That six-week postpartum doctor appointment usually means three things: the end of going to the doctor all the damn time, the green light to resume sex, and the OK to start working out again. After months of having someone else literally share your body, it can be liberating and important to do something just for yourself. And, honestly, a lot of people want to be more proactive about losing weight. Still, there are things I'd rather feel after a postpartum workout besides "skinny," and that hasn't changed as my children have grown old and I've evolved as a woman and a mother. After all, when it comes to working out to get "thinner," it's a process and results may vary. I know it's important to look at the big picture.
The truth is, working out (even in conjunction with a healthy diet) may never be enough to get you to your "goal weight," but that's not to say you shouldn't do either. Regular exercise (the Department of Health and Human Services recommends about 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity per day for the average healthy adult) is a good idea regardless of whether you are trying to get into a Size Whatever or not. From mood, to sleep, to warding off heart disease and postpartum depression, exercise has a load of benefits for new moms (and everyone else) that have nothing to do with getting thin or staying thin or fitting some predetermined, arbitrary, and not to mention unrealistic (and often unhealthy) societal standard of beauty. And even if you want to or do lose weight in the process, it's not going to happen all at once, so focusing on the other good things exercise can make you feel is a good way to keep yourself on track.
I remind myself of the aforementioned anytime I go on a run or hit the gym or consider any other physical activity. I know that "thinness" is not synonymous with "goodness," and a number on a scale is not indicitive of a successful workout. So, yeah, instead of feeling "skinny" after a post-baby workout, I would rather feel this: