Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Trim Healthy Mama Tuesday - 10 weeks postpartum

After stalling for several weeks I finally started losing weight again in the last two weeks. I am down another 3lb in the last fortnight, 1 lb the first week and 2lb this last week. After slacking off in the first 6 weeks after Megan’s birth I knew I needed to get back to sticking to plan to get my weight moving again. 

While I was getting used to nursing a newborn and running after 2 preschoolers I found myself slipping back to my old ingrained ways of eating. Breakfast was my biggest issue. I’d wake up in the morning after several night feeds with a need to eat straight away. On top of that we had moved the boys from cribs to beds so there was no more sneaking downstairs to the kitchen without them. I started making toast for a quick breakfast to keep me going until I could get more than a minute or two in the kitchen. Inevitably a bad start to the day with food led to other “cheats” when the hunger pangs would strike within a few minutes of nursing.

I knew the only way to break the bad cycle I’d slipped into was to get myself more organized. As the initial “newborn fog” lifted at about 8 weeks postpartum I finally felt ready for more planning and structure to our food again. I put a few things in place to help me conquer the early morning munchies. First I set up our little four cup coffee maker in our master suite. That way I could get that important first cup of coffee to kick start my day before I had to cope with the demands of our preschoolers. After the 6am (or thereabouts) nursing I could enjoy a mug of hot black coffee in bed along with my devotional time and my sleeping baby lying beside me in bed. Then I decided I really needed to make sure I never ran out of skinny chocolate in the freezer ready to eat. Right now I’ve been enjoying it with whey protein powder and salted peanuts. This let me have a quick snack that was on plan while getting the boys their first breakfast. (They always start the day with a banana and a cup of milk while they wait for me to make the real breakfast.) Then I finally tried the Muffin in a Mug recipes.

Cinnamon Muffin in a Mug
I had avoided Muffin in a Mug until this point because we don’t use the microwave for cooking. We do have a microwave as part of our fitted kitchen, but we use it to store baking trays and cake pans. Neither Rob nor I like the idea of microwaved food, but it was the perfect size for my baking trays. Since it was mentioned in the book that 2 smaller muffins could be made from the recipe, and Serene had mentioned baking them in the oven instead of the microwave I decided to try the oven method. Since I have 6 muffin sized trays I started with tripling the ingredients and using paper cupcake cases in the muffin tray. I made the cinnamon version first, then next time I made the chocolate version. I also made the cream cheese frosting with Greek yogurt for a nice tangy topping. Now I had a quick and easy muffin that was perfect for a quick breakfast instead of toast. I could freeze the muffins ready frosted in pairs. Then when I had a morning where I couldn’t wait long for breakfast I could take 2 muffins out of the freezer and they would be ready to eat by the time the big pot of coffee was ready. No more off plan toast for this Trim Healthy Mama.

An added bonus of having Muffin in a Mug always available is now I have something I can feed the boys when they are having a “picky about food” day. They are particularly fond of the chocolate version (like their daddy) and think they are getting a chocolate cupcake. Now if they won’t eat anything else I can feed them a nice healthy muffin that won’t spike their blood sugar and lead them to a sugar crash meltdown. Since there is protein in both the muffin and the frosting I also don’t have to be too concerned that they haven’t eaten anything else that day after their initial banana.

Chocolate Muffin in a Mug
The most exciting part for me is that not only have I not held on to my 10lb first trimester gain for the first time, but I have also lost 27lb of the 30lb I had kept from the previous 3 pregnancies. Only 3lb more to lose and I’ll be back at my “before any pregnancy” weight. Being so close to my first loss goal is definitely motivating me to find more ways to help keep myself on plan. If I can stick to the plan right now when I only have little ones and run around all day with an infant in my arms, then I can stick to the plan no matter what is going on in my life.

Monday, July 22, 2013

July 2013 Family Update

I know I haven’t been a good blogger recently. It has taken us a few months to get used to our new rhythm as a family of five. 

Little Bit is 10 weeks old and finally starting to get into a more predictable sleep/awake pattern. She is growing faster than either of her older brothers did at this age too. When we weighed her last week she had gained 5lb 13oz from her lowest recorded weight of 6lb 13oz at 2 days old. Our tiny baby simply isn’t tiny anymore. She is also holding her head up really well, and we can see that she is eager to get moving and join her brothers playing on the floor. So far her biggest challenge has been excessive reflux. We are pretty sure that it is mostly due to my over active letdown and over supply issues. She gets too much milk, too quickly most of the time. It is slowly getting better, and thanks to Gripe Water she is also sleeping better at night. The difference if we don’t give her the Gripe Water is amazing, and means that Rob and I don’t get much sleep as she thrashes around and groans loudly even while sleeping.

Shorty is 22 months and learning to jump from standing. He does manage to get both feet off the floor some of the time, but he isn’t consistent with it yet. He has such a sweet look on his face when he tries and says “I jump” while feeling very accomplished. He has such as sweet and happy disposition. He is also a very loving big brother. Every morning his first question is “Kiss the baby?” which is quickly followed by “Hug the baby?” He always has a huge grin when we actually let him hold his baby sister. He loves to climb and jump on anything with a bit of bounce. So far I’m glad we started learning to sleep in a bed with just a twin mattress on the floor, as he has been known to bounce right off his bed head first. Fortunately other than a few bruises to his face he has managed not to hurt himself too badly.

Sweetie Pie is 3, and finding our new family dynamic a little more challenging than his brother. He is a thinker, and trying to come to terms with even less individual attention now that there is a baby that needs almost constant attention. Once we got past the initial novelty period he did start to act out to gain that attention back. Now that his baby sister is beginning to settle down he is calming back down too. He has become more affectionate towards me than he has ever been, but snuggles are still only on his terms and when he feels the need for them. Usually we snuggle up to read stories together. He is very interested in cars. We bought him some new cars and the Pixar animation “Cars 2” for his birthday last month. It became his obsession to have the DVD playing in the background while he played until we bought the original “Cars” for Rob for Father’s Day (so Rob could watch it with the boys.) Now the original version is his favourite because it has more racing in it. He is definitely his father’s son as at 3 years old he already loves NASCAR. His favourite toy car is his “Jeff Car” (a matchbox Jeff Gordon 24 car.)

Rob is still working long days Monday through Friday, but we both agree that it is worth it to have him with the rest of us for the whole weekend. His blood pressure has continued to improve thanks to the Trim Healthy Mama eating plan. He has also slimmed down and that slowly creeping middle age spread has disappeared. He has been maintaining a stable weight for a few months now, even without much exercise. We both keep waiting for the day our lives slow down enough for us to fit in regular exercise programs.

I am most definitely out of the “Newborn Fog” that happens for the first couple of months after I give birth. I’m even back to experimenting with Trim Healthy Mama recipes in the kitchen. After only gaining 12lb during my pregnancy with Little, I have lost a total of 29lb since her birth. So I have managed to lose the 10lb I held on to after Shorty was born and 9lb of the 10lb I held on to after Sweetie Pie was born. I still have 3lb to get to my “before any pregnancy” weight and 49lb total to lose to get to my goal “happy weight.” My weight loss has stalled for the last few weeks, but I’m finally back to sticking strictly to plan (too much bread crept back in after Little Bit arrived) and trying to add in some exercise during nap time (if I can get all 3 children to nap at the same time.) I am confident that if we don’t get pregnant again quickly then I may actually be able to reach close to my goal by Little Bit’s first birthday. I also got Rob to take a couple of “before photographs” to show my progress with trimming up. My plan right now is to post the photos with update photos once I get half way to my goal weight. If nursing doesn’t keep me stalled then I hope to be posting about that around Christmas time.

Now that I’ve updated our family news it is time to get back to playing with my children. Since it is raining today we’re building a fort in the family room and climbing over Mount Sofa.