Are you worried about your weight?
For many women, achieving a healthy weight after pregnancy can be a struggle. It can be stressful taking care of a newborn, adjusting to a new routine and recovering from childbirth.
First time this month I ordered some clothes online. I would never do that before simply because I didn’t know my size. Whenever I went shopping the clothes wouldn’t fit me properly. I had to try so many outfits and NOT BE HAPPY WITH ANY.
I was so unhappy with my body and self-esteem. I felt like I was walking in someone’s body.
Today I can feel more confident in my body than before having any kids. I dropped a few more inches around my waist. The last bit is always the toughest but it’s going down surely.
My question is: Am I confident in body today because of the weight or because I have learned to respect, love and nurture my body? I’ll let you answer.
Have you been affected by Postpartum Depression?
As you perhaps know my Post Partum Depression story by now. Inside postpartum depression, there is a multitude of challenges, but one I often struggled with was how my mental health affects my physical health.
For me, it was a big circle of feeling depressed, lacking the motivation to exercise, taking meds that are known to cause weight gain, emotionally eating, gaining weight and feeling even worse about myself, with a bad body image. It all led me further into depression.
Then, following everybody else’s opinion on how I should lose the weight by joining the gym or exercise class. Not to forget that I should also stop eating so much.
Joining a class would have been great except I had no one to mind the baby. How does a new mother deal with that?
I don’t often talk about weight loss here because I am not an expert on how to lose weight but how nourish the body by healthy eating and removing as much junk from your diet.
Celebrate your Body for growing a life
Also, all the body shaming that goes on the internet these days is already too much. Your body is yours and you deal with it the way you want. Who am I to tell you how you should look.All that said I like it when I fit well in a dress. Don’t you? That’s important to me. But I equally believe in the beauty inside out.
Your confidence and attitude is your beauty. The clothes you wear support what you already have not the other way round.
Before you jump at me, I would like to say that I am no way talking about the 6 pack abs here! I don’t have it and this whole topic is not about that.
So drop the weapon and hear me out. I am not afraid to say that given I am a Health Coach that I wear my pouch after having 4 kids (proudly) or that I wear tummy tuckers when wearing a dress.
Body shaming of all kinds is wrong, but criticising a woman for looking a little different when she’s grown a whole new human is ridiculous.
Giving birth is the most extreme thing a woman’s body can do, so of course, the shape is going to change. Having a post-birth body is something to be celebrated, not shamed.
Nourish Your Body Instead
Of course, it’s good to be fit and healthy, but we shouldn’t be so obsessed with perfection that we raise a generation of children with body hang-ups.
Having a bit of a mum tum or some stretch marks isn’t shameful, it’s a badge of honour for what your body has gone through. They are the markings of a mother.
I exercise to keep me fit, balance my stress levels and yes to lose the extra weight I still carry 4 years postpartum.
The first time I finally join a class two years postpartum still inside my own place of anxiety and depression, but it felt good to get motivated and take a positive step. That is, until I got there.
Be Friend With Your Body
This big group of women all happy perhaps? But for me? My social anxiety took over. They all seemed so much more fit than me. I had trouble keeping up, and even though they reminded me with great care to go at my own pace, I felt defeated. I wasn’t good enough. Teary-eyed and insecure by the end of class.
I wanted to be motivated. I really did. Exercise for many is a wonderful therapy for the body and mind. I knew so many new moms who get their groove back or help manage their mood issues with exercise. Endorphins are real, they feel good. A healthier body can help lead to a healthier mind too. It’s so interconnected in many ways and I know that … intellectually.
Concentrate on the Beauty Inside Out
I knew we’re supposed to concentrate on our health and not our size. I knew that for certain in my head. But along with my depression came feelings in my heart of inadequacy, insecurity, and sadness. I didn’t even recognize the woman in the mirror and those feelings become more intense. I didn’t want my husband to come near me at all. I was carrying that burden every day.
A few years later, I gave up and join a Nutrition Class. That’s when my eyes were opened and I dropped the constant dieting.
I then learn how to nourish my body instead. And my relationship with food and exercising completely changed.
If something about this topic really resonates with you, please know that we can always sit down together and dive deeper!” Contact me here
Take Positive Action Toward your Health, Because Your Worth It
This is what I do today:
- Set time for some me time at least 10 minutes each day.
- Few hours every week
- Slow down, connect with each step I take.
- Be mindful of my thought patterns.
- Use Positive affirmations from YouTube
- Exercise, even when I’m not in the mood
- Treat myself with something I love (movie, book, food, bath)
Check out my post on Self Care for Parents Here
Check out my post on the 5 Food to Ditch for a Better Mood
A Change is as good as a Holiday
4 years later, I actually love exercising, yoga and pilate more than cardio though. Anyhow, as the weather changes in Ireland, my routines change as well. I am so lucky to be only about 3 minutes away from the beach.
I call it the private beach we have to go through a muddy field to see the hidden rocky beach that gets a rare bunch of visitors.
I have always loved the rocky sea that contrasts in colours and compliment each other. I have on many occasions sat and watched the waves hitting the rocks in fury and in love.
I sit and breath the fresh air that touches my skin and if it’s comfortable enough I bring a book. Sometimes, when there isn’t anyone around I would do some basic yoga stretches.
All that takes me no more than 30 minutes of my day but it helps me tremendously to refresh and re-energize the mind. All mothers should have a daily routine like that in my opinion but it’s not always possible.
As poetic as this sounds, it’s all true and as real to my hectic life, mothering my four bunnies, studying and trying to start a Business. While being a pretty wife and a dutiful daughter. It’s mad!
So my first new routine this Spring is to get out of my hibernation and take as many walks by the sea as I can. Because when winter comes back you will not see me out as much and that’s when the mood drops and the energy is lower. Do you think Vitamin D plays a role in mood and energy level? It certainly does.
Another one is that I start running, also at the beach. When I come home after the run I feel like I have earned the couch time. I use the couch to 5K app to guide me.
I also start buying new indoor plants and organise the house a little better. I cook lighter food, as supposed to stews and soups. Fresh, vibrant and rapid cooking. (Salads, stir-fry, Pan fried chicken with green veggies)
We also started fresh fruity smoothies and cleansing juices. If you look back the last 9 to 10 months, I have shared juices or smoothies. That’s because I don’t make them. I believe the outside temperature matters and we should change the way we eat accordingly. I am very sure if you look at Chinese Medicine they will talk about that too.
In today’s juice recipe I have used is Dandelion leaves as it is starting to go out in my back garden, thankfully I have no pets so it’s clean and organic. Dandelion is quite bitter and bitter is good for YOU!!
I absolutely love this juice. I don’t taste the bitterness at all and in about a week of drinking this juice I feel so good inside. But not in isolation. The benefit of this juice will involve a bit of ditching the junk! Check out my 7-day programme here which gives you an awesome 7-day meal plan that prevents you from reaching the junk!
Let’s see why:
Bitter food (in Chinese Medicine is known to stimulate the digestive juices that help break down your food. Good digestion means you absorb all the beautiful nutrients that your body craves.
You know what I mean? When you are craving chocolate before Menstruation, what it actually means is that your body is craving magnesium! Chocolate=cacao=magnesium. It’s not craving sugar, it’s craving nutrients.
It helps to purify the blood, prevents gallstones and helps digestion. The fact is the greens of theese humble dandelion provide 535 percent of the recommended daily value of vitamin K, which may be the most powerful source of any other plant-based food to strengthen bones but may also play a role in fighting Alzheimer’s disease by limiting neuron damage in the brain.
Dandelion greens also contain vitamins C and B6, thiamin, riboflavin, calcium, iron (crucial for generating red blood cells), potassium (to help regulate heart rate and blood pressure), and manganese. Other nutrients present in dandelion greens include folate, magnesium, phosphorus, and copper.
I have put Dandelion in Salads and Stir-fries as well and it’s really really good. Read how Dandelion can be good for detoxing.
If you are someone suffering from bloating, flatulence and other digestive issues. Try my Ditch the Junk Challenge and incorporate this juice for the whole week and see how you can rid of your bloated tummy.
If you don’t have Dandelion, you also use Nettles or Spinach.
- 1/2 a pineapple peeled
- a generous handful of dandelion leaves
- about 2 inches of ginger
- 1 cucumber
- 2 celery sticks
- Use a juicer to extract the juices and drink!
Other ingredients in this juice like Pineapple and ginger also helps with Digestion and are anti-inflammatory.
Ginger has so many health benefits such as Immune Strengthening, Energy boosting, revitalising and cold remedy as well can be used daily for any savoury meal you prepare. I buy tonnes of it every week without fail. It keeps well in or out the fridge so don’t worry if you don’t use them all.
My best way to use is to slice them and add it to a cup of hot water and sip as a herbal tea or cold as a refreshing drink.
You can try my Turmeric, Ginger and Basil Detox Tonic here
So if you’re looking get slim down, improve your health or get into a healthier lifestyle let me tell you that you won’t be lacking food that tastes absolutely delicious. I actually believe that a healthier lifestyle gives you the opportunity to explore more flavours and hence eat awesomely delicious food. Do you agree?