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  • Pre/Post Birth Fitness

    What are you doing for your fitness after giving birth?

    After the initial rest period after birth, I plan to sign up for post-natal yoga (since I am taking pre-natal yoga now) or sign up at a gym near home. Since, my mom will be staying with me for a while, I can sneak out for an hour or two (I think).

    I know breast feeding can help lose weight but I would prefer a more toned up body (no flabby waist and thights).

    I am also getting a malay lady to do body wraps for me at home. Personally, I know I will feel better with a healthy and fit body. Most of my friends after giving birth, managed to lose weight but around their tummy I can't help but notice the excess baggage. Its up to individual but for me, I really don't want that.

  • #2
    Good topic, very essential topic! Coincidentally I was just telling my hubby yesterday that I *will* make myself lose all the extra weight I gained during pregnancy, and will do my best to whip myself back into shape before baby no. 2.

    I'll also be engaging a malay massage lady to do those traditional wraps and massages. Heard that its very effective to rid water retention and improve blood circulation. Tanya, you found one already? Pass me the contact if you have, I'm still looking.

    I'm staying alone with hubby and baby, so I don't think I'll be able to get out much initially esp before baby's schedule is stabilised. But once baby is slightly older (maybe couple of months onwards), I plan to take a couple of hours off once a week to do some workout/excercise (haven't decided what, gotta find something that suits my schedule). Will probably drive by MIL's place to drop baby off and pick baby up after I'm done. Also provides good bonding opportunity for MIL and baby. Will discuss this with MIL soon, see if she prefers to drop by our place instead.

    And once baby is old enough to attend weekly playgroups and classes(18 months?), then I'll get even more time off to do my excercises. I think its kinda unhealthy for a SAHM(stay at home mum) to be cooped up at home 24 hours a day anyway. In this case, its even better if my time-out time is used to keep myself fit and healthy.

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    • #3
      I will get the malay post-delivery massage.

      Doing confinement at mum's which has a gym but doubt I'd be free to use it what with recuperating, breastfeeding, diaper-changing, and catching up on my beloved sleep. If I can "throw" some of the diaper-changing and whatever else I can to my mum, that might leave me with abit of time to walk the treadmill, hehehe.

      I won't give myself added pressure since might be feeling emotionally and physically overwhelmed ALREADY. Therefore will not pressure myself to lose anything ASAP. And I'm not entirely sure hubby will be around since he may have some work commitments overseas, so yeah, whatever arrangement is least... punishing, for me!

      As for targets for much later- just losing the extra pregnancy weight will be a fine target since I wasn't toned/ flat tummied pre-pregnancy anyway hah! I'm more concerned about spending some time with baby, restoring my health (so no crash dieting this time) and planning for subsequent babies (we're kind of rushing our babies schedule due to my preference to stop production before 35yrs old and seeing how hubby would like 3 kids it's rather tight if you consider possible/ probable hit-and-misses attempts... anyway all these unconfirmed, we're KIVing, see how).

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      • #4
        Just to share with you my experiences: Just 5 days after my delivery in end Dec, I had a Malay lady to do massage for me. She used Aromatheraphy oils, but not the traditional jamu (can't take the strong smell), and then did a body wrap on me. I could hardly believe myself, seeing my bloated tummy go down day by day, and even the thighs were toned. She gave me a lot of pep talk during the massage, and that provides me with positive thinking too. Must say the sessions with her were so therapeutic and relaxing. Best of all, I could fit into some of my skirts and pants just after 5 days with her.


        After regaining my positive self-image, I tried going to the gym 2 months later. Started doing light exercises - cycling, brisk walking on treadmill and some light weights. After 2 sessions, I gave up! Had felt so tired out after just 45 mins' workout (with stretches in between) and my back ached so much.

        So I dared not go gym after that, and my self image deflated again. Then plucked up courage to sign up for a Pilate class at the CC. Wow, lucky the experienced instructor is very encouraging and the pace is ok. Can feel my confidence returning again. Thank goodness.

        So my advice is we have to know your own body. Try not to hit the gym too early, unless we're fit. Take up exercises at own pace. Last but not least, I feel mothers should pamper themselves with post-natal massages - for the body and mind too.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by cassia
          Just to share with you my experiences: Just 5 days after my delivery in end Dec, I had a Malay lady to do massage for me. She used Aromatheraphy oils, but not the traditional jamu (can't take the strong smell), and then did a body wrap on me. I could hardly believe myself, seeing my bloated tummy go down day by day, and even the thighs were toned. She gave me a lot of pep talk during the massage, and that provides me with positive thinking too. Must say the sessions with her were so therapeutic and relaxing. Best of all, I could fit into some of my skirts and pants just after 5 days with her.
          dear Cassia, can you PM me with this malay lady's number.?

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          • #6
            Cassia, wow, your massage lady sounds good! Can you PM me her contact if you still have it? How much did you pay for the massages? Thanks in advance.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by mango
              Tanya, you found one already? Pass me the contact if you have, I'm still looking.
              Hey mango, yes I have found one. My sister used her when she gave birth last year. I will be getting her namecard from my sis soon and will let you know her info.

              My sis highly recommended this lady because she did experience significant results and this lady is organised (she knows what she is doing). What this lady will do is a complete body massage traditional javanese style. After the massage, she will do a wrap for you and recommend you to keep the wrap on for several hours etc. Its $100 per visit.

              I will definitely go to her because I want the traditional java stuff and I'm half indonesian (mom side). But, if you don't like you can definitely ask cassia (hee... just saw that you just did)

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              • #8
                i had body massage & wrap for a week after my delivery. well, my wrap was too tight for me & it made me feel moody for a few days fact because it was affecting my appetite & it gave me pain at certain areas like around the hip . So if your threshold for pain & itch is high ,you can put on the wrap for a longer period, if not i think you have to put on for a minimum of 7 hours ?
                its been 3 months after delivery , i still have a lot of flabby bits on my stomach areas . my excercise regimne started at 2 months post delivery. once a week aerobics , which i hope to increase to twice a week from next month.

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                • #9
                  I asked my Malay colleague about the body wrap thingy and she told me you have to keep it on for a long time (8 hours at least). She said it can make you feel hot and itchy. They also wrap it quite tightly so you can only take small steps when walking. My only concern is whether the stuff they use for the wrap smells as I have little tolerance for yucky smells :puke:

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by poem
                    i had body massage & wrap for a week after my delivery. well, my wrap was too tight for me & it made me feel moody for a few days fact because it was affecting my appetite & it gave me pain at certain areas like around the hip . So if your threshold for pain & itch is high ,you can put on the wrap for a longer period, if not i think you have to put on for a minimum of 7 hours ?
                    its been 3 months after delivery , i still have a lot of flabby bits on my stomach areas . my excercise regimne started at 2 months post delivery. once a week aerobics , which i hope to increase to twice a week from next month.
                    Yes, my sis also told me the wrap is not comfortable at all (very tight!). I guess if really cannot take it, I will take it off earlier (comfort is important).

                    Personally, I believe that massages and wraps do wonders but what really works is still our effort to exercise.

                    Poem,it has only been 3 months since you delivered, what you are doing right now sounds good enough to me. These things cannot be rush and should start slow and then pick up (like what you are doing). Nobody should be able to lose all that fats in a short while and I will give myself half a year and anything earlier will be a bonus.

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                    • #11
                      just thinking... can i call for these malay ladies to do the wrap on normal days(like for normal slimming session, not after giving birth?)

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                      • #12
                        Actually, personally, I am not worried that the oil used during these massages will not smell pleasant. Alot of spas also offer many types of javanese massages etc and they always smell good. Most of the time, these javanese massages uses natural ingredients like flower essence etc.

                        Anyway, I found this on how/what to prepare for a massage at home. http://www.goldwellness.com/Services...alMassage.html

                        Hope it is helpful

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by ssgg02
                          just thinking... can i call for these malay ladies to do the wrap on normal days(like for normal slimming session, not after giving birth?)
                          I'm sure you can. They can probably do something specially for your needs.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by naughtygirl
                            Yes, my sis also told me the wrap is not comfortable at all (very tight!). I guess if really cannot take it, I will take it off earlier (comfort is important).

                            Personally, I believe that massages and wraps do wonders but what really works is still our effort to exercise.

                            Poem,it has only been 3 months since you delivered, what you are doing right now sounds good enough to me. These things cannot be rush and should start slow and then pick up (like what you are doing). Nobody should be able to lose all that fats in a short while and I will give myself half a year and anything earlier will be a bonus.
                            yup massages & wraps do wonders! my massage lady told me that it is important for post natal massage because it will helps sooth & keep out post natal blues, & wraps will also speed up your womb to return to post pregnancy size.

                            i must admit i was kinda obssesed with the urgency to slim down right after birth but when i realised that all these worries was making me moody & i didnt spend most of my time with my baby but was struck in bed with the most killing wrap on me. i told my massage lady to go slow.

                            right now i am totally cool with my little "pouch". what matters most is that i am in the most healthy state of mind to take care of my little percious!!!

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                            • #15
                              Hi all, thought this was an interesting article to share!

                              Postpartum Secrets of Celebrity Moms
                              How they whip themselves back into shape after a pregnant pause
                              By Carrie Bell

                              Bouncing Back After Pregnancy

                              Movie star moms make it look easy. Catherine Zeta-Jones danced in Chicago months after giving birth to her first child, then performed again on Oscar night, eight months into her second pregnancy. Reese Witherspoon was back to looking leanly blonde just eight weeks after delivering her new son. And where does Kelly Ripa find the energy to skirt around New York City in high heels while filming two TV shows and raising three kids?

                              Although motherhood on the A-list may seem like magic -- the ultimate trick being a speedy return to normal after nine months with child -- Matrix mama Jada Pinkett Smith admits that celebrities are masters of illusion who get a lot of help from nannies, personal chefs, trainers, cleaning services, the works. "All moms struggle. Celebrities just know how to conceal it," says Pinkett Smith, who has two children with husband Will Smith and is stepmom to his first son. "While motherhood is a beautiful thing, it's traumatic to the body and the mind. I had some really down days after my kids were born. I thought I would never recover, even though I had a lot of help." Of course, you wouldn't have known it from looking at her. "The acting comes in handy," she admits. "We can pretend everything is great even if it isn't."

                              While you may lack their acting ability and the bank account for a team of specialists, you can still adapt some of the superstars' secrets for your own post-preggers routine. Follow these tips to bounce back and feel great.

                              Star Strategy #1: Celebrities Aren't Afraid to Sweat

                              Regular exercise is a must if you want to fit back into your prepregnancy jeans. "Committing to it is the only way to lose the weight," says Holly Robinson Peete, a mother of three who stars in Like Family. "Plus it makes you feel more energetic and strong. You'll need that when the kids start crawling."

                              Wait for your doctor to give you the go-ahead, usually about six weeks after you give birth. Then ease into exercise. And if you're currently with child, keep moving. "I never stopped exercising while I was pregnant," says Catherine Bell, who stars on JAG. "You should stay active all nine months, even if it's just walking around the block." Kate Hudson, whose son, Ryder, was born in January, agrees: "You can't do everything you did before, but you can adjust your routine."

                              Even if you weren't keeping in shape during pregnancy, there's hope. Trainer Gunnar Peterson, who works with star moms including Jennifer Connelly, explains, "If you're out of shape and start working hard, results will come quicker and easier." To keep things interesting, he recommends varying the exercises you do. "Trick yourself into thinking it's a good time," he says. Uma Thurman used her Kill Bill martial arts and sword training to shed 50 pounds; Catherine Zeta-Jones favors fencing. Other hot workouts include exercise boot camps, aerobic striptease, and spinning.

                              For a less cardio-intense session, celebrity moms such as Melissa Rivers, Brandy, and Vanessa Williams swear by Pilates, an exercise method that strengthens and lengthens muscles while increasing flexibility. Yoga, too, has a large cadre of A-list devotees including Madonna, Melanie Griffith, and Reese Witherspoon. It's become so popular that most YMCAs offer $10 classes, and for both yoga and Pilates there's a wide array of videos and DVDs, TV programs, and books.

                              Star Strategy #2: They Feast on Healthy Food

                              You don't need a nutritionist to tell you to reach for an apple instead of a bag of chips or to eat baked chicken instead of fried. The problem with most of us is that we keep falling off the healthy-eating wagon because junk food is so convenient. For celebrities, though, avoiding sweets and fats is a job requirement.

                              Currently it's the rage to avoid carbs -- diets like Atkins, South Beach, and the Zone are huge in Tinseltown, though you may want to stick to a modified version, especially if you're nursing. The idea is to cut down on carbohydrates such as pasta and white bread and opt for more lean meats, fish, and veggies. Tips and recipes from Web sites like the-zone-diet-recipes.com can help.

                              Start eating right during pregnancy and just don't stop. "If you can keep up good habits after you give birth, you'll be ahead of the game," says Melissa Rivers, a host on the E! Entertainment network. Bell echoes that sentiment: "If you pig out during pregnancy, you might develop a taste for the bad-for-you stuff. You have to eat more because you're eating for two, but you should eat the right kind of food."

                              Other Hollywood tips include guzzling water all day and steering clear of the fridge at least two hours before bedtime. If you're at a restaurant and you can't seem to stop stuffing yourself, sabotage your plate: Celebs have been known to dump a drink in their dish to discourage picking.

                              Star Strategy #3: They Don't Apologize for "Me" Time

                              "At first I fell behind at work. I stopped riding horses. I even left an exercise class because I felt so guilty about being away from my newborn," Rivers says. "It took me months to figure out how to balance all aspects of my life. But I realized that giving up hobbies and responsibilities didn't make me a better mommy. I was actually more bitter and more stressed than when I took time to myself."

                              A few activities just for you can make a huge difference in your happiness quotient. Can't afford the babysitter? Think about people who might owe you a favor. "Starting with your husband," says UPN star and two-time dad Flex Alexander. "He helped get you into this. The least he can do is pull some diaper duty."

                              And of course the two of you need couple time as well. Malcolm in the Middle's Jane Kaczmarek has said that one of the best pieces of advice she ever got was from Kate Capshaw, wife of uber-director Steven Spielberg and mom to seven children. "She told me that kids certainly need a lot of attention, but so do relationships. Our kids don't want us to go out, but as crazy as it gets with kids and jobs, the marriage is the backbone. We do the best we can with the limited time we have."

                              Faith Hill agrees. "You can't neglect your marriage, or it will fail," she has said. "Tim [McGraw] and I schedule dates at least once a week. Sometimes it's a fancy trip to the beach, sometimes it's just breakfast alone."

                              Star Strategy #4: Celebrity Moms Dress Casual, But Well

                              You may not have a stylist, but you can still look pulled together. "Clothes help make the woman," says Lisa Rinna, mother of two and host of Soap Talk on the Soap Network. "If you feel good in an outfit, you'll feel more confident, people will want to be around you, and you'll have a better time."

                              Treat yourself to a few new pieces of clothes. Get a stylish but easily managed haircut, and wear some makeup to bring emphasis back to your face. The best alternative to makeup is a glow courtesy of a bronzer or self-tanner. Victoria Beckham, formerly Posh Spice, looked as if she'd been in Barbados when she first appeared after giving birth to her son, Romeo. In truth, she hadn't left England.

                              As for acting calm and cool, do what you can to harness serenity. "You can't sweat the small stuff," says Matrix star Carrie-Anne Moss. "I don't want to create that kind of nervous, stressful energy around my kid." None of us do. Experiment with candles, meditation, massage, a hot bath, a cup of tea, and anything else that will ease your troubled soul.

                              And if you learn anything from the stars, let it be this: Go easy on yourself. There's no Superwoman, only a lot of women doing the best they can. "Everyone recovers at a different rate, and that's okay," says Pinkett Smith. "Give yourself a break, be patient, and let your body guide your comeback."

                              Carrie Bell is an entertainment writer in Los Angeles.

                              Originally published in American Baby magazine, March 2004.


                              http://family.msn.com/tool/article.a...=true&GT1=3391

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