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What 6 Months of Breastfeeding Can Do! (Anonymous)

January 28, 2009

After gaining 60lbs during my pregnancy and crossing a very scary number (I got to 204lbs) I gave birth (via unplanned Cesarean :() to a healthy 8lb 12oz baby girl! Despite c-section I planned on getting back into shape right away, as a former college ice hockey player I had been in pretty good shape before, but as with the birth of my daughter, things didn’t go quite according to plan.

I healed pretty fast and played a couple games of hockey at 8 weeks postpartum, so far so good, it was now summer and I started taking my daughter on long walks, 1 to 2 miles a day (now here was my big mistake) IN FLIP FLOPS! After about a month of walking pretty regularly I started having pain in my ankle, no big deal, I’m tough, don’t like to complain, I keep going for long walks. My ankle keeps getting worse, once my other ankle starts hurting 2 weeks after the 1st one, walking becomes pretty difficult. So I finally decide maybe I should see a Dr. (fast forward a month and 4 doctors!) I am finally told that I have severe Posterior Tibial Tendinitis in both ankles, how did it happen? Well it was pretty obvious after the fact! Walking in flip flops that much is bad, but I’d always done that, turns out walking that much in flip flops right after your pregnancy is really bad! My muscles and ligaments were still lose from the “relaxin”. Combine that with long walks in flip flops and you get two destroyed ankles!

Nine months postpartum and I am slowly getting better I had to wear a really stylish (sarcasm) walking boot for 2 months, and have been in ankle braces for the last 4 months now. But I am finally able to start going to the gym again!

Moral of the story… flip flops, aka thongs. aka slippers, etc. ARE BAD!

So what does all of this have to do with breastfeeding? Glad you asked! Like I said, I gained 60 lbs during my pregnancy and basically haven’t been able to work out, or even walk for that matter, for about 8 months of my 9 months postpartum. BUT thanks to breastfeeding and a good metabolism I lost 60lbs in the first 6 months! No diet, no exercise! While I have lost all of the weight, I am excited to be able to get back to the gym again. My body may weigh what it did pre-pregnancy but it certainly doesn’t look or feel like it did! I have lost A LOT of muscle, especially in my legs which are totally atrophied from lack of use :(

Moral of THIS story, BREASTFEEDING ROCKS!

The first picture is 8 weeks postpartum and the second is 8 months postpartum (hence the 6 months of breastfeeding) I’ll try to remember to come back and up date this after I’ve had some time in the gym.

I’m still working on accepting the stretch marks… But, even with the stretch marks, and the ankle nightmare, I’m pretty grateful for the body I have.



Updated here and here.

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24 Responses to “What 6 Months of Breastfeeding Can Do! (Anonymous)”

  1. charity Says:
    January 28th, 2009 at 11:19 pm

    wow, you look amazing. glad the myth of weight loss through breast feeding worked for someone… it didn’t work for anyone I know, even the ones who ate a strictly healthy, no-junk food diet!

  2. Ashley Says:
    January 29th, 2009 at 1:14 am

    I also thought I’d add, I was 25 when I conceived and 26 when I gave birth,and I was 5’9.5″ before I had my baby and now I’m 5’9″! I shrunk! Or is it Shrank? Anyway, I just discovered that today :(

  3. Bonnie (SOAM) Says:
    January 29th, 2009 at 9:13 am

    I bet if you measure yourself another day you will find that extra half-inch back. I swear I have my tall days and my short days (if you can call 5’9″ short) and when I went to the chiropractor regularly, I learned that your spine can get out of alignment which can change your height to small degrees.

  4. Bridget Says:
    January 29th, 2009 at 11:58 am

    YOU LOOK AWESOME! Great job bfing for 9 months!!
    To Charity: Weight loss during breastfeeding is NOT a myth! You burn about 300 calories a days. Whether you lose weight depends on how/what you eat, exercise, your own body/metabolism, etc.

  5. Amber Says:
    January 29th, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    That’s great that breastfeeding worked for you. For me I lost the weight after breastfeeding. That extra 10 pounds held on until I weaned! Even if I was heavier while doing it I have to admit breastfeeding really did rock! I loved providing for my son.

  6. charity Says:
    January 29th, 2009 at 1:47 pm

    @ Amber:
    my point exactly. When i stopped breastfeeding inches just started falling off. I miss breastfeeding to this day (and i miss my c cup boobs!) but it’s too late for regrets.

    @ bridget
    everyone’s body is different… i think a lot of women lose weight while breastfeeding because they have a high metabolism to begin with. i never did, and i gained weight while pregnant at the drop of a hat, even though i was eating a (mostly) well-balanced diet.

    an extra 300 calories a day really isn’t that much, when you consider that many foods (including healthy ones) far exceed 300 calories in a serving, not to mention the carbs that are a big part of weight gain.

  7. I-dra Says:
    January 29th, 2009 at 2:10 pm

    bridget, it may not be a “myth” per say, but neither is it an absolute truth. 2y 2m pp, i’m still 20-25lbs heavier than normal & i’m pretty sure it’s not going away until after my boy weans himself (pray it comes soon). i’m also pretty active & i’ve been a vegetarian for almost 9 years. some bodies hold the fat until weaning, other bodies let it go.

  8. Nikki Says:
    January 29th, 2009 at 2:17 pm

    You look like a totally different person, wow! I just joined a gym also and I hope to look as good as that in a few months. Kudos momma. Breastfeeding does rock, I loved it.

  9. Breastfeeding Moms Unite! Says:
    January 29th, 2009 at 8:39 pm

    So cool to find a site that speaks to these issues, including the merits of breastfeeding in today’ sometimes shallow and plastic society. Rock On Breastfeeding Women! —- breastfeedingmomsunite.com

  10. Melissa Says:
    January 29th, 2009 at 11:04 pm

    Looking good, Momma! Breastfeeding my first worked for me, too. I got back down to my pre-pregnancy weight… actually, even lower than my pre-pregnancy weight… while I was nursing my first child. That was without dieting or exercising. But with my second child, it was not nearly that easy. ;) It works for some and not for others, what can I say?! Keep up the good work!

  11. Ashley Says:
    January 31st, 2009 at 6:24 pm

    I was told that breastfeeding burns on average 500cal a day, which I think is a pretty considerable amount! Especially when you take into account how long you would have to get on a treadmill each day to do the same! My daughter will be 10 months old soon and we are still going strong with the breastfeeding. I’ve been in the gym for about a month since those pics were taken, doing mostly weight training and I’m starting to see some more improvement in my upper body. With my ankle problems the legs are going to take a little longer to start toning up. I’ll defiantly update my post in a few months, I’m thinking in about 5 months, “What 6 months of weight training can do!” LOL. Thanks for all the support!

  12. Catherine Says:
    February 13th, 2009 at 11:42 am

    wow! Your story is exactly like mine! I gained 60lbs with my daughter and had to have an unplanned csection due to high blood pressure and tempature. She was also 8lbs 12oz 20in long! I am breastfeeding and loosing the weight so fast! Thank you for making me feel so much better about myself! I have something to look forward to. and knowing that breastfeeding is helping my baby girl and myself!

  13. Veronnica Says:
    March 5th, 2009 at 6:26 pm

    I lost nothing through breast feeding.

  14. Lynne Says:
    May 14th, 2009 at 10:44 am

    I never lost weight during breastfeeding, it was always after I weaned that the weight dropped off, but breastfeeding worked for my mother. So, guess its different for each woman.

  15. Mir Says:
    July 11th, 2009 at 9:50 am

    Right there with Veronnica and Lynne–breastfeeding doesn’t work for everyone–I breastfed as well for six months and never lost an ounce because of it–actually for many women it makes them retain a certain level of fat. Anyway, good job on getting back to your pre-pregnancy weight. I gained 80 pounds while pregnant and was 230 pounds when I gave birth–now that is a scary number.

  16. moira Says:
    August 10th, 2009 at 11:22 pm

    u r lucky .. i have been breastfeeding from 7 months but not lost any weight even though i am working out and eating smaller frquent meals … i am upset with my emotions

  17. Susan Says:
    September 9th, 2009 at 10:15 pm

    Are you sure this is you? I saw your pictures in bodybuilding.com and you mentioned that it was done thru exercising. never mentioned breastfeeding.

  18. Ashley Says:
    September 18th, 2009 at 12:45 pm

    Yes it’s me. I didn’t start exercising till after these pictures were taken. I couldn’t because of ankle injuries. I started working out about a month after the second set of pictures were taken. It says this on my bodybuilding.com bodyspace page. I have an update on here after 6 months of exercise “What Six Months of Weight Training Can Do!”

  19. sonia Says:
    February 5th, 2010 at 8:20 am

    hi Mir, i actually gained 80lbs too i also hit the 230lbs mark my normal body weight is 150lbs i did lose a lot of weight in the begining first 3 months, i lost 43lbs, im still 37 or i should say 40lbs over weight, my daughter is 6months shes still breast feeding not as much b.c shes eating now but still do it. when ur heavy and not used to it it really tires you out. Hoping either breastfeedint will help or weaning her off will help so i can resume my strength and go to the gym again. thanks all for sharing info

  20. Kath Says:
    December 12th, 2010 at 4:24 pm

    I was 217lb when I conceived, had a problem pregnancy which I threw up all the way through and lost 35lb in the first trimester.
    I’ve had 2 pregnancies and been breastfeeding for nearly 3.5 years, and now weigh 155lb.
    It’s a combination of running around after young kids, eating considerately of my baby (who’s not good with dairy and thus I’m avoiding a lot of packet foods, cheese, ice-cream etc.), and breastfeeding.
    When I was expressing I was feeding about 800ml (3.38 cups) a day so according to http://nutritiondata.self.com/
    that’s about …581cal? which by my calculations is 182g (6.4oz) of sugar (over half a cup).
    I did notice my weight creeping up a bit when my oldest weaned, but I just watched my dieat a bit and cut out the snacks I didn’t really need :)

    Definitely – Your Mileage May Vary.

  21. JWifey Says:
    May 22nd, 2012 at 2:28 pm

    Ive gained 45 lbs so far. I have 2 1/2 months left to go. Ive been pretty depressed gaining the weight. Ive had morning sickness all day about everyday. With the thyroid problems Ive gained 7 1/2 lbs within a week. Its been insane to say the least. I had a job I loved and made great money. I played on an adult softball team and basketball team. I haven’t been able to do anything. Im 25 yrs old. Ive been gaining weight and can’t do anything about it. I feel very unhealthy and tired. For me pregnancy has been horrible. Seeing all these stories is really a heads up for me. Thank you to all that has posted. I hope I loose the weight from breastfeeding or exercise. Sometimes I don’t even look in the mirror. Its a lot to take in. Best of luck to all.

  22. Diana Euell Says:
    February 11th, 2013 at 7:00 am

    Breastfeeding worked for me with all 3 of my kids AND they are all 9 years apart! so age and rate of metabolism really didn’t play a role. My newborn is 6 weeks and Im back at my prepregnancy weight. with my oldest it took me 4 weeks and with my second child 12 weeks. Either way Breastfeeding is so beneficial your baby that IF you do shed pregnancy weight with it its just an added bonus. like most of you said everyone is different so if Breastfeeding alone doesn’t work try moving that body of yours at least four days a week and a nutritious diet.

  23. Lily Says:
    June 29th, 2014 at 12:34 pm

    I’ve lost 40lbs since birth at 8 1/2 months post partum, however I have a problem with having lost huge amounts of muscle despite exercising. Can’t understand what I’ve done wrong. I can feel all my bones easily through my skin, it’s like I’m just fat and bones and skin now, whereas I used to be quite muscly looking. I won’t give up breastfeeding, I’m just scared I’m going to lose all my muscle at this rate. I eat well, good food, lots of veges, fish, chicken, meat and only some whole grains, and a little dairy (I’m slightly lactose intolerant). Anyone know why this has happened to me?

  24. Zippity Says:
    December 9th, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    Breastfeeding was hard. No doubt about that. Cracked and bleeding nipples a week in, and I almost quit. Thankfully, I didn’t. 8 months in, and 75 lbs down (yes, I ate Oreos for breakfast when I was pregnant…) I totally attribute it to breastfeeding. If you can do it (and I understand not every woman can) it’s wonderful – for both you and the baby.

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