As a new mom, I am sure you feel that you have much less time to exercise and take care of yourself. However it’s NOT impossible. Working out doesn’t always have to mean going to the gym for an hour. Simply playing with your baby you can squeeze in an effective, FAST, and fun workout. When you see the smile on your baby’s face you will be even more motivated to use simple moves and work your whole body. You don’t need to plan a 30 minute workout, you can break the exercises up into just a few minutes, several times a day. Your baby will love it! He will be the center of your attention during these mini workouts, he will move and see you move and you will really feel the bond of playing more than working out.
With your doctor’s approval, you can start doing these exercises as early as six or eight weeks after you’ve given birth. I personally started after 3 months. My son was strong enough to hold his head and was starting to be very interactive. I’m not going to lie… I had never felt so weak and it was hard to believe I could ever regain my strength. I was also struggling with body image issues. But after a few weeks I felt much better. Exercising boosted my energy level and confidence, improved my mood, relieved stress and (of course!) tightened my new Mommy body. Here are some mommy & me workout tips to help get you started.
Exercising with a baby:
- Make sure your little one isn’t hungry, sleepy or uncomfortable in any way. Also, when performing exercises in which your baby must hold his own head up, be sure he can do so without discomfort.
- Place baby comfortably on his back and do some planks or push-ups over him. Talk to him, tell him some stories, count how many seconds you want to hold or how many reps you do out loud. At around 4 months old, my son was trying to catch my hair and was smiling all the time. Believe me, it’s a big source of motivation to push yourself!
- Your Baby is grumpy? Take to stroller and go for a walk. In a park you can do a few squats or lunges. You can use the stroller to help you and keep your balance. There is a good chance that your baby will fall asleep enjoying the fresh air. You can also use your favorite baby carrier.
- Hold baby and lift him gently over you. After a few arm extensions your shoulders will definitely be talking to you. Interact with him, he’ll love hearing little hoots and sounds as you exercise “Yeahhh”, “Whoooo”! Your baby and your arms will love this workout! This exercise/game is very beneficial because as baby gets heavier, you get stronger! To get a complete workout you can also combine this move with some slow wide squats or calve raises.
Once you find a way to include your workouts in your daily routine, you will crave them! If you need inspiration, you can find many quick and efficient routine examples on my Instagram @ourfitfamilylife. Know your limits and tune-in to your body. You know your body better than anyone. These are guidelines and you must make the final decision. Have fun!