FREE SHIPPING WORLDWIDE!

Getting your glo back


So your adorable bundle of joy has finally made their way into your world (and turned it upside down), but with something resembling a routine down pat, and with clearance from a medical professional, you're feeling like you're ready to get your back into exercise? You glo mama!

First things first, it's important to understand and appreciate the incredible physiological transformation your body has undertaken during pregnancy.  You produced a human! So it goes without saying you should indulge in the baby cuddles and coos for a little while. You may need more time to heal than you think, especially if you've had a Caesarian. Our bodies continue to change up to 12 months after birth.  

If you're breastfeeding, pregnancy hormones like relaxin are present.  Relaxin is the hormone responsible for preparing your body for childbirth by allowing your ligaments - specifically your pelvis - to become lax.  So it's important to take a little extra care when getting back to exercise, in particular things like stretching, and playing contact sport.

OK, WHERE DO I START?

A great place to start is with some gentle tummy exercise to help bring your tummy muscles back to alignment in the middle. Here's an exercise that strengthens the deepest muscle layer (transversus abdominus):

Gentle tummy exercise

You can do this lying down, sitting, standing or on your hands and knees:

  • Keep your lower back flat

  • Breathe out and draw your belly button back towards your spine. Try and keep your spine in alignment (this is not a body roll)

  • Hold this move for 8 counts and breath lightly

  • Relax and repeat up to 8 times per set

Once the gap in your tummy muscles has closed, you're ready to move to some more demanding exercises.

Pelvic floor exercise 

Okay, if you were anything like me, you only ever did your pelvic floor exercises literally just as your midwife would be asking you, "Have you been doing your pelvic floor exercises?" I know...I know, but here's an exercise to help strengthen them and prevent problems like incontinence later in life.

You can do this lying down, sitting, standing or on your hands and knees.

  • First, find your pelvic floor muscles. Hint: they're the muscles that you tighten to stop weeing.  

  • Try not to hold your breath. You should be able to carry a conversation while doing these exercises.

  • Gradually squeeze your pelvic floor muscles as hard as you can for 8 seconds. 

  • Release slowly counting down from 8.  Repeat this 8 times.

  • Try and squeeze these in as often as you can.  Some people do them at traffic lights, or while brushing their teeth. 

READY FOR MORE?

When you're feeling ready, you can start getting back to what you loved doing pre-pregnancy. Just a couple of things to keep in mind:

  • Remember, baby steps.

  • Take your time, go at your own pace.  Strive for progress, not perfection every day.  

  • Listen to your body.  If you feel pain (not a good pain), slow down or stop.

  • Avoid any activities that place stress on the pelvic floor and hip joints (that's a no to Olympic trampolining).

  • Wear a supportive breastfeeding friendly sports bra (we know a goodie!)

 Exercise ideas:

  • Pram walks - take the long way to your local café for your daily fix

  • Swimming

  • Aqua aerobics

  • Pilates

  • Cycling

  • BodyPump

  • Yoga 

BENEFITS OF EXERCISE

There are so many benefits to getting back to exercise as a new mum. I love having some time to myself - to do something just for me. I find that no matter how sleep deprived I am, a little exercise can actually boost my energy, and help to reduce stress.  I always sleep better (okay, if I'm lucky, in four-hourly stretches) if I've gotten my heart rate up.