Now, you must be wondering, ‘What’s the big difference between regular workouts and strength training?’
There’s a major difference between the two and some fitness gurus recommend doing strength training on top of cardio to increase the efficiency of burning off fat. Well if you’ve always wanted that lean and toned silhouette, strength training is a must have in your post pregnancy exercise plan.
The fact is that strength training (which includes some weight lifting), actually helps you build lean muscle, increase metabolism, and decrease body fat at the same time.
You won’t end up looking like the Hulk after working out because a woman’s genetic factor and hormones aren’t exactly built for massive mass gain.
Instead, our muscles will get leaner and more toned over time with strength-training. It’s great for the nursing mum in the long run as it builds-up your functional fitness for everyday activities by increasing the tensile strength in tendons and ligaments.
1) Curl to press (biceps and shoulders)
- Sit down on a chair or stability ball and hold a dumbbell in each hand.
- Then extend your arms to the sky and make sure your arms stay at your side, palms facing forward (B).
- Slowly curl the weight towards your shoulders (A) and rotate your palms towards your shoulder as you do this.
- Repeat 12-15 times, resting for about a minute before starting the next exercise.
2) Tripod row (back and core)
- Again, with dumbbells in each hand, get on all fours are make sure your arms are straight with wrists under shoulders.
- Extend your right leg to the back (A).
- Slowly bend your left elbow back and lower weight to complete 1 rep.
- Do 12-15 reps and switch sides to and repeat all the above steps.
3) Fly to tris (Chest and triceps)
- Lie down faceup, and place your ankles on either a stability ball or a chair.
- With weights in each hand, Get into your starting position by opening and extending your arms to the sides (A).
- Extend your arms over chest, elbows bent and palms facing each other (B).
- Repeat for 12-15 reps.\
4) Lying march (Abs)
- Again lie down and face up, with your arms placed on the floor to your sides.
- Lift your legs and bend your knees. Make sure it is 90 degrees and aligned over your hips.
- Pull abs in and slowly lower your left foot until just before it touches the ground. Return to the previous position and switch to your right leg to complete 1 rep.
- Make sure your knees are bent throughout the repeating motions.
- Repeat for 12-15 reps.
5) Squats (Legs and butt)
- You can do this exercise with or without a stability ball.
- Stand against a straight wall with the stability ball in between.
- Move your feet forward until they’re slightly in front of your hips.
- Place hands on thighs and squat till your thighs are parallel to the ground.
- Complete the set by standing back up with your hands stretched up.
- Again, repeat 12-15 times