The rumors are true, once you start having babies your tummy may never be the same again. Infact immediately after delivery you may still look like your four to six month pregnant. On top of that you may have to contend with stretch marks which are results from your tummy stretching during the duration of your pregnancy.
However dreary things may seem it’s not totally impossible to get your abs back to pre pregnancy mode. One must also bear in mind that loosing your big tummy or extra weight in general is a gradual process and nothing is going to happen overnight especially if you aren’t a spring chicken. However, with hardwork and determination some yummy mummy’s are able to even have flatter abs than they did before childbirth. Here are some tips that may help you in your quest for a hot and fit body after baby.
Patience: Please remember that Rome was not built in a day …in the same away your tummy didn’t get huge overnight so expecting it to deflate like a balloon as soon as baby pops out is unrealistic. Firstly your uterus takes about 4 to 6 weeks to return to pre- pregnancy size. So once your doctor gives you the go ahead then feel free to choose an exercise regime just don’t expect instant results. Also if you didn’t have “abs of steel” before pregnancy then desiring them after means you have to work even harder.
Breast feeding : Breast feeding actually helps burn calories, so in the critical months after childbirth a mum who chooses to breast feed will generally loose more than one who doesn’t. Also the nursing process actually releases hormones that help
shrink the uterus. Breast feeding is however not an excuse to over eat, so while you should eat well…there is no need to stuff oneself with pounded yam and white soup. You must remember that eating well and over eating are two different things.
Exercise: Physical activity will do wonders for your stomach muscles and help you burn calories. However before you start any exercise
programs always ensure your body is ready for it, this is irrespective of whether you had exercised before pregnancy or not. It’s also important that you start your post pregnancy exercise regime slowly this is especially important for women who have gone through a c- section . If going to a gym or getting a personal trainer is difficult then try taking a
walk round your neighborhood or using some exercise tapes at home will also help. Try ensuring that your regime includes some exercises that focus not just on your abs but an all over body work out.
You are what you eat: There is really no point in doing all the abs exercise in the world and then eating the wrong foods or over eating. If you do this you may just end up with a muscular flabby tummy . Its therefore very important you eat meals that will help burn the fat and not pile it on. Foods such as white bread, pasta and pastries should be cut out and fruits should be consumed in their natural forms (not as commercial juices with added sugar and preservatives). The same goes for vegetables, try making fruit and vegetable smoothies and let that replace a meal. Also where you must cook your vegetables try to just steam them lightly to preserve the nutrients. Remember going on a drastic diet after having a baby is dangerous and even more dangerous when
you breast feeding exclusively. Instead of being in a hurry to get your tummy back to pre pregnancy size it’s better to do it over several months .
Tying your stomach :This is sometimes referred to as belly binding and is now becoming a trend in the US. It involves tying a wrapper or girdle round your waste. Just like wearing a corset tying ones stomach has helped a lot of woman bring their abs down and fit into their pre pregnancy jeans. Though there is no actually research that shows stomach tying actually works , many generations of Nigerian mothers swear by it so there is no harm in trying. Take care to ensure you don’t hurt yourself by tieing your tummy too tightly.
Lemon water: So many women swear by lemon in hot water. This taken on an empty stomach first thing in the morning is said to help anyone trying to loose weight especially in the abs. A variant is lemon and ginger in water and it can be enjoyed not just first thing in the morning but throughout the day .
Here to having rocking abs after your baby!
ps. Remember that everyone is different and there are factors that may make it harder for some to get flat abs than others. After all is said and done what’s most important is a healthy mummy and baby, so a squishy, not so flat belly is a small price to pay for your bundle of joy.