Body after baby #2

I always enjoy body after baby posts on other blogs so I wanted to share my story, complete with embarrassing photos…

My experience with getting back in shape after having Ezra has been drastically different from after I had Zain. There are a few reasons why: When I was pregnant with Zain, I gained about 40lbs…on top of the 20lbs I gained after hubby and I got married.

200711-280439_0595

Happily married

 

The 20lbs came from the 2 miscarriages I had before I got pregnant with Zain and the toll they took on my body with the hormonal changes…plus a little emotional eating thrown in for good measure.

I did not exercise while I was pregnant with Zain. I had not been consistently running before my pregnancy so that wasn’t even an option. I started out regularly going on long walks with our dog who was a puppy at the time. When I had some unexplained bleeding around 9-10 weeks, I freaked out and stopped even going on walks.

My first baby

My first baby

 

After I had Zain, I felt like I had a mountain to climb when it came to getting back in shape. Not only did I need to lose the baby weight, but I also needed to lose the pre-baby weight. I didn’t even reach my pre-Zain, pre-miscarriages weight until a few months before I got pregnant with Ezra (that would be about 2 years after having Zain).

April 2012, the best shape I was in before getting pregnant with Ezra

April 2012, the best shape I was in before getting pregnant with Ezra

 

With my pregnancy with Ezra, everything was different. I started my pregnancy at a healthier weight. I ran until 20 weeks when I had to stop due to the tendonitis in my ankle. I wish I could have run for longer, but it is what it is. Even after I stopped running, I remained active by walking and using the elliptical. I gained 29lbs during my pregnancy – a much healthier amount and still in the 25-30lb recommended weight gain range.

I ran a (very slow) 5K at 33 weeks pregnant

I ran a (very slow) 5K at 33 weeks pregnant

 

Ezra is 3.5 months old now and I am a mere 5lbs away from my pre-pregnancy weight. I have not been dieting in any way because I don’t do diets; I like to eat whatever I want :). Plus, I am running and breastfeeding so I am consuming a lot of calories to keep up with both of those things. I also know that with breastfeeding, the body sometimes likes to hang onto a little extra weight so I’m not stressing about those 5lbs. I’m just really thankful that I’ve bounced back quicker this time.

In addition to having a healthier pregnancy the second time around, the difference recovering from a natural birth as opposed to a c-section is another reason why I’ve been able to jump back into running so easily this time. It took a long time for me to feel healed enough to run after my c-section with Zain.

The funny thing is that I have never appreciated my body until after I had kids. I can now look back on pictures of myself pre-kids and wish I had that body again, even though I know that I wasn’t happy with my body then. Tell me I’m not the only one who does this :).

2008 - Honeymooning in Hawaii. Can I have that body again?

2008 – Honeymooning in Hawaii. Can I have that body again?

 

Now that I’ve been through 2 pregnancies and experienced becoming the size of a house, I appreciate my body so much more when I’m back in shape. Plus, I appreciate what my body is capable of – creating these perfect little boys.

My perfect little men

My perfect little men

 

So here you go:

IMG_5908

5 days before Ezra was born

versus

10 days before Zain was born. Holy fat face.

This is just embarrassing…January 2010 – 10 days before Zain was born. Holy fat face.

 

At 14 weeks postpartum, following a 12 mile run:

There's still work to be done

There’s still work to be done, but I’m happy with where I am now

versus

This is how I looked 3 months after I had Zain

This is how I looked 3 months after I had Zain. A lot of extra weight on my body

Like most women, I’ve struggled with body image issues for as long as I can remember. I’ve never truly been happy with my body and I’ve always wished I could change certain things. Having babies has helped me see that my body is capable of so much more than I ever knew it was and I appreciate it so much more for that, as cheesy as it sounds. Running has also shown me that my body is capable of more than I thought it was. I never thought I’d be able to work up to running 12 miles by 14 weeks postpartum, especially since it’s not like I ran until the end of my pregnancy. I started back at square 1. I’m feeling pretty confident and very excited for my first half marathon of the year in a week and a half!

Anyone else have drastically different experiences getting back in shape after having each kid?

Comments

  1. TaurianDoll says

    You are amazing! Congratulations on better managing the post-baby workouts and the post-baby weight this time around.

  2. says

    I think you look beautiful in BOTH preggo pics AND both postpartum pics! :) It’s funny you mention looking back on pre-baby body and thinking wow, I wish I had that now. While having a baby has definitely made me appreciate the amazing things our bodies can do, I have to say that now, it is just a little bit harder to stay in shape, post baby. It’s like I have to work about a 3rd more every week to stay in the same shape I was in pre-pregnancy. Does that make sense?

    Anyway, huge congrats on your baby boys (I have a son, boys rock!) and your awesome running progress! You give me hope for when we try for baby #2.
    Carly recently posted…Sneak Peek – Fit Mama Friday 4/5/13My Profile

    • Kristen says

      Thank you so much! I agree that it’s a little harder to hang onto that fitness once you get there.

  3. Hubby says

    You are a beautiful women inside and out. I never want you to forget that even if I have to remind you everyday. You are my biggest source of inspiration and I love you with all my heart :)

  4. says

    You look gorgeous in all the pictures! And I mean that seriously. I don’t know why we all focus so much on how our bodies look, but for some reason we do. I think it’s sad. (Believe I’m extremely guilty of this sin.) We should focus on all the amazing things we do whether it’s running, walking, cradling our kids, driving our kiddos to practice or just giving people we love a hug. What we look like really doesn’t matter when you come right down to it. It’s what we do with love that matters.
    Karen recently posted…And They’re Off in a Bunch!My Profile

    • Kristen says

      You are so right, Karen! I think as I’ve gotten older and especially after having kids, I’ve really learned to appreciate my body more.

  5. says

    I think you look great in all these pics but I 100% understand what you are saying. I wish I would’ve appreciated my body pre babies. I look back now and wish I could look like that again. Your right though I grew one beautiful boy and I’m growing the next now and the fact that my body can do that and that I can get back in shape after gives me true appreciation. Even if it is hard getting as big as a house :-)

    Awesome post! I need these right now

  6. says

    you look amazing! we are expecting our first in just a couple of weeks and i had to stop all exercise 10 weeks ago due to bed rest. i am nervous about what my body will look and feel like after birth. thanks for the inspiration!

    • Kristen says

      Thanks, Tina! Congrats on your little one on the way! Just take it easy while you recover and I’m sure you’ll bounce back in no time.

  7. says

    Wow, thanks for sharing! Very inspiring. And congrats. You are doing an amazing job! (I just googled “getting back into running shape after baby” and came across this blog post!).
    Crystal recently posted…35 Week BumpdateMy Profile

  8. says

    Its quite inspiring. I am also a mother of one daughter and now second child in my womb and hope to get my body like earlier even after my second child. Hope to get it and Thanks once again for sharing.

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