Once the baby is born most new moms expect an immediate return to their pre-pregnancy body and regular clothing. However, that’s far from true. In fact you’ll leave the hospital looking about five months pregnant. Naturally, weight loss is a concern. Exercise is important post-partum for weight loss but it is also much harder to find time than during your pregnancy (unless you are already running around with other kids). Besides contributing to weight loss, exercise will also benefit you post-partum in the following areas:
Mood: Exercise helps keep baby blues at bay
Heart: Healthy circulation helps with milk production, healing and reduced spider/varicose veins
Fatigue: Getting some exercise and fresh air can actually boost a mom’s energy.
While it is tempting to gauge your success by the number on the scale remember that breastfeeding requires a little extra weight. Instead focus on the fit of your clothes and be proud of your healthy eating and exercise program.
Here some popular exercise options that I have tried. Maybe some of these will work for you!
Kid lifting: I like the at-home video that we have in our office. You can call us or purchase it at http://www.kidlifting.com
Baby Yoga: This is yoga with mom and baby. We had a lot of fun doing this but it didn’t work well with my little one’s schedule. Check out the class options here: http://www.harmonymama.com/yoga/playfulyoga.html
Walking/Jogging: This is nice because the dog gets join you as you get some sunshine and fresh air. I recommend interval walking until you are ready to actually jog. At that point start small and work up. I use my Bob Jogger and a very supportive body pillow for baby.
Biking indoors: This can be done at the gym but I have accomplished it by using my road bike on a trainer. While the baby is sleeping I am exercising without leaving the house. You can reward yourself by tuning into a fun TV show while you work out.
Boot camps: I go to one on Sundays with other people which helps motivate me. Since it is on the weekend my husband, who is a big runner, goes along and pushes baby around the school track while I do boot camp.
Ab workout: I do some of the traditions crunches and leg lifts. However, be cautious and start slowly as you can get ab cramps and hip flexor cramps dut to your body’s wildly changing hormones.