I recently gave birth to my second daughter - sweet little Meaghan. After a rough pregnancy and rather intense labour experience my poor body felt and looked like it had been through a battle - and I have the wonderful scars (aka stretch marks) to prove it.
This being my second time around, I wasn't expecting my body to bounce right back into shape - nor was I expecting to have any sort of motivation to do the work necessary to get it there. Especially knowing that no matter how much work I put in, my stomach will never look like it did before kids (something I have yet to come to terms with). I was lucky to lose about 3/4 of the weight and fit into my pre-pregnancy jeans within the first few weeks thanks to regular dog walks and the fact that breast feeding uses up so many calories! And at the six week mark (which for some reason all the books and experts say is the healthy time to start moderate exercise) I began working out, following a DVD "Get your body back after baby" by FitPregnancy. Personally I found the exercises and routines a little too easy but they got me off my butt and moving - which I think was a key first step.
For the last 3 weeks or so I've been trying something called "ten-minute trainer". It's a program by Tony Horton (beachbody.com) and is basically a bunch of ten-minute workouts that focus on different areas (lower body, yoga, total body, abs, cardio). The idea being that you can get a good workout in just 10 minutes. While 10 minutes is ultra doable - the key is doing at least 2 or 3 a day (bringing me up to 30 minutes plus a warm up and cool down). I'm actually VERY PROUD to say that I've been sticking to it and doing about 30 minutes a day, 6 days a week for almost 3 full weeks. This may not be very impressive to some people, and it may seem amazing to others. For me - it's great. I don't think I've stuck to an exercise routine of any kind in years - at least since I got pregnant with Layla and probably since my wedding. Raise your hand if you were also in the best shape of your life for your wedding day!
The results aren't amazing - yet - but I am sold on the program and I fully believe that I'll start to see real results soon. For now I'm trying to stay motivated by focusing on the fact that I feel great after I do my 3 daily workouts, I feel like my body is toning up (albeit under a soft layer of extra padding, but still...) and it makes me sweat more than any work out I've ever done so it HAS to be working.
To be perfectly honest, staying motivated up to this point hasn't been too hard. I'm blessed with a teacher for a husband, so with the arrival of summer vacation he has been home a lot more the last few weeks. With him taking Layla to walk the dog after breakfast and Meaghan settling into a good nap schedule I definitely have the time. He's also the workout KING. I sometimes think he has a mild case of OCD when it comes to exercise... or maybe he's just addicted to the endorphins! He is keeping me motivated in more ways than one - He helps me find the time, he encourages me to do it when I don't feel like it and (sigh) I just want to look as good as he does!
Can I keep it up though? That is the question...