In 2015 over 600,000 women became new mothers, bringing 697,852 babies into England and Wales. Whilst we are all quick to congratulate the mothers on bringing new life into the world we also seem quick to judge their weight gain.
On the 24th September 2016 Amor posted a photograph of a woman two months after giving birth who had shed her baby weight to display a flat stomach. Amor captioned the photograph;
“We must say, this is an amazing achievement, just 2 months post-pregnancy. But is there too much pressure on women to snap back into shape after just having a baby? Let’s discuss…”
There were a range of comments from viewers and readers including; “I definitely think you should focus more on spending time with the baby after birth than working out to get back in shape!”
An interesting point from one instagramer, others support the woman’s weight loss stating; “Nice post” and “Lol its goals love love”.
On average a woman will gain between 15 and 35 pounds during pregnancy, this is dependent on if you underweight, obese or healthy weight when you conceive. It takes a woman 9 months to gain this weight so is the thought of losing that much in under 9 months unrealistic?
During the birth a woman can lose instantly anything up to 12 pounds due to the weight of the baby, placenta, blood and other factors.
One mum of two explained how it’s not realistic for everyone to shed weight after giving birth: “I think she’s [the woman from the Instagram photograph] clearly naturally slim and not a good example, they should use a real mum, someone who works full time or doesn’t have the money. If someone, like me, doesn’t find it easy to lose weight it’s hard to see other women drop the weight overnight.”
Age is another issue to deal with when it comes to weight loss. In 2015 the average age of mothers rose to 30.3 years old.
Being over 30 it’s already more difficult to lose weight. Here’s when science gets involved. Due to Free Radicals (atoms or molecules) being unstable they become very reactive and damage healthy molecules. This causes our energy levels to decrease and our ageing process.
There are of course other factors for weight loss including a lack of motivation. The mother of two continued to comment on this; “I just kept putting weight on [after her first pregnancy] I wasn’t happy though. You have got to want to do something if I’d been living at home with my mum she’d of made me go to the gym and eat healthily and I wouldn’t of gained so much weight. You need someone to motivate you. Having the time to exercise isn’t easy with two kids and it’s hard to find ‘me time’.”
Money and motivation, the two key problems when it comes to weight loss. Having a child costs money, there are many things to buy for them. So finding money, time and motivation for your own personal fitness isn’t easy. However, it is important, regardless of expenses you can always go for a walk or a jog, the addition of the push chair will help work your arms. So stop feeling pressured to instantly drop the pounds and simply enjoy your time as a new mother, in a healthy way.
Words by @AmyJoannaTaylor