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How to Start Exercising Again After Pregnancy

Diane Luke
Senior Editor, TipsHire

Returning to the silhouette you had before pregnancy is on top of every young mother’s ‘To-Do List‘ but some women, being overwhelmed by the new responsibilities of being a mother, find it very difficult to lose weight after pregnancy. This article will show you when and how to start exercising again after pregnancy in order to lose weight fast and easy.

When to start exercising again after pregnancy?

Physicians of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists believe that it is much better to start exercising when you’ll feel able to do it and to gradually increase the difficulty of the exercises.

The doctors may ask you to wait up to six weeks until the regular after birth control to see if your body is once again capable for exercises. In general, if you’ve done even some light exercise during pregnancy and have had a normal delivery (vaginal birth), you’ll be able to safely start exercising after a few days after birth.

On the second week after birth, mild to moderate walking for at least 30 minutes daily, for three times a week, is a great start. As you regain your strength, you can increase the length of the walks or their number.

If you gave birth by Cesarean section, also known as C-section, be prepared to wait about six to eight weeks to start exercising again after pregnancy. However, on-foot walks are recommended as the fasten the healing process and helps you to avoid complications such as blood clots.

If you haven’t been active during pregnancy or if you don’t have fitness habits consult your doctor before beginning any exercises programs. In any case, remember that your joints and ligaments are all still weak for three to five months, so be careful. If you want to attend to the gym or aerobics classes, try to find ones that are kept by a specialist in postpartum gymnastics, or go for exercises with a low level of difficulty and effort, focused on toning and stretching.

Remember that your body needs to heal after birth, and even if exercising is good for you, don’t exaggerate with exercises in the first few months after you gave birth. Your body needs time to heal, and you need the time to adjust to your new mommy role, and to take care of the baby and to bond with him.

Most women make the mistake to focus only on their abdominal muscles after they gave birth but it will take about four to eight weeks after you gave birth to be able to safely workout your abdominal muscles. If you start doing abdominal exercises before the muscles are completely recovered, you will risk affecting the abdominal muscles, so you need to be sure the abdominal muscles are ready before you begin exercising.

A simple method to figure out whether your abdominal muscles are recovered, or not, is to lay on your back with your knees bent, then place your left hand’s fingers just above the navel and your right hand on top of the thigh. Now, inhale and exhale. As you exhale, lift your head and shoulders off the floor and let your right hand slide up the thigh reaching to the knee. That will force your abdominal muscles to flex, and you should be able to feel the gaps in the places where the muscles were separated by the effort of pushing the baby out of the womb.

If the opening is at least three or four fingers wide, you can easily start to strengthen your abdominal muscles with lifting exercises and bending of the legs and pelvis. After the gap narrows to only one or two fingers width, you will be able to start doing leg lifts or squats.

Physical exercising will not affect the ability of breastfeeding, and even more, intense exercises will not significantly affect the quantity or quality of breast milk. Although, you should avoid exercises that will force your pectorals or breasts, so always wear a sports bra that will support your breasts while you exercise and try to breastfeed your baby before exercise.

Many new mothers are wondering if there are any physical signs of doing too soon too many exercises. The only sign is that if doing too much physical activity during the first weeks after birth can cause abundant vaginal discharge, pink or red in color. This is a signal to take it easy. Tell your doctor if that vaginal discharge resumes after you stopped exercising or if you feel any severe pain.

Which one is the best way to get rid of the extra pounds gained during pregnancy depends on each new mother in part, depending on how used is she with physical activity or how fast her metabolism is working. One of the best ways every new mother must try is to practice some aerobic exercises, walking, swimming, jogging or cycling. But it is recommended to wait at least 6 weeks, or preferably several months, before starting to make a hard effort, or more difficult exercises, in order to lose weight.

Weight loss supplements to lose weight after pregnancy

There are many best way to get rid of the extra pounds gained during pregnancy out there but which one is good for you is depending on whether you’re breastfeeding your newborn, or not. In case you’re breastfeeding, you should avoid supplements that contain caffeine, capsicine, guarana and other energizing substances because these ingredients will pass to the baby through your breast milk.

In case you’re not breastfeeding, you will be able to use any weight loss supplement that is made of naturally extracted substances, just to keep yourself healthy. The best substances that help to lose weight are:

  • Caffeine eliminates the fluids retained in tissues, is energizing and appetite suppressor
  • Piper extract: burns fats
  • Capsicine: the active chemical compound in Peppers and Spicy Peppers is a great metabolic accelerator
  • L-Carnitine: converts fats into energy
  • Calcium: maintains a healthy body weight and fortifies joints and bones
  • Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA): works as a weight loss supplement especially when during workout sessions, by accelerating the metabolism, and transforming fats into muscular mass
  • Chromium: suppresses cravings for carbs and sugar
  • Guarana: suppresses appetite, accelerates the metabolism, and energizes

Use any weight loss supplement that contains one, two or all the ingredients described above and combine weight loss supplement usage with light physical activity for the best results.

Final thoughts

My advice to you is to be patient with your body and do not set the goal to lose more than one pound per week, especially if you are breastfeeding. If you choose to go for a weight loss diet or to start exercising again after pregnancy too soon after birth you may affect your mood and your energy, and also the lactation. If you have patience and give your body the necessary time to recover, you may be amazed how much weight you’ll lose naturally.

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