Well, with that in mind, I’m going to drop you straight in with top tips for making working out simple, easy, fun and time-efficient.
My question to you is: Are you ready?
Everybody loves a circuit-style workout, don’t they? It’s quick, easy, gets the job done and with a few tweaks, you’ll get effective results once a day, in just 9 minutes. All you need is a timer. Set it for 45 seconds work, and 15 seconds rest. Then, choose 3 exercises eg squats, press ups against the wall and a core-based exercise on your hands and knees and repeat them 3 times through. Simples.
- Pick a number, any number
Another way of training is to set yourself a target of say 20 reps and select 3 or 4 exercises and do 20 reps of each chosen movement and perform this through 3 times. Again, an effective way of targeting lots of different muscle groups and burning off those coffees and cakes you’ve been consuming.
- Take it to the stairs
Want a tone your bum? Walk up and down the stairs with purpose. (Unfortunately, those steps you take up and down the stairs in between feeds, nappy changes and ‘Now, what did I come up here for?’ moments don’t count!) Do a stair workout with conviction. As you step up, drive your bodyweight into the heel of your foot for a great booty toning workout. Walking up and down the stairs isn’t just a toning workout, it’s a cardio one too, and if you use your core/pelvic floor as you go, that’s all bases covered.
How often do you get up from feeding your baby for what seems like an eternity, only to discuss when you move, you’ve completely seized up? Just making tiny adjustments to the way you’re seated and/or making a conscious effort to stand with your shoulders down and your neck lifted is a workout in itself for better postnatal recovery.
- Work out when no one’s watching
No one need know if you’re sitting on the bus, or in a cafe feeding your baby and doing a bit of focussed work on your pelvic floor. A strong pelvic floor is vital for wellbeing after birth, and to help your body keep up with the demands of being a new mum. All that lifting and carrying you do puts a lot of pressure on your pelvic floor muscles.
- Take it outside
When I worked early mornings and late nights in gyms years ago, I’d see plenty of new mums out and about at strange hours of the day, looking frazzled, just trying to get their babies to sleep out in the fresh air. Find some hills, or set up points throughout your regular stroll where you pick up the pace from one bus stop, then slow it down from the next one. Every little helps, remember!
If you don’t do something NOW to get back into shape after birth, it may be even longer before you’re your old self again. Even when you’re at your worst, I’m certain with a bit of willpower and a change in mindset, you can find 10 minutes in your day to exercise with these tips.