1. when can you start exercising after giving birth?
Because every woman’s postpartum recovery is different, Huma Farid, M.D., of Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, says the time to start exercising after giving birth depends on “how much exercise the woman did during the pregnancy, what kind of delivery you had”. she had and if there were any complications during the delivery.”
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In addition, your level of fitness prior to pregnancy may be a determining factor. if she exercised regularly and was in good physical condition before she got pregnant, she’ll probably find it easier to resume after giving birth. But “don’t try to do everything you did before or start a new strenuous routine for at least a couple of months,” says Felice Gersh, M.D., founder and director of Irvine Integrative Medical Group and author of PCOS SOS: A Lifeline of gynecologist to naturally restore your rhythms, hormones and happiness.
“In general, women who have had an uncomplicated vaginal delivery can gradually start exercising as soon as they feel ready,” says dr. says farid. “Most women can resume exercise four to six weeks after an uncomplicated delivery.” Be sure to check with your doctor about starting an exercise routine (usually during your standard six-week postpartum checkup), especially if you had a C-section or other complications. “For women who have had a C-section, that [onset time] can be extended up to six weeks after delivery. women can safely return to the gym six weeks postpartum, but their joints and ligaments may not return to their pre-pregnancy state until three months postpartum.”
That’s because of relaxin, the hormone that loosens up the joints in preparation for childbirth. it can stay in your body long after birth, which means it can wobble and experience more aches and pains. so keep that in mind as you begin your postpartum exercises. dr. farid suggests starting with a brisk walk around the block to get a sense of how your body has healed. in general, you’ll want to start out gradually and gently. no new mom will be ready to run a marathon right away, but you might feel like you just ran one.
“I advise my patients to listen to their bodies and exercise as much or as little as is reasonable,” says dr. says farid. “If the exercise causes you pain, I recommend that you wait another week or two before starting again. they should increase the amount of exercise gradually, and for women who have had a C-section, I recommend avoiding heavy lifting (such as weight training) for six weeks. I would recommend starting gradually with brisk walks of about ten to 15 minutes in duration and gradually building up.”
dr. Gersh also recommends brisk walking after each meal and starting “light weights at six weeks postpartum for vaginal deliveries and eight weeks after a C-section.” you may also want to work with bodyweight exercises like push-ups, pull-ups, and squats.
Other low-impact aerobic activities to consider include swimming, water aerobics, and gentle yoga or just stretching. at the gym, hop on the stationary bike, elliptical, or stair climber.
2. how much exercise should you do after giving birth?
according to the us According to the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion’s physical activity guidelines, adults should get at least 150 minutes of exercise a week (about 30 minutes a day, five days a week, or three 10-minute walks). minutes a day). “but realistically, many women with newborn babies struggle to find time to exercise,” says dr. says farid. “If a woman can’t find time to exercise and has just given birth, she encourages her to take a break and exercise when she can. Taking walks with the baby in the stroller or baby carrier is a great form of exercise. and when she has time, she can resume more vigorous physical activity at the gym.” Some gyms even offer babysitting services, or you can look into mommy and me fitness classes as a baby training program once your little one is old enough. Also, keep in mind that some classes, like indoor cycling, may include movements that are too intense for postpartum moms, so notify the instructor that you’ve recently given birth and they can offer adjustments as needed.
3. Are kegel exercises really necessary?
In addition to stretched abdominal muscles, the pelvic floor will also be weak. To help strengthen bladder muscles that can be damaged during pregnancy and childbirth, Dr. farid recommends practicing kegel exercises. In addition to walking, kegel exercises should be one of the first exercises you incorporate into your postpartum routine. to do them, pretend you’re trying to stop the flow of urine by contracting your pelvic floor muscles from front to back. hold and release do this about 20 times for ten seconds each time, five times a day. this will help with bladder and bowel control, as well as prepare the vagina for postpartum sex.
4. what about basic work?
During pregnancy, as the tummy expands, the connective tissue in the tummy stretches, and the rectus abdominis (the muscles that run vertically down the sides of the abdomen) can pull apart and separate down the middle. this is known as diastasis recti and is experienced by most pregnant women. for some women, the gap closes quickly, while others can be separated for up to six months after delivery. If your tummy still looks pregnant months after you delivered your baby, you probably have diastasis recti. and that’s why getting that six pack back (or for the first time) is going to be a challenge.
instead of doing a million sit-ups, which can actually make the condition worse by spreading the muscles further apart, try planks and focus on strengthening the deeper abdominal muscles (known as the transversus abdominis or tva muscle) to regain your core strength and stability but ask your doctor before attempting any abdominal exercises as you may need to see a physical therapist who specializes in postpartum training depending on the severity of your diastasis recti.