Here are some tips on how to lose that baby weight and have some fun doing it with baby!
Your body has been through many changes during pregnancy and you may feel that your fitness has suffered. This may not be the case. You probably want to get back out there doing some exercise and shifting the baby weight.
It is very important that you do let your body heal after having had a baby and this can take 6 -8 weeks to do. So during this time just concentrate on your pelvic floor exercises and go for short walks with baby.
Here are some tips on exercise in the first six weeks after giving birth.
Once you have had the six week baby check and the all clear from your doctor you can start do some exercises with baby. Start small and build up your exercise. Make sure you have a well fitted baby carrier that you and baby feel happy and comfortable with. If you feel uncomfortable, don’t enjoy it or feel any pain then stop and rest.
Extremely Important Reminders for Baby-Wearing Workouts
STRENGTHEN YOUR CORE AND PELVIS FIRST
Before carrying baby in a sling or carrier and adding physical activity into that scenario ensure you are both comfortable. Your core and pelvic floor muscles need to be functioning safely and effectively in order to handle that extra load (the baby on your body!) without injury to your low back, pelvic floor, hips, knees, etc.
MAINTAIN GOOD BODY ALIGNMENT
Keep good positioning to allow your core and floor to work best and to protect your back. A couple of general alignment cues: keep an “untucked” bum, with a gentle arch in your low back. Keep your rib cage stacked directly over your hips
Inhale during the “easy” part of the exercise and exhale during the “tough” part of the exercise. Making sure to engage your core and pelvic floor (by pulling your belly in) as you perform the exercise’s tough movement.
Remember The “3E” Rule:
Exhale: do a simple, easy breath out
Engage: do your core and floor connection (think about drawing the front of your hip bones together, and your belly button up towards your sternum)
Exert: do the toughest part of the exercise
- TUNE INTO YOUR BODYBy now you should know your body well and know what feels right and what doesn’t. Stay in tune with your body while exercising and know your weak spots and strengths. Be honest about how you and your body are feeling during and after your workout.
If you feel any pain or heaviness stop, sit, and rest.
Interested in giving a baby-wearing workout a try? Here are some ideas for what you could do:
DIY Workouts and circuits
You may feel more comfortable starting by doing DIY exercise, at yourown pace and in your own time. You can do workouts at home, with just you and baby or with other people.
If you have always been a regular exerciser you know what you like doing. You may need to adapt some of the exercises to allow space for the baby. You also need to adjust for the changes your body has gone through.
Sling baby yoga
Yoga is brilliant for strengthening your pelvic floor and your back, relaxing and keeping that lovely suppleness that pregnancy brought you. Make sure that the instructor is qualified and also knows about the post pregnancy nuances.
Sling baby yoga is similar in exertion levels to pregnancy yoga – the breathing technique this time helps you to stay calm when your little one won’t settle or is suffering from Colic, teething or Reflux.
Dance work outs
Why not join a baby carrying dance class? I loved dancing before I had kids and as soon as I had them I would dance with them when one of my favourite tunes came on.
I’d had a c-section and was told not to carry anything heavier than the baby. So that’s what I did and as we gained confidence in each other we got more adventurous. Now they are bigger they still dance with Mama when a good tune is on, and they know when that is because the volume always goes up!
Walking and hiking
Doing simple everyday things like taking a walk to the shops, round your local park, on the beach or around your local area of natural beauty is exercise. Carrying baby with you means you are also weight lifting at the same time!
If, like me, you work full time, then maternity leave is a great time to explore more around where you live, with a totally new point of view!
If you are looking for places to go and live in the UK why not check out National Trust, English Heritage or RHS membership? These are all great institutions that need our help and support to keep going and the price of memberships is well worth it once you have made three visits in a year. I also find they are great places to enjoy festivals like Easter Egg Hunts, Halloween, Fireworks and Christmas. Most have good parking, lovely outdoor spaces, tea rooms and great baby changing and feeding facilities.
Mama and baby work out classes
If you want to go to a more strutured and cardio workout then you may want to find a workout class to attend. You will probably be able to get some good ideas of places to go from your local NetMum’s pages, NCT group or your local sports centre.
Make sure the class is specifically designed for baby carrying parents. Check that the instructor is qualified not only as a personal trainer but also knows about postpartum issues and doesn’t suggest exercises that are inappropriate. Feel free to ask as many questions as you want and if they are not able to answer them to your satisfaction you may want to go to another class. It’s not worth the risk!
So go out and have some keeping fit with baby wearing.
Whatever you choose to do to keep fit while carrying baby make sure that you and baby enjoy it.
Please do leave comments on what you have found to work for you and your baby. We love to hear from you!