I’m trying to stay positive about my body. My very different body. I’m six weeks postpartum and I’m emerging slightly from a newborn haze and looking around; looking down…at my body… and thinking, “whhhhaat are you?!” My body looks and feels different than it ever has before. I’m struggling not to feel fat and get down on myself. I’m anxious that none of my pre-pregnancy clothes will fit when I have to go back to work. Hopefully the dress-code has changed and I’ll be allowed to wear maternity leggings, nursing tops, and a bathrobe to work everyday now!
Despite my plans to be an Instagram super fit prego, I gained about 40 pounds during pregnancy. I lost about half of that giving birth. In the past six weeks I’ve lost an addition 0-5 pounds depending on the day, which is frustrating because I was promised that if I breastfed the pounds would melt away like butter. LIKE BUTTER!! Like all the butter I’ve been eating! I’ve been doing a bit of – as my friend Adrienne described her own postpartum behavior – eating with reckless abandon. So I know one way I can start feeling better about my body – start feeding it better.
I’m only just cleared to do normal levels of exercise now that I’m at 6 weeks. I think the lack of exercise is probably what has made me feel particularly down about my body. I’m used to feeling strong and active and now it’s been months since I’ve been allowed or able to push myself. I’m looking forward to starting to run and go to the gym again, but it’ll also be a challenge to find time when I can leave my baby for a few minutes (and then making myself leave her) to work out.
So I’m going to start to work to get my body back! But what does that mean now? My body is not about to snap back to pre-pregnancy shape and weight. For one thing I now have these giant boobs that add to my weight, but I don’t want to lose that weight because that’s how I’m keeping this cute baby alive. So I can’t really go by a weight goal. Then there’s my shape. I was talking to my friend Adrienne again (she’s very wise, read her blog) and she was saying after her son was born she was able to wear the same size jeans but not necessarily the same cut because somethings are just a little different after you give birth. She doesn’t look different, so just because I start to look like myself won’t actually mean I’ll feel the same in my clothes or my body.
I’m not totally sure what’s going to happen. I hope to get a body back that I’m proud to call mine, but I’m trying to keep in mind it wont be the exact body I had one year ago. I signed up for a race: the NYRR Women’s Mini 10k on June 11th. It’s ambitious, and I know I won’t be racing it (or probably even running it). So for right now getting my body back means making it to my first post-pregnancy finish line. I’ll be tracking my progress on myfitnesspal (Sirrahs) and Garmin Connect (SirrahHarris) and of course on the blog. Please feel free to follow my progress. Let me know how you started to feel like yourself post pregnancy if you’ve been here.