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What about my belly?

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Old 10-04-2013, 11:00 PM   #1
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Wink What about my belly?

Perhaps it's a little early to be asking this and is rather superficial, but I'm wondering what I should expect of my body and particularly of my stomach in the first few weeks after giving birth.

My pre-pregnancy weight was 215, and I'm currently going on week 30 and weigh 228. If I continue with the trend I'm on, I'm guessing I'll probably weigh in the 235 range when I hit full term in December.

I'm an apple so I already have a big stomach that I'm self-conscious of, but being pregnant has been sort of comforting: I like not having to not worry about trying to camouflage my belly, lol. I guess what I'm concerned about is still looking pregnant for a while after I have the baby. While my main concern is obviously going to be taking care of the little one, I know my stomach won't immediately snap back to what it was pre-pregnancy and am just curious what everyone's experiences have been. I mean, I'm not even sure what to pack to wear home from the hospital? I'm guessing my maternity pants should still be fine at that point.

I feel silly for even thinking about this, but I was working so hard to lose weight before getting pregnant. While I'd made a lot of progress, I still have a ways to go and I'd just like an idea of where I'm going to restart from.
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Old 10-05-2013, 12:26 AM   #2
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It's not silly to be thinking about it! Our bodies do such crazy things throughout pregnancy, it's impossible not to think about it.

I did a lot of googling post-pregnancy bellies myself just to see what the range of difference was between women.http://theshapeofamother.com/ This is a great site dedicated to real women sending in pics of themselves. Like everything, it all depends on the individual.

Since you have lost so much weight you probably already have an idea of how much elasticity your skin has.

A lot of women say they leave the hospital looking about 4-5 months preggers, and after that they get a 'deflated balloon' look for awhile. Maternity clothes or yoga pants are still your best friends. Besides, it`s all about being comfy at that point.

Immediately after giving birth your uterus will still be fairly large, it'll shrink rapidly (more rapidly if you are nursing). Once your uterus is sitting back in your pelvis (about two weeks) the loose skin and lax transverse abdominal muscles (your inner girdle) are what keeps your belly jiggly.

How quick it tightens back up has to do with how elastic your skin is, how tight your transverse abdominal muscles were pre-pregnancy, and if you concentrate on exercises to tighten them back up. If you do have the energy/inclination to do exercises to try and get a slimmer midsection after baby make sure you are doing ones specifically for your transverse abdominal muscles (no crunches!)

The old saying `9 months to gain it, 9 months to lose it`applies.

Personally with my first pregnancy I didn't pay much attention. With this second one I believe that because a) I had already been larger due to weight and b)my belly had already expanded due to my first pregnancy it was easier for my stomach to adjust after. I also know I'm fortunate, by a week postpartum I was in my pre-pregnancy jeans.

I'm almost 2 months pp right now and I have a bit of a loose stomach and some jigglyness still, but that's only when I compare it to how my stomach looked before when I was exercising a lot. Compared to what I looked like at my highest weight it looks great! lol

I always seem to write a book's worth in my responses to you! I spent a lot of time wondering about similar things a few months ago and am so glad to pass on as much information as I can that I can't stop typing.
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Old 10-05-2013, 12:30 AM   #3
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i gained quite a bit of weight while pregnant, both times, but I only remember paying attention to my body after the birth of my second son....maternity pants are definitely needed for awhile but my stomach "deflated" quite a bit very quickly after giving birth and continued to go down fairly quickly...I did find, however, that my hips and pelvic area had shifted permanently and now, while i'm a good 25 pounds lighter than I was at my old "normal" weight I still can't fit into the pants I wore before pregnancy....they just don't sit right or button right anymore...and it's not a weight thing since i'm even lighter now, it's the way my bones have changed
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Old 10-05-2013, 02:26 AM   #4
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CanadianMomma - Thanks! I really do appreciate all the insight you offer! I already have a lot of loose skin on my tummy, and when I'm at full-term it's still going to be a far cry from when I weighed 360 pounds. I'm a little less concerned with loose skin at the moment, and more concerned with the girth in general. I'm quite proud that I've been gaining at a good, healthy rate; eating right throughout all this is something I've worked very hard as I don't want to throw away any of my hard work from last year. I think I'm mostly concerned about where I'm going to be mentally; I was losing at a decent clip towards the end there, and my stomach was the smallest it's been in memory. I wasn't at that state long enough to get used to the smaller me! Being 7 months pregnant right now sort of feels like it's my old, normal stomach from the past few years (even if it's still smaller now than it had been for the majority of that time, lol), and I think it's going to be a shock even if I look like I did at only 3-4 months pregnant again.

I've spent a lot of my pregnancy in comfy yoga pants, even as I type this I'm sitting in a pair that I began wearing at 2 months pregnant that are still stretchy enough for being at 7 months. They'll probably be a good friend for a while after the birth, lol. I'm hoping I can get back into my jeans relatively soon but I'm not going to count on it. I'm definitely interested in exercise to help my stomach muscles and hope I'll have the energy for it on top of everything else! I'm also hoping to breastfeed and have heard it sometimes help with the weight loss.

And thank you for the link! I'm thankful to see a whole section devoted to plus sizes.

Alaskanlaughter - I'm definitely wondering how my hips may change; if they do shift/widen I don't actually think I'll mind since my hips and butt are pretty non-existent. My stomach has always been my problem area though, and I long for the day that my stomach measures smaller than my hips. We'll see what happens? I still do have at least another 60 pounds I'd like to lose once the pregnancy weight is out of the way.

And thanks for the reply!
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