Postpartum

How Should You Approach Your Postpartum Fitness?

By Darisse Kennedy on Nov 24, 2020 10:30:00 AM
3 Minutes Reading Time

 

Pregnancy, childbirth, and having a newborn all demand a lot from your body. If you were committed to your fitness before and during pregnancy it will help you get back to your pre-pregnancy fitness level much more quickly. If you were unable to maintain a dedicated fitness routine during pregnancy it is still possible get back to a place where you are happy with your fitness level. Approaching your postpartum fitness will likely look a little different than you typically approach a new training program. You should approach your postpartum fitness with care, with a focus on resistance training, and in conjunction with a quality eating plan in order to get safe and lasting results.

With care

Healing after childbirth takes time. If you experienced a high-risk pregnancy or complications during childbirth it may take you longer than the average to heal. Each person is different which means you need to approach your postpartum fitness with care (and your doctor’s guidance). Easing into an exercise program will help you avoid injury and gauge how much you can handle. For example, your postpartum body could still have hormones in it that impact your stability. Approaching your postpartum fitness with care will help you make sure you have the stability needed to perform various exercises. Getting an injury will extend the amount of time it takes you to reach your postpartum fitness goals. Approach exercise with care until you feel confident that you are healed enough to fully engage in each exercise.   

With a focus on resistance training

It may be tempting to focus your postpartum training on cardio because of the high calorie burn that aerobic exercise offers. Avoid that temptation! The reality is that you will get better and longer-lasting results if you focus your postpartum fitness efforts on resistance training. Resistance training will help you build muscle and increase your metabolism. Over time, your body will naturally burn more calories and make it easier to keep off the weight you lost.

In conjunction with a quality eating plan

Working out is important but it must be done in conjunction with a quality eating plan if you want to see results. Approach your postpartum fitness with a focus on both nutrition and exercise. A high-quality eating plan is also extra important if you are breast feeding and plan to continue doing so. A few simple rules can help you get started on a quality eating plan: cut out as many processed foods as possible, get the recommended amount of water, and add in nutrient-rich foods to your diet. These basic steps are important for anyone looking to improve their fitness. You can dig deeper into finding a quality eating plan by exploring the Intuitive Nutrition Guide available from MAPS Fitness.

You should approach your postpartum fitness with a long-term perspective. The steps you take to get back in shape after having a baby are about feeling and looking your best – not quick fixes. Take the time you need to heal and, when you’re ready, approach your postpartum fitness with care. Once you are able to fully commit to a workout and eating plan be sure and include resistance training for the best results. Ultimately, you will reach your postpartum fitness goals more quickly when you follow the steps that lead to lasting change.

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Darisse Kennedy

Darisse is a writer and educator who received her formal education in psychology and mental health counseling. Growing up, she was more of a bookworm than a gym rat, but she discovered strength training in adulthood. She learned the true value of strength training as she fought to lose the extra forty pounds that remained after having three kids. In the process, she discovered the significant impact that working out regularly had on her mood, mindset, and energy levels. Experiencing the benefits of exercise firsthand sparked her interest in the connection between movement and mental well-being – particularly in relation to women.

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