Okay mama, so you have been cleared by the doctor to get back into your fitness routine. Problem is not only do you not know, but your body does not know what it is truly capable of after having a baby. So here are my tips to gently get back into some sort of fitness/health routine that will be good for not only your postpartum body but nurture your post baby brain.
1. Go Slow
Seriously, you do not need to run a marathon with your adorable baby jogger just because. You can start with long walks. After having a baby your hormones are all over the place, and too much too soon can hurt you. Plus those hormones settling can be danger for your knees and hips. Your core is also lax and needs to recover (and re-strengthen) so walking up hills or even just strolling across uneven pavement will be a workout. Trust me
2. Don’t over do it
A lot of times as fit-moms, we do NOT know our limits. We think that working out 5 days a week after having a baby is a good goal (“Well.. at least we didn’t say seven days a week, right!?”) — I have actually used that line on my husband before.
But seriously mama. Go slow. If you hit the gym already 5 times a week in the beginning where do you have to go from there in your post-baby weight loss journey. Start with 20 minutes three days a week. When you stop losing weight, then go 3 days for 30 minutes or 45. Add an additional day when you plateau there. After that you can add in more days or longer time slots depending on what works for you (and baby). My sweet spot now is 5 days for 25 minutes (that’s also how long daddy feels comfortable alone with the baby!)
3. Remember you took 9 months off from the squat rack
There is no way you were doing your normal fitness routine up to the end of your pregnancy. And most the time (for me included) that pregnancy hormone which relaxed your joints while you were carrying the baby, can create pain in you after you deliver the baby. You most likely were told not to squat, deadlift or run due to that hormone, so give yourself time to work it back into your routine.
4. If it hurts, STOP
Need I say more? Don’t be a hero. This is the one time I beg you to not push too hard! The damage you can cause is not worth it! I had a therapist recently tell me I should not workout for 6 months because my pelvic floor was so weak.. SIX MONTHS!? … but I am listening because it is not worth the risk of causing long term damage.
5. Do NOT restrict
You are most likely feeding a little human right now, so make sure that your nutrition is top priority. Your body is smarter than you, so if you start to restrict it will literally just leach nutrients from you, for the baby. However in due time that will leave you depleted, exhausted and potentially very sick. So make sure to nourish your body.
6. Make sure you provide even MORE nutrients to your body
Truth is, that moms come last when in comes to feeding ourselves right 😉
I like to include the following items every day in my routine just incase I cannot get in all the fruits and veggies I actually need!
7. Consider helping your body and mind (and baby) with some OMEGA’s
Here are a few quick reasons as to why a solid OMEGA supplement is a MUST for any post-baby mama
- Helps your hair and nails stray strong and long, especially with your changing hormones which can cause your nails to get brittle or create that post baby hair loss
- Helps your brain (need we say more #MomBrain
- Helps your baby’s brain (need we say more.. again) You will naturally think your baby is a mini genius, but this will actually help your breastmilk be stacked with some serious brain boosting power
- Keeps your immune system strong, and moms when you just had a baby you need to be on your A game (especially with how little sleep you will be getting)
8. It is NOT just about you any more
You can have all the lofty goals you want, but if you baby doesn’t want to take a bottle you might not be able to workout- other than beside him in the living room. If she is colic you might not even be able to put her down for the first three months. If you stop producing breastmilk if you workout too much or eat a little less, you might not be able to cut out calories to help with weight loss. All of these things have happened to me, and this is a reminder that you just created a beautiful life. and you will get your post baby body back soon. Do not let these road blocks upset you, or create frustration within. Enjoy these peaceful weeks, months or even years — and when you and baby are ready, you can get out and achieve those fitness goals again!
9. When you are ready, make a plan.
Work with another mom, a trainer, a friend or your partner. Create a fitness and nutrition plan for your goals to get back in shape. Remember that it took you 9 months to make that human, so give yourself time. If you are interested in more information or the gentle programs I offer my moms, post baby click here!