Ask any mother and she will confirm that once you have created a precious new life, nothing is the same again. Becoming a mother is one of the greatest joys on earth but it brings with it its fair share of challenges. Exhaustion, fear of the unknown, and anxiety over whether you are doing the right things are part and parcel of motherhood.
Getting back that pre-baby body is yet another cocern for many news mums. These days the pressure of snapping back to a svelte, toned body is even greater, what with the celebrity culture we live in. You may ask yourself, if Kim and Beyonce can get their pre-pregnancy bodies back in what seems like weeks, why can’t I?
We are here to tell you to relax and take a minute to listen to the experts. Most obstetricians, doctors and nutritionists will tell you that it took nine months for your body to grow, and it will take at least that much time for it to snap back to its pre-partum shape. In fact, they will say, if you are breastfeeding its positively dangerous to restrict your calorie intake. And, they will add, you really should breastfeed if possible. It will protect baby from many illnesses and provide a perfectly balanced diet. There are benefits for you too – breastfeeding can lower your risk of both ovarian and breast cancer. To be at optimum health while breastfeeding you need extra, not fewer, calories, so this is certainly not a time to restrict your intake.
A far healthier approach to getting your body back in shape is to exercise. Build up your core strength – your body’s muscles have taken a pounding – and get going on light cardio. Stretching, yoga and swimming will also help your body regain its shape and might also have a positive impact on your mood and general sense of wellbeing.
So, ignore the unnatural lifestyles of your favourite celebrities. After the wellbeing of your baby, the most important thing to concentrate on is your own health – both mental and physical. Many mothers suffer from anxiety and depression after giving birth. This can be attributed to fluctuating hormones, lack of sleep, and general worries over your baby. So be good to yourself and allow your partner, your family and even your friends help you with your precious newborn, and take these regular opportunities to rest, recharge and revitalise your mood. At the moment, that is all the “snapback” you need.