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  • Nikki Cagle


I worked out through my entire pregnancy — all the way up until the day before I gave birth. There were a few "rest" weeks thrown in there {doctor mandated}, but for the most part, I moved my booty {and that belly} almost every day.

So when the doc came by to check on me a mere 12-hours after giving birth, I said, yea, yea, hemorrhoid cream, granny panties, ice pack - got it - but when can I work out again!?

Don't get me wrong, I was perfectly fine laying around and getting in ALL the snuggles. I had newfound appreciation for my body, and all that jazz that new moms spin. But I knew that within a few weeks I'd start judging that pooch, feeling lethargic, and ultimately unlike myself. I would need that workout to feel like more than a mom with milk jugs.

The doc said the norm, of course, it's a 6-week wait until your full workout routine. But she said, you know your body — if you want to take little walks and do light weights, go for it, just don't push it. {FYI: I did not have a c-section, so my situation may differ from yours!}

Here were my go-to workouts for the first year postpartum, and how my body changed - and continues to change!

{Weight recap: My pre-pregnancy weight was 138.9lbs. My weight the day before I gave birth was 171lbs. My weight today dances around 130lbs.}

My workout for the first four days consisted of... c'mon guys, I'm not that crazy! I'm pretty sure my craziest activity in the first four days was taking a shower. Well, besides actually birthing the twins. Gosh, I would have loved to have seen what my FitBit said after that workout...

My 21lb weight loss in the first four days was attributed to birthing a 4lb 10oz babyboy, a 6lb 4oz babygirl, two placentas, beginning to breastfeed, and sucking down water like my thirst was never quenched.

By day six postpartum I started wearing the UpSpring Shrinx Postpartum Belly Wrap for a couple hours a day - whenever I could stand it. My three weight-loss weapons in the first — month, essentially — were the UpSpring belly wrap, my massive Bubba jug, and breastfeeding. Also, let's not forget that I was working out daily up until about a week before this, so my body hadn't forgotten how to take shape... or, at least, that's how I rationalized what was happening.

Other than running up and down the stairs {not by choice, but because I'd constantly forget something #mombrain}, I wasn't back into any real workouts. I did, however, try my hand at a one minute plank, for shits and giggles. Yea, it was laughable. I was sore and shaky, and no where near pre-pregnancy form. I probably shouldn't have been trying my hand at a plank less than two weeks postpartum. But I pushed little-by-little for the next couple of weeks and I got stronger and less shaky each time. My stomach had a lot of retraining to do — not necessarily in looks, but in strength and stamina, because I hadn't worked my core in so long.

About three weeks postpartum is when I really started to get back into "real" workouts. The twinlets were sleeping around 20-hours a day {praise}, and while I did get some cat naps in, I would also get... bored! So I weened back in with a mix of these workouts:

By this point I was full-fledged back into regular workouts! I got the a-okay from my doc at 6-weeks postpartum and I promptly jumped into 21DayFix with Autumn Calabrese to get me back to a regular routine. {Bonus: the hubs did it with me! Find yourself a partner - it helps!}

I needed something to follow that used little brain power, because my mom brain was lacking. I also needed something to help me get my eating and portions in check. I was no longer able to breastfeed, but I still still eating like I was! That, paired with the holidays made my portions and snacking all out of whack. Nothing gets you in check like a tiny yellow container that controls your carbs.

After 21DayFix I dabbled in all things BeachBody. Do yourself a favor and buy BeachBody On Demand - you'll have access to every BeachBody program, including the newly released ones! I switched it up every day so I wouldn't get bored. I also got fully immersed in BeachBody groups through the new app. It really helped to keep me accountable, and everyone's check-ins push you to move your BUM. I'm not a gym kind of gal, but I am a workout-community kind of gal, and the app was perfect for that.

My favorite programs to mix in were:

  • Hammer & Chisel {I was loving to lift weights more and more}

  • Core de Force {talk about sweating it out!}

  • Yoga Studio {Vytas all day, every day}

  • PiYo {old faithful}

I still mixed in some TIU, and of course - my runs! I signed up for my first postpartum 5k right around the five month mark to push me to get back into running shape. It wasn't my best by any means, but I did it, and I had the best cheerleading team of my life on the sidelines!

Let me be clear — I look like this on my best day, not every day. This was after I worked my bum off in order to take this one-year postpartum picture. I guarantee three days after this {and after gorging on chips & salsa and wine} that I went right back to my five months postpartum picture {or even two months postpartum...}. I don't strut around looking like this on the reg. I work HARD to look like this for occasions and then I ENJOY life. Rinse and repeat. I never let myself go too far so I don't have to start completely from scratch every time, but I do work harder in certain months and for certain occasions, and then rock a little more padding in downtime {aka, December}.

Around this time I fell deeper and deeper in love with the TIU girls & program. I'm now a TIU Studio fiend. They mix a lot of weights into their routines, which I used to shy away from because I didn't want to be bulky or manly. Psssh, myths of yesteryears. I swear weights are what work best for me now. They shred while I sweat my bum off. I'm literally standing there, doing the lowest impact moves, and I'm dripping sweat. How can this be!? It can. It is. I'm not saying it's easy all the time {jump squats with 10lb weights — come at me}, but it's definitely a different way of shaping my body that I'm all about embracing.

I'd like to think that I'm still on the postpartum fitmom-bod workout schedule — and probably always will be. Constantly fighting to tone my stomach that was stretched to oblivion to fit twins. Fighting to fit in a workout between feedings and naps and work and LIFE. Fighting the urge to take bites of the chicken nuggets and mac and cheese that should be making its way to the twinlets' plates, and not my mouth.

What I'm sayin' is - it's an every day battle, but one that's worth it so I can be healthy and strong to run with my babes day-in and day-out. Not to mention the fact that it keeps me sane in this otherwise world of insanity that they call: Motherhood.


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