Okay new mum, are you ready to sweat? Here is the lowdown on the types of exercise for new mums that you can do, what works well and how to fit it all in!
Exercise for new mums: Some facts
When can I start exercising?
In most cases, it is recommended to wait at least four weeks after giving birth before beginning heavy exercise. If you had a ceaserean delivery, wait till six weeks to start strenuous exercises.
What exercise should new mums begin with?
Begin with a 15-minute stretching program to improve flexibility in your joints and tendons. Make sure you really stretch your lower back, hips and inner thighs. You should also do some sit ups and star jumps.
Gradually add aerobic exercise to your stretching program. Begin with five minutes of aerobic exercise. After two weeks, add another 10 minutes. Walking is great and can be done with your infant in a stroller or baby jogger. If you have home-exercise equipment, use a treadmill, exercise bike or even a step to do the aerobic portion of your exercise regimen. When your stamina is up, dust off the old running shoes and go for a jog.
If you feel pain at any time, stop immediately.
Try to squeeze some running into your routine. Image courtesy: Pixabay
Exercise for new mums and breastfeeding
Moderate exercise does not usually interfere with breastfeeding. Have a balance of exercise and rest, and be sure you drink plenty of fluids, especially if you’ve been sweating. Some babies don’t like the taste of milk just after vigorous exercise. This is not common, but if your baby refuses the breast at that stage, just make sure you feed just before your work-out and not again until you’ve cooled down.
Also be sure to wear a supportive bra. You may find that feeding bras are not supportive enough and you need to wear a sports bra whilst exercising. You may also need to wear breast pads.
When will I shed the pounds?
Women lose approximately half of the weight they gain during pregnancy when they deliver their baby. Most of the remaining weight is retained fluid, which women usually lose over the next few weeks through increased urination and perspiration.
The rest of the weight is stored fat – calories for milk production. How you shed the final pounds depends on how much weight you gained during pregnancy and your postpartum nutrition and exercise program. Most women return to their normal weight before pregnancy within about nine months to a year after giving birth.
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