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How to Get Your Body Back After Baby

The Naked Truth: How Moms Reclaim Their Body Postbaby

There's a lot a pregnant woman can count on following the birth of a long-awaited baby, including sleepless nights and visitors flocking to her home for a viewing. But the zinger is the postbaby bulge.

That round bump that was so cute during the final months of your pregnancy becomes a balloon of bothersome flab that bulges over your waistband. People tell you it will eventually shrink back (you hope). But if you feel like dialing your ob-gyn to ask, "Are you sure I didn't have twins and you left the other little guy in there?" you're not alone.

Of all the common changes to our postpartum bodies, which can include stretch marks, varicose veins, and even new birth marks, the bulging belly is the one that seems to bother us the most, according to a Circle of Moms" target="_blank">survey of Circle of Mom members.

Forty-three percent of moms say in the survey that pregnancy left them with a fat, flabby belly, while 16 percent say it all settled in their hips, and five percent say their feet have grown and their shoes don’t fit. Around 29 percent share that they feel like their whole body has changed.

"My son is 4.5 months old and my body is definitely not what it was," says Jessica C. "[While I] lost all the weight I gained while pregnant plus 10 more pounds, [I have] the pudge belly. I need my body back."

Is there anything moms can do to slim down, tighten their abs, and reclaim their prebaby bodies? Moms share their tips, here.

Keep reading.

Be Patient

A mom of four, Erica D., says, "I was a freak about my belly. It takes about a year for it to go back to normal, but some women don't get their tight belly back at all. Be patient," she advises.

Do Crunches

Kimlin
W. says she got her stomach back to normal with
abdominal exercises. Erica also shares that stomach exercises help.

Join a Weight-Loss Community

Another survey respondent, Kristin, used Weight Watchers online and a stationary bicycle to get her body back in shape. "I went from a size 16 to an eight."

Take Care of Your Body

Kimlin also recommends babying your belly while pregnant. "For future reference, as soon as you know you are pregnant, rub your entire body with lots of baby oil and take lots of baths, which helps the skin to stretch and relax back to normal. It helped me avoid stretch marks," she says.

Try Breastfeeding

Krystin B., who had a baby in 2008, is one of the 16 percent of the moms who say the postbaby weight settled in their hips. But she eventually slimmed back down. "Breastfeeding really helps," she shares. "After my first baby, I bounced back really quickly, second baby not as quickly. It's amazing what our bodies go through."

What postpartum body changes have you experienced?

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, POPSUGAR.

Image Source: Shutterstock
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JuliePeck90683 JuliePeck90683 5 years
I agree with Gabrielle,I think that its terrible for you to say some thing like that.I have had 4 children,&yes I may have a few stretch marks ,but thats just a reminder of all the Love,joy & happiness that I've put into carrying,birthing ,& rasieing my children.Every little mark is a reminder of my Beautiful kids!!So,Deona why would u say something to make woman scared of having the most beautiful,wounderful experience of there Lives?
ASHLEY97046 ASHLEY97046 5 years
with my first i lost all the pregnancy weight plus an addition al 20 lbs (60 lbs total) and STILL looked like I had a belly tire. I just had my 2nd son who is 4 months old and have again lost weight but never going to get rid of belly =(
KimberlyFrazierBass KimberlyFrazierBass 5 years
After my first child, my belly went away rather quickly, however, I was left with plenty of stretchmarks. It wasn't until after my second child 8 years later that my tummy began to have an affect on my self-esteem. After my third and FINAL baby, I really began to understand just what MY body went through and that just like each pregnancy is different, so is the recovery for each and every lady who goes through it. I have stopped comparing myself to how other women look after they have had 4, 5, even 6 kids and accept, that I am wondrously and beautifully made and if a stomach full of stretchmarks is what I have for the rest of my life, so be it. I have three ABSOLUTELY WONDERFUL, SMART, CARING, LOVING children and I would do it all again.
PennyGarner89218 PennyGarner89218 5 years
I knew I would b more prone to the 'viranda over the toybox' so I took measures to try n avoid this from happening... My son is 2 n I still wear my baby belt... I wore a tight wrap around my waist n hips to aid my weight n skin going back to 'normal'... I now hav a flatter stomach n tighter tone than most women I speak to who just let it all hang loose... However I wouldnt say exercise n dieting didn't help either although 50 percent of the time I was bad... My kgs rnt the same as they used to b but I think I still did pretty ok to avoid the bulge... :-)
SarahPlants SarahPlants 5 years
I love Breastfeeding and have done so for four kids (still bfing the 4th). But for me it does NOT help me lose weight. After each kid it was harder and harder to lose weight and get rid of the "muffin top". 8 mos after the birth of #4...trying harder than ever...it seems that I'm losing this battle and it SUCKS big time. I hate my body right now.
ChristinaWaters31188 ChristinaWaters31188 5 years
My daughter just turned 2 last week and I'm just now noticing that my belly is starting to firm up again. I was thrilled when I started noticing the jiggle disappear!
LaurieBurlew LaurieBurlew 5 years
Hello all you new young Moms I see many comments on worrying about bulges and weight post preggers I was always petite (100 lbs) and after 4 births bounced right back until having twins~ and ya know i got back a bit slower after that Being 115 was ok But what i wish to share is that when i stopped taking care of me to take care of everyone else, my bod began to slip and i didn't notice til it was too late. Took it for granted that i'd always bounce back as before Now I'm 55 and 2 yrs ago my body betrayed me My skin lost it's elasticity and i finally grew a belly bulge that i still cannot get used to SO never stop moisturizing your skin no matter how busy you are MAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF while baby is napping or whenever you can but be sure that you do!
TQ56398 TQ56398 5 years
I REALLY recommend wearing a girdle. I wore one from the day i came home from the hospital until my baby was 4 months old, but by the time she was 2 months, you couldn't even tell that I had just had a baby. Seriously, girdle + breast feeding.
AlisonOCallaghan83443 AlisonOCallaghan83443 5 years
People should count themselfs lucky that they can have kids spare a thought for the women who would give anything to be in your shoes.. THE WOMEN WHO GO THROUGH FERTILITY MONTH AFTER MONTH HOPING AND PRAYING THAT THIS WILL BE THEIR LUCKY MONTH.............
kieshapruitt kieshapruitt 5 years
Well lucky me I guess I just have good genes because I have 2 kids one I had at 16 and another at 21 and with the first one I didn't get any stretch marks and my belly went back down the next week and my end pregnancy weight was 137 and I got bigger breast and with my second one I didn't get any stretch marks either but this one took everything I had after my daughter I had gotten larger breast a small waist with a nice ass now after my son was born he took everthing I went from a full c to a half b I had too much room in my jeans and went from a size 5 to a size 3 but I'm still happy because my biggest fear was stretch marks so as long as I didn't get those I was happy and I wouldn't trade my kids for anything in the world
ErinCoram ErinCoram 5 years
Stretch marks are worse! They can never go away!
JohnsonMaria JohnsonMaria 5 years
Every Mum has the same story to tell, even as a young mum, i have a baby of 3months plus and i still thou i lost a lot of weight compare to when i was pregnant but my stomach has not got back to its actual size.
CarolineJames CarolineJames 5 years
Hemorrhoids!
KerriDanner KerriDanner 5 years
WOW! Way to Bash yourself! What is that about? Are we all trying to be the what society wants us to be? For Christ sake you just had a baby..9 mths(actually 10 mths) ago..give yourself a break. Life is so much more than your body type. Live or it will pass you by!!
KimberleyBaggett KimberleyBaggett 5 years
I so agree with this I have awful stretch marks that are across my lower belly up to my button their on my thighs and my boobs hate hate hate them! But...I love my son to bits on the weight side of things I seemed to struggle but have now been eating organic food and I dropped a stone in a mth! havent looked back almost that 8 again!
EliskaKohout EliskaKohout 5 years
Ii can really realate cuz I have a that flab after having two kids and two csections. Don't like my body. It will never be the same.
BrookBridwell BrookBridwell 5 years
If you work out and eat right during your pregnancy the baby bulge will go down even quicker! A lot of pregnant women think it's okay to eat for two, when really you only need an extra 200 - 300 calories. Many also believe you can eat what ever you want!!! This is not right. Everything you eat goes straight to your baby! Pregnancy is the time to eat healthy. Post baby, while you are nursing, your baby only gets a small percentage of what you eat. While it's still good to eat healthy during this time, it's okay to eat a treat. I have had two children and I worked out and ate what I usually eat during both pregnancies and only gained 25 pounds with each and I now weight less than pre-pregnancy. They also keep me very busy, running around and playing! My breasts are smaller then they have ever been (which is kind of disappointing) and I have a little extra skin around my navel. I wholly believe in you are what you eat! Stick to the natural foods and you will feel so much better and look better too! =) Not to mention it is healthier for the baby!
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