Fit Tip: Five Ways to Blast Baby Weight
With the news of the royal baby, we’re reminded of all the amazing ways having a child changes your life, whether you’re the Duchess of Cambridge or the queen of your own castle. One thing that can be less than amazing? Getting your pre-pregnancy body back. Once you feel ready and your doctor gives you the green light, here are five great exercises that can help you get your workout routine back on track.
1. Start From the Ground Up. Literally, all the way to the pelvic floor. It contains the muscles that support your uterus, kidneys, bowels and bladder. Kegels are the best way to work this area of the body.
- If you’ve never “Kegeled”, you can find the correct muscles by stopping and starting the flow of urine. Hold each contraction for one or two seconds before releasing. As the muscles develop, you’ll be able to hold the contractions longer. At first, try five sets. If it gets too uncomfortable, don’t push yourself.
2. Get Your Cardio Going. Even if you’re doing all the right strength training, sculpting and toning exercises, boosting your cardio is necessary to burn off the calories to put those muscles on display.
3. Try Pilates. This could be your answer to reclaiming your pre-baby abs. Pilates focuses mainly on small movements that strengthen the abdominals, pelvic floor muscles and back, with an emphasis on contracting the transverse abdominis, which is the deepest layer of abdominal wall.
4. Planks and side planks. These are a great way to work your entire core because they activate both your abs and back muscles. To get into plank position, lay with both forearms on the floor, keep your back straight, legs extended, and abs engaged. Work up to holding this position for a minute, and make sure to keep your abs tight and your back flat.
5. Strength training. Work all of your muscles, but focus on your lower body. Dead leg lifts are a great exercise for new moms, because they help prepare you for picking up and putting down your new baby.
- To perform them, stand with your feet hip-width apart, knees slightly bent, with hand weights facing your body. Slowly lower yourself until your weights reach the height of your ankles. You should feel the movement in the back of your legs. Try several sets to help work your hamstrings and your butt.