One of the moms was asking about how to find motivation to exercise. She talked about how she has no motivation to do anything, but doesn't feel pretty or sexy anymore. She felt stuck in a hole, and needed some help out. I promptly told her that she was probably suffering from PPD, if not depression, and that weight loss came a bit harder for those of us that have it.
Losing weight for women is a struggle anyway. Especially after pregnancy. Breastfeeding helps out a ton! But not all of us are lucky enough to have that (I wasn't able breastfeed with either of my kids despite the fact I desperately wanted to). Between all the hormones, trying to catch up on lost sleep, not showering for a few days on end, and you're body recovering from the brutal beat down you just gave it, losing weight is hard! It can be even harder when fighting PPD or depression. Because let's face it, you do not want to go running when you're crying hysterically and wanting to become one with your bed.
I struggle really bad with weight loss. I had very big babies ( 9lbs 11.6oz for Chase; 8lbs 2oz for Sky), so I gained quite a bit of weight. It also didn't help that I wasn't working for half the pregnancy with Chase or at all with Sky. Granted, I gained less weight with Skylar because I was constantly running after Chase. He was a big help in that department. My other problem was back to back pregnancies. I hadn't lost all my baby weight from Chase when I got pregnant with Skylar. Because I'm brave, here were my numbers.
Pre-pregnancy weight - 160lbs
Ending weight with Chase - 225lbs
Weight when I got pregnant with Skylar - 195lbs
Ending weight with Skylar - 250lbs
Current weight - 202lbs (as of three days ago)
I've still got a lot of work to do before I get back to my pre-pregnancy weight. And I find it hard to keep up with it. There are days that I have trouble pulling myself out of bed, so doing anything more than cooking lunch is a no-go. There are days where all I crave is chocolate and nacho cheese Doritos (it's PMS, deal with it). Then there are days were I only eat Chase's leftovers and a piece of string cheese. Some days I don't eat almost at all. And none of the above is good for me. None of the above is helping.
It's all about consistency. I have to remember to eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner. I have to stop drinking Dr. Pepper (even though I'm pretty sure that's the only thing keeping me awake as of late). I have to start at least trying to get more sleep (but insomnia can be out of one's control). Granted, I have been cutting out sweets almost altogether and watching my portion sizes. Not eating after 9pm is also helping out a ton (I used to have a bowl of cereal at midnight before passing out while I was pregnant; no bueno).
The biggest factor that's been helping me? Playing with Chase and the dogs outside. I try to spend at least an hour every day out in the backyard playing in the pool, pushing him on the swing, picking up dog poop (with six dogs, that's a workout in itself), throwing a few balls around for the dogs, and about once a week, taking Chase and one dog on a walk around our two blocks. I also try to keep moving almost all day. I do laundry, go up and down stairs, clean, walk around the house with Sky, etc. I'm usually moving all day, except for Chase's naptime. I try and take an hour or two break so I can get through the rest of the day without collapsing.
The biggest way to help yourself when you want to lose weight and are suffering from depression is to remember that little movements help. Small efforts pay off too. If you can't manage to get out of bed on Saturday, do leg lifts in bed. If you find yourself folding laundry, do squats when you reach into the laundry basket. And PLAY! Play with your kids, your pets, your hubby or boyfriend, a friend. Play is not just for kids. You would be amazed at what playing will do.
Seriously, try it. Spend at least 20 min a day for a week just playing. Play with chalk, bubbles, balls, hide and go seek, dance like a crazy person with your kids, play tag, something playful! Not only will you be getting some exercise and some good outside time, but even on bad days, for those 20 minutes I play (and sometimes I have to force myself), I am happier. I am me, for at least 20 minutes. Fake it if you have to, because it will change over time into real happiness.
Just remember, you're not alone. We are all struggling with something in our lives. Weight is just another battle us women face. We got through childbirth in (mostly) one piece, so you can get through this too. Depression, PPD, and weight gain go hand in hand. Don't be afraid to break those suckers up!