After a baby is born, a new mother’s life changes dramatically. She is now responsible for taking care of her child around the clock, which often means very little sleep. Additionally, she has to deal with dirty diapers and figuring out how to get her pre-baby body back. It’s not always glamorous, but many satisfied mothers wouldn’t have it any other way – except for the extra weight they’re carrying around.
After pregnancy, it can be difficult to stay in shape with everything a newborn demands of your time. Getting your pre-baby body back is possible, though, with postpartum exercises. If you kept yourself physically fit during the entire course of your pregnancy, it becomes even easier.
Supermodels always look amazing just a few weeks after giving birth, but that doesn’t mean you should try to emulate their workout routines. Instead, listen to your obstetrician about when you can resume normal physical activity. In the meantime, do some gentle exercises to get your body ready for more challenging workouts down the road.
Here are some postpartum exercises that you can do to help get your body back into shape. Remember to proceed at your own pace, and listen to your body. Take deep breaths throughout the whole routine. If you notice increased bleeding or bright-red blood, stop and see your health care provider.
Even before leaving the hospital after giving birth, women are encouraged to walk around and stay active to prevent complications like thrombophlebitis and pneumonia. To tone your abdominal muscles and relieve back pain, try doing pelvic tilts.
To do this exercise, start by lying on your back with your knees bent. Then, tilt your pelvis by tightening your stomach and butt muscles. Make sure to keep the small of your back flat against the floor. Hold for 2-3 seconds before relaxing. You can try to increase your hold time to 10 seconds as you get more used to the exercise. Repeat it 5 times.
One to two weeks after you’ve given birth, you can start doing diagonal sit-ups to help slim down your waistline. To do them correctly, lie on your back with your knees bent and your heels on the floor. As you breathe out, raise your head and right shoulder while pointing your right hand toward your left knee. Hold for five counts before slowly lowering your head and inhaling through your nose. Repeat on the other side.
Enrolling in a Yoga or Pilates program can help you physically and mentally after pregnancy. Basic Yoga poses help increase blood flow and tone your muscles, while Pilates exercises strengthen your muscles, improve core strength and flexibility.
It’s important to get back into shape after giving birth, and working out is a great way to do that. But of course, you can’t just jump into things too aggressively. You need to ease your way back into it and make sure that you’re comfortable with the pace you’re setting for yourself.