45 pounds up, 40 pounds down. learning to love my new body… saggy skin and all! (Ruth)

25 years old, first (and only) pregnancy, cesarean, baby boy
Pre-pregnancy weight: 110 lbs. (best shape of my life!)
Weight gained in pregnancy: 45 lbs.
Current Weight at one year postpartum: 115 lbs (5 lbs to go!)

Before baby, I was working out sometimes 2 hours a day (don’t worry, I ate a lot to make up for it!) and as I continued in my pregnancy, all the things I used to do (I ran, swam, biked, yoga-ed, weights, pretty much anything and everything) went by the wayside and all I could do was walk and swim the last few months of my pregnancy. I continued to eat what I wanted and craved which was mostly healthy, but still A LOT to pack onto my small 5′ 1″ frame.

After some craziness (20 hours of labor), the little guy was suffering too much to go through more labor and I had a c-section. I wish I had done a better job to mentally prepare myself for it, because it was a SHOCK. 6 weeks I could basically do nothing, not even carry my baby in his carrier. Even though I was working full time as an art teacher at the local high school, I set about for 530am workouts to lose the weight. I breastfed/pumped for 8 months. Even with the stress of working full time, I lost just about all of it within 7 months and was so happy!!!

BUT…. nobody told me what would happen to my body and I was in for a HUGE shock. When people told me my bikini days would be behind me, I told them of course it wouldn’t be, in my mind, if I lost the weight (ate right, and worked out REALLY hard), everything should go back to normal, right??? wrong.

Then someone pointed me to this site.
And I was humbled. And left in awe. Some of these women have bodies that were so much more affected than mine.
And yet these bodies really are beautiful. This site is wonderful and I just wanted to add my voice to it.

I wish someone would have sat me down and told me a few things.
And if there are any other pre-baby girlies out there who are in need of some post-baby advice:

1) Its a LOT of work to get back to your pre-baby figure, but it is MUCH easier if you are in good shape BEFORE you get pregnant (I won’t be getting pregnant again till I lose those last 5 pounds!)
2) Breastfeeding is a GREAT way to burn more calories… but be forwarned that it will make you SUPER hungry 24/7
3) If you eat well and work out, your body may go down to size within 9 months (9 months up, 9 months down) but expect about a year.
4) Extra skin. Its a sad truth. But hopefully it goes away after all the kids?

Photos are
(me in black shirt) Pre-pregnancy, the day I found out I was pregnant
(me in green shirt) 40 weeks pregnant
all the other photos are 10 months postpartum, different angles of the saggy skin I never knew I would have to keep! and the c-section scar that my doctor told me would DISSAPPEAR in 3-6 months (it DIDNT)
and my little man :)

I also have a blog about my life, baby, and everything that came along with it if any one is interested in contacting me!

13 thoughts on “45 pounds up, 40 pounds down. learning to love my new body… saggy skin and all! (Ruth)

  • Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 6:57 am

    You look great. You didn’t get any stretch marks…and you have very little loose skin. You do not look like you need to lose 5 more pounds at all! You look beautiful…and your baby is adorable. I am 25 as well, and have had 2 cesareans.

  • Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 7:22 am

    i love it! your the one that has come the closest to making me see myself in your pics. i posted blessed and tortured… you look amazing and your boy is precious

  • Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 9:08 am

    You look great! Your stomach looks just about like mine! I am 22 and have 3 kids. I just sent in a submission yesterday!

    Looking good momma, and your son is so cute!

  • Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 9:13 am

    wow! look at that bump! :D you probably heard that a lot while you were pregnant, but I’ve never been around other pregnant women so seeing peoples’ bumps always amazes me :) youlook great, and you give some great advice too. (your kiddo is adorbz, btw)

  • Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 10:55 am

    I would also like to point you to http://www.cesareanscar.com (it’s on the side bar–>). Cesarean scars actually come in all shapes and sizes. By the time I was 1 year PP, mine was all but invisible (except where it affects the hair growth). I used vitamin E oil on it for a month or two right at the beginning. I’m not sure if it would help you now but it will at least help make the skin softer.

    I think you look lovely. If I saw you at the beach in a bikini I would definitely give you a high five (last time I went to the beach i saw a woman who was your body/tummy twin rocking a bikini and I almost *did* give her a high five!). You’ve worked your honey off to tone your body, why shouldn’t you show it off? To heck with extra skin. If people don’t like it they can shove it because you are beautiful.

  • Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    Wow! I don’t even see sagging skin. I see MUSCLES! Holy crap, woman! I clicked on your blog and it totally makes sense that you’re a runner. All I an say is… YOU GO, GIRL!!! :D

  • Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    Hey girl! You look awesome! You definitely look like an athlete. It is so true – you just plain don’t look like you did before unless your skin snaps back. I lost all the weight, plus five pounds, work out every day and have pretty good abs and muscle all around, but still the little bit of wrinkly pudgy skin that makes me feel ashamed to show off all my work. Especially around the belly button. I’m trying to just accept that for what it is and worry about the things I can actually change. I tell my girlfriends who are getting pregnant the honest truth – and they’ll just be extra happy if their skin is really elastic and does go back :)

  • Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 1:25 pm

    (P.S. I am 24 months pp – skin didn’t go back yet, don’t know if it ever will)

  • Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 2:33 pm

    You still look awesome!!! I love your belly picture, so round :) You go mama, and I wouldnt worry about that 5lbs, your beautiful!

  • Thursday, September 1, 2011 at 3:18 pm

    You have a beautiful shape, and a handsome little guy there! And the scar doesn’t necessarily disappear. I think it depends on genetics and how your scar heals. I had a c-section 10.5 months ago, and it is actually raised slightly because of the way the skin healed (I have an overhang. curse genetics.. working on it though! :) ) and it still aches at times and is red too at times. Everyone’s different, and I hope you make your goal. You do look pretty awesome though! :)

  • Friday, September 9, 2011 at 5:49 pm

    You look amazing! I think this just goes to show that you can be in shape before, eat well and exercise during pregnancy (even slather on the belly oil like I did) and STILL get stretch marks, loose skin and gain more than you think you should have. At least that’s what happened to me! There are just no gaurantees. I’m starting to think some people are just lucky. Regardless of any stretch marks, loose skin, scars or “extra” 5 lbs, you still have awesome muscle tone and a great figure — you look fantastic! And you’re little guy is too too cute! :)

  • Tuesday, September 20, 2011 at 3:33 am

    =) I look forward to being hungry 24/7!

  • Thursday, June 28, 2012 at 1:47 am

    This helped so much ! I’m only 4’8 I weighed 106 before I got pregnant and at 34 weeks I was informed I would have to have a c section do to my son being SO big, I have gained about 40 pounds so far , thank you so much for sharing and you look great !

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