38 answers

Motivation W/weight Loss

I am a mother of 4 - tandem nursing my 23 month old and my 6 1/2 month old. I want to lose weight - my goal is 130. I am 33 years old, 5' 7" and weigh 144 as of this morning. I started last week at 148.4 and just started watching what I eat (counting calories, eating no more than 2000 a day) and trying to drink 8 glasses of water a day. I also try to do an activity of at least 30 minutes a day (jumping rope, mowing the grass, situps, etc). I am keeping a food journal too.

I got down last week to 142.4 and now back at 144. I feel bummed that I have gained weight back already and need some motivation or if someone out there knows maybe what I can do to push it a little further/faster. We recently joined the YMCA and I am looking forward to going there next week to try to move it along. Thank you in advance for any motivation and tips.

I prefer that no one try to sell me anything. I am not interested in buying supplements or paying someone to be my personal trainer.

What can I do next?

Featured Answers

Got to www.sparkspeople.com it is like a free weight watchers but on line. You can track food, exercise and it will give you goals and everything else you would need to loose weight. Hope that helps

I understand what you're going through. I am in the health and wellness industry and I now know it is much more than watching calories. There is a lot to be said for the nutritional part of managing weight. I am now in my 50's and with never having had to diet, I now have to manage it. I reduced 18 lbs and 11 total inches. If you are interested please let me know.
Good Health


More Answers

Prisilla, I totally understand the desire to lose weight and get back into shape. Congrats on joining the YMCA!!! I teach aerobics at our local Y, and it really is a great place for families. That said, my personal opinion is, try not to become too worried about what's going on at the scale right now. Physical activity is certainly wonderful for you, AND then on top that you are producing milk for 2 little ones!!!! That is a great accomplishment, and one that requires a good amount of quality nutrition. Give your body all the nutrition it needs, and don't worry about the scale. Keep up the great work!!!!!

1 mom found this helpful

I recommend 6 small meals a day so that your metabolism is up all day and eat Protein, protein, protein! Lay off most carbs. Our bodies have to work to burn the protein so we actually burn calories digesting it--and you won't feel so hungry as it lasts longer. Try eating eggs--boiled, scrambled--whatever and lots of chicken breasts & fish or even canned chicken or tuna. My daughter likes to put salsa on heated canned chicken for one of the six meals. Add green vegetables to a couple of the six meals, too. One meal could be a protein shake (made with protein powder). My favorite protein breakfast is a protein pancake (1 egg and 3 egg whites and 1/2 cup oatmeal in blender than fry in olive oil and eat with sugar free maple syrup--there are other variations too). I was asking my trainer how to lose 10 lbs in a month before going to florida on his free blog at http://fitdocnthehouse.ning.com/?xgi=4L3lx5w and his answer really works! Also, always lift weights at the Y--muscle burns calories and get on the treadmill for 30 minutes and walk 2 minutes and run for 1 minute. I promise you'll lose you'll 10 lbs on this plan!! It's worked for me and many women i know!

1 mom found this helpful

Sounds like you are almost there...stick with it! DON'T give up. You might be changing some of the fat to muscles and muscle weighs more. How do your clothes fit? When exercising are you getting your heart rate up? When you jump rope, I am sure that you are but not so much with situps or mowing the yard. Situps are good for toning so keep doing that. One thing you can try is to run (running strollers for the kids) and while doing it be sure to keep your heart rate up for 15min then let it come down for 5 then pick it back up again. Do that for an hour. keep drinking water and stay away from tea/coffee/soda. Eat a lot of greens and some fat is going to be ok if you exercise a lot. You could bring the calories down a little but that would not be my focus.

Hope it helps!!

1 mom found this helpful

First, congratulations on having 4 children and having the energy to do all of this!! Since, you are still nursing and you have a 6.5 month old, give your body a break. "They say", 9 months on, 9 months off about weight. It sounds like you are doing great and have the energy. Weight flucuates everyday, so checking it everyday will make you go crazy. I wouldn't worry with the 1 to 2 lb. differences. In the long run, you will reach your goal (you JUST started). Also, if you try adding some weights (not too heavy at first- 3-5 lbs to start- if you aren't doing them already). Muscle burns faster when you do strengthening and aerobic activity combined. If you don't really want to build muscle, keep the weight low, but do more reps. as you get used to it. I'm not a personal trainer, but have read a lot and worked out a lot to experience some of this and got the results I wanted. If you still have questions, please talk with your doctor and don't overdo it! You still have 4 children who need their mom to play with and be there for them. Good luck! You can do it!

1 mom found this helpful

Not really sure how to help you with loosing weight while nursing since I always seemed to gain weight with my children!!! The only thing I wanted to mention was make sure you are getting enough calories because your body will kind of shut down and not let you loose weight if you are not eating enough. I am not sure how many you are supposed to get in a day while nursing and since you are nursing two you may actually need more. Either contact your DR or look online I am sure you can find out what you need to know!!

Good Luck

1 mom found this helpful

Over the last 2 years I have lost 40 pounds. I try not to be obsessed about it because I am raising a little girl and I don't want to give her any ideas about that. Anyways, It has been slow going but I have kept the weight off. Everyone said that breast feeding would help you lose weight, but that was not the case for me. I ended up getting really sick and lost about 20 lbs from that. From that point on, after I felt better, I tried to eat better and I weighed myself once a day. Every time I lost a little weight it motivated me to eat better. I used to weigh 115 and after losing 40 lbs I still weigh 145. The thing that motivated me the most was that I felt so much better and had more energy and the fact that people who hadn't seen me for a while were commenting on how good I looked. I would like to get back down to 115 but I am not holding my breath on that one. Remember to forgive yourself, and just try to stay on track. I don't know if anyone else can tell you how to motivate yourself, you have to decide what it is that motivates you the best whether it be a shopping spree when you have lost so much weight, or something else. I have noticed that I yo yo back and forth between a 5 pound difference. One thing I contributed to helping me lose weight is I cut out dairy due to my daughters dairy allergy. I let myself have some occasionally, but you might try it.
Good luck

1 mom found this helpful

Don't get down on yourself! You are on the right track with keeping a food log and trying to get exercise - mowing the grass does count! When you do get to the Y - try lifting light weight 3 sets of 15 reps and then hit the cardio. You may want to try interval training on the cardio equipment. (increase your intensity for 1 min. (up to 5 times) and then start back at your starting level. Do this for 20 mins. That is all the time you need to do for your cardio part. (short but intense)
Keep in mind that to lose weight you must lift light weight and do cardio. Good luck!

A little about me - I am a happy mother of a 3 month old - trying to lose my last few pounds. To add some credit - I am a PE teacher and have done personal training.

1 mom found this helpful

It sounds like you are doing a great job. It will take time. As long as you are consistant, the weight will come off. I always gain a little bit at a certain time of the month and it ALWAYS gets me down! But, I just keep eating right and working out even when I don't feel like it. I have found that you need to find something that works for YOU and just stick with it. For instance, I like to work with free weights and I really hate aerobics! lol So, I just do what I like to do...I walk on the treadmill for cardio.

I also learned to listen to my body. I was working out every day of the week! But, again, at a certain time of the month, I noticed my body was really exhausted. So, I skip a day in between those weeks, but I still stay consistant.

You can do this!! Keep up the good work! Let us know your progress so we can keep encouraging you!!

You go, girl!

1 mom found this helpful

Don't worry about the weight variances - it will vary from day to day and even depending on what time of the day you weigh yourself. And be careful about the calorie intake - you need your calories as a tandem nurser! Nursing moms should have a minimum of 1800 calories per day, and since you are nursing 2, your calorie needs are higher, probably closer to 2000 at least. Let your appetite be your guide! You are doing a great thing for your kiddos - be sure not to short change yourself. Physical activity is what I would focus on - don't cut out calories below about 2000 or so!

1 mom found this helpful

I'm not selling anything, but Weight watchers does have programs tailored for the special needs of nursing moms (like the extra calories for nursing and extra nutrients)- I had a lot of success - you can do it all online if you want to. Don't get discouraged with a small rebound like that. Make sure you're weighing in at the same time of day - while dieting I tried weighing myself at different times to see the difference between first thing in the AM and in the PM before bed and it varied by as much as 5 pounds in one day, so 1.6 lbs could have just been some water weight (or before rather than after a feeding). I would ask a professional before cutting out dairy - from what I've read dairy is good at helping you lose weight especially in the belly - choose lowfat/no fat options and you definitely need the calcium. It sounds like you're on the right track, not starving yourself, drinking lots of water, and added exercise are all great. I wouldn't worry about it too much - I'm pretty sure you're within the healthy weight range for your height, but I can understand wanting to get that extra baby weight off! Good luck!

I understand what you're going through. I am in the health and wellness industry and I now know it is much more than watching calories. There is a lot to be said for the nutritional part of managing weight. I am now in my 50's and with never having had to diet, I now have to manage it. I reduced 18 lbs and 11 total inches. If you are interested please let me know.
Good Health


Hi, P. --

If you haven't tried TurboJam, you ought to check it out. www.beachbody.com. It's a set of workouts that you can do at home, and they're fun and energized. I have to schedule my workouts around my daughter's schedule AND my work schedule, so sometimes the only "me" time is 10 or 11 PM at night. I have been very happy to have these workouts to keep me motivated and give me a little boost, even if the time slot isn't my favorite. I am someone who cannot STAND to do the same thing every day, so that should speak well about the fact that these workouts keep me enthused and engaged. In fact, I am going to attend Camp TurboKick in California at the end of this month, strictly to continue to challenge myself and because I enjoy the workouts so well.

Hopefully, this will be a good avenue for you. And, by the way, don't focus so much on the weight! That's just plain silly! Pounds are no indication of your level of fitness, and the nursing will continue to create a slow and steady loss for you so long as your intake isn't outrageous. I haven't stepped on a scale for 10 years because I think the numbers are so preposterously irrellevant. Just focus on what's important: health and care of yourself and your kids. Exercise, eat right, and put the scale in the trash.

Take care,

Hello. I wanted to suggest that you add a lot of fish in your diet. We have great luck with eating it every other day to every third day. My spouse and I have both noticed our weight is usually down the next morning. I use french salad dressing to marinate it for the kids. My 6 year old says he likes chicken more that way. We have peel and eat shrimp often. I think it helps curve your appetite because you have to take the time to peel them.

We have cut down our red meat dinners. We still have it once every other week. Mostly because we don't want our body to stop making the antibodies in our bowels to help digest it.

I found all kinds of turkey meats at the grocery. Turkey burger(s), sausage, breast singles, and bacon. We did not like it all at first but after eating it for months it has grown on us. I guess your taste buds change.

I also started adding carrots, spinach and zuccini into a lot of meals. Shredded and chopped into spagetti sauce or any other soups etc and they don't even know. It helps get the servings of veggies that help with weight lose. Also wheat bread and pastas are a big part of our diet.

Good luck. We are both losing using the different diet ideas I suggested and of course exercise! I read some where that exercise is not a destination it is a life long journey! I keep that thought a lot!!! Don't forget when we learned to ride a bike we fell off a lot...but we always got back on to get where we wanted.

I found that your weigh can fluctuate somewhat from week to week but it does not mean that you are off track. The slower you take off the weight the more likely you are to keep it off. Weight watcher’s has a great plan for nursing mothers. I lost (on average) 2 pounds per week while I was on it. Some local YMCA’s have WW classes on site.

I completely understand. Just be careful about your daily calorie intake since you are still nursing. Your calorie intake has to be slightly higher than a normal persons. I am down to 115 8 months after my son was born. I eat a healthy choice meal for lunch, pretzels and veggies for snacks, no pop, lots of water, and try to excercise where I can. Like when I'm sitting at my desk I'll raise my legs or not lean on the back of my chair so that my abs get some work. It's amazing how much it does!!
Good luck, though!! It sounds like you're really motivated!!

Sounds like you have your hands full, and are doing the right things. I'm a retired nurse, and a lifetime member of Weight Watchers, and here's my advice.RELAX!! Just do what you're doing, and quit hopping on the scale. For one thing, for a woman who's had 4 kids and is 5'7" tall, a goal of 130 is unrealistic. You truly are at your ideal weight and don't know it. If you eat healthy food, keep a food diary to know what you're eating daily, and get some exercise when you can, you will stabilize your weight at what's right for you. Don't focus on the number on the scale(put it away and weigh no more than once a week!)and instead focus on how you feel, and for goodness sake,cut your self a break! Pat yourself on the back for all the great things you accomplish every day!N. B

Don't get too discouraged about a couple pounds of flux either way. Your weight can vary up to 3 or 4 pounds in a day. so two pounds in a week is not bad. Also to lose weight at a healthy rate you should only lost 2 pounds a week. Good Luck!

I don't know if you are having periods yet, but if you are, that can cause a weight gain if you are about to start. THen the next week, you will see it fall off and more. As someone said, you do need to watch your calorie intake to make sure you are getting enough. If not, your body goes into starvation mode, and with too few calories you can actually gain weight. Good luck to you. You have your hands full.

P.- you really need to stop trying to loose weight and focus more on eatting what is best for your body and your babies bodies. It is not reccomended thatt you diet while nursing as, the nutrients your body needs for the breast milk will be leached from your reserves in your BONES which leads to osteoperosis, really its not worth it.

Try to make sure you are making healthy choices, ie wheat bread, lots of dairy dairy etc. Also, remember if you diet you are also putting your babies on a diet when they really need WHOLE FATS and lots of calories to grow. If loosing weight is that important to you stop nursing.

I have 4 kids nursed them all, and well, I called them my fat years of breading. I gave birth to one while breast feeding another and then did it again 2 more times... as soon as my last one was done nursing I lost all the weight I wanted to and am happily back to the size I want to be.....

In the big picture of a life of 70+ years, you will have an extra 15 lbs for at most 2 years???? Your health, future health and the health of your kids depends on your not cutting calories while nusring, so, I would reccomend enjoy your curves, stop worrying about it and when your done nursing go forward

I do know of a great wieght loss plan that helps prevent the yo-yo diet. But my advice to you would be - make sure you have support. I am part of a running/walking group that I signed up with on-line: seemommyrun.com, if you are near me youare welcome to be part of that group. But mainly, find someone that will commit to going to the Y with you or walk/fun with you a couple times a week. It always helps to have support.

You are doing everything right. You should know that you shouldn't weigh weekly. Just weigh once a month. In the beginning you will gain water weight (which is good) and muscle is more dense than fat. Look for your clothes to fit better after 4 to 6 weeks and the weight will come too. It didn't take you 1 week to gain the extra 14 pounds and it won't come off that fast either. You are doing great! Keep up the good work!

Perhaps a little encouragement is in order. You are doing fine. Your plan is excellent (perhaps a little too severe). Your plan to exercise is great. A little set back is to be expected. Your body gets used to your methods and your metabolism slows down, therefore you gain a little back. Are you weighing daily? Try to just keep track of your eating and exercise but only weigh once a week. Less chance of discouragement more chance of pleasant surprise. Best of luck. I went from 185 to 125in 9 month. You can do as well or better. (By the way cheating is allowed if you jump back on the wagon immediately after.)

I have had two children and it took me almost a year after each of them was born to loss the weight. I also nursed both of them. My doctor told me to keep in mind that when you are nursing two items are adding weight to your body. One is the breast milk and the other is that your body is keeping a little extra fat storage for its own sake. The body is making sure it has energy through the nursing period. Since you are tandum nursing your one body is supporting 3 lives. Don't get discouraged. You are doing great. A weight gain of 2 pounds is not significant. I can gain/loss 5 pounds a day when I am not nursing and up to 8 pounds when I am nursing. It amazes me and is frustrating at the same time. Some days I can wear a pair of pants and the next day I can't. Keep up the good work. It sounds like you are trying to lose the weight the right way. You have to be healthy for yourself as well as for your 2 children.

Hi P.,
My only thought would be to try cutting your calorie intake to 1800. Good Luck
Meliss V.
Melaleuca-The Wellness Company

Eat tons of fruit and veggies. Drink lots of water between meals. Eat slowly-you'll get full faster. Do not eat processed foods like chips and crackers. Eat good fats. Eat fiber-rich foods which keep you fuller longer (35g/day). Take a multi-vitamin for women every day. I do recommend detoxing to get all the bad stuff out of your body which tend to make it harder to lose weight.

Make SURE you're doing some sort of weight training. That will build muscle which in turn will boost your metabolism. Weigt bearing and "full body" exercises such as walking lunges w/ overhead presses, Squats on the wall with an overhead press recruit lots of muscle and in turn burn more calories. CHANGE YOUR ROUTINE!! Your body KNOWS when it's accustomed to doing the same thing. CHANGE IT and boost your challenge level.

Eat 3-6 times a day, protein and fruit or veg each time...i.e. apple and handful of almonds, string cheese and some raw cauliflower, cottage cheese and blueberries, etc. You will be AMAZED at your energy level and this type of eating/grazing ALSO increases metabolism.

Let me know if you need anything else or get stuck and/or need ideas. I live in Fishers, am a certified personal trainer and have been in the biz over 30 years. If you want ideas for working out at home, I'd be more than happy to meet w/ you for a session or two.

ALSO......do NOT focus on weight numbers. Focus rather on inches! You can lose inches and STILL be the same weight if you're working out right. Muscle weighs more than fat and is much more dense. I had a client who was two inches taller than me, weighed about three more pounds than me, but wore 3 SIZES bigger than me. It's NOT about weight!

It sounds like you are losing weight at a normal pace. Don't get discouraged by the fluctuation. You will do that depending on your cycle and what you had to eat the last few days. My husband and I have found that if we eat pasta, bread or red meat our weight will bounce up for a little bit until it is out of our system. The best thing you can do is drink, drink, drink (at least 32 oz. of water + 32 oz. of other fluids) a day. This helps flush out the fat cells.

Got to www.sparkspeople.com it is like a free weight watchers but on line. You can track food, exercise and it will give you goals and everything else you would need to loose weight. Hope that helps

Dear P.,

It sounds like you're moving in the right direction. One big secret to successful weight loss is finding a new way of eating, and a new way of looking at food.

I was having all kinds of health problems for years, including stubborn extra weight I just couldn't seem to conquer. I went to see an Integrative M.D. in February, and since stating her plan (diet and supplements), my health has improved dramatically. One big benefit is that I've lost nearly 30lbs. She told me that my Body Mass Index has improved so dramatically, the weight loss is actually more like a 40 lb loss because of the fat/muscle trade-off.

Her diet plan is really good, common sense ~ eat fresh foods whenever possible, and avoid processed foods as much as possible. The trick is this: Avoid all dairy, wheat, and foods that are high on the glycemic index (potatoes, rice, super sugary veggies, etc).

This plan is what she recommends to all her patients, for all conditions. She says it's the purest, most human body compatible diet available. She knows it works, too! Her father just turned 101 years old, and her mother died at the age of 94 after an 8 year battle with lymphatic leukemia. They are/were both on this plan for about 20 years. The mother had more good days than bad days while living with her cancer, and that says a lot for a woman who received such a devastating diagnosis in her mid eighties.

The only grain I eat is oats, and I consume no dairy at all. I eat very little sugar ~ just an 0.8 oz dark chocolate bar each day, which I am permitted to have for the antioxidant effects, and as a special treat. :)

When I first started this plan, I focused on the foods I couldn't eat. Once I began to see improvement (within 3 days), I began to focus on how good I felt, and all the delicious things I can eat. I love this plan, and I will never switch back to my old ways. I feel so good, why in the world would I? Not only that, but my old cravings have been conquered, and none of the "no" foods appeal to me any longer.

If you want to e-mail me, I'll be glad to send you a detailed copy of this plan, including some meal ideas. My friends have been so impressed with how my health and weight have improved that I sat down and wrote out the whole thing with meal suggestions. Several of them have begun to eat this diet, and they are all showing tremendous improvement not only in weight and Body Mass Index, but also in blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and conditions like fibro myalgia, arthritis, and migraines.

Keep up the good work!

It sounds like you are doing all the right things. My only suggestion would be to eat wheat bread and stay away from anything that says "enriched" on the label (white rice...switch to brown rice) and try to stay away from potatoes, they will pack on the pounds. have a yougert smoothie in the morning, that will give you a burst of energy too. What I do is I take plain, nonfat yougert and put fresh berries in a blender with some 1% milk along with some Splenda and mix it all together. Try to stay away from sugar too. Splenda is a very good substitute.
For a snack, i usually have a string cheese stick or some sugar free pudding or jello. Good luck and keep up the good work!!

Hi P., Weight watcher is very good,and teaches you the healthy way to eat, the Y will be good it will give you a time for yourself. But with The ages you have of children, I am sure it will come off. Be more concern about being healthy and triming up. Being a healthy mommie is important, Good Luck

I was at the gym today and I got really good motivation from a lady who lost over 100lbs. She said if you eat 7 days a week you must work out 7 days a week whether it is walking running swimming cutting the grass anything to keep you moving and the pounds will come off because I am trying to get to 120 I am currently 135 so I suggest you and I try to utilize her advice.


First of all, congratulations on tandem nursing. We all know the benefits of nursing an infant, but your older one is still getting some much needed antibodies as well as some one on one (or two on one! :) ) connection time.

That said, be patient with the weight loss. Your body may be keeping the extra poundage (and it doesn't sound too excessive from your description) to support the nursing, especially since your kids are still little and probably nursing often. For some people those pounds will melt off when your body is no longer feeding two or three. Just be careful to cut your calories as they wean. I can imagine you feeling like you want your body back now but try to be patient until the kids are a little older.

I am in the same situation now--nursing a 2 & 3 yo. less frequently and I was still 10 lbs. over where I wanted to be, then in the last 6 months I have put 10 more on--ugh. I have never had to really "diet", but I am still as hungry as when I was nursing more, so I am eating too much.

Hope this helps. Good luck.

I am also a member of our local YMCA and love it!! Ours has a great playroom for the kids so I take my 1 and 3 yr olds in there while I use the circuit room (women only - like curves). Then I can take the 3 yr old up to family track time and we run laps together (she thinks it is a game). We also take advantage of open swim times and I swim with the 3 yr old. I am signing my little guy up for parent/child swim classes this fall so he can get in on the fun too! I joined in January and have to date lost 16 pounds!! I have to admit it hasn't really been because I have been overly careful with calories. It has just been getting really active and enjoying what I am doing! The kids look forward to it too and that keeps me going back when I would rather not make the drive etc.

Check out all the great opportunities at your YMCA and I know you will find something there that will work for your family!

Hi P.,

I'm very impressed by your motivation! I just wanted to share my own experience, which was that after I stopped nursing with both my kids, I lost a little weight. I think my body held on to a little extra while I was nursing, and after I stopped my hormones realigned and a little weight came off. So don't beat yourself up if you feel like you're not reaching your goal as quickly as you'd like - you're nursing two kids! I'd wait until after I stopped nursing before doing any significant calorie restrictions, and make sure you're getting enough rest (or as much as you can as a mom of 4). The YMCA is awesome.

Hi P.,

In addition to exercise, a nutritionally balanced diet will help a lot. I used Weight Watchers program. Now, I own a WW friendly meal assembly store in Hilliard called Touch of Gourmet. Our family friendly meals are designed by a nutritionist and make losing weight EASY. It's amazing how many dieticians recommend us to their clients for the same reason. We offer MamaSource members perks, so please feel free to check us out to get a great meal for your family. www.touchofgourmet.net

Hi P.. If you are still nursing, you really shouldn't be loosing weight. You need those calories to feed your babies. That is probably why your body is holding on to them. keep up the exercise and watch what you eat, but I wouldn't diet until the nursing stops.

Well to me you sound like you are at a healthy weight. I too have 4 kids and am also 5'7". I don't think its healthy to be breastfeeding 2 children and trying to loose weight because you should be eating extra calories. (healthy ones of course). I think you should think about weaning atleast the older child. maybe you should talk to your doctor.

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