You may have thought life was busy before you became a parent, but now with your new gorgeous bub, the focus of your life has certainly changed and prioritising yourself can seem almost impossible. Before having a baby you would hear mums say they could barely find the time for a shower, with slight judgement you thought ‘as if’ but somehow, it has now become your own reality. So if I asked you to exercise each day, I suppose your response might be, “as if!”
Well I say “as if you can’t!” It really is easier than you think to do some exercise every day. I’m not suggesting you need to go to the gym, run 5km or even wait till your baby is asleep. I am proposing that you exercise with your baby! This will allow you to bond and play with your baby whilst gaining both physical and emotional health benefits at the same time.
Your baby provides you with a functional resistance. All fitness text books will tell you that ‘fitness is specific’, and as a mother you can’t get more specific than using your baby as your weight. After all, that’s the weight you must lift out of the cot, off the floor, into and out of the car as well as carry around every day!
To kick start your daily exercise, here is one upper body, middle body and lower body exercise you can do with your baby to help you get back into shape and be fit and strong for
Push up kisses
We all love kissing our baby and our baby loves being kissed, so while your baby is lying on the floor, lie over him/her and perform push ups kissing your baby each time you lower yourself. What better motivation than a kiss!
Double leg pushout
Bub gets a ride and your core gets a workout. Win Win!!
You’ve no doubt stood holding your baby, swaying from side to side trying to settle him/her, why not perform squats while holding your baby getting the same settling effect but giving yourself the added benefit.
In addition to resistance exercises, I recommend you put your bundle in the pram or a baby carrier and get out into fresh air for a walk, even if it’s just while you’re running errands.
Listen to your body
The first six weeks after giving birth are a time of healing, re-balancing and recovery. Lean on the side of caution. I advise you consult a physician before beginning any exercise program including these exercises listed above, to make sure your body is ready and safe for exercise. It is also beneficial to make an appointment with a womens’ health physiotherapist and have a real time ultrasound to check your pelvic floor and transversus abdominis functionality, as well to have your diastasis recti (abdominal separation) checked, as this may prevent you from safely performing certain exercises.
Lisa Entwisle, mother of two has devised a unique and innovative new product called babyweights. babyweights is a deck of 48 low impact resistance exercises you can do with your baby – a convenient, cost-effective, playful and creative way to get back into shape without time away from your baby. Cater for all fitness levels and is the perfect way for mothers to look after themselves and their baby.
For further information on babyweights visit www.babyweights.com.au
For more ways to fit exercise into your busy world check out babyweights latest blog: ‘Mums’s multi-task their way to fitness’