(This is part one of my post-preggo weight loss journey. It by no means has ended, but I feel that I can finally speak to this little battle and let you know how its went for me.)
I have been putting off this post for a very long time, partly because it has taken me forever to shed this baby weight and partly because it makes me uncomfortable to talk about this stuff.
I've had an interesting time with my weight and perception of my weight my whole life. Growing up, I never felt thin enough or looked like one of the models I envied on the cover of Cosmo (seriously that was my idea of perfect and, yes, I know now that is pathetic). I remember it being a topic of conversation in my house often. My mom and sisters were always talking about different diets and exercise fads, whether they were warranted or not. Let me just say, I was never big. I was scrawny, but that doesn't mean I was healthy. Then I moved out to head to college. I remember busting my butt my freshman year because I didn't want to succumb to gaining the freshman fifteen or more. But there were so many temptations: drinking, fast food, no one to make sure I was getting balanced meals.
The thing is, I love to eat and I love enjoying some cocktails even more. From college through my twenties that was our thing. Our group of friends went out to dinners, drank, partied, went to bars, took trips that revolved around partying. This is what made up our weekends. And this is what got me to my highest weight and unhealthiest state just before finding out I was preggo with little man. I can remember being the Monday morning dieter. Sunday night after laying around the house all day recovering from the weekend and shoveling some fattening hangover food into my mouth, I would tell myself I'm going to diet and exercise starting "tomorrow." It would work for a day or two and then a work dinner or after work cocktails would arise and I couldn't say no or behave myself.
After finding out I was pregnant, my main goal was to consume healthy foods for the baby and I also didn't want to balloon up from feeding my face with every yummy treat I could get my hands on (but trust me, I tried). Early on in my pregnancy - most of my first trimester and well into my second - I had major morning sickness. I threw up every single meal I ate. At first it was annoying and kind of disgusting, but after a while it was just a part of my pregnancy experience. I knew that directly after I ate, I would need to hightail it to the bathroom to vomit. It made for some awkward bathroom convos. I often felt the need to explain to everyone as soon as I got out of the stall, especially since that early on I wasn't showing and couldn't just point to the belly.
For the remainder of my pregnancy, I ate ok. I substituted caffeine from both my daily morning Starbucks to my extremely large diet mt. dew to decaf, allowing myself the real stuff only once in a while. I loaded up on a ton more fruit and tried to limit my snacking. I wasn't drinking, so that eliminated a shit ton of calories right there. Toward the end of my pregnancy, I did succumb to my late night snacking/cravings and was oftentimes found laying on the couch before bed with a glass of milk and oreos or hostess cupcakes....or those yummy hostess chocolate pudding pies (embarrassingly, here). Who am I kidding, the "or" was probably more realistically an "and." I loved me some late-night junk. (sample preggo diet here...definitely not proud of this moment).
As for exercising, I had taken up running just before becoming pregnant. I actually remember the first time I ran Lake Zorinsky the entire way - no walking- that I found out I was preggo later that day. I was a half-assed two to three times a week exerciser (even though if asked, I more than likely would've lied and said four to five times a week). I had good intentions, but always found other reasons to justify not working out - I'm tired, I had a long day, I want to go to happy hour, I'd rather lay on the couch....you know, really good reasons.
Throughout my pregnancy, I walked a decent amount with Maya, around the lake with friends, around the neighborhood. I ran a little bit, but got tired easily. The bigger I got, the less energy I had for any of it and I became pretty stagnant. I used my pregnancy as a get-out-of-working-out-free card. I really got used to not having the black cloud known as "working out" hanging over my head for the last month or so....and just got lazy.
Then, little man came. Obviously, I was over the moon happy. Best day of my life. But then the reality of what was ahead sunk in. I remember the first time I went to the bathroom at the hospital and noticed all of the flab (of course, a lot of that goes away within the next couple of days) and extra meat on my inner thighs, arms, love handles. I was bummed, overwhelmed by the long weight loss journey that was looming in front of me.
In my head, it was all challenge accepted. I was going to show this preggo weight who was boss and bust my ass to get back into better shape. And quickly! (Or so I thought...)
(Check back tomorrow for the next post all about the aftermath, what I experienced with my post-baby bod as well as my path to getting it back together.)