Every new mother considers going back to exercise after childbirth. It is completely natural for a mom to gain weight during pregnancy, and it is also important for the new mom to include some form of exercise in her daily routine post-pregnancy as it can help her in several ways, one such way is losing the added pregnancy weight. After the baby is delivered, hormonal changes make the uterus contract and shrink back to its pre-pregnancy state. It takes time to do away with the sagging skin on the belly. But with effort and perseverance, getting back to the previous shape is not impossible.
Top 10 post-pregnancy exercises for flat tummy
Proper exercise and healthy food can help in reducing tummy fat after pregnancy. The emphasis should be to do the right exercises that focuses on the tummy. However, before you begin with these exercises, talk to your doctor to know when it is the right time to begin the routine, how much to do, and when to halt because your body is still sensitive for a few months post pregnancy.
In this Mommunity post, we share some simple exercises to achieve a flat tummy after pregnancy
When should you start?
Before get going, it is really important to remember that your body needs at least six to eight weeks to recover from the stress of labor and birth. Starting exercise too soon after delivery will delay the recovery process due to extra stress and make you feel tired. It is essential to consult your doctor and understand the various changes your body has gone through during pregnancy, along with the precautionary measures to get back in shape in a healthy manner.
Doctors usually suggest a waiting period of six weeks after vaginal delivery and eight weeks in the case of a c-section. However, women who have had a complication-free pregnancy and delivery can start with mild exercises, including walking, floor exercises and stretching, sooner. In the cases of complicated normal deliveries, cesarean, or postpartum hemorrhage, doctor’s advice is a must before starting exercise routines.
Post-pregnancy belly exercises
Here are some post-delivery exercises to reduce your belly fat. Following these regularly will help you achieve your goals in a consistent manner and leave you happy and healthy.
1. Brisk walking-
Walking is a simple workout and it is the best way to warm up your body and set it up for more intense exercise. You can start with a relaxed stroll at first, slowly moving towards brisk walking over a period of a few days. Try to walk for 15 minutes every day for at least 5 days a week and increase the walking time gradually. You can take your baby with you in a stroller!
2. Stretching and twisting exercises-
You can proceed towards stretching and twisting once your body is used to walking. It will begin the process of strengthening and toning your muscles. These exercises might make you feel energetic and active. Just stretch and twist your body while standing straight. Repeat on both the sides for about 10 to 15 minutes.
Place your elbows shoulder-width apart on the floor and maintain a push-up position. Stay in the same position as long as you can. Try increasing the plank-time gradually.
4. Floor sit-ups-
These could help you in reducing weight on the lower tummy. Lie down on your back and place your hands behind your neck. Slowly lifting your head upwards. Alternatively, you may place your hands crossed over one another on the sides of the tummy and do the sit-ups.
5. Leg raises-
This exercise will help in making the leg and stomach muscles stronger. Lie on your back and try to raise both the legs at the same time. Remain in this position for about three to four seconds. Gradually release the legs. You can try doing 20 sets twice a day.
6. Flutter kicks-
This exercise aims for the core muscles, specifically the abdominal muscles. Lie on the floor with your arms placed beneath your buttocks, followed by moving your legs up and down for about 30 seconds.
7. Bridging exercises-
This exercise is likely to tone your stomach, bottom, and thigh muscles. Lie on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Rest your arms at your sides with the palms facing downwards. Raise your bottom off the ground until your knees, hips, and shoulders form a straight line. Remain in this position for about five seconds. Steadily lower your bottom and get back into the original position. Repeat after relaxing your muscles for a while.
Crunches are usual exercises that helps to bring the abdominal muscles back together. They can be enhanced with the use of a towel. Wrap the towel around your torso so that its ends are in front of you. Then start doing the crunches while pulling the towel ends toward each other. Increase the number of crunches each day.
9. Pass the ball-
It is a variation of crunching exercise which includes twisting and stretching too. Sit on the floor and lift your legs while crossing them. Place your hands as if you are holding a ball and try to pass the imaginary ball from the left to the right foot and vice versa.
10. Lying down bicycle-
This exercise flattens your belly along with strengthening your thigh and leg muscles. First lie on your back with knees bent (at 45 degrees), followed by moving the legs as if you are cycling in the air. Keep up for about ten seconds and gradually increase the pace.
The speed at which you reduce the fat largely depends on how much weight you gained, your pre-pregnancy body size, genes, and level of activity.
Before you start any of these exercises, you should check with your doctor for suggestions and precautionary measures to be taken.
Published on: 28th June 2021