At risk of boring my brother, who didn't particularly enjoy my many posts about maternity clothes way back when, I figured it was about time to dedicate a post to my thoughts on how my body turned out post-pregnancy. While things haven't quite gotten back in place, I am relatively happy with the way things turned out. At first glance I probably look pretty much like my old self. Weight-wise I'm at or just below where I was pre-pregnancy, but I don't think that's entirely representative of the current state of things. I think I lost a lot of muscle tone during my months away from the gym, and my once a week class probably hasn't entirely recovered it. Muscle weighs more, so I could theoretically be fatter but weigh less because I don't have as much muscle. And to some degree, I think that's the case. Most of my body seems pretty okay (it never really got that out of control to begin with), but my stomach still hasn't quite snapped back into shape. There's definitely an extra layer of flab there. It's merely the difference between looking thin and average...meaning I don't look bad, but just not as good as I did before, and no worse than your average person out there. I just have to be extra conscious of what kind of clothes I put on...things that are fitted around the belly aren't ideal right now. While I don't enjoy looking at the belly and would love to make it disappear, it's not really that bad and I'm not sure I have the time to dedicate to working it off anyway. I suppose I could take in less calories, but I'm enjoying cheating a bit (less than pregnancy, but more than I used to) while I'm still nursing and have a few more calories to burn. I'll have many more years of perpetual dieting ahead of me, so no sense going nuts now.
Most of my old clothes fit me again, though I still have some issues with short tops due to my larger chest from nursing. Some of my pants, which were big before, are finally big again. Good problem to have, I know. I don't quite have the free time I used to have to go out and work on my wardrobe, but I discovered during my pregnancy (and reaffirmed when I was out shopping recently) that there was a secondary reason that I always shopped the clearance racks. Besides being cheap, it made for less decision-making. If I were to shop the entire store, there's just so many racks and so many styles to choose from. Many of them were newer shapes and I'd have no idea (and not enough patience to figure out) what styles would work best on me. Shopping for maternity clothes was nice, because it really narrowed down my options. I could do a sweep of the store and be sure I had covered everything. Now that I'm pretty much back to normal, I have two problems. First, I have to figure out how to work around my belly. Second, I feel like I'm so out of touch with current fashion and my own body that I'm not even sure where to begin when I do shop. I can once again shop the "normal" racks, and still limit myself to clearance for the most part, but I feel like I have no clue what I should be wearing at this point. Does being a mom matter? If you watch "What Not To Wear" it does. Where I used to be able to get away with it because I looked young, now with a baby in tow, I'm not so sure I want to get away with it. And again, not a lot of opportunities to figure all of this out since clothes shopping is nearly last on my to do list right now (middle of the priority list, but actually being able to get out and do it just seems to fall to the end of the practicality list). Oy.
Long story short, I'm glad I did all the work I did while I was pregnant to ensure that I had the best shot at getting back in shape. I'm not sure I could have done much more. It turned out pretty much as well as could be expected, and for that I am grateful. I have more work to do, however, and will go through these same fears the next time I get pregnant (not for a couple years, at least)...because they say the second time around it's that much harder to snap back into shape. Ugh. But at least I look normal now. Whew.