Struggling to lose baby weight? Try these 3 simple tips
Drastic diets and over-exercising are harmful, and slow down your metabolism in the long run
Every new mother is keen to look like her old self again, but patience is required. Unfortunately, the media constantly inundates us with images of celebrities who fit back into size 0 jeans just after giving birth! However, they may not have done it in a way that was good for their body. Drastic diets and over-exercising are harmful, and slow down your metabolism in the long run.
Here are some tips for a gradual approach to weight loss. It took the best part of nine months for your body to change during pregnancy; it should take at least that long to get back to your healthy weight.
Tip 1 – Stomach vacuum exercise
As the superficial abdominal wall muscles split during pregnancy, it takes several weeks for them to come back together. Performing abs crunches is not advisable during this time. The stomach vacuum exercise helps activate core muscles, which will help reduce pot-belly.
Assume a kneeling position with your hips over your knees and shoulders in line with your hands.
Posteriorly tilt your pelvis (tuck your hips under) .
Keep your mid-back extended and as straight as possible.
Inhale into your upper abdominals. As you exhale, gently draw your belly button toward your spine.
You will feel a burn in your lower abs.
Hold for 10 seconds and repeat six times.
Do not tighten your upper abs during the holds, or hold your breath.
Tip 2 – Stroll
If you are struggling to find time to exercise after having a baby, exercise with the baby. Walking is the safest form of exercise post-pregnancy, and the most natural form of movement for humans. It helps activate key muscles such as the abs, mid-back and glutes (butt). These muscles will help you burn more calories when used efficiently.
When walking, keep your hips back and your navel drawn in - this will activate your abs.
Breathing is key. As you inhale through your nose, breath into the mid-back.
You will feel a burn in the centre of your back.
As you cannot use your arms if they are placed on a stroller, keep your shoulder blades retracted (pinched back).
Try to take each step consciously keeping your navel in, and focus on breathing into the mid-back as you inhale through your nose slowly and deeply.
You can walk two to three times a week for 10-30 minutes.
Walking outside is a much more natural movement than on a treadmill, which pulls your body forward.
Tip 3 – Wall push-ups
Babies get heavy quickly, so while they are relatively light is a good time to build your upper-body strength. Wall push-ups are a safe and great way to strengthen and tone, plus you can do them anywhere.
Stand with your feet hip-width apart and away from the wall.
Place your hands on the wall about chest-width apart from shoulder level.
Draw your navel in and posteriorly tilt your pelvis (tuck your hips under).
Keep your back elongated and as straight as possible.
Slowly move your chest toward the wall, allowing your torso to follow, but keep your legs and feet static.
Keep your navel pulled in throughout, and do not curve your lower back.
Push yourself away from the wall to the starting position, keeping your body aligned.
Perform three sets of 10-15 repetitions each.
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