After giving birth to your long awaited bundle, the chances of you thinking about exercise for at least the first few weeks are slim to none!
But once the fog starts to clear a little, there’s a good chance you might want to strap on your sneakers again and start to get back into some regular exercise.
This can be a great thing for both your mental and physical health. In fact many midwifes and other obstetric care providers encourage new mums to get out and about with their prams as soon as possible after birth, due to the positive effect the fresh air and gentle exercise can have on your recovery and mental state. After a sleepless night (or ten), getting out of the house for some sunshine and a change of scenery can make all the difference and help enormously if you’re feeling a little bit fragile.
When it comes to actual exercise though, finding time can be difficult. If you’re breastfeeding, you’ll need to be with bubs at least every couple of hours and even if you’re not, baby will still require the majority of your time and effort. So what do you do?
We know for healthy weight loss, regular exercise is a must. While healthy eating makes up a large part of the equation, moving your body is essential for shifting extra kilograms and toning muscle. The key to squeezing exercise into your new life is to try and work out ways you can either workout with bubs on board or fit a workout in at a time when your partner or another person you trust is onboard over the care responsibilities. Ideally, a mix of the two can work really well as working out with baby will allow you to fit exercise into your daily life while a solo exercise session can provide a much needed break from new mummyhood.
Try one of the below for a great workout.
- Strap on your baby carrier and go for a walk – Wearing your baby and hitting the pavement provides a fantastic workout due to the extra weight you’re carrying. This is a lovely way to exercise as baby is snuggled in close while you burn calories. Just make sure you’ve got your carrier fitted correctly as incorrect fitting can cause all kinds of strains and sprains.
- Join a mums and bubs exercise class – Many gyms and personal trainers now offer indoor and outdoor classes where mums and encouraged to bring baby along. Depending on the class, your little one may be integrated into the exercises or a nanny may be on hand to take care of the kids while you focus on working up a sweat.
- Work it with your stroller – Popping baby in the stroller and heading out for a walk or jog is an easy way to slot some calorie burning into your day. Add hills or different terrain like grass or even sand into your route for an even better workout.
- Find a gym with a creche – If you’re comfortable leaving your little one with a carer for a short period, joining a gym that offers a fully staffed creche can be a great option as you’re able to workout safe in the knowledge that the carer can come find you immediately if you’re needed.
- Enlist your partner – A family walk a couple of times a week is a lovely way for dad to bond with baby and also allows you and your partner to have a chance to chat and catch up, outside of the four walls of the house. Alternatively, work out a roster so that you’re able to get out and attend your favourite class or go for a run while your partner is on baby duty.
- Invest in a DVD – There are a whole range of great post partum DVD’s on the market for getting your body into shape after baby. Being able to complete a class in the comfort of your lounge room means you can workout whenever you get a spare 30 minutes.