, the code is not an easy one to break, but it is breakable. Find out how to lose weight after having a baby in the article, plus, get expert tips for successfully achieving postpartum weight loss and getting rid of the postpartum pooch once and for all.
How Much Weight Should You Gain During Pregnancy?
Did you know that almost half of all pregnant women gain more than the recommended amount of weight during pregnancy, according to the CDC.
And with the added weight comes extra consequences that occur during pregnancy:
- Increased risk of being overweight postpartum and beyond
- Increased chances of pregnancy complications
- Heightened risk of diabetes and heart disease
- Higher health risks for women with gestational diabetes
It has been advised by the CDC (Centers For Disease Control and Prevention) that women gain 25-35 pounds during pregnancy. This is the healthy target range pregnant women should strive for all the way up to the end of their third trimester.
What Is The Fastest Way To Lose Weight After Pregnancy?
What is the fastest way to lose weight after pregnancy? The answer is don’t gain too much weight above the recommended amount during pregnancy (25-35 lbs.) and focus on healthy eating, exercise and breastfeeding after childbirth.
This by far is the fastest way to lose weight after having a baby. But there’s one more catch. You have to be consistent, you have to stay accountable to yourself and you can’t give up. Those moms who have the best self discipline have the best results.
But let’s dive deep into the 21 tips for weight loss after having a baby so you can get the whole picture on what weight loss looks like after pregnancy.
Best Tips For A Healthy Way To Lose The Baby Weight
1. Set realistic goals that are obtainable
Setting realistic goals helps you to focus your energy on something specific. Having a specific goal that is obtainable will encourage you to keep moving forward and not give up. Setting unrealistic goals is setting you up for failure and thus disappointment. Once disappointment settles in, you’re less likely to get up and try again. But if you achieve your goal, whether it’s losing 1 pound a week or working out for 5 minutes a day, you’re more likely to keep working on the next big goal.
2. Write Down Your Weight Loss Goals
It is proven that writing down your goals increases your chances of actually achieving them. So why not write it down? Your success rate just went up. You want to succeed, right? So take out a piece of paper, make it look pretty and write down your top 3 realistic goals that you want to achieve this week or month. Be sure to set a time frame for each individual goal.
3. Never ever choose crash dieting
Crash dieting is going to lead you to exactly what the name of the diet is….CRASH! You will crash and burn out if you choose to lose weight after pregnancy by doing a crash diet. Avoid them all together and make healthy food choices instead. You’re less likely to succeed in your postpartum weight loss journey this way.
4. Breastfeeding is the way to super speed weight loss
If you didn’t know, breastfeeding is proven to speed up weight loss in new moms who just had a baby.
It has been shown through research that breastfeeding goes hand-in-hand with weight loss during postpartum recovery.
But did you know that you may not experience weight loss during the first 3 months of breastfeeding; you may actually experience weight gain?
The weight gain during the first 3 months is due to increased calorie needs and intake as well as reduced physical activity during lactation. But don’t fear, there’s hope in sight, and after 3 months you will start seeing a shift in your weight.
5. Being calorie conscious is a must
So if you choose to eat foods that total up to be 3000 calories a day versus the other mom over there who chooses to eat 2000 calories a day, which one of you will lose the baby weight first?
It’s a given, the new mom who chooses to eat fewer calories.
So with that simple math problem out of the way, I want to encourage you to keep track of your daily calorie intake and be sure to hit your target range of calories and avoid splurges.
Have you ever tried a mobile calorie tracking app before? This could help you keep track of your calories more easily.
6. Have a high fiber diet
Foods high in fiber = weight loss. It’s proven. A 2019 study of 345 people found that an increase of 4 grams of fiber over what participants had eaten before the study led to an average additional weight loss of 3 1/4 pounds over 6 months. That right there is enough proof to include more fiber in your diet.
Here is a list of the top 20 foods that are high in fiber.
7. Make protein rich healthy food choices
Healthy proteins suchs as lean meats, eggs, low mercury fish, legumes, nuts and seeds are all great choices for weight loss after having a baby.
Why are protien rich foods so great for your diet? Because protein rich foods can boost metabolism, decrease appetite, and reduce calorie intake, according to research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
Healthy protein sources include: eggs, lean meats, nuts, seeds, dairy and low mercury fish.
8. Have Grab-and-Go Healthy Snacks Readily Available
So often as a new mom we run out of time to make a nice meal, or even a meal at all. So snacking sometimes is our only option.
But please, please avoid the pre-packaged snacks, or at least choose a healthy pre-packaged snack. Opt in for healthy grab-and-go snacks for those busy mama moments that often happen throughout the day (and night).
9. Cut out added sugar and refined carbs
No more added sugar for this postpartum mom who is looking to get serious about losing the baby weight. Sugar is not helping you achieve those goals we talked about earlier. And refined carbs are a culprit to keeping the baby weight ON.
If you want the baby weight off, it’s time to make a change to the way you eat and that means cutting out added sugar and refined carbs.
Research associates a high intake of added sugar and refined carbs with an increase in weight, diabetes, heart disease, some cancers, and even cognitive decline.
Common sources of added sugars include: sugary drinks, white flour, fruit juice, any type of refined sugar, cakes, biscuits, pastries and packaged foods.
10. Eliminate highly processed foods
The common theme here so far in these tips for losing weight after having a baby is eating whole foods that are rich in protein, fiber and lacking added sugar.
On the other hand, highly processed foods are the complete opposite. These types of foods are high in sugar as well as salt, contain unhealthy fats and have a high calorie count.
These are the foods we 100% want to avoid.
Which foods am I talking about? These: fast food, chips, cookies, baked goods, candy, prepackaged foods, boxed mixes, processed cheese, ready meals and sugary cereals.
11. Avoid alcohol
Since you are determined to keep the calorie count in a reasonable range for weight loss after pregnancy, that means there’s no room for alcohol.
Every calorie you ingest needs to go towards a real purpose, to fuel your mama body. You need all the energy you can get from nutritious food choices to nurture your growing baby, and alcoholic calories are empty calories that get you nowhere except leading you to exhaustion.
Also, keep this in mind: According to research from Trusted Source, there is no known safe level of alcohol for infants. The CDC Trusted Source advises that the safest option for infants is for breastfeeding mothers not to drink at all.
12. Increase water intake
According to a 2016 study, drinking water may increase your sense of fullness and stimulate your metabolism, leading to weight loss.
Ever drink 4 cups of water before in one sitting? You feel full afterwards, right? That’s the best part, you fill your stomach with healthy liquids which leaves no room for the unhealthy choices. And water has so many added benefits once ingested.
A common recommendation from health authorities is to drink eight 8-ounce glasses, which amounts to half a gallon, or about 2 liters. This is easy to remember as the “8×8 rule.”
13. Sleep, sleep and sleep some more
Yes, sleep is hard to come by when you just had a baby. But if weight loss is important to you after pregnancy, than you will make sleep a priority, too.
The best way to sleep after giving birth to a new baby is to nap when your baby naps. Ask your spouse for a 20 minute power nap and having him take care of the baby during that time.
Aim for at least one nap a day, and you’ll feel more energized and renewed to focus on the other healthy choices we listed earlier.
14. Exericse needs to be a part of your daily routine
When you incorporate exercise along with healthy food choices, you are tag-teaming this weight loss journey like a pro! Yeah, you can focus entirely on reducing calories and eating high protein foods, but to get the real results and take the fast track, exercise is the way to go.
Create a workout schedule that is realistic for your lifestyle. Find a program that you enjoy and want to come back to every day during the week.
15. Strength training needs to be incorporated
Participating in exercise regularly is great, but it’s most important in this particular situation that you as a mom who is trying to lose weight after pregnancy, focuses on strength training above all else.
Research has shown that a combination of diet and resistance training has been found to be the most effective method for reducing weight and improving heart health.
One of my favorite ways to workout is using my baby as the added weight in my workout. These are called mommy and me workouts.
16. Workout with your baby
Incorporate your baby into the workout and you won’t feel as guilty about leaving her to do something good for yourself.
A lot of moms have mom guilt for leaving their baby just to simply step away and work out, but the opposite should take place. You should feel proud to work out with your baby and instill healthy habits at such a young age.
You will have fun, your baby will have fun and you will be more likely to return again tomorrow after completing your mommy and me workout together.
17. Create a comfortable workout environment
Let’s make your workouts comfortable by setting the mood. Have your workout space ready to go, equipped with the tools you need for a great workout.
Have your yoga mat ready, some lightweight dumbbells, water bottle, running shoes and any other favorite gym equipment that you invested in for your home gym. Make it your own special place of peace, but make it exhilarating at the same time.
18. Set reminders on your phone
It’s easy to say, “I’m going to work out every day this week,” but it’s also easy to forget to do it. So set reminders for the same time every day that you plan to work out and use that reminder as an appointment reminder. Don’t skip your appointment with yourself to work out. You made a commitment, don’t back out now.
19. Track workouts and mark progress in a calendar
Have a calendar out and printed for you to mark up each and every single day. Writing it on paper is more effective than marking it on your phone.
Get the entire month calendar out so you can look at it at a glance and put a big X on the date you worked out.
Your goal is to a make a chain, a chain that links every day you worked out so you don’t skip a day. But on your rest days, which you definitely will need, do light stretching or yoga to take it down a notch.
20. Have an accountability partner for added support
Do you have a friend that just had a baby? Good! So call her up and tell her you want to be accountability partners.
You both will call each other at least once a week to check in and see if you did what you said you were going to do every day last week.
Check in and ask each other if you worked out today. Ask what recipes you have planned for the week. Check to see if there were lots of cheat days or skipped workouts.
The both of you have to commit to these regularly scheduled check-ins, or it’s not going to work. Staying accountable with someone else will increase your chances of success.
21. Seek professional services for extra help
If the above tips did not help you in any way, it’s time to seek help from someone who is more knowledgeable in this area. An expert can help speed up your progress, especially if you are having trouble staying focused on the task at hand. It’s not an easy thing to do, losing weight after having a baby, and it’s ok to ask for help.
Sometimes just having that one person to guide you in the right direction can ultimately change your life forever. There’s no shame in asking for help, whether it’s a nutritionist or a personal trainer. Just think about the end goal in mind and whether or not it’s worth it.
Feel free to contact me, a licensed physical therapist, on my contacts page for advice and tips on postpartum weight loss.
For more information on how to get rid of your postpartum pooch continue reading this next article.
This post contains affiliate links. For more information, see my disclosures here.
*It is important to always consult your doctor before beginning any exercise program and get medical clearance. Always warm up thoroughly and stretch after all workouts. LiveCoreStrong.com, Jena Bradley and Jena Bradley, LLC will be not be responsible or liable for any injury sustained while exercising at home, gym or elsewhere. Perform exercises at your own risk.
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