Get Your Pre-Baby Abs Back: Top Four Tips
By Kate Horney
“How can you get your pre-baby abs back after having a baby?”
This time last year I was a brand new mom, and among many other things, this question was on my mind.
By just 8 weeks postpartum, I was able to make significant progress on getting my pre baby abs back.
Read on and I’ll tell you exactly how can you get your pre-baby abs back after having baby.
But first, let’s have an honest mom moment: Being a mom is tough.
New moms especially have a lot to think about: when to feed the baby, what to do if they cry, and how to get rid of those extra pounds packed on during pregnancy.
Especially when you’re sleep-deprived, overwhelmed, and already have so much else on your plate! There is a TON of conflicting information out there about how to lose baby weight. If you’re not an expert, it’s really difficult to know where to start.
If you don’t know where to start (or if sifting through fat-loss programs makes your head spin), you’re not alone. But getting back your pre-baby body doesn’t have to be complicated.
When it comes to getting your pre-baby abs back, crunches aren’t the answer.
Core training is important, especially if you’re a new mom with diastasis recti, but if you’re serious about slimming your midsection, the key is to create a caloric deficit while balancing your metabolic hormones to ensure your body is burning fat.
How To Get Your Pre-Baby Abs Back: Top 4 Tips
- Lift More Than Your Baby: Engage in resistance training a minimum of 2-3 times per week. Adding weights to your workouts isn’t just for moms who want to gain muscle. The ideal postpartum fitness program incorporates a balance of activities including leisurely walks, some HIIT (high intensity interval training), plenty of stretching, 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 and get your pre-baby abs back, adding some strength training will be key. Cardiovascular exercise may get you bigger or smaller, but it will do nothing to help tighten and tone your abs. Yes, traditional aerobic training may burn calories during your workout, but this type of training does little to improve your metabolic potential. On the other hand, weight training creates the best hormonal environment for fat burning (belly fat included) as it stimulates the production of testosterone and human growth hormone – two incredibly powerful fat burning hormones that help you to burn belly fat both during your workout and long after your workout is over.
- Don’t Diet: You heard all about “eating for two” while you were pregnant, but what about now? When you’re a new mother, your body needs maximum nutrition, so immediately dropping your caloric intake to an unreasonable level isn’t healthy, and may actually cause you to gain weight around your middle or do some long term damage to your metabolism. You certainly don’t have to count calories (in fact, I prefer to focus on quality over quantity). To give you an idea of what you need to sustain your baby while you are breastfeeding and safely lose fat get your pre-baby abs back, the National Women’s Health Information Center advises consuming at least 1,800 calories per day. For a healthy baby AND momma, concentrate on well-balanced, healthy food choices that include foods rich in calcium, zinc, magnesium, vitamin B6 and folate. Remember to focus on foods that keep your hunger, energy and cravings balanced. If you do that, the caloric intake will take care of itself. (If you need help, I put my complete 12 week nutritional program broken into 3 fat burning phases into the Beyond Baby Members Portal for instant download today!)
- Prioritize sleep: It may seem impossible to get a full eight hours of sleep when you have a baby summoning you like clockwork throughout the night, but being sleep deprived will definitely make fat-loss harder. In one study, new moms who slept five hours or less a night were more likely to hold onto their extra pregnancy weight than women who slept seven hours. Yes, it’s much easier said than done, but don’t be afraid to ask for help from your partner, family or friends. The old adage, “Sleep when the baby sleeps” is still great advice. When you’re tired, your body releases cortisol and other stress hormones that can promote fat storage – especially fat around the belly. Plus, when you’re tired you simply don’t feel like taking good care of yourself. Moms who are exhausted are less likely to choose healthy food and are more likely to raid the pantry and load up on stimulants and sugar. In addition, if you’re low on sleep, you are less likely to have the motivation to exercise. When you sleep your body restores and rebuilds muscle, burns fat and resets hormones to prepare your body to be energetic, motivated and ready for the next day. If you want to get your pre-baby abs back, go to bed early, and until the little one is sleeping through the night, make it a priority to nap when your baby naps.
- Add Intervals: For a one-two punch that really kicks belly fat in the…belly…add intervals to your resistance training. Interval training is designed so that there are alternated “working” and “resting” segments within the same workout. These types of programs focus on improving body composition, while also increasing performance. Follow the rest based training model that we use in Bikini Boot Camp workouts: push as hard as possible during the working segments, bringing your body to its anaerobic threshold, and then rest until you’re ready to go again. Like resistance training, this style of training takes advantage of EPOC (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption) and enhances the caloric and fat burning effects both during and after your workout. When it comes to EPOC and the hormonal “after-burn,” intensity, not duration, is the key. If you want to get your pre-baby abs back, sprints and other high intensity intervals are the most efficient ways to increase fat burning hormones and burn belly fat!
Ready to get your pre-baby abs back?
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