Whether you were a regular gym rat before (and during!) pregnancy, or you are a certified couch potato, you might be wondering about a postpartum exercise and fitness routine.
Afterall, moving your body is healthy, feels good and can help limit postpartum depression in some women.
To that end, here are some tips for postpartum exercise and fitness. Read on:
How long should I wait?
This depends on many factors, like if you were regularly exercising before you gave birth and what type of birth you had. Also, how do you feel? Do you have help? Generally, doctors will see you at 6 weeks to make sure you’ve healed, but anyone who has had a baby can tell you, it can take longer than that to feel normal.
Generally, walking and light stretches can be done in the days after birth – provided you feel up to it and have no complications.
What are some signs I need to slow down or take a break?
Listen to your body! The post partum period is one of recovery. Your body has been through a lot! If you have any pain, extra bleeding or something feels off, stop immediately and call your doctor or midwife.
What about breastfeeding?
You can exercise when you are breastfeeding, but take extra care. Your breasts are likely larger and more sensitive, so a good sports bra is a must. You will probably want to limit high-intensity workouts for a bit and it’s extra important to stay hydrated and nourished.
It can be a great idea to meet with or regularly see a pelvic floor physical therapist in the weeks and months after giving birth, just to make sure you are addressing any issues (like a diastasis recti or pelvic floor dysfunction). Your posture, alignment and muscles have all changed during pregnancy and these experts can help keep you safe and prevent injuries.
At Everything Birth, we hope you have a great postpartum experience.