How to strengthen abs after pregnancy is a common concern of a new mother. During pregnancy, stomach muscles are stretched and stretch more so after childbirth. It helps to understand areas of your stomach that bring the most concern including muscles located toward the lower belly. Understanding types of exercises best for your abs ensure you get the look you want while feeling your best after pregnancy. Here are essential steps to consider as you work toward strengthening your abs.
Determine a good time to start exercising
When is a good time to begin your exercise routine? You’ll want to consider how often you can exercise and the amount of time regularly to devote to your routine. Aspects of your health may determine when to start exercising. If you are breastfeeding or delivered via C-section, your doctor may have additional input on when it is safe to exercise. When in doubt ask your doctor.
You’ll know when your body is ready for the task based on your energy level and physical well-being. Many moms will wait a few weeks before they start, but it also depends on the type of exercises you’ll engage in. You can consider starting a few days a week for half an hour in 15-minute intervals. There are different ways to use your time and adjustments may be necessary to ensure your safety and results.
Learn about recommended exercises
As you set out to start strengthening your abs with recommended techniques, it helps to see stomach exercises executed to understand if they are right for you. There are a variety of methods including the pelvic tilt, belly breathing, crunches and leg lifts that are designed to pinpoint specific areas of the stomach. Many exercise options don’t require accessories, but an exercise ball may be useful for particular options. Understanding exercise options help with establishing a plan to meet your goals. You may find some exercises are uncomfortable or challenging to get used to. Talk to your doctor or exercise expert on tips on how to adjust and tips on which options are best for your body. If your abdominal area is still sore or achy, maybe waiting a few days or a week before trying again may help.
Start with simple options
Work your way up to doing exercises that require more stamina and energy. When starting after having a baby, you may get tired or sore soon after a few reps. Learn techniques to help warm up your body before exercising. When making time to exercise break it up into smaller sessions. You can do this by focusing on one or two types of exercise techniques and add a method as you continue your routine in the future. Your routine may include between four and six types of techniques. Each technique is completed a specific number of times for a particular time. As you gain momentum, strength, and energy you may consider changing up your routine to maximize your results.
Consider an exercise buddy for accountability
Some moms like to exercise with their baby nearby. Others may join a group or pair up with another new mommy. Exercising with others makes things interesting and keeps you on track. You’re more likely to stay focused on the task, and another person can relate to your struggles. You can take turns leading the exercise session. Maybe meet at each other’s home or meet outside at the park. When you feel down or frustrated they can provide moral support. When you feel good about your progress, encouragement from a buddy adds momentum.
Set goals and know your boundaries
Health experts recommend that women engage in at least 150 minutes of aerobic exercise each week. Starting an exercise routine after pregnancy that includes targeting abs may consist of moderate activity that increases in intensity over time. Start with doing exercises that are comfortable and easy to complete. Complete ab exercises in repetitions of 10, 12, or 15. Set goals on how often to exercise and know your limits. To meet your goals know actions to take such as precautions to stay safe and motivated. Learn warm-up and cool-down methods for before and after workouts. Keep your pace slow and gradually increase it. Stay hydrated with fluids. Breastfeeding moms can wear nursing pads and supportive bras in case of leakage. If you feel discomfort or pain, stop exercising.
Identify possible barriers that may hinder your efforts
As a new mom, you may experience stressful and busy moments. It may seem challenging to make time for yourself or to complete tasks you want to do. Some days will be more challenging than others for good reasons. You may experience emotional hormone changes that affect your mood and energy. You may have days you don’t want to exercise or do a complete workout due to lack of energy. Have other forms of support lined up to maintain your focus or when you need a break. Know which family members and friends to connect with for emotional support.
Recognize benefits to maintain motivation
While strengthening your abs may be the focal point of your exercise sessions, keep in mind there are benefits related to your actions to think about to keep you motivated. As you learn which techniques produce desirable results, they help with losing weight and burning calories. Your cardiovascular fitness levels improve and your stomach muscles with tone up and strengthen in time. Regular exercise naturally boosts energy levels. Maintaining daily physical activity relieves stress, minimizes postpartum depression, and promotes healthy sleep. You’re also setting a positive example for your little one.
Strengthening your abs after pregnancy is possible with a solid workout plan. Exercising has its challenges, but it can encourage you to be a better person for you and your baby. Set realist goals and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Get suggestions from your doctor about how to engage in regular exercise and address any concerns about your health or well being.