January 22, 2012

Cookies, Frosting & Donuts: My Postpartum Weight Loss Story.

Note: Be warned! This is a pretty long read! Snacks and frequent breaks recommended...

You can also enjoy this long post with popcorn (no butter please) & a glass of lemonade (no sodas!) Enjoy! :)

I had been planning to do this blogpost since a long time now but one thing or the other has come up and I tend to forget about it. Now that a number of friends are expecting their babies and others are already trying to lose their postpartum weight I thought let's do this now!

How it all started:

It's been quite a few years now but I still remember clearly when I stepped on the (dreaded) weighing machine after coming home from the hospital. I was in a haze after so many meds, a hard labour and a tiny baby to look after.

But the momemt I saw the numbers on the machine...it was one of those scenes from cartoons when those little stars start to spin around top of the head!

I guess most girls who are having their first babies at a young age and especially who dont have their families around tend to think the weight will just magically disappear once the baby arrives...well....it's not entirely false. I have seen some lucky young women losing their pregnancy weight in two,three months...but some unlucky ones like 'moi' are not so lucky in the get fat-diet-lose-weight department.

I was merely 50 kilos at 22, when I conceievd Bubba Rayyan. That day when I came home with my new pre-term 2 kilo bundle of joy my weight was the last thing I wanted to worry about, but the number 78 looking back at me mockingly was enough to depress me further! And here I was thinking my baby would carry (if not all) atleast Most of my weight but he was tiny and I was huge...

My mom was visiting to help us with the new baby. She is a doctor and a total fitness freak when it comes to her daughters. She almost fainted when she saw me!

Thank God for mothers...I owe it all to her that I was able to lose those pesky pounds with home cooked meals, healthy diet plan & exercise time. I could not have done it, alone without her help. I owe you once again mom! Miss you...Love you *sniff sniff*

Okay! Coming back to my weight loss...Let's begin with the Weight Gain.

My pregnancy did not start off too well with nausea and too many vomits a day. As most of you readers must have read (if you havent you can read about my Nausea)

And once that nausea and frequent throwing up subsided at around four months, as most pregnant women I started to eat like anything!

I loved to have Krispy kremes, Baskin Robbins Milkshakes, fried eggas & sausages, fries, coleslaw, bars of chocolates and munched on packets of Lays and Pringles!

With the society nowadays, media hype and the pressure on young girls to be thin, women know how we spend all our lives dieting and avoiding foods that we love. Being a foody that I am, I felt that for the first time in my life I could eat all that I wanted and not feel guilty but little did I know that how hard it would be AFTER I had the baby. How hard would it actually be to lose all those pounds.

The weight gain also caused many problems. I was on high risk of GD, had SPD because of my enormous weight (Click SPD to Read More.)

I had put on my 5'3 frame in hardly three to four months! I could not walk, I used to waddle. I used to lay and eat and watch tv ALL day and I blame it all on my unhealthy food intake and lack of being active throughout my pregnancy.

I would suggest all my friends, family and readers who are pregnant or are planning: "not" to gain too much weight. It is NOT healthy at all for the mother nor for the baby. Check out Baby Centre's Pregnancy Weight Gain Guide to read more.

How To Lose it:

But all those who have already gained those pounds and are willing to lose them. The number one step to your goal weight is Motivation: You can not lose even an inch if you are not motivated. You have to keep a realistic goal in your mind, do not be in a hurry or in a rush, take it slow but keep trying. There are NO quick fixes, no yo-yo's. You have to choose a healthy lifestyle for yourself & your family. Remember slow & steady wins the race! :)

Back to "How I lost those kilos". Here are a few tips & tricks I followed; hope they would help you too.

(Please check with your doctor/physician before doing any vigorous exercises or diets-I did not breastfeed my baby so few things MIGHT NOT apply on you.)

A confident woman is always beautiful. Women always tend to over analyze themselves. We must NEVER lose our self confidence. Whether thin/fat/curvy/skinny you must always remember YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL in your own skin. If you are COMFORTABLE with your body, there is nothing better than that. These tips are just ideas and stuff I did to lose some weight. You can use them to tone up or lose the last few pounds.

Make healthier choices. Choose Wisely. You are what you eat. Switch white bread with brown, full fat with skimmed, fried with baked, grilled & sauted. Especially when you eat out. Always choose wisely.

Eat Healthy.

You are what You eat. Yes! What you put in your mouth is what actually sits & settles in your fat cells. You might be one of those few genetically lucky ones who can eat whatever they want but the rest of us HAVE to count calories. Because there IS a connection. I don't believe in: "I don't eat anything still gain weight" (unless ofcourse there is an underlying medical issue.)

You will have Mood swings. It's normal to get a little moody and easily triggered when you are making changes in your diet. But soon your body will get used to it. So whenever you feel a little edgy just relax, drink water, take a long relaxing shower or better yet 'Jog' :)

Ditch the SUGAR. Yes, folks! That is exactly what I did. People who know me won't believe that (rofl) but yes I did ditch the sugar box for quite some time. I chose Fruit over candy and water over sodas. I removed everything with the word sugar in it. I only allowed myself a few nibbles of my favourite dessert once in two weeks or an occasional indulgence over the weekend when I was eating out. But that was about it. No daily chocolate bars, no milkshakes, no fizzy drinks, no pizzas, fries, cookies, blah blah!

The tastiest foods are healthy foods. We feel that Healthy means "bad tasting", "bland", "boring. BUT it does not have to be boring! A steamed fish fillet with lemon, rosemary & thyme. Grilled chicken with baby tomatoes, lentil soups, vegetable salads, fruit salads, eggs with a whole-grain toast and fruit, Salad with tuna, chickpeas and a small amount of olive oil dressing, A bowl of oatmeal made with skim milk, topped with a handful of walnuts, Low-fat cottage cheese with almonds and sliced fruit, carrot sticks with hummus dip are just a FEW ideas I tried and they are so NOT boring. Introduce healthy foods in your lifestyle and you will love it! Not only will you loom good, you will feel good.

Count your calories at www.CalorieCount.com.

Keep a FOOD Diary. I made a food journal. I know it is tedious and tiring and time taking but it is definitely worth it. Once you start writing down everything that goes in your mouth you will know what the culprits are. But No cheating! You have to write each and everything you eat or drink or nibble all day everyday. It will be like a secrret diary with your secrets in it ;)

Don't expect to lose weight like the celebs. They have private chefs, gyms, instructors and food made according to their body types and demands. Take your time, stay motivated and don't lose hope. Be patient. Don't aim to lose lots of weight over a short period of time. A goal of one half to one pound a week is best for long-term weight loss and maintenance.

I prefer the word 'healthy eating' over 'dieting' but that also can never work alone. You 'HAVE' to exercise. You can choose to run, jog, swim,, do pilates, yoga, aerobics or even zumba. Anything that works for you. I used to walk 20-30 minutes a day and then jog 20 minutes more every alternate day on the treadmill. Work it, sweat it. Take it slow I started with 15 minutes a day and went upto 40 minutes a day, also run a little, power jog. Be active!

My motto was less salt, less sugar, less oil. I stopped bringing home chocolates, chips, crisps or anything that I ate when I was pregnant (lol). If it is in your fridge you are bound to eat it. My diet included lots of water, fruits, vegetables, fresh juices & lean meat.

Do not be obssessed with weighing yourself. Do not weigh yourself everyday. Let it be once a week or perhaps twice but not everyday. It gets depressing and disappointing to keep count of each and every kilo. Eat healthy, exercise and then weigh yourself empty stomach, first thing in the morning, once a week.

Below are few options of what I ate from my Food journal from one of those days:

Ideas for Breakfast:

Oatmeal with skimmed milk and apples.
3 egg white, vegetable- (no oil) omelette with fresh orange juice.
Fruit Salad.
Cereal with skimmed milk.
Egg sandwich

Ideas For Lunch:

Vegetable salad
Lentil soup
grilled chicken
black bean & chickepea salad


carrot sticks with hummus dip
cucumber sticks
a bowl of fresh fruit
corn chips
fruit and nuts

Have a light early dinner.

Walk regularly 30-40 minutes a day. Drink 8-12 glasses of water.

Eliminate fizzy drinks, sodas, fried foods, oily stuff, sugary, syrupy & salty foods.

Best Of Luck! :)

Hope you enjoyed the post. Do share your experiences and tips to lose weight.


Nida said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Love youur way of writing !
keep up the good job .. really enjoyed reading the post :)

Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

luvd reading it! learnt alot!Thanx:)

Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

its annie here:)

aisha m said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

luv ittt...:)good job hun

Anum said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

loved your blog!its very true what we eat makes us what we are now!thankfully i did not put too much weight after kamil but did not think about losing it just up till now..new year resolution..hehe!m working out vigorously at the gym..running floor exercise belly dance etc.been 13 days..weighing machine still showing the same number but have lost in inches..wore my ol shirt..felt great!though m not following the 'healthy diet'..have sweet cravings:(..but from now on no chocs!thanks for ur inspiring story mariam..m motivated once again:D..im 7 kgs away from my pre preg weight but intend to lose 10..want that sexy body i always dreamt of.sigh!...ladies keep up ur spirit and stay hopeful..hum wazan barhana jaante hain tu kam karna bhi;)

nadia tariq said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

nicely done, thats what i did too, after my first baby, took almost a year but then i stayed, i still have to shoot 4 kgs after my second one, theres no shortcyt, eat right n workout that is it

Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

good read.... however ... these r the things we all know... wat i was really hoping for was that u wud go into specifics.. u know the life style of KSA ... u know the the available "fixes" in the aisles
of the hyper markets.... so why not give us the guidance wat to bring into the fridge...u said fruit juices ... did u take fresh juices or the almari ones... u also know how it is with new moms here... hardly time so what quik snack bought from market can b safe for weight loss, and also for small families... how do we fit in our ddesi daily cooking?

Food-Shop-Travel said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates


Thank you so much Nida :)

Food-Shop-Travel said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates


You're welcome Annie :) Glad you liked it.

Food-Shop-Travel said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

@aisha m

Thank you :)

Food-Shop-Travel said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates


thanks for dropping by hon! your sweet comments always make my day! Love to kamil <3

Food-Shop-Travel said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

@nadia tariq

Thank you :) Best of luck with those last few pounds hon! :)

Food-Shop-Travel said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates


Hon...as we all know there are no quick fixes, no secrets. Eating healthy and staying active are the keys to a healthy you.

Life in KSA is very sedentary women spend most of their sleeping, watching tv or on facebook (lol) you just have to make your lifestyle more active even if it's just a brisk walk or cleaning around the house.

Very soon will be doing EASY recipes which fit in our "desi lifestyle" :)

For the timebeing: ditch the sugar, oil and too much salt. Avoid anything that is overly processed. Choose healthy foods, count calories and try to drink WATER. If you opt for Juices- they must be FRESH or second choice is ALMARAI. Skip anything cheesy, oily, buttery while you're on it.

Hope this helped. Further feedback and comments are most welcome :)Best of luck!

Ice said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

I was too lucky I lost all the excess post-partum weight without even trying...but i have gained extra pounds over the years and I kinda like it coz I was always skinny and my indian inlaws teased me all the time...but I've gained like 3kg yet all those extra fat appear in the wrong areas! Flabby arms and jelly belly grrrrr...i love food so I can't diet, my only hope now is exercise! I want a toned body with a healthy weight! Wish me luck:) Btw, this was a really good post Masha'Allah!

Faiza Bukhari said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

Quite convincingly written :) just a conscious diet habit and motivation to be healthy can lead us to a really happy life. Great piece of work Food – Shop – Travel !

Food-Shop-Travel said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

@Ice thanks a lot for sharing your views & for appreciation. Love x

Food-Shop-Travel said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

@Faiza Bukhari well said! Thankyou for your kind words :)

Anonymous said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

how long it took u to lose that weight?

Food-Shop-Travel said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

it took me around 6-8 months and I was less then my before-pregnancy weight :)

Amna Khan said... Best Blogger Tips[Reply to comment]Best Blogger Templates

loved it! very helpful <3


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