It’s the fifth “Coffee with Kate” round-up and I just love the entire range of questions ya’ll sent in! Thank you for continuing to allow me to share a little more about myself. And, of course, I always love getting to know each of you better through your social media posts! Thanks for sharing your questions and anecdotes. You can always shoot me a question on my social media posts, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org! Keep the questions coming, ladies!
Coffee with Kate: Question 1. When and how often do you think someone should workout after they’ve had a baby? I am looking to tone up and lose about 15lbs postpartum, but don’t know what type of workout is best or how much I should be doing. And I definitely don’t want to over-do it at first. I didn’t exercise much during pregnancy.
Hey Mama! You’re right–when the time comes to start introducing some training postpartum, cardio alone won’t cut it. If you’re wondering how to lose baby weight, you have to look past the cardio and on to the weights. The most successful postpartum training plan incorporates a balance of activities including leisurely walks, some High Intensity Interval Training (a.k.a. HIIT), plenty of stretching, proper core training, and also weight training.
I realize that carrying a baby around all day is a workout in and of itself, but if you really want to take your fat loss to the next level, adding some strength training will be key. Cardiovascular exercise may get you bigger or smaller, but you will stay the same shape–weight training is the #1 way to change the shape of your body.
Do strength training 3 times a week for 30 minutes to increase fat fighting hormones that help burn fat long after your workout is over. This will go a long way toward speeding up your metabolism, tightening and toning. This is the most often missed secret in postpartum fat loss. Check out my Beyond Baby program for for workouts, nutrition, coaching and more as you lose the baby weight and get back into shape!
Coffee with Kate: Question 2. I loved your boys’ little play dough valentine you shared on insta stories. I am always trying to think of healthy, non-candy valentine ideas or kid gift ideas in general. Do you have any others that you’re willing to share?
I love the idea of non-candy valentine’s/gifts for kiddos. I ordered the adorable printable tags from Love Lucy Designs, which is what inspired the playdough gifts. From there I just got little clear bags and some crinkle paper and cute ribbon and that was it! Super easy and it will last much longer than some of those little candy hearts. You could find any little trinket or toy to put in a bag like that. Other ideas include:
VALENTINES WITH SCHOOL SUPPLIES
- You’re the highlight of my day – highlighter
- Happy Valentines day for crayon out loud – crayons
- You’re #1 in my book – bookmark or book
- I think you are just write – pen
- You rule – ruler
VALENTINES WITH TOYS
- Love is in the air – balloon
- You make my heart swirl – crazy straws
- I wheelie like you – toy car
- Chalk-full of fun, that’s you, Valentine – chalk
- You make my heart bounce – bouncy balls
- Love is a battlefield – GI Joe
- You a-maze-me, Valentine – maze
- I’m stuck on you – tattoos or stickers
- You make my heart glow – glow sticks
- Happy Valentines day love bug – plastic bugs
- You blow my mind – bubbles
- Valentine, never lego my heart – Legos
- I dig you – shovel
- You are just plane awesome – toy plane
If you need some more inspiration or adorable printables, here’s where I got mine this year!
Coffee with Kate: Question 3. I am 6 months pregnant and I find that I can’t stop snacking! I want to pick good snacks, but I’m running out of ideas. What were some of your favorite healthy snacks when you were pregnant with your boys?
So glad you asked this! I definitely noticed that I was increasingly hungry between meals when I was pregnant. If you’re not careful, lots of pregnancy snacking leads to packing on some serious poundage. And even when you are being careful and do plan ahead, the same old, same old snacks get to be…well…old.
A few of my favorite healthy pregnancy snacks provide dense nutrients to leave you satisfied, energized, and nausea-free without overloading you on fat or calories. Plus, these easy-to-make snacks deliver the good stuff your baby-to-be needs to grow.
Apple with Cheese
An apple a day is good for everyone, including pregnant women. Apples are a great source of both insoluble fiber, which fights constipation, and soluble fiber, which can help lower cholesterol. All that fiber also keeps you full. Add in a small slice of protein-rich cheese for an even more satisfying snack, or dip your apples in some PB mixed with a scoop of protein. When buying apples, you might want to consider organic apples since the regular ones tend to have lots of pesticide residue on the skin.
When you just need something to munch on without a lot of calories, try a cup of grape tomatoes. You can snack on an entire cup for less than 50 calories — a lot less than a handful of potato chips. Packed with vitamin C, tomatoes also deliver a big dose of lycopene, an antioxidant associated with lower rates of cancer and heart disease. Plus tomatoes contain a fair amount of fiber, some vitamin A, and even a little folate.
Oven-Baked Sweet Potato Chips
When you crave something crunchy with a hint of sweetness, these homemade chips do the trick. Coated in a little cinnamon and sugar instead of salt, and then baked, makes them much lower in sodium and fat than regular potato chips. Plus you’ll reap the many health benefits of sweet potatoes, including fiber, potassium, and vitamins A, C, and B6.
Here’s how I make mine: Preheat oven to 400°F. Lightly spray a baking sheet with olive oil spray. Spread sweet potato slices on baking sheet and lightly sprinkle with sea salt and optional cinnamon/stevia, if desired. Bake 20 to 25 minutes until cooked through, stirring once halfway through.
Smoothies you buy at your local store come high in sugar and low in fruit. Whip up your own at home using nonfat Greek yogurt and your choice of fruit and you’ll get a healthy serving of protein, calcium, and other important nutrients. Frozen fruit gives your smoothie a thicker texture, so use fresh fruit if you like a thinner consistency. And don’t go overboard on the juice. The calories and sugar in juice (even 100 percent fruit juice) add up quickly.
Speaking of Greek Yogurt, it’s a GREAT healthy pregnancy snack! Rich in calcium and protein, yogurt is a nearly perfect pregnancy food. Some yogurts contain live active cultures, which are beneficial bacteria that are believed to enhance digestion, improve nutrient absorption, and boost the immune system. Choose low-fat or fat-free plain yogurt since flavored yogurts tend to be high in sugar. Stir in a little cinnamon, stevia, or even some berries for flavor.
Portable and high in protein, hard-boiled eggs make a great snack when you’re on the go. If you’re an egg white-only type of gal, now’s the time to eat that yolk. While the white is high in protein, the yolk is full of valuable nutrients, including choline, which plays a role in fetal brain and nervous system development, and folate, which helps prevent neural tube defects. Cook up a batch of eggs once a week so you can easily grab one when time is short.
Homemade chocolate-covered almonds
Almonds = nutritional powerhouses filled with fiber, protein, vitamin E, potassium, magnesium, and heart-healthy monounsaturated fat! They’re rich in disease-fighting phytochemicals and have good amounts of nutrients such as fiber, iron, and calcium that are especially important for pregnant women. You can eat almonds raw but personally, I find you can’t go wrong by adding some chocolate. Grab a handful when hunger/sweet tooth cravings strikes.
Coffee with Kate: Question 4. I loved the one piece swimsuit you shared on Instagram. Do you mind sharing where you got that? I am always looking for a good suit that stays put.
Absolutely! I got the one you refer to from Target for under $40. But I’ll link a few more great one piece options that I’ve been eying this year as well!
Don’t forget if you’re getting ready for a beach trip or any other swim situations, I’ve got lots of healthy beach/pool snacks listed for you here: Easy Healthy Summer Snacks and 25 Healthy Snack Ideas for Summer.
Coffee with Kate: Question 5. What’s the best type of workout for a woman of my age (50+) who wants to lose a few pounds and tone up? I used to be a runner but my body no longer responds like it used to. Even when I’m logging lots of miles, I can’t seem to get rid of these last 5lbs.
As women age, they lose muscle, which gives you that tight, toned look. Lean muscle mass generally contributes up to approximately 50% of total body weight in young women but declines with aging to be 25% at 75–80 years old. Physically inactive women lose as much as 3-5% of their muscle mass per decade after age 30!
If you want to change your body shape and keep your muscle loss at bay, you absolutely MUST lift weights. Cardiovascular exercise may get you bigger or smaller, but you will stay the same shape– weight training is the #1 way to change the shape of your body at any age.
For menopausal women, strength training 3 times a week for 30 minutes is absolutely crucial. This increases hormones that help keep your muscle, burn fat and go a long way toward speeding up your metabolism which tightens and tones your body as you age. Finally, find more tips for women over 50 right here.