Fitness & Nutrition

Abs After Babies Part II

Once you have the drive, you can conquer your conquest.

But you may feel lost.  You may not know where and exactly how to begin.  Some of this may be recapping things I have said in other posts, but to be concise, I’m going to help you develop a plan.

First, I will start with healthy habits.  It’s almost swim suit time and that time when we all want to be in our best shape because we can’t hide inside our comfy sweats anymore.  This is all my personal advice, and again, I am not a nutritionist.  I am nutritionally interested and at most, an experimentalist, but I know how to get results.

If you haven’t read or taken a look at The Abs Cookbook, please do so.  It is full of information beyond recipes regarding how your body responds, processes, and reuses the foods you eat.  It will educate you on correct portions as well as how and when to eat to optimally fuel your body.  Another source I have fallen in love with is www.skinnytaste.com.  This woman has endless recipes that are simple, delicious, and if you’re into weight watchers, she gives all of the point values for each meal.  Finding recipes to prepare in the beginning of the week will set you up for success.  Below are a few of my favorites.

  • Fiesta Rice– I use brown rice, and sprouted brown rice when I’m lucky enough to find it.  I like to add chopped red pepper and cayenne pepper to it as well.  This is a great side or quick dish for a post workout and can easily be topped with shredded chicken and avocado.
  • Chicken Taco Chili– A great dish that is filling and you can freeze.
  • Santa Fe Chicken– Similar ingredients, so buy in bulk and you have multiple meals.  I add this to 1/2 c of fiesta rice or wrap it in a whole wheat, low carb tortilla.  Sometimes I even add it to eggs in the morning if I’m in the mood for Mexican.  And did I mention my best friend, Ms. Crock pot does all the work?
  • Avocado Egg Salad– This is amazing.  Even my husband prefers it regular egg salad.  Swapping all mayo to a little mayo with plain nonfat greek yogurt is genius.  And the superfood, avocado makes this even better!

I also wanted to share my secret to avoid bindging.  I’m sure I didn’t come up with this and I probably heard it somewhere in my life.  Nevertheless, I have two tips to help save you those unneeded calories, and it’s very simple.  When you have a craving, whether it’s in the morning, afternoon, or at night ( which is the typical time to become reckless for me)…

  1. Brush your teeth! —it sounds so simple, but seriously, I think half the time you’re craving something is because you just want a different taste in your mouth.  For me, I would gladly wash every meal down with a piece of chocolate. GLADLY!  When you brush your teeth, not only will your dentist thank you, but I bet your waistline will as well;)
  2. Drink at least 8 ounces of water immediately after you brush your teeth!  —your mouth is clean and you are hydrated.  I’m sure you’ve heard that your “eyes are bigger than your stomach” saying before, and half the time you’re not hungry.  You’re thirsty.  You just don’t know you’re thirsty.

Finally, here is a killer abs routine.  If you are unfamiliar with any of the names of particular exercises, educate yourself!  YOUTUBE it so you do not hurt yourself!  Most of them are taken from Pilates, so if your gym offers it as a class, it’s a great way to learn the basics.

 

  • Begin with “The Hundred.”  This is a great warm up that engages your entire core.
  • “The Roll Up” with a 5 lb weighted ball.  Do 10 reps.  This is great because it helps to stretch your spine, while engaging your core.  The weighted ball adds a little bit of upper body.
  • “The One Leg Stretch” with a 5 lb weighted ball.  The ball, again, just adds a little upper body.  Do 30 reps.
  • “The Double Leg Stretch.”  I refer to this as the frog because that is what I feel I look like doing it.  Do 30 reps.
  • Side Oblique Crunch- Do 10 regular crunches on side, followed by 10 that pulse for 3 counts each time, followed by 10 regular.  Switch sides.  2-3 sets of this on each side.
  • “The Cork Screw” 20 reps.
  • “The Saw” 10 reps
  • Leg Lifts 20 reps
  • Plank until failure.
  • “The Roll Up” again, to help cool down and stretch the spine from all that ab work!

 

This is a routine that will have your abs burning.  Get through as much as possible.  If you’re new to abdominal work, than cut the reps in half in all except “The Hundred,” “The Side Oblique Crunch,” and “The Saw.”  Do at least 1 set daily, and if you’re feeling extra motivated, do 2x daily-morning and night.

If you can complete this routine, in addition to a healthier eating lifestyle, you will find your abs!  Start today!

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2 Comments

  • Reply Megan Markiewicz April 28, 2013 at 6:26 pm

    I am always looking for healthy/low-fat but tasty recipes- these look great and I am trying a few this week 🙂 I also really enjoyed your posts on GMO, grocery lists and preparing weekly meals. I have been trying to find healthy “real” food options for my lunch over lean cuisines… and I don’t have kids yet but I work 10-12 hr days so my husband does the cooking… I think your suggestions will help us now and in the future!

    I didn’t know you were a writer Michelle, keep it up 😉

    • Reply Michelle April 29, 2013 at 10:24 am

      Thanks so much for the encouragement, Meg! Check out her website http://www.skinnytaste.com
      There are so many great crock pot recipes, which are perfect if you don’t have a lot of time to put in, in the kitchen. I’m happy to hear that you liked my posts:)

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