As you know (if you read the blog on a regular basis) I am super proud to be a bridesmaid for my dearest friend Kate this summer. I have never been a bridesmaid before (you know that joke always the bridesmaid, never the bride? It’s the other way round for me!) and I have always wanted to be.
I gained rather a lot of weight during Edith’s pregnancy, which I’m still surprised by – I didn’t at all with Toby, but for some reason I neeeeded starch in my life at all times. So I had a grand total of 48lbs to lose to get to my target weight. So far I’ve lost half of that, and I still have another 23lbs to lose to reach target (which makes it 17lbs to get to my pre-baby weight). Obviously I am breastfeeding, so I have an obligation to Edith to make sure that my milk is as nutritious as it can be – no crappy diets or fasting for me. In order to help shift the weight a bit faster than I have been doing, I’ve started a little bit of what I call ‘Mummy exercise’. I do some exercises on a night, with Edith and it is something that we both think is great fun (in fact on a weekend I try to do some with the boys too to get them involved and they think it’s hilarious!).
Here are my favourites:
1.) Plank Chat: Perfect for bringing back the waistline and ridding yourself of the mum-tum.
Forget pillow talk, that’s out. Plank chat is in. What I do is lie Edie underneath my head so that I am hovering above her, and then I hold a plank position above her while chatting to her and (trying) to sing to her. If you have ever tried a plank, you will know it looks so simple but it’s actually mega hard to do. The reason I do it like this is because Edith takes my mind off what I am doing and I can generally hold the plank for longer, because I’m focused on her giggly little mush. Just make sure you don’t put baby underneath your body, if you suddenly collapsed in a heap because your muscles aren’t stronger enough, you could really hurt him/her.
2.) Up and down: Push ups for fun and toning arms, while firming the chest.
This is exactly the same as a plank, but instead of holding the position you are doing a push up while talking to your baby. I’ve said a thousand times that Edith will not let me put her down for love nor money, but she will if I am doing something like that where she is the centre of attention. I’m not great at push ups, so if you are like me you can still do the knee style push ups and progress as you get stronger.
3.) Ride your horse: Squats for toning the tush and loving the legs
It is one do the easiest things to do but also super effective. Squats are the mummy must do (and it also works in an even more effective way than a kegal – ladies, you know what I’m talking about!) plus it’s fun for your little one to join in. If you have a wrap or carrier then simply put baby in it (if you don’t then this can be done holding baby too just make sure you have them securely and you don’t over do it) and stand with your feet shoulder width apart, lower you bum down as if you are sitting in mid air and back up. The key is to clench everything and try not to go to fast. This will make Edith laugh every time provided I give. Good rendition of ‘Horsey Horsey don’t you stop’ as I do it. And yes, I neigh.
4.) Flying baby!!!! Arms and tums at the same time.
Ok, this sounds scary, I know. It’s not. Lie flat on the floor with baby in your hands, lift baby high into the air and say flyinnnggg babyyyy with a big smile on your face. As you do it, raise your feet into the air and hold them 30-40cm off the ground. Keep them in place as you lift baby up and down 5 times. Then move onto something else. I don’t need to tell you that baby should go up slowly and carefully, this is a game for them so we don’t want to go frightening them. I know I don’t need to tell you, but I’m going to anyway! All of our kids love this, in fact, my husband will still do this with Reuben and Toby. I can’t quite manage anymore as they are too heavy, but I’m trying to build up to doing it with Tobes.
5.) Twists – tense the tummy and trim the waist.
Super simple, stand with your feet shoulder width apart, hold baby in your arms (or preferably a carrier) and twist from one side to the next while tensing your stomach muscles. If you are feeling particularly energetic you can sing some kind of song while you do it to make it more fun for baby.
6.) Fast feet, fast feet, slow… – bit of cardio for you and the munchkins.
Firstly, NEVER do this holding a baby. Ever. Never ever. You run the risk of damaging their delicate little necks, however this is one to do with toddlers and older kids because they think it’s hilarious (as does the baby watching from the safety of her swing). So you start of walking on the spot and them shout ‘Fast feeeeeet’ and run on the spot as fast as you possibly can while counting to ten or shouting fast feet ten times. The boys think this is hysterical. It’s a great little bit of cardio for helping burn some calories, and it’s a game that can get the kids running around without having to leave the house.