Jul 02, 2015


Finding Balance: Weight Loss After Pregnancy

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Weight Loss

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Weight loss after pregnancy isn’t easy.  Sixteen months after the birth of my son, I am still struggling to get off extra pregnancy weight and restore some semblance of order to my hormones. In addition to the extra pounds, my skin is simply, well… not my skin! My once clean, bright complexion has become ruddy and dull. An occasional PMS zit or two, I can handle.  As for my body, I have always been curvy and voluptuous- give or take a few pounds.  Pero esto? Never!  Me tiene loca.


Pursuing Post-Pregnancy Weight Loss

All of the new moms that I speak to, have post-pregnancy concerns of their own.  Weight. Skin. Breast size. Hair loss.  Or even, much more serious concerns like postpartum depression or thyroid troubles.

I realize that both my weight loss and my skin can be worked on through exercise, nutrition and perhaps, a mental overhaul.  Truth be told, I haven’t made losing weight a priority.  The weight loss I’ve had, has been lost unwittingly, albeit happily.  Each disappearing chicho has seemed like a grand feat though I have done little to help my cause.  While I eat healthily, I haven’t made exercise a priority.  And water- my once favorite drink- has been replaced by too much coffee.

I walk on lunch breaks when I have them.  Occasionally, I do a workout in my living room or take a dance class if I can get out of my hyper demanding job in time.  I try. I really do. I just don’t try enough.

As a full-time working mother who is earnestly trying to be the best mother possible while staying on top of my work game, I have found little time for me.  Correction: I have made little time for myself.  Sure, I write or take pictures sometimes.  Occasionally- when my bubbly baby can sit long enough- I read the latest novels or academic papers of interest.  Out loud.  To him.

I realize that beyond my weight loss or having great skin, I simply have to make time for myself.  I have to love and care for myself more.  My weight and skin are vanities.  I am healthy and my concerns are, in fact, superficial.  I can lose those pounds just as easily as I gained them.  Well, maybe, not as easily but I can put in the work.  The power is in me, to make different choices and transform my body and skin from the inside out.

The first change I have to make is realizing that I can’t be a good mother, partner, or professional, unless I make myself the absolute first priority.  Self-care is good for everyone.  And now that I am ready to say it aloud, I am ready for change and ready to love the skin I am in.  For now.

Are you moving toward a change?  How will you put your plans into action?  How do you make time for yourself?


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Marinieves A. Alba

Marinieves A. Alba

Marinieves Alba is New York City-based cultural activist, producer and changemaker, who has worked in the arts, and youth and community development throughout the United States and Latin America for over 15 years. Marinieves holds degrees from Wesleyan University and New York University, and has received numerous honors recognizing her contributions to youth arts, media and activism. She resides in New York City where she is is happily re-discovering her love for photography and writing, and raising a beautiful baby boy.

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  1. I subscribe to: “If Mami ain’t happy ain’t nobody happy.”

    I also believe that I must show my daughter self-care — via everything from exercise to beauty to home care — will teach her how to care for herself one day.

    Take good care of you, Mama!

  2. Yes, the classic “how do i do it all … well” question from us mamis! I do my best to not feel guilty when I make time for myself. I’ve even gone one step further and I no longer include working out in that time. Working out has become a necessity, not a luxury :-) I am a firm believer in “I cannot be the best mommy, wife, friend if I am not being the best to myself first”. … Thanks for a great post!

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