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Get Active, Baby!

Get Active, Baby!

Nine months growing a baby. Check. Grimaced through labor and delivery. Check. Okay, rockstar — on to the next! After giving birth, getting back into exercise and recreational activities can be a great starting point for you to feel like you again.

Exercise during pregnancy has great health benefits. So it makes sense that exercise after birth would do the same for new moms. But when can you start? And what are the best exercises that you can be doing? Keep reading for our best advice on getting active post-pregnancy.

when is it safe for you to start working out postpartum?

First, we’d be foolish if we didn’t acknowledge that every labor experience is different. Some women may recover and be back on their feet in no time while others who have faced complications in pregnancy may take longer to get back to a sense of normalcy. If you have experienced complications, or had a C-Section, be sure to consult with your doctor on when you can begin light activity and exercise safely.

For those of you who may have pulled your little human out like a Kardashian with no complications, experts say you can begin gentle walks and pelvic floor exercises within the first day or two after birth. Build the pace and length of your walks gradually until you get to the recommended 2.5 hours a week of moderate exercise by the Department of Health & Human Services. Make sure to stay hydrated, wear supportive bras, and listen to your body (Mayo Clinic).

Once you have your 6-week postnatal check up and get the green light from your doctor, you should be able to return to the gym and group exercise programs. At 16 weeks after birth you will likely be able to engage in your previous level of activity and fitness although it may seem harder (Pregnancy Birth Baby).

why workout after you’ve given birth?

There’s often a lot of societal pressure on new mothers to drop that baby weight and fast, however postpartum exercise has a ton of health benefits aside from just weight loss. It can help increase your energy, clear your head and relieve stress, and even reduce symptoms of postpartum depression (PPD) (Reuters).

Postpartum depression is a serious condition that some women can experience after birth. Rebalancing hormones, lack of sleep and the drastic mental and physical change from being pregnant to raising a newborn can result in PPD in up to one in five women. Exercise can be a tool used to help lower symptoms by getting your body moving, and interact with other moms or friends to help build up your support system. (What to Expect).

workouts you can do after you’ve had your baby

Now for the fun part! Let’s explore some exercises you can do postpartum.

  • Bridget Teyler shares postpartum exercises for a better recovery with some super simple but helpful ways to ease back into working your muscles.
  • Pre and Postnatal fitness instructor Jessica Pumple leads you through postnatal yoga with diastasis recti exercises. This flow is great for mommas 6-8 weeks after birth, and who have been to see their doctor and given the go ahead for more interactive exercises. Be sure to check out her channel for more videos & exercises.
  • Pelvic floor exercises are important for engaging abdominal muscles and the pelvic floor. This quick 5 minute exercise can be done at home while watching tv or listening to your favorite podcast.

When you are first starting out, it’s most important to listen to your body, stay positive and stay active!

mommy & me – workouts you can do with your baby

As if you two don’t already spend enough time together — bring your baby along for your workout and show him or her what a strong woman looks like. These classes are easy going and a lot of fun.

Get in touch with yourself and your baby with Mommy & Baby Yoga. This series from Leil Cheri has relaxing flows that let you get some exercise in while spending time with your little one.

After a couple months of getting back into the rhythm of working your muscles, get back into the rhythm of dancing and having fun with your babe! This channel has a ton of great musical numbers to get up and moving either alone or with a partner.

For when your baby is a bit older, or you are well recovered from labor and ready to build muscle, Kukuwa fitness has entertaining, and engaging workouts for you and your baby, or you and your other baby mommas.

These workouts will become memories that you can cherish forever. Remember to always make sure that any time you work out with your baby you are in a safe environment, they are protected, and there is no equipment that could potentially come in contact with or harm them.

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