There are two types of women – those who want to continue exercising as soon as they’ve had their baby, and those who procrastinate and avoid starting an exercise routine. The most important thing to realize is that it’s not impossible to get back into shape after childbirth but that it requires some persistence and creativity, mostly around the issue of having your baby with you while you are exercising. The sooner you start, the faster your results will come. Here are a few ideas:
Pelvic Floor Exercises
The most important thing after giving birth will be to recover your pelvic floor – these are muscles, ligaments, and tissues stretching from your pubic bone at the front, to your spine at the back. Due to bearing heavy weight for a long time, these will have overstretched and weakened and might cause you to leak wee when coughing, sneezing, and exercising, so it is a priority to get them in shape first. You should be able to do the pelvic floor exercises even if you’ve had a cesarean.
One of the easiest and most enjoyable ways to get some exercise is to cycle. If you have a newborn, you can get a baby carrier and have your baby cuddled up either on your front or your back.
There are also bike trailers suitable for kids over one and they usually have enough space for two kids. For bigger children, you can use front or back child seats.
Walking and Jogging
It can be as simple as walking around your neighborhood with your baby. After your sixth postnatal week, you are ready to accelerate the walk to a fast pace or even start jogging.
Nowadays, you can get a complete jogging stroller or just a jogging accessory for your existing stroller. It's a good idea to research the best jogging strollers before you start, just to be safe.
You can put the baby into a baby sleeping bag, turn the seat to face you or the world, and off you go jogging together. The accelerated speed will probably even make the little one fall asleep a lot easier too. This will allow you to get some peace and quiet while you’re losing weight. Win, win.
Yoga is convenient as it can be done in your room, with your baby close by. All you need is some space for a yoga mat. This ancient exercise system works your muscles, bones, internal organs and energy centers.
In addition, it relieves depression and keeps you in good internal balance while you are overcoming the postnatal blues. You might have heard of prenatal yoga, but there is also a thing called postnatal yoga where both moms and their babies practice together, in yoga classes! Yes, you’ve read it right, babies on yoga mats. It’s never too early to start.
Exercising at Home
You can do a lot at home if you organize yourself well. While the baby is napping, you have plenty of time to warm up, do some squats (provided you’ve fixed your pelvic floor), floor bridges, lunges, crunches, windmills and so on. If you are strong enough, you can do push-ups and plank poses.
Get some dumbbells and start easy but increase the difficulty – you will need strong arms for all those mommy duties, or you can treat your baby as your weights, and let the kid have some fun flying up and down.
Play a game of peek-a-boo where you constantly lift and move the baby around. They will get a good laugh out of it hopefully and you get a really nice arm workout. It’s a nice little trick to keep the arms firm.
If you’re looking to work out, there are solutions even if you’re always busy with taking care of the baby and house. The trick is to look at things from a different perspective and seize opportunities. First, make sure it is safe for you to start an exercise regime and always consult your doctor about that. There are plenty of exercises you can start doing within weeks after childbirth, but most commonly women get back to their regular training routine six weeks after having a baby.
How did you get back in shape after having a baby?
The Everyday Mom Life
These are all great exercises. I love to ride my bike and run. I have to doit more often. Still have 15 pounds to go.
That is wonderful, the effort you put in! You’re so close!
Heather Riccobono (@BrieBrieBlooms)
Excellent suggestions. My youngest daughter is two years old and I’ve had a very different experience with pregnancy weight than with my eight year old daughter. Those six years made a big difference in how my body would react differently (and not in a good way!).
I’ve been there! I know how that goes. It’s much harder as we age, no doubt.
Great ideas! I love all of the bike joggers that they have now. I think just getting out and walking is a great place to start.
Walking works super well and is a great place to start! I couldn’t agree more.
With Kids And Coffee
Yoga is such a great way to ease your body back into exercise after giving birth. Plus if you take a class, you get a little bit of silence as a nice bonus. 😉
Isn’t that the truth?! Yoga is amazing. Helps the nerves too 😉
I started out walking, then progressing to running. Slow steps!
Yes, slow steps! No reason to kill yourself, just ease into it and enjoy it!
Exercising alot while pregnant helps alot! I remember learning that from one of my nutrition teachers and she had 4 kids, but still has a banging body!
Oh yes, very helpful! A lot of women believe the myth that you can’t do any exercise when you’re pregnant but as long as you know the exercises that are safe, it’s actually recommended!
Angela Ricardo Bethea
I think this is very helpful especially to those Moms who want to lose those post partum bellies. I’ll definitely take note of these tips!
Don’t you have your first on the way?? I could be wrong but if I remembered right, congrats and I bet you will have no issue losing that extra afterwards!
After having baby #7 11 months ago, and dealing with gestational diabetes the whole time my poor body just isn’t the same, and I’ve never weighed as much as I do. I will have to take these tips and run with them! – Jeanine
Wow, 7 babies, you’re super woman! I don’t think anybody’s body would be the same after 7 children haha. You’ve got this, girl!
exercising at home is the way to go for me, I am not a jogger or biker and don’t find that yoga gives me a good enough burn. I find great workouts on youtube that are only about 30 minutes long, just long enoughfor the baby to nap!
That’s a great idea! Finding what works best for you is always the trick! Always have to play trial and error for a bit to get there.
My youngest is almost three and I’m still trying to get my body back! It always takes longer than I hope but I’m getting back into a routine and it’s helping.
With the addition of each new child, it definitely gets harder. Pregnancy does a number on our bodies and so does age. They’re not kind! You’ve got this!
These are some great ideas for exercising after baby. It is definitely important to be kind to yourself and not expect yourself to leap right into that crossfit class right after baby. But it is valuable to get some kind of movement.
I couldn’t agree more. Being too tough on yourself is more unhealthy than where you’re at! Even just walking around the house more is beneficial!
Well, I’m passing this along to my blogger friend who just had a baby. She was looking for some quick exercises to get her back in shape.
I’m super glad I could help! Let me know how she liked it!
I exercise after my babies even though I do drop the weight quickly. I try to get back into good shape by exercising at home.
Exercising at home can make it easier and more convenient to fit in a workout at all. You’re lucky it sheds quickly!
These are all great ideas! The pelvic floor exercises are super important! I still do them and my kids are in elementary school!!
Good for you! Yes, so important for women in general!
I will definitely need this by next year. Haha! I guess exercise just helps in general. 🙂
Exercise before AND after the kid helps a ton. Good luck to you and congrats!
I am still working on my post baby body and my youngest is 10 months lol. Working out at home has been a real help though, along with walking with my older daughter
At home exercises as well as walking are splendid! No reason to kill yourself.
I like the idea of cycling and Yoga sounds like a great way of exercising after having a baby. These are great tips for mums x
Definitely for moms but they’re also good for women in general. They hit all those right muscles 😉
After I had my kids I took them for walks every day and the weight just fell off!
That’s awesome! Good for you on keeping you and your kids active!
It was tough to get back in shape after having the kids and I sort of gave up on the whole idea. But now I’m back on track and I usually work out at home. It’s so convenient plus, I get to save money on gas and gym membership fees!
Amen to that! Gym memberships plus gas to get back and forth add up so quickly. Definitely not worth it when jumping into a workout at home is so much quicker and definitely cheaper.
I love your advice, and as one who didn’t get at it very quickly, I highly suggest that it becomes a high priority for the new mom!
I definitely agree! The more we age and as each new child comes, our bodies just get worse and worse at bouncing back.
I have friends who prefer to exercise at home because it’s not just convenient but they get more time too. I think these are great exercises and I love that some of them include being with your baby!
Sometimes getting away from the baby for a workout is a no go so you have to make do WITH the baby haha! At home is so much more convenient and cheaper as well.
I think the biggest thing about exercising with your baby is how good it feels to get out and move, and it’s great for mental health. I don’t think new mothers should be stressing about weight loss and just enjoy creating a new healthy lifestyle with their baby 🙂 The weight will fall off if you keep active and maintain a healthy diet
I couldn’t agree more, Cassie. There is no reason to kill yourself to get back to your old body. Just take your time and have fun with it!
these are great tips on getting your body back after having a kid, and yoga is awesome! like i love yoga, its so calming and has gotten me so tone.
Yoga is wonderful for an all around workout. It really gets you relaxed.
It’s not easy, but it can definitely be done. Thank you for the awesome tips.
You’re right, totally not easy but worth it! Glad you enjoyed them!
After I had my last daughter I lost a lot weight
That’s awesome! It always seems the weight is a little easier to lose starting with a second pregnancy.