Most new mums, once they’ve got ‘used to’ the interrupted sleep, want to get back to their usual fitness regime. They say they want their body back, the ‘mum tum’ gone and more energy etc. And yes there are numerous benefits to getting back into exercise, but the workout routine needs to look a bit different. Here are some of the common mistakes new mums make:
There’s too much focus on the so-called mum tum
You’ve just given birth to a human being so your stomach is not going to be the flat, toned thing it may have been before. What you need to focus on is getting your body to function efficiently again - that your continence is as it should be, that you have no aches and pains, that your diastasis recti is repairing etc. The fat loss will come later. Less aesthetics, more function!
Too hard and fast too soon
You’ve spent 9 months nurturing this new being, so your body simply isn’t just going to ping back weeks later. It needs another 9 months or more to recover from the changes that happened. You should certainly wait until 6 weeks postnatal (12 weeks if a c-section/ difficult birth) before starting anything (with the exception of gentle activity such as pelvic floor activation and walking) and mostly you want to be taking it easy in those first couple of months – take it slow and build up. Everyone has a different birthing experience and everyone takes a different amount of time to recover, so just go with what your body is telling you. Doing too much too early could lead to additional complications.
‘Rehabilitation’ hasn’t been considered
Your exercise instructor should get you to fill out a form that asks about your postnatal health – are you breastfeeding, have you got any back ache, any pelvic floor issues and so on. Please be as detailed as possible. Some ailments, even if they seem insignificant to you, may require you to do modifications or do specific types of exercise to strengthen up and rehabilitate. Sometimes a different course of action needs to be taken.
The workout isn’t mindful enough
The connection between the core, breath and pelvic floor needs to be rebuilt and this can’t be done just bashing out a few squats. You really need to think about the move and what it’s actually doing for you, which muscles you’re working. Build that synergy into your exercises and make things more functional. Your instructor should be able to tell you how to incorporate this into daily activity, such as picking up your baby.
Nutrition isn’t right
You’re probably thinking this isn’t an ‘exercise’ point, but, what I’m wanting to tell you is that your nutrition plays a huge role in the rehabilitation of your body and how it fuels your body to do the activity you want to do. If you’re not eating the right food stuffs, your body isn’t going to be able to a) heal itself and b) give you the energy to do your fitness and recover afterwards. As the saying goes ‘abs are made in the kitchen’, so make sure you’re helping your body by giving it the nutrition it needs
Do any of these points resonate with you? Make these simple changes to get a healthy happy body.
If you need any advice on any of these points, then please drop me a line. I offer group classes, personal training (in-person and online) and nutritional recommendations
Get fitness and health advice, nutritional tips, offers and class updates with my newsletter - sign up here
And, please come join me in my Facebook Group to get updates on when the blogs are posted and other useful updates/info