Hey everyone, so last week was the first time I felt like I could start doing some proper exercise since Jasper was born. I decided to get all of my old gym gear out that I used to wear before I was pregnant and it made me feel really good putting it back on. I am back at my pre pregnancy weight (because Jasper doesn’t stop breastfeeding!) so the main reason I want to get back in to exercise is so I can start to feel strong again. I also think it will do wonders for my mind as well because I used to feel so good when I went to the gym. So far I have just managed a few home workouts using Youtube tutorials but I guess you have to start somewhere!
Since Jasper has been born the only exercise I have been doing is walks with him in the pram and some physiotherapy exercises. I have included a picture below of the first walk I was able to take Jasper on when he was a month old. He was born by caesarean section and I had lost quite a bit of blood during the surgery and the wound got infected so it took quite a while for me to build up the strength to even go outside. I thought it was interesting to see how far I had come since this picture because I still look pregnant in it and I am very hunched over from having a sore tummy after the surgery. I am also so pale which I think is funny given how the picture was taken in the middle of the UK’s hottest ever summer!
For this first walk I literally walked less than 100 metres down the road and back but it took me so long and I was exhausted by the time I got home because I had been sedentary for so long. So for the next few weeks after this I just tried to slowly build up how long I could walk for and how often I could go for walks. Since then I now try to go for walks on most days, even if its just 15 minutes round the block, because I feel so much better when we spend some time outside.
When Jasper was 4 months old, I went for my first women’s health physiotherapy appointment. I got referred to this because I had hip pain during pregnancy that was still there after Jasper was born. During my first physiotherapy appointment I found out that I also had diastasis recti (which is also known as abdominal separation) that needed repairing. So after this appointment I was given exercises to strengthen my pelvic floor muscles and my transverse abdominis (which are the deep core muscles) and told to do these exercises three times a day. I then had a physiotherapy appointment each month until being discharged in February this year, so I had 5 appointments in total. At each appointment I was given more exercises to do to help build up my core strength and repair the muscles.
Also because I had a caesarean, the physiotherapist did some mobility work on my scar to help mobilise the scar tissue. I found this to be really helpful because it would sometimes cause me pain when I woke up in the morning (I guess because the tissue was stiff) but since the scar mobility it hasn’t hurt.
I would highly recommend having physiotherapy after birth if you have the opportunity because I think it really helps to build your strength back up in a safe way. It has really helped to strengthen my hips which has reduced the pain I was getting in them.
I still try to regularly do the physiotherapy exercises since being discharged to maintain the strength I have gained and to stop my hips from getting sore again. But I now feel like I am ready to do some higher intensity exercise, I’m just not sure what yet so any tips on helping this mum get back in to exercise would be fab!
I would love to know how you felt about exercise after having a baby and how you got back in to it.
Thanks for reading, Jen x