Wondering How My Postpartum Body Will Look? (Colorado Mama To Be)

First off, this site is truly amazing. What incredible women you all are! My situation: I am 27 and just found out I am pregnant. It was a total accident, but I love my boyfriend and am not entirely opposed to having a baby. But we are both currently unemployed, which makes for a VERY scary situation bringing a baby into this world.

As many of you were, I’m terrified of the stretch marks and loose skin associated with pregnancy. I was an athlete in a Division-I college, and although that was eight years ago, I have since lost the definition and strength that I once had. This has resulted in a negative self-image. I know this may be impossible to tell, but I’m wondering how my body will react to pregnancy. Does anyone have similar skin and/or stomach/breast shape? I know we’re all different, but I’m just trying to get an idea of how I might look postpartum, and whether I can handle that emotionally. I am 5’5 and 152 pounds. My mother had average stretch marks that faded over time. Thanks so much for any input =)

11 thoughts on “Wondering How My Postpartum Body Will Look? (Colorado Mama To Be)

  • Friday, May 15, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    First of all I’m so happy for you. This is a very special time just cherish this gift. You already have a great body. Just stay active and try not to over eat! I was so excited to get the preggo belly with my first that I ate everything in sight to try to “look” pregnant. Also try to workout and be active. It helps a ton. Good Luck and Congradulations!

  • Friday, May 15, 2009 at 1:29 pm

    I agree – eat well and exercise while you are pregnant. If I could go back and do anything differently, it would be that. As long as you look after your body, you have a much better chance of coming out the other side and being happier with the result. I can’t believe how badly I treated myself when I was pregnant – I ate everything, I never exercised, I put on a huge amount of weight and found it hard to take it back off afterwards.

  • Friday, May 15, 2009 at 2:23 pm

    Congratulations on your pregnancy, I must say it is indescribable how much joy being a Mum will give you.

    Try to relax and embrace your it, it really is such a miracle and it won’t hit you until later on just how amazing creating life really is.

    Stretch marks are largely genetic and there is lots of research that shows that putting lotions on will do little to stop them if you are going to get them. Although I will say keep the water up, if you are hydrated it can help a little bit.

    And you will put on the amount of weight that is right for you and bubs. I ate very healthy foods, just LOTS of them. I was ravenous. Your doctor will tell you if there are any problems with the amount you gain. Try not to make it your focus. Just keep you and bubs to be healthy :)

  • Friday, May 15, 2009 at 8:22 pm

    Hey! I wish I had this site for my first pregnancy that way I could get advice from the mamas… but I am happy to be ones of those mamas willing to share my experience!
    Be prepared that your body may look completely different, its reality! My sister is a labor and delivery nurse and after I gained 70lbs with my first she was the only person that put things in perspective for me, your baby only needs an additional 200-400 calories a day… so my scarfing down entire pizzas was the wrong answer! With my second pregnancy I power walked until the day I went into labor for as long as I had free time(the mall is great for this). And ate a reasonable diet with lots of whole grains and fresh produce. It took me a year to get my pre-baby body back(after the first), but the stretch marks I have are forever. Some things can help, for my second pregnancy I used sugar scrubs and olive oil for my skin and it helped, esp with the itchy belly. Sometimes your just meant to get them so nothing will change that! And while having a belly is amazing dont forget your inner core, when your walking around and being active maintain your posture and hold your core/abs, this helps you stay strong and helps your skin not be totally strained the whole time. I did this until I went into labor as well, it also helped me maintain some strength in my abdominals so I wasnt to far out of shape pp.
    So from my experience…
    First pregnancy-ate past being full, never worked out, and used lotions sometimes. Gained 70lbs, stretch marks from my breast to my knees, and 1 year to get back(gym 2x a day).
    Second pregnancy-ate well but didnt deny myself goodies once in a while, powerwalked and moderate yoga, sugar scrubs and olive oil. Got 3 new stretchmarks and I am 2 months pp with 15lbs left to loose from a gain of 40lbs.
    I hope this helps and always remember whatever happends you are going to be bringing a beautiful baby into the world and even though some things change, it is worth it.
    Something to think about- There is a new study going that says women should only gain 10-15% of their weight during the course of a normal pregnancy… I am 135lbs, so that means about 15lbs… not going to happen ever! Your body will do what is right for your baby, I gained 30lbs during my 2nd trimester and ended up loosing weight during the last few weeks of my second pregnancy, like my body stored everything, then as I grew larger and more tired it fed off of that reserve… weird!
    Take Care… looking forward to seeing pictures of your beautiful belly!

  • Friday, May 15, 2009 at 8:51 pm

    I’m also from CO, used to being in great shape (tho I had gained a lil bit b4 preggers!)and I’m about your age. Today I’m 40 weeks and 1 day! I’ve been and am still very paranoid about my body and the shape I’ll be in.

    If I could offer any advise though it may sound funny coming from someone still preggers, I would say don’t just let yourself eat anything. Eat well, look up the amount you should be gaining by each week and stick to it. You only need on average, an extra 300 calories a day.

    I have NO stretch marks, but I’ve gained more than advised- like 45lbs, you will put a lot of weight on toward the end. I know you won’t read this anywhere, but I SWEAR by it: don’t just rub lotion on your belly… breasts… thighs… everyday, but massage it in, almost giving yourself a feeling as though you’re stretching it out yourself. I haven’t gotton a single one, and by massaging, I was trying to get my skin prepared each day for more stretching. I got a TON during puberty, and I was expecting it now. So maybe this little remedy works?! Worth a try!

    I coudn’t work out bc I was put on modified bed rest beginning in the 4th month, and if there’s one thing i wish more than anything, it would be to be able to exercise! Good luck, and know that you will change a lot during pregnancy, I mean the way you see things. You will evolve and become smarter and stronger and will learn to love whatever happens to your body.

  • Friday, May 15, 2009 at 9:35 pm


    I agree with everything the previous posters have said. Eat well (if you have questions, that What to Expect book has a mate, What to Eat When You’re Expecting that might help) and exercise gently. Not only will that help you bounce back, but being in shape might help you work through your labor a little more easily.

  • Saturday, May 16, 2009 at 11:52 am

    No one can predict exactly how you will look. I should have been riddled with stretch marks as every one of my sisters had them and mom as well, but I had none! I had them terribly on my hips as a teenager, so imagine my surprise when I had a very big baby and not a single stetch mark. I attribute this to keeping very active and eating a very healthy diet. My best advice is to not overdo it with the exercise, but start walking and cut out the sugar and grease. I found diet to be the biggest struggle because I could have eaten a whole pan of brownies every night! These seem like very simple and tired tips, but I honestly believe that this is how I outfoxed my genes and kept the stretch marks away. Good luck to you, your baby, and your employment endeavors.

  • Monday, May 18, 2009 at 9:26 am

    You really can’t anticipate how your body will look, but I do think how you treat you body does make a difference. You and your baby only need an extra 300 calories/ day in order to grow at a healthy rate. Really that is just a banana, a cup of milk, and some granola. If you eat well now, just continue what you are doing and add in a few healthy snacks. If you eat a lot of high calorie foods, like fried things, lots of sugar, etc, you could always consult a nutritionist to help you get nutritious foods. When I was pregnant, every tiime I went to eat something, I would ask myself if the food had nutritional value, if not, I would choose a different food. For example, if I had the choice between a fat free cookie and and apple, I chose the apple. They had about the same calories, but the apple provided more nutrition. i did spluge on some things, but tried to limit that to once a week.

    You look fantastic now and have an athletic background, so I would imagine if you eat a balanced diet and keep yourself active with walks, yoga, bike rididng, water aerobics, etc, your body will bounce back rather quickly.

  • Wednesday, May 20, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    It largely depends on how you take care of yourself, both throughout the pregnancy and afterward. Before my 1st pregnancy, I was 150 lbs and 5’3″. I became a very healthy eater and exerciser after her birth, and lost more than I gained. After 3 babies, I weigh 135 usually, a size 6. Pregnancy improved my body!

  • Thursday, May 21, 2009 at 5:32 pm

    Congrats on becoming a new mommy! It truly is the most amazing adventure you will ever undertake!!

    As for me, I ate WAY too much during my first pregnancy and gained about 65 lbs. I didnt get stretchmarks until the last 4 weeks but boy they sure spread fast around my belly! I used all the creams in the world but well, its a genetic thing and some peoples skin can stretch better than others. For my second pregnant I gained about 40 lbs and did not get ANY new stretchmarks. I still kick myself in the butt because I believe the extra 15 lbs I put on during my first pregnancy led to my stretchmarks. My body couldnt handle the extra “stretch” I guess. So my advice is to eat well, and go for some brisk walks a few times a week and your body will thank you for it later. Congrats again and I wish you an easy pregnancy and a healthy bundle of joy!

  • Friday, December 25, 2009 at 8:03 am

    My body looked a lot like yours pre-pregnancy. I had two babies, the last one almost 3 years ago. I lucked out and didn’t get any stretch marks and actually weigh less now than I did pre-pregnancy. But what I wasn’t prepared for was how the weight shifted around. I used to have a defined waistline and some pudge beneath my belly button; now I’m thicker overall through the middle. Everything else stayed the same though. My breasts got a bit flatter and saggier, but nothing too drastic. Anyway, try not to worry about it too much and enjoy the ride!

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