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Mar 04

Calling all new mums! Tips for a healthy body and mind

So you’ve given birth and the hard part is out of the way. Now all you have to concentrate on is looking after your beautiful new baby – but are you forgetting to look after yourself? new mums exercising

It’s inevitable that as a new mum you’ll become so immersed in your new role that you’ll put everything else before your own wellbeing. While it’s essential that your baby receives the proper care that they deserve, you need to remember to take care of yourself too. Having a baby can be difficult, after 9 months of adapting to a new way of life your world is suddenly turned upside down due to the arrival of your little one. While of course they are a blessing, they don’t come without their own challenges.

Many new mums find themselves becoming isolated from the rest of the world during the first few years of their child’s life. Your life transforms into a routine of midnight feedings, nap times and nurseries, and you have little time to stop and think about getting some well deserved “you time”. Due to this, many mums struggle to keep up with their fitness and lose their baby weight.

This doesn’t have to be the case, and we’ve compiled some exercises that will encourage you to get out there and enjoy spending time with your baby as well as keeping yourself active. As you no doubt will, remember that when performing any of these exercises your baby’s safety is paramount.

Stay social

Balancing an active social life with bringing up a new baby can be challenging, but there’s no reason why you should avoid seeing your friends altogether. Instead, rethink the way that you spend time with your friends.

Meet them for a catch up in the park and push the baby around in its pushchair for an hour, as opposed to sitting in a coffee shop or inviting friends to your home. The added resistance of pushing the stroller around, especially on a more difficult terrain such as grass, will make this a great cardio workout. Getting out in the fresh air will be beneficial for you and your baby, both mentally and physically, as it not only encourages you to be more active, but it can also boost the levels of serotonin in your brain, which promotes feelings of happiness.

If you get the chance, leave your baby with a sitter and see if you can take a quick trip to the gym on your own. Participating in a low-intensity activity, such as swimming, can help to reduce stress and improve your fitness. Many gyms offer swim and sauna facilities, so you can feel pampered upon your return.

Use your baby as a weight

As a new mum, you’ll be familiar with how heavy a healthy growing baby actually is. You might as well use this extra weight to your advantage when you’re looking after your baby.

Baby squats: Try strapping your baby to your chest using a baby carrier so that they are comfortable and secure, stand with your legs shoulder width apart and slowly bend down into the squat position and return to standing position. Repeat this for 10 reps, have a break and repeat the sets three times.

Pushchair power: Place your baby in their pushchair. Stand about four feet back facing them and put your hands on your hips. Then bend forward on one leg and hold for a few seconds. Complete 10 reps, switch legs and repeat four times. You’ll be getting a vital workout and your child will think you’re playing an elaborate game of ‘Peekaboo’. Everyone’s a winner!

Learn and tone: Lie on your back, face to the ceiling with your baby by your side. Secure an arm around your baby to keep them safe and slowly extend your legs up towards the ceiling. Make circles of the alphabet using your toes and say each letter out loud to your baby as you complete each one. A great way to build up your leg muscles.

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