The New Mama Workout

If you’re like me, you’re already wearing your sweatpants around the house and have your hair pulled into a messy bun anyway. So what’s a Mama to do when she’s all dressed up for the gym with no time to go?

New and seasoned mothers alike know how difficult it is to work exercise into your day to day activity.

Having a baby significantly changes our bodies and we need time to recover. But once your healthcare provider gives you the all clear, here are 10 exercises you can do with your baby.

(By the way, Dads, you can do these too!)

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Before Parenthood

Before the birth of my son, I considered myself a fairly organized person. One might say my house is “lived in” but usually one wouldn’t say my house is “a mess” (I hope). Now that my son is here, any weakness I had previously has been brought to light.

One of these weaknesses is my propensity to forget to switch clothes from the washer to the dryer. My mother can attest that this has been a shortcoming of mine since childhood. Doing laundry with good intentions gone bad…or soured actually. Oops!

One of my husband’s weaknesses is how much he hates to do dishes…but we won’t go there.”

Wait a second, I thought this was supposed to be about a bedtime routine, not your shortcomings regarding housework!

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If you missed it, read the beginning of this story, called “Finding Out I’m Pregnant.”
How I Told My Husband He’s Going to Be a Father

After the shock wore off and I ceased gaping at the wonderful pee stick that announced the good news that I was, in fact, for the first time, pregnant, I set down the pregnancy test and skipped into the bedroom. I crawled in bed next to my husband, on HIS side, and said softly, “Honey, I’m pregnant.”

He stirred as my words sunk in. “Really?” he asked.

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I was recently sent an article regarding a woman whose baby was struggling to nurse and basically starving because the baby could not physically remove milk from the breast. After much trial, the mother chose to formula feed. The article’s point? Fed is Best.

I would like to reiterate this point: Fed is Best. (And no I don’t mean the Federal government. I mean that a fed and full child is best. Yes, my mommy brain went there and was confused by the article until my smart brain kicked in.)

This article hit home for me because my son also struggled to nurse and for the first 4 weeks, before we put him on high-calorie formula, he was in fact, a failure to thrive baby.

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The happiest day of my life.

The happiest day of my life after my wedding day and before the day my son was born, was the day I found out I was pregnant.

I have mentioned before that my husband and I had wanted to have a baby for quite some time. From the first time we agreed to try to conceive to the moment of that positive pregnancy test was nearly three years.

I had spent a week at work feeling tired and strangely out of breath. I remember telling my boss as I was cleaning one day that I felt weird and jokingly told her, “Ha! Maybe I’m pregnant!” She said, “You better take a test.” I laughed it off at the time, but the more I thought about it the more I realized I had never quite felt the way I did.

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Don’t sweat it!

Remember, our bodies are designed to be amazing! God thought of everything and our bodies respond to the needs of our babies.

The concept of “emptying the breast” can be a bit misleading, but have no fear, our breasts were designed for the purpose of feeding our children. And this is still true even after pumping.

The breast is never truly emptied. Think instead of the milk being extracted from the breast as a supply and demand issue. It’s true that milk production is constant. When the breast is less full, the production speed picks up, and as the breast gets fuller, production slows.

Imagine a factory is making and selling a widget. While the widget is in demand, the factory is working quickly to satisfy its customers. If the demand for the widget decreases, so does the speed of production, and the excess stored.

Your baby will also begin to eat closer together as it gets later in the day. There’s a reason for this too. The fat content of your milk is higher which aids your baby in being able to sleep a longer stretch.

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As I finished a much needed shower, and exited the bathroom, my husband thrust our upset son into my arms for me to nurse him. He was screaming and crying! He was too upset to eat and it was clear this was exactly what he needed to do. All the books and articles and care providers said newborns needed to eat every two hours, but he didn’t keep to this at all. He was showing all the signs of hunger but wouldn’t nurse. He was frustrated, as was I because he wouldn’t nurse. To put it bluntly, we were a hot mess!

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Am I a Failure? People would tell us “Once you stop trying, you’ll get pregnant.” To this day, I still don’t know how to mentally or emotionally stop trying. God instilled an innate desire to bear children within a woman. Needless to say, I was not good at following this advice. Being pregnant was all I wanted. It was all I could think about. 

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Our Little Dinosaur
This endearing term refers to my son. The name was coined by my husband (aka Lil Dino Daddy) a few weeks before he was born. One day, while he and I were shopping for baby clothes at our local resale shop, my husband would only consider items that had dinosaurs on them. After my son arrived in early November, 2016, we finally gave those cute little clothes a purpose. Remembering our shopping adventure, I stealthily selected one of the outfits my husband had picked out – one featuring dinosaurs. I then dressed my tiny baby boy and took him into the other room to show his Daddy. Once my husband saw him in his “stegosaurus” outfit, his eyes grew wide in excitement as he exclaimed, “Aww, come here my little dinosaur!”

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