Getting back their pre-baby body is one of the major challenges that new mothers typically face. On average, Baby Centre notes that mums gain 10-12.5kg during pregnancy. Weight gain is a completely natural effect of growing another human in your womb, but the reality is that it’s also a huge confidence killer for many.
While mums don’t exactly have the luxury of time, there’s no reason they can’t get back in shape.
So here are some short at-home workouts you can do that don’t require fancy equipment or a gym membership.
After giving birth, you might feel… flabby, especially around your midsection. Some women even experience a condition that causes their ab muscles to come loose. Fret not as Pilates is a core busting exercise. The only thing you will need is a few minutes of your time and an exercise mat. Follow these five essential moves suggested by Saga:
- The Hundred
- The Letter T/Superman
- The Bridge
- Seated Twist
Do two to three rounds of these and you’re all set!
Unlike Pilates, yoga focuses on overall body strength and flexibility. There are plenty of resources available, from online videos to instructional books that can help you find an effective routine. This is perfect for mums who have developed aching joints from carrying too much weight and the household on their shoulders! Here’s a video guide to help you get started.
HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training. The idea is to give maximum effort in a short amount of time at interval periods. For example, work hard for 30 seconds and then rest for 20 seconds. This has become very popular, not just mums, as it can really increase your metabolism without requiring a lot of time and equipment. All you really need is a timer and plenty of water. Here’s an example:
*Do each exercise for 45 seconds each and take a 15-second rest in between. Repeat as many circuits as you can.
• Bum kicks
• Jump squats
• Mountain climbers
• Alternating lunges
• Press ups
• Plank hold
The great thing about these workouts is that they can be alternated throughout the week for variety purposes. For better results, it’s also a good idea to incorporate them into one routine. We recommend a combination of Pilates and low-impact HIIT. That way, you’re building strength particularly in your core as well as improving your stamina. The next day, a morning yoga session can be so rewarding especially since it can help relieve muscle soreness.
Ever heard that skipping burns more calories than running? Fitness instructor Corinne Naomi says that it is also good for improving overall fitness particularly in terms of power, strength, and endurance. Once you’ve purchased a trusty skipping rope, try out Naomi’s exercise:
• Basic bounce: Jump with the feet together.
• Skiers: Jump side-to-side, feet together.
• Walk-out press-ups: Bend at the hips, walk hands out to a high plank and do a press-up, then walk back to squat.
• Fighting burpee: Do a single burpee with a press-up and jump, then finish with four punches.
Start a one-minute set of the basic bounce for warm-up and try to make a combination that works for you. For instance, you can do each exercise for 30 seconds each and complete as many circuits as you can manage.
Aside from weight loss, physical activity is listed on Simple Parenting as an effective way of shaking off those blues! So if you find the time, a short and simple workout is always a good idea.
Good old fresh air
New mothers often get claustrophobic stuck indoors all day. The beauty about having a child is you get to share the great outdoors with them for the first time. This is also around the time when iCandy claim babies are keen to watch their parent’s face, “interact and learn from their facial expressions,” while being pushed around in a pushchair. So what better way to get some exercise than share the world with your baby while also stretching your legs and pushing a pram about? Believe it or not, it actually works as a full body workout.