Let talk about the makeup of your body’s weight gain during pregnancy.
Did you know, the initial weight gain in pregnancy is all fat? Then, as you reach 20ish weeks you start to gain weight via blood, baby, breast milk/tissue, etc. Eventually, all of the fat that you had originally gained is used to help give you and the baby energy! How cool is that? Speaking of weight gain, here is where they say your weight is typically placed when you hit the delivery room:
Breasts: 1-3 pounds
Baby: 7-9 pounds
Placenta: 1-2 pounds
Uterus: 1-2 pounds
Amniotic Fluid: 2-3 pounds
Your Blood: 2-3 pounds
Your Protein and Fat Storage: 8-10 pounds
Your Body Fluids: 3-4 pounds
Total: 25-35 pounds
Isn’t it crazy to think that the extra blood your body holds weighs as much as an organ? I think it’s all super fascinating…nerdy me! Keep in mind that every person is different, every pregnancy is different. You may gain more weight than this and that is perfectly okay. It has been proven to me that weight gain is more about genetics and less about your will to stay within the suggested range.
I walked into the hospital (okay, I crawled) 40 weeks + 5 days into pregnancy and delivered my baby boy.
When I walked out of the hospital I had lost 18 pounds (putting me at about 172 – down from 190). I was happily surprised by this much weight loss because my milk had come in (which added weight) and what person has the ability to lose this much overnight? A new mom, that’s who – give it up for our amazing bodies, ladies. Anyway, as happy as I was, I still felt like a wiggly bowl of jelly.
At two weeks postpartum I was down 25 pounds (164). I wasn’t dieting – in fact, I was eating like crazy and sleeping all the time. The trick to my weight loss? I was breastfeeding. I was breastfeeding a whole litter of puppies. Okay, just my baby, but my body was able to produce nearly 50 ounces a day in milk and that took a lot of energy out of me. I share my secrets to this in my guide to breastfeeding here.
The last 8-10 pounds that I had to lose were a stubborn bunch! Three months out and I still had about 5 pounds to lose in order to be back at my starting weight. I know what you’re thinking, I’m crazy for complaining..But remember how quickly the weight was slipping off me at first? This felt like a total plateau and I was more than ready to have my pre-baby body back.
I stayed pretty inactive for the first 6 months of my son’s life. I was a single mother and between working full-time, raising a baby full-time (I did both from home), and finding time for me I just had no motivation or energy to work out (even though my body craved it..I mean literally yearned for it). At 6 months I realized that my tummy was still saggy and stretched out, my buns were still dimpled, and I needed to take care of me. So I began T25 – and am currently working to become a better-than-pre-baby-body me. I encourage you to do it with me, it’s a great workout and takes almost no time!
Final Side Note: I want to remind you that my weight gain + weight loss were probably pretty abnormal and it’s totally normal for people gain and lose weight differently…. My in-shape sister had gained 70 pounds with each of her pregnancies, no matter how well she ate and exercised. Although she didn’t breastfeed, she did drop a substantial amount of weight by the time she got home from the hospital which is a wonderful baby bonus! All of those fluids your body was holding, a placenta, and a baby are now outside of your abdomen – resulting in instant weight loss. It took my sister a lot longer to get back to her pre-baby weight but she was sure to take each victory as it came and I admire her determination. Maybe I will have her write for us too, that would be a fantastic journey to share! 🙂