As a qualified trainer in post- and prenatal fitness I get lots of emails asking how can I get back in shape after a baby, and what is the best way to get my abs back in shape. Well, it is more than just a couple of answers, it is lots of advice, which is why I created this blog to answer the most frequently asked questions.
So here we go:
1. Make It A Must: And that is to move (when you move, you generate your body’s energy supply, and boost your feel good hormones which can help reduce those baby blues) – even if it is one of my 4-minute (yes, literally just 4-minute) HIIT workouts, or a brisk 10-minute power pram walk – you will feel great for doing it.
2. Me Time: So you are on full-time duty for 24 hours, 7 days a week – but it is important to try and find some time for you. Even if it is just an over-the-top big bubble bath or reading a book before bed. Just try to do something that will help keep you feeling good, because when you feel good, everyone else feels good.
3. Stock Up: And buy the good stuff. Only fill your cupboards with good healthy foods, and avoid buying any processed foods, because this way if they aren’t in the house, then they aren’t going be within reach when temptation strikes.
4. Alter your mindset: We often look at healthy eating as being a challenge, but instead reset your mind and accept that delicious healthy natural food not only tastes good, but it is great for your body, and if you are breast-feeding then it is also great for your beautiful new bundle of joy.
5. Ditch the sit-ups. Often the area that mums want to quickly get back in shape is the abs, but you need to do this by focusing on the deepest ab muscles known as your transversves abdominus, so forget those sit-ups. In my 4-week postnatal plan I work on a 6 minute ab separation repair video.
6: Be kind to your body, and appreciate all its magic: Give it some respect and just work with it every day, and keep appreciating all that it has given you.
7: See through the filters: Okay, it can seem so frustrating when we see a celebrity mum step back out in the limelight looking like she did before pregnancy, back in her skinny jeans literally days or weeks after giving birth. But who knows the help she has had – stylist, full time trainer, live-in dietician, and nanny. They have to make them look their best. So just remember what we see is not always what’s real, and your body has been through 9 months of changes, so we can’t except it to zap back in 9 days. Give it time, and remember that patience is a virtue.
8: Become a smoothie queen: Homemade smoothies are a great way of getting an abundance of nutrients, so study up on the best fruits and vegetables as these are a great way to get your 5 a day. But a top tip is never have more than 3 pieces of fruit in one smoothie, as any more will make for a high dose of natural sugars. Here’s a good combination to try my Green Goddess Smoothie:-
9: Don’t avoid carbs: Because if you are breast-feeding these will give you that extra energy. The important thing is just make sure it is slow-burning carbs, which are the likes of:-
Sweet potatoes -Brown Rice – Chickpeas – Lentils – Beans – Wholegrain Pasta – Barley
10: And the best tip of all is: Celebrate every second and love who you are. Remember you are awesome, and just focus and enjoy being a mum.