...to hate the phrase "9 months on, 9 months off"?

(69 Posts)
SpooMoo Tue 25-Jun-13 17:48:34

My baby is 8mo and while I have lost some weight (all the pram pushing and breastfeeding) I am still overweight and nowhere near back in shape. But I don't have the time or energy to focus on that right now! I just feel like a failure that I'm nearing 9 months postpartum and that's when I "should" be back to normal, according to this phrase! AIBU?

WorraLiberty Tue 25-Jun-13 17:50:59

The phrase is complete and utter bollocks

Some people take 3 or 4 days to go back to exactly the same weight they were before pregnancy...and others take months/years.

It depends on so many different things.

Alisvolatpropiis Tue 25-Jun-13 17:51:40

Fairly sure that phrase was probably coined by a man,who had no children.


JaneFonda Tue 25-Jun-13 17:51:44

I think the phrase is meant to reassure people who feel like they need to be back to pre-baby shape within three weeks!

Don't worry - concentrate on your lovely baby.

HeySoulSister Tue 25-Jun-13 17:56:04

I get annoyed when people say they can't 'focus' on their weight loss/diet etc

Why does it need such focus?

SpooMoo Tue 25-Jun-13 17:57:53

HeySoulSister - do you have a baby?

usualsuspect Tue 25-Jun-13 17:58:20

I've never heard that phrase in my life.

After my last child it's been 9 months on, 20 years still not off.

thebody Tue 25-Jun-13 17:58:51

Never heard the phrase to be honest but now I do it's bollocks.

SpooMoo Tue 25-Jun-13 17:59:25

Pre-baby I ate fewer snacks and I went to the gym 3-4 times a week. I still cannot find time/headspace to join a gym, it gets me down to be honest.

peteypiranha Tue 25-Jun-13 18:01:15

Can you not do exercise videos, join classes, speed up your walking with buggy or walk further distances etc? Ditch the snacks and you will be back to normal pretty quickly.

CrowsLanding Tue 25-Jun-13 18:02:24

Never heard of that phase before tbh. Everyone's body is different.

SchrodingersFanny Tue 25-Jun-13 18:04:39

It needs focus because healthy eating requires planning, usually more than each night deciding what meal takes the least effort. I never had time to make healthy lunches, instead made a quick cheese sandwich that easy. And snacked because you've had so little sleep and tiredness makes you hungry.

Tee2072 Tue 25-Jun-13 18:06:06

More like 9 months on, 4 years off for me.

peteypiranha Tue 25-Jun-13 18:06:29

If you snack less you will want less snacks. Eat healthy snacks like grapes, strawberries etc, but the most important thing is upping your exercise which is even easier if your not working. Dont get down hearted but just get motivated if you want results.

WorraLiberty Tue 25-Jun-13 18:13:40

And you can't honestly blame a random (and stupid) phrase for making you feel like a failure.

You are making you feel that way, not the phrase.

So perhaps it's time to either lighten up on yourself, or make plans to change things.

RaisingChaotic Tue 25-Jun-13 18:32:40

What Usual said.

HeySoulSister Tue 25-Jun-13 18:44:12

A baby?? I'm a lone parent to 5!

mumblechum1 Tue 25-Jun-13 18:45:55

I'd never heard that phase. After DS1 I was back to pre-baby weight within a week. After DS2 (now 18) I still have a stone to shift grin

Onesleeptillwembley Tue 25-Jun-13 18:51:03

Never even heard it. Is it a local thing?

HeySoulSister Tue 25-Jun-13 18:52:17

Our local park has pram running groups. The gym doesn't have to feature in your regime. Power pramming looks fun!

itsblackoveryonderhill Tue 25-Jun-13 19:10:55

its a load of tosh. DD was 2 before I was back to my original weight, can't say the same about my shape though. shock

PortHills Tue 25-Jun-13 19:15:13

Are you still breast feeding? I didn't lose much weight until I stopped feeding.....

LadyRabbit Tue 25-Jun-13 19:16:18

Another one saying dont stress it OP, and even if you do exercise like a mofo which I did before and after.
(I mean proper stuff like marathons) you might have to accept your body will never be the same again. And why should it? You created a human being FFS! YOUR BODY IS AMAZING. Give it - and yourself - a break.

And yeah YANBU that phrase is a load of shit!

valiumredhead Tue 25-Jun-13 19:16:48

I've never heard of it.

StepAwayFromTheEcclesCakes Tue 25-Jun-13 19:17:24

ignore it... I look more pregnant now than I ever did while actually pregnant (Ds1 is 20) grin

i am still trying to shift my baby weight

DD2 is...........................................21............................years

ENormaSnob Tue 25-Jun-13 19:23:25

My dc4 is 11 weeks and im still chubby blush

Despite exclusively bf i hadnt lost a pound until i joined slimming world and started exercising more.

I can feel it coming off but it is hard at times sad

Fakebook Tue 25-Jun-13 19:25:13

It's not a literal saying. Most sayings aren't.

Stinkyminkymoo Tue 25-Jun-13 19:25:16

YAsoNBU! I hate it, my dd is 10mo and I still look like I'm due another thanks lady in Laura Ashley for asking when it's due between my dd, the horses, the dog and trying to keep the house in some sort of order I only have time to do 1 Pilates class and ride twice a week at the most. Not cool hmm.

Don't worry about it and crack on. smile

PollyIndia Tue 25-Jun-13 19:35:15

Well doesn't it depend if it's important to you or not? If it is, then why not try and make some time to yourself to exercise or to think about nice healthy things to eat rather than just feeling guilty? Get your oh to look after the baby and find a class you like or just go for run? If not, then who gives a crap about some rubbish slogan! I am a single working mum to an 8 month old but it's important to me to feel fit and healthy so I have made time for exercise etc. and I run whenever I can get a babysitter for half an hour! But we are all different and there is no right way. For me, breastfeeding made me put in weight as I was such a pig. I stopped a few weeks ago and it's dropped off. So maybe the same will happen with you. My sister was the same.

Xmasbaby11 Tue 25-Jun-13 19:36:46

I've never heard of it either. Don't worry, sweetie, it can take ages to shift it. DD is 18months and I'm relieved I've just got pregnant again as an excuse for not shifting the baby weight!

Fuzzymum1 Tue 25-Jun-13 19:44:57

Totally ridiculous! I weighed less when I came out of hosiptal than I did at my booking appointment - purely because I was about 6 stone overweight when I conceived - I'm still trying to lose the weight I gained with DS1 and he's 19!

RaisingHooligirls Tue 25-Jun-13 19:46:54

I don't know, I think it is important to say this phrase out loud a LOT because there is so much pressure on women now to have lost all the weight in 9 WEEKS

WorraLiberty Tue 25-Jun-13 19:53:25

When does baby weight stop being known as baby weight?

I mean at what point is it considered to be that the mother is simply overweight?

HeySoulSister Tue 25-Jun-13 19:56:19

You mean when do we need to find a new excuse?

nametakenagain Tue 25-Jun-13 19:57:20

Never heard the phrase. Ignore it and focus and what's important in the right order for you.

WorraLiberty Tue 25-Jun-13 19:59:06

Yeah, that too Soul grin

mrscog Tue 25-Jun-13 20:00:16

It is a silly phrase, but it is probably helpful to people feeling self conscious about their post-partum figure 4 weeks after the birth. From my experience (and friends), some of us lost it quickly, some slowly and others after the whole bf/mat leave stage. For me, I lost about 1.5 stone initially (baby, placenta, fluid etc.) then nothing until DS was about 4-5 months, then in the space of 3 months the other 1.5 stone melted away. DS is now nearly 16 months and I've just started my 'focussed' healthy eating this week to lose the last few pounds. You're right about needing focus - 3 weeks ago I was still enjoying cakes too much, then something clicked and I was like 'right. I'm doing it'. So far so good smile

SpooMoo Tue 25-Jun-13 20:08:42

Thanks for the replies. I think you're all right that it's a phrase to reassure very new mums that they don't need to worry about it until a few months in! I just read it again in a newspaper article today and it got my back up.

I am still breastfeeding (exclusively as in not mix feeding). I walk everywhere with the pram or sling. I know I have to start planning some more exercise and get DH to take the baby while I go to classes (not men on using a creche) but this would mess up our routine somewhat. I know this just sounds like an excuse. I'm probably not BU to hate the phrase though judging by some responses!

Itchywoolyjumper Tue 25-Jun-13 20:09:56

I was mightily sick during my pregnancy and by the time I'd peed out all the excess fluid I actually weighed a lot less after DS's birth than before I was pregnant. I was a very, very different (knobbly potato) shape though and its taken me nearly 3 years to get back to something like what I was before. Nine months it not long at all, just be nice to yourself and eventually it'll be ok.

SpooMoo Tue 25-Jun-13 20:10:19

* not men = not keen (autocorrect)

DontmindifIdo Tue 25-Jun-13 20:14:20

I tend to think it's a useful phrase for woman who've been reading the Daily Fail with their obsession with celebs who've "snapped back" by 2-3 months (I believe they've had an article about that one who shagged Ryan Giggs who's now 4 months after having her DC and is back to underwear modelling). That sort of speed of weight loss isn't healthy for most woman - because for most woman it involves either starving yourself when you're breast feeding or exercising before your body's completely recovered (as I believe Katie Price proved after one of her pregnancies where she busted her stitches hitting the gym too soon post birth).

It's a phrase that's supposed to be about taking your time and doing it sensibly. Not that you will just lose the weight by 9 months no matter what you eat/do, but that if you are aiming to lose the weight, you should work towards being back to your old size after a long period - and 9 months is really a reasonable time frame for most woman.

Shenanagins Tue 25-Jun-13 20:15:42

The weight clung to me for dear life whilst i breastfed and only when i stopped it slowly started to come off. Still want to punch people who say if you breastfeed the weight will just melt off!

FrenchRuby Tue 25-Jun-13 20:22:00

I am now less than what i weighed before getting pregnant with dd, she is now 2 and a bit years old and it took me that long to lose 8 stone, it took me a year and a half to lose the 6 stone I put on in pregnancy so that phrase is complete bs for me. But everyone is different. Don't pressure yourself

Elquota Tue 25-Jun-13 20:22:54

YANBU. It's your body and you get to decide what's a reasonable amount of time to spend on exercise and so on. Just ignore anyone who makes judgy comments - I'm sure there are things they find difficult to stick to (such as being nice to others wink)

maddening Tue 25-Jun-13 21:10:50

Heysoulsister - for some it takes more focus than others - my pcos make weight loss for me a greater battle than for another person.

For you it's easy - great - for others not so - no need to be so derisory of other's experiences.

TroublesomeEx Tue 25-Jun-13 21:23:39

I've never heard that expression either.

With my first I was 8st 3 before I became pregnant, 8st 3 at my 6 week check and 8st 3 the day I left hospital with my 5 day old son.

With my second I was 9st 3 when I became pregnant and 8st 9 when I was discharged with my 2 week old daughter.

I exclusively BF too. It made no difference to my weight in either direction.

It's absolute nonsense.

Just look after your baby and yourself and don't worry about what you 'should' have done weight wise. smile

MiconiumHappens Tue 25-Jun-13 21:27:28

YANBU! Also it's often said in a supportive way as on don't worry you have 9 months smile WHAT?! Now I have a deadline, jee thanks.

foreverondiet Tue 25-Jun-13 23:43:12

I think it's just to reinforce idea that not normal to be back in skinny jeans after 3 weeks like celebrities and 9 months is reasonable length of time to lose weight particularly if one is focused on it...

MamaChubbyLegs Tue 25-Jun-13 23:55:29

9 months on, 3 days off, 3 months back on for me envy

MamaChubbyLegs Tue 25-Jun-13 23:57:10

That will serve me right for being epicly smug grin

I've never heard the phrase before. I lost the baby weight within 2 wks with DS1 and 4 days with DS2 (I didn't put a huge amount on for some reason) but it was being pinned to the sofa with feeding babies and lack of sleep that made me put on weight which I am still not shifting nearly 10 yrs down the line. That said I don't sleep very well even now - having2 children seems to have made me an insomniac - and I am almost certain it is the reason I still have to lose weight and the one of the main reasons many women don't lose it after their babies are born.

WorraLiberty Wed 26-Jun-13 00:11:03

I think what people tend to forget with celebrities, is that they're normally quite slender and toned to begin with.

IME if you're slim with strong stomach muscles at the start of a normal, healthy pregnancy, you're less likely to put on much more than the weight of the baby anyway...providing you keep to a faily healthy diet.

So whilst they may appear to be exercising and dieting before the placenta's been delivered, the chances are they're probably not.

MrsMook Wed 26-Jun-13 00:28:49

It was about right for me after DS1. I went from 9st 2 to 13st via 8st 7. I had 1/2 st of "me" weight to lose after the easy stuff went in the first weeks. I went to Buggy Babes which got my basic fitness back (I ended up totally sedentary with PGP for the last few months), then at 5mths I started at circuits to boost my fitness level. I found weaning good for my diet as baby shared the same food and it was easier to do one healthy meal for all than something lazy for us and an alternative for him. His food allergies did me a favour- he made it hard to eat cake when out as he'd want to share.

By the time DS2 was concieved I was a little lighter than I'd been for a few years and fitter. I had worked at it. It required being mindful, but wasn't too much of a battle.

With a 10 wk old it's helping my patience. I'm making a start at building my fitness back up but it is harder this time. My PGP hasn't gone completely so pushing two in a pram is quite wearing. I'm heading out for a short but brisk walk when DH gets in. When I can go for a decent walk and get up a hill with the DSs it should get a bit easier for me. At the moment, it seems to take longer to get them ready to leave the house than I can manage walking!

It's not going to work for everyone, but it is useful to remember that the body is going to take time to adjust. Unfortunatly some people need more time and work than others.

It's more useful than "pregnancy is not an illness" Really? It can do a very convincing impression of it.

ThisIsMummyPig Wed 26-Jun-13 00:35:42

I never lost more than a couple of pounds until after I stopped breastfeeding. I would start your nine months from the date of your last breastfeed.

Or learn to accept that your body changed when you became a mother, and that's not a bad thing.

WorraLiberty Wed 26-Jun-13 00:57:13

Your body changing isn't a bad thing MummyPig but to be fair, weight gain and body shape change aren't necessarily the same thing.

Not that weight gain is necessarily a bad thing either...but it's probably best to look into losing it, before it becomes a bigger problem (if in fact it does). Especially if that mother wants to TTC another baby.

themiss Wed 26-Jun-13 01:03:40

I lost most of my extra weight after my DD started walking (or in her case, running)

TroublesomeEx Wed 26-Jun-13 10:36:45

I also think that if someone is looking at slebs as providing a blueprint for their own life then they've got bigger problems than a few extra pounds anyway!

Toomuchtea Wed 26-Jun-13 11:43:49

If it makes you feel any better my eldest is 21 and I'm still nowhere near in sight of my pre-pregnancy weight.

lborolass Wed 26-Jun-13 11:52:29

Another one who hasn't heard that phrase and in fact before I opened the thread I thought it was going to be about maternity leave grin

Don't believe anyone who says they lost weight "running around after a toddler", that phrase really makes my teeth itch - what nonsense, to lose a significant amount of weight you need to use up a lot more calories than you consume (other medical issues aside). I have never met a toddler who can run so fast that an able bodied adult needs to much more than a brisk walk to keep up.

Celebs - just admit you've had surgery or spend all day with a personal trainer and chef please

melliebobs Wed 26-Jun-13 11:56:04

I have never heard that phrase in my life. It's bollocks

Chunderella Wed 26-Jun-13 12:08:09

Lots of people do keep hold of a few pounds whilst ebf, OP, it's the body playing safe. In fact the big 2007 study on bf showed that ebf mums on average weighed a few pounds more than those who weren't at 6 months. So you are totally normal and probably your body is doing it for a reason. Mummypig's idea is a good one.

And I understand totally what you mean about lack of energy. All my baby weight just sort of evaporated by itself at about 4.5 months (so in defence of Imogen Thomas it's possible that happened to her). This was in December so I certainly wasn't eating fewer calories than I burned up! But I'm flabby and unfit because it's just so hard to muster up the time and energy simultaneously- especially when baby doesn't sleep through. I cannot believe anyone who has had a baby themself doesn't get this.

peteypiranha Wed 26-Jun-13 18:16:00

It probably is feeling flabby and unfit that makes people tired chunderella. If you feel fit you dont get as tired and have more energy.

Chunderella Wed 26-Jun-13 19:09:50

You don't think it might have a bit to do with having a baby that hasn't slept through in months petey? Because I have to say, I think that's the chief reason for it. I was also flabby and not especially fit before getting knocked up, but I wasn't tired then.

peteypiranha Wed 26-Jun-13 19:14:46

I think if you are fit and do exercise it is much easier to cope with lots of night time wakings/work/babies etc.

LondonBus Wed 26-Jun-13 19:20:58

I dislike lots of phrases;

You cant have your cake and eat it.
You are what you eat
A problem shared is a problem halved
Waste not want not..................

Chunderella Wed 26-Jun-13 19:22:57

Perhaps, but as I was in the same shape pre-baby as I am now, and yet wasn't tired then, I think it's fair to say the night wakings are to blame. I doubt there's any way for someone whose sleep is disturbed a lot to not be at least somewhat tired, even if they're at Olympic levels of fitness. Not that I number many Olympians amongst my acquaintance, although I did work with one a while ago.

Elquota Wed 26-Jun-13 19:24:19

> You cant have your cake and eat it

Oh no? What else is cake for grin

badguider Wed 26-Jun-13 19:34:30

I think it seems realistic to me in terms of a timescale to allow your body to recover from birth and the most intensive period of breastfeeding and to regain fitness and muscle tone lost in pregnancy, but it depends how much you actually care about your fitness and how fit you were before. Also, your body will not be the same shape, but it can be as fit as it was.

Getting your muscletone/fitness back won't be easy to do if you are just feeling bad about your jeans size, but among people who genuinely enjoy sport and exercise and want to feel fit and strong again then most women I know through my running and cycling clubs have been back to pre-baby performance levels after about 9months.

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