Just Had A Baby? How Soon Can You Workout After?
Postpartum Fitness – How Long Do I Have To Wait After Giving Birth?
So you’re a new Mom or soon to be one; congratulations! During your journey, your body has gone through significant hormonal and physical changes. Many of these changes you may not like, however the reality is that your body won’t be completely the same after delivering your bundle of joy. And this is a bitter-sweet reality.
You may be wondering how long you should wait before attempting to lose the unwanted baby weight. Your baby will keep you busy enough, but sometimes, it may be hard to squeeze in a quick 30 minute workout, uninterrupted. However, if you’ve gotten yourself into a daily rhythm and routine, then you might actually be thinking of how you can balance your hormonal levels, while shrinking your frame.
If you’re lucky enough to not have gained weight or very little weight during your pregnancy, you will be the envy of many new and soon to be Moms. However, if you, like many of us have gained weight during this experience, then you are most likely thinking of how you can get rid of them. Wait periods before engaging in exercise can vary depending on your circumstances.
Many doctors will recommend that you can exercise whenever you feel ready after giving birth. This would apply to those who had an uncomplicated conventional delivery. However, the wait period may be much longer if you had a C-section or a complicated birth. It is always recommended that you consult with your doctor prior to beginning or resuming your fitness regime. Especially if you experienced complications or required incisions during delivery.
What Can I Do To Get Back On Track?
The best advice for a new Mom, who is looking to get back into the clothes she once wore, would be to start slowly. Your ability to rebound back into a workout regime will be dependent upon if you were physically active prior to and during your pregnancy. It is best initially to avoid high impact exercise, such as jumping and running post pregnancy. The reason being, that you may cause bleeding which can set you back on your fitness journey. So this is what you want to do:
- Do easy warm ups and cool downs.
- Initially start slowly and increase your pace gradually, while listening to your body.
- Up your water intake. You will need more than 2 liters per day.
- Wear a supportive bra and, if you’re breast-feeding, nursing pads in case your breasts leak.
- Stop exercising if you feel pain.
Tips On Shedding The Extra Baggage
The simplest way to impact your weight and fitness level is diet. Because diet plays a much larger part in overall health, wellness and physical weight, it is one of the easiest areas to begin wit, not to mention that a proper diet will aid in balancing your hormones. No dieting is required, but rather to select the right food choices which will fill you, but won’t add additional weight. Many new Moms struggle in this area because due to hormonal unbalances they feel too tired to exercise. However, the support of family and friends can remedy this issue.
Another factor to consider prior to shedding baby weight, is if your abdominal muscles have over-stretched. If your doctor or mid-wife determines that your abdominal muscles have over-stretched and that there is a gap of more than 2 fingers between them, longer than 3 weeks, then light pelvic exercises should be performed to assist in tightening up and strengthening the muscles. Pelvic tilt and kegel exercises may be recommended by your doctor, a fitness expert or a physiotherapist.
However, if the gap between the abdominal muscles is 2 fingers or less, then more intensive abdominal exercises may be performed, however it is not recommended to do full sit-ups 2-3 weeks post pregnancy. Moderate exercise such as walking, moderate strength training and light cardio can be done, to aid weight-loss, however you should consult with your doctor prior to participating.
How Soon Can You Workout?
As you can see, there are a number of factors which impact your ability to dive into a fitness program, post pregnancy. If you were consistently and actively working out prior to your pregnancy, then you most likely will be able to rebound much faster than someone who was sedentary. However, one must take into consideration, if there were complications, surgery or an over-stretching of abdominal muscles, pre and post term. Your best bet is to consult with your doctor, follow their recommendation, listen to your body and consult with an appropriate wellness expert. By doing so, your road back into regular clothes will be a safe and smooth one. And remember, we’re always able to assist you in getting there!
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