Your journey after you have had a baby can be very daunting! Sleepless nights, crying baby, feeding schedules and your undercarriage!! There are sooooo many things to think about once you get home from the hospital and are left ALONE!!
For the first few weeks (0-6 weeks) fitness and 'getting your body back' shouldn't even enter your mind. You have enough on your plate as it is. So here is what to do....
- Spend as much time as you can sleeping, everyone is probably telling you to sleep when the baby sleeps....well they are RIGHT!! A lack of sleep puts an added stress on your body that plays havoc with your hormones. Leave the dishes alone, forget about the laundry and catch some well deserved zzz's
- Listen to your body, if your back is hurting think about supporting it correctly when feeding. If you are experiencing neck/shoulder pain do some stretches to relieve the tension. For the first few weeks your focus should be sitting down and letting your pelvic muscles, ligaments and tendons relax back to their previous state.
- Go for some short walks, starting at 5 mins and work your way up to 20-30 mins per day. It is SO important to listen to your body at this time. If you are still in pain when you walk then you should still be resting.
Week 6 is where you can SLOWLY start adding in exercise. And I mean slowly...no going out for a run or heading to the newest HIIT session. You have Just been through a lot of trauma and your pelvic floor is still VERY fragile. At this point I would recommend seeing a PELVIC FLOOR PHYSIOTHERAPIST whether you think you have diastasis recti or not. They are the KEY to a safe and effective recovery and can prevent further damage. To find a physio near you click here (Ontario, Canada ONLY)
Here are a couple of exercises to do to start strengthening your 'core' and prepare you for future workouts.
10 reps of each exercise 3 times per day
1. Glute Bridge Squeeze 2. Standing Knee Lift 3. Bent Leg Lowers 4. Glute Bridge Spread