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When is safe to start exercising?

(16 Posts)
CrazyAlien06 Mon 03-Oct-11 23:57:07

hi, not sure this is in the correct thread but anyway,

Just wondered when it is considered safe to start exercising? I gave birth 6 days ago and want to plan to get back in shape. I have already lost my bump and am only left with a podge that I need to get rid of.

I am walking daily with LO and it's so enjoyablesmile
I'm wanting advice on when i can do abdominal exercises /go to exercise classes?
If anyone has any links for me to check out that would be fab

Grumpla Mon 03-Oct-11 23:59:38

Six days?!?

I plan on waiting a few more years just to be on the safe side...

<eats another slice of hot buttered toast before bed>

CrazyAlien06 Tue 04-Oct-11 00:17:14

Yup six days! Always been in shape and exercising makes me feel loads better. Seem to live in an area with naff all on in terms of things like buggy fit so need to find my own stuff to do ...fun fun

broomformychin Tue 04-Oct-11 00:30:51

Seriously? 6 days?! Slow down. I could barely walk for the first two weeks. I think generally 6 weeks is the standard advice but it depends how you feel. My local hospital ran a post natal exercise class, ask your health visitor if there's any near you. Also if you type post natal exercise into you tube it'll bring up some good videos to follow. but it's important to take things slowly and allow time to recover from the birth.

CrazyAlien06 Tue 04-Oct-11 01:02:28

Yes 6 days, i had a dream labour (3.5 hrs) and am feeling 100% already. I was active all the way through my pregnancy and so want to continue.
I'll ask the mw next time baby gets seen then.

BeeMyBaby Tue 04-Oct-11 05:46:11

I started dog walking 3 days after giving birth to DD, but I think that is very different from exercise class - I agree with others and think the advice is 6 weeks.

TheSkiingGardener Tue 04-Oct-11 06:25:51

You need to be careful working the abdominal area because it needs to sort itself out first.

Pushy Mothers may not have a class where you are but I think their website explains the issues. Something to do with allowing the abdominal muscles to repair/get back to where they were.

fraktious Tue 04-Oct-11 06:33:16

I was doing yoga and tai chi at 3 weeks, proper abs work I left until 6 weeks.

Walking, pulling your tummy in so your belly button goes to your spine when lying down and when standing and doing the plank are all fine before then.

JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 04-Oct-11 07:01:13

At 6 days I think walking with LO and doing your pelvic floor exercises are enough. Wait until you've had your 6 week check up and enjoy these first few weeks with your new baby.

Jules125 Tue 04-Oct-11 08:24:45

Hi, I got back into exercise fast (running 5 weeks after caesarean). Most of the advice about this is very conservative and your midwife will be too. I would say see how you feel, take it very easy at first, and hold off on the abs exercises for longer (I didn't do any till post 12 weeks or so).

pootlebug Tue 04-Oct-11 08:56:41

Be careful with abs work - as a previous poster said, it all needs to knit back together before you start working it hard. That said, you can concentrate on a strong core, pulling your tummy in towards your spine, whilst pushing the buggy etc.

Most post-natal classes recommend waiting until after your 6 week check. That said, there is also an element of knowing your own body. I would try and see if you can find anything that is specifically for post-natal fitness if you go early....at least the person running the class should specialise in that area, so that they can ensure you don't do any damage.

Highlander Wed 05-Oct-11 11:43:31

I was out doing brisk walking about 5 days after both my elec CSs. I included hills.

At 4 weeks I was out running with the buggy, but only doing a couple of miles.

In terms of relaxed ligaments, running on level ground was fine. However, while I was still BFing, skiing was a nightmare!

If this is your first baby, there is definitely an element of trying to prove to the world how quickly you can get back to normal. do eat nutritious food and do be honest with yourself about how tired you are.

I found fitness in the first couple of months was easy to maintain as babies sleep a lot in this period. Once they got to 4 months and neeed more attention, but still wake frequently during the night, I found I was quite tired and less inclined to get out running.

QTPie Wed 05-Oct-11 18:08:44

Agree with what everyone else has said...

Most women's uteruses don't fully shrink back for quite a few weeks - so you will continue to see improvement in your abdominal area. Also is your current "podge" really podge or is it loose skin? Regardless of muscle tone (and depending on age, genetics etc), your skin may well take some months to contract back again (and some women find that it is never quite the same....).

The MOST important thing after pregnancy/birth is nutrition: your body (muscles, bones, everything) have taken a COMPLETE HAMMERING over the past 10 months - even if your pregnancy nutrition was good, your body was most likely pilaged by the little parasite ;). You need to eat well to protect yourself and build yourself back up again (vitamins, minerals, bone density, hair condition, teeth density etc).

You may also find that you are currently on a "hormonal high" (feel that you can take on the world) and this may or may not last. Exercising is a great way to help with emotional ups and downs, but remember to be kind to yourself and enjoy rest etc smile

Are your breastfeeding? If so, then that works as a miracle "fat sucker" for many women (including me - it literally sucked all of the fat out of me!).

Brisk walking with the pram is great exercise. Swimming is also wonderful, but you should wait until your lochia has finished. As others have said, watch with the ligaments after birth (esp if breastfeeding), but most non-extreme exercise should be ok. Take it easy, don't overdo it and build up slowly. I did wait until my 6 week check before going back to the gym/swimming (just did LOTS of walking before that), but picked things up pretty much straight away again.

As others have said, very important to looks after your abs - no crunches/sit-ups. Work on your pelvic floor (and holding your belly button into your spin) and either join a proper post-natal yoga/pilates/exercise class (most should let you take your baby with you - which helps!) and/or make an appointment to see an osteopath who specialises in treating post-natal women: get him/her to check your abdominal seperation and give you some exercises to help close the seperation.

Enjoy your baby, be kind to yourself, eat well and get back into exercise gently and sensibly smile

Chynah Wed 05-Oct-11 20:08:26

I was also back running 5 weeks after both mine (both ELCS) - agree midwives do tend to err on the side of caution. If you feel fine, exercised before and know your body I would start when you feel ready (gently) and build from there.

Beesok Wed 05-Oct-11 23:06:01

I was told by a PT who specialises in training pregnant/post-natal women to wait at least 4 weeks after a non-complicated birth, even though I was quite fit before I conceived and remained quite active throughout the pregnancy.

There is no point in pushing yourself too hard smile oh and congrats on the baby! smile

MurielPuce Mon 10-Oct-11 15:02:08

Just thought I'd throw my story in: after totally easy, non complicated natural birth for DC1 I felt great & all lochia had subsided after a couple of days, so 3 weeks after I thought I'd try a basic ballet class just to start stretching and toning a little bit (just some tendus and pliés, nothing fancy), and it reactivated the bleeding which hung around for a further 2 months! I'm going to wait a cautious 6 weeks before trying anything after DC2.

Also, this is kind of random, but I was not able to wear high-heeled shoes for 4 months after birth of DC1, because my ligaments were so wobbly.

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