Alright, so you’ve had your baby and perhaps you’re rocking a bit of a mom or dad bod. It’s been a while and you didn’t get a prenatal personal trainer to teach you the right from wrong. You want to get back into working out but you don’t know how to get started. What kind of exercises should you be doing? Each person is different and we recommend customized fitness plans but we’ve outlined a few basic exercises to help get you started. It’s important to remember that just because you’re busier, it doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your own well-being. Starting a fitness routine at home might be the best and only option for some new parents. Give the following exercises a try…
Your glutes (your butt muscles, the largest muscle group in your body) lengthen and weaken during pregnancy because your pelvis tips forward as your growing bump comes forward. Being your largest muscle group, it will also be important to work on in order to build other muscle groups in your legs and increase your metabolism.
The glute bridge. This is a fantastic exercise that anyone can do in postnatal training. Use two legs to start or try lifting off of one to make it more difficult. Contract your core and push off of one foot with your opposite leg in the air. Squeeze your glutes at the peak of the exercise and release.
As your belly and breasts get larger, your shoulders, back, and overall posture will tend to round out and become more forward-leaning. This is why it’s so important to work your upper back in particular, in order to help reset your posture. Reverse flys can be done with bands, rope pulls or with dumbells.
Reverse fly. Narrow your grip to make it more difficult. Expand the band to the upper part of your chest. Easy peasy!
Abdominal and Pelvic Exercises
You may have also noticed that your tummy has become a problem area since giving birth. Your ab and pelvic muscles actually weaken during pregnancy. They contract strongly leading up to and during birth, which can often develop into chronic pelvic pain syndrome. You can also develop diastasis recti – a condition where you abdominals separate during birth. It’s very important for any new mom to incorporate a flexibility and core training program into their routine.
The plank. This basic move is the king of core exercises. Remember to keep your hips only slightly elevated and flex your ab muscles to make it more difficult. Bringing your forearms further in front of you shifts more weight onto your shoulders and also increases difficulty. Hold until failure.
The following guidelines were published by Harvard’s fitness program.
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