Return To Fitness | Almost A Year Postpartum Update
Last last year I wrote about my return to fitness after having Forest. Since then I feel like I have come even further down this path to fitness and wellness.
Some time after the New Year I decided that in order to really work on losing the baby weight and to get healthy once again I needed to take advantage of my lunch hour to work out. I am lucky that our office is next to a residential neighborhood and that we have showers at work. Working out at home in the evenings was just too much for me. It was doable but I felt like I was cramming in just another thing to do into my already busy evenings of making time for chores, the family, and then whatever personal stuff I wanted to do. At that time, too, Forest was littler and still not in a good rhythm with bedtimes so it made the evenings even more stressful. I was doing the PiYo and other YouTube workouts but losing motivation. I knew I had to return to doing what I enjoyed most and that was to be outside.
I started off by walking and then running and it all felt good. Over the spring months I was joined by coworkers on occasion but most of the time I took off on my own. Sometime in May, I think, I remembered about rollerblading—why I forgot I really loved it, who knows?!—and dug them out, putting them in my car so I’d have them there when I wanted them. Since then I have switched to primarily rollerblading at my lunch hour. I bought a new pair this summer after I realized just how bad of a condition my old ones were in. It’s pretty amazing how much better I’m able to move down the road now!
Also in late spring I started incorporating weight lifting back into my routine. I had lost a lot of muscle and strength since being pregnant and having Forest. I know, I could have lifted and done a lot of workouts that are available to pregnant women but I really took it easy on the heavy lifting while pregnant. Lifting weights is something I have always loved since I did it in highschool for softball. Lifting and having a good muscle mass is very beneficial, especially as we age. I would really love to do Crossfit and considered it a few years ago but never bit the bullet. Maybe someday I’ll get to try it.
Another thing that has been on my mind this year has been mobility. It’s one thing to do cardio and get some weight workouts in, it is also another thing to keep joints moving appropriately and muscles stretched right. It’s also an aging thing, too. While I definitely want to be in good shape for vanity reasons and for overall health reasons, I want to be in good shape so that as I age I don’t become susceptible to diseases and ailments that plague our current culture. So, I’ve also been incorporating exercises that help to work various body parts and I can definitely tell a difference when I’m active in doing them. Before I got pregnant I started to have ocassional lower back pain but it has definitely been exacerbated since being pregnant and having Forest. Not only that, I seem to have developed some kind of heel problem, too. Yay, thanks 35!
One thing I have really appreciated this year has been my FitBit. At first I didn’t think I would enjoy using it but it really helps hit home how much I move and motivates me to get steps in. Some months I’m a lot more diligent about trying to hit 10,000 steps. Other months I’m less diligent but will try to push myself to get another thousand or so if I’m only at 5 or 6K for the day. Just Google ‘Sitting is the new smoking’ and you’ll get a ton of articles about how detrimental sitting can be to your health. I remember feeling just how constraining sitting felt four years ago when I came to my current job after being active for previous last year and a half. I now try to make sure I get up more often during the day and change positions from sitting to standing and trying to move myself out of one position the entire day.
As for weight loss, I’m not sure what I weigh now. The last times I’ve checked I’ve waivered between 7-10 lbs from pre-pregnancy weight, but it has been several months since I’ve done that. I started controlling my portions a little better in May and did notice an impact to my clothing at that point. Many pieces started fitting looser and I am able to get into a few pieces here and there that are what I was wearing in early 2014. For the most part I still sit teetering at a standstill and I know a lot of that has to do with my eating. It’s not that I necessarily eat all that unhealthily but like I said it is more portion control than anything. I still have a bigger than normal appetite since I’m still breastfeeding, too.
That’s kind of where I am at now. Trying to increase my activity and start pushing myself a little harder. I’m looking forward to cooler weather so we can start hiking again, too.
Some interesting links:
+Katy Says: A blog about natural movement. She has a podcast, too, which is fantastic.
+Lift Like A Girl
+Sitting Is the New Smoking—Even for Runners
+Harder to Kill podcast
My fitbit has been a great motivator. I remember I got one for Lois and she was like “Meh…”, but now she is insane with it…over 150,000 steps a week at times! Keep at it, you’re doing great!
Keep it up! Just always remember the shape your grandma was in and that will help motivate you too!