New mums are faced with a dilemma; looking after a baby is a full time, 24 hour a day job, but getting into their pre pregnancy clothes will require them to do at least half an hour exercise five days a week. Here are a few tips that can help.
If you like to get out of the house for your workouts and prefer walking and hiking to hitting the gym, then there are plenty of products that can help. A front or back pack gives you a safe way to carry your child wherever you go and leaves your hands free too. Choose a front pack while your baby is very small, as it’s safer for your child, and will make it easier to soothe him or her, and invest in a backpack for later on.
A jogging buggy is great for mums who like to run, although they’re not recommended for use with children under six months. They have large, rugged tires that make them easy to push anywhere, including the beach, so they’re perfect for runs with your child.
Finally, if your version of outdoor exercise is more about walking than running, you need to invest in a good pair of walking shoes. They can help protect your back, neck and knees from impact and other injuries and make walking a lot more enjoyable.
If you like cardio workouts, but can’t find the time to go to the gym (or if you’d rather exercise in the privacy of your own home) then there are products out there that can help you too.
Home exercise machines, whether it’s a stationary bike, treadmill or stepper, are all great choices and you can use them while your baby is napping or while you’re watching television.
DVD’s and videos are another great at home training tool and whether it’s kick boxing or yoga, there’s something for everyone out there. Unless you’re very fit, choose something that’s aimed for beginners – otherwise you might over do it.
Toning abs is a big worry for many new mums, but there are products that can help here too. Ab rollers are a great choice or you could get a mat for the floor and start using it for crunches. A book or DVD on pilates should also help, as this form of exercise focuses on the core or abdominal muscles.
Your arms and legs might not have taken as much of a beating as your abs, but they can still benefit from a workout. Using free weights is a great idea, or you could invest in a set of resistance bands or an exercise ball.
Finally, there’s your back. It’s no surprise that it feels sore – you’ve been carrying a lot of weight for the last few months! Get yourself an exercise mat and do your exercises on the floor for a while. Less stress on your back should give your abs time to catch up and keep you standing straight and tall while protecting your back from pain.