I got a great question via email that I would love to take time to answer and hear your suggestions on as well!
Question: Hi Jen! I’ve had 2 kids in the past 3 years and my youngest is 9 months. In the past nine months I’ve lost about 46 pounds (this was not baby weight but plus the baby weight). So now I have stopped breastfeeding and I need to lower the calories and up the exercise. I generally do videos in my home like 30 day shred biggest loser or pilates. I am not sure how much and how often I should be going for. I feel like a 25 min video isn’t enough. Also I can get very muscular esp in my legs, so I try to watch what I'm doing with weights. Any suggestions would be GREAT ”
So nice to “meet” you! First of all, congrats for the 46lbs on top of the baby weight! That is a huge accomplishment, and you should know that not many women find the time to do that along with raising young children, so I hope you know that you are a rock star!
I would try varying your workouts as much as possible. I think videos are a great idea at home! The length of your workout does vary based on what your specific goals are. If you are looking to lose more weight, you can use 25-minute workouts, but they need to be HIIT (high intensity interval training), which is something that gets your heart rate up quickly and often, and then returns it to normal. I actually have a great video, 200 Tone Up (bad quality but you’ll get the idea). The jumping jacks get your heart rate up, while the strength training uses mainly your own body weight as resistance. Returning to the jumping jack between moves will help vary your heart rate!
As far as your legs go, I would focus on only body-weight exercises, and don’t use any additional weight. Resistance bands or yoga could be a great way to work those muscles without building up too much muscle.
Constantly switching up your workout from day to day is a great idea, because you confuse the muscles which cause them to work harder and differently, which in turn, burns more calories!
As far as diet goes, eat a balance of health fat, complex carbohydrates, and lean protein. In general, try to do 1/2 of your plate fruit/veggies, 1/4 protein, 1/4 grain. Blogs are a GREAT resource because there are always new ideas, information, recipes, workouts, and suggestions!
What additional tips do you have for our advice-seeker?