Post Pregnancy Abdominal Exercises
You’ve just given birth to a beautiful, healthy baby. Your body has just gone through nine months of incredible changes, and the delivery process has pushed your body to its limits. Now, the question on your mind is: -What do I do to get my tummy back into shape?-
Luckily, there are specific post pregnancy abdominal exercises you can do. But don’t go jumping on a treadmill the day after giving birth. Give your body a break for about two months-allow the body to heal.
During that time you can do some light stretches so that your body maintains its flexibility, but, overall, I would suggest that you take it easy. Then, after your two months are up, you can start exercising. Don’t force it, by trying to do 100 crunches on day one because you’re not only getting your tummy back into shape, but you’re rebuilding your abdominal muscles, and that’s a gradual process. The process is more like rehabilitation, or physical therapy, than it is a Jane Fonda-style workout.
First, you want to start with a simple pulling in of the abdominal muscles. You want to feel like you’re pulling your belly button back toward your spine, then hold that for 10 seconds and release, and make sure to continue breathing while you’re holding.
You can do that one sitting down or standing up, but you should do it about 10 times a day. What’s happening with this exercise is that your abs are getting used to that feeling of abdominal muscle contraction.
For our first -real- exercise, you’re going to want to lie on the floor in a relaxed position, with your arms at your side and your knees bent. Slowly slide out, and then slide back in, one leg at a time, never letting your foot or heel off the floor. Alternate, and repeat 25 times on each leg.
Your second exercise starts in the same position – but this time, you’re going to lift one leg, still bent, and slowly extend it out straight, then back in to the bent position before resting the foot again on the ground. Do 25 times for each leg.
For this next exercise, you’re still on the floor, but you’re going to raise both knees up so your lower legs are parallel to the floor. Then, alternate bringing one leg at a time back down to the original position, going back and forth. This should be done slowly to get the most impact to your abs. Repeat this 10 times at first, and then work up to 25 times each leg.
Finally, this one is a combination of the second and third exercises above. Lift both your legs up, keeping your knees bent’ then, slowly extend one leg out and bring it back in slowly. Repeat 25 times for each leg.
For each of these exercises, you should maintain your breathing and keep that feeling of pulling your belly button in toward your spine. You’re not putting any direct pressure on your abs, which is a good thing – these post pregnancy abdominal exercises, instead, help you to strengthen the abs indirectly, so as not to cause any harm to them. After doing this for a couple of months, you will be ready to really step it up and get into phenomenal shape.
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