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Walk Your Way to Fitness After Baby

Regain your Pre-Pregnancy Shape
-- By Sara Hambidge, Physical Therapist

Life after the birth of a child can be extremely busy… and sleep depriving! Finding time to exercise seems impossible, but getting your body back into shape is important for you and your child. Exercise will give you more energy, and when you exercise with your new baby, it gives you more time to bond. One of the easiest ways to resume your fitness program postpartum is by walking. Walking can be done on a treadmill, outside (on a sidewalk or track)—even in the mall.

Many new moms believe that you should wait 6 weeks after delivery before you begin exercising again. But this is not true in all cases. If you had a non-traumatic vaginal delivery, then your doctor will probably give you the OK to perform many forms of low level exercise, such as Kegels, stretching, pelvic tilts, leg lifts, and walking. If you had a Cesarean or a traumatic vaginal delivery, then you may have to wait 3-6 weeks before beginning a walking program.

Be sure to ask your doctor before beginning any of these exercises.

Before you begin a walking program, be sure you are warmed up, well-hydrated, wearing supportive shoes, and using good posture. This will allow your body the most optimal environment to exercise and tone.

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Member Comments About this Article
"seeing comments about being disappointed in yourself because you didn't bounce right back into shape! Don't be! It always seems like everyone else is super skinny instantly and thats so not fair that some are that lucky and some of us struggle and then are made to feel bad by media, social preasures, and even friends and family. Be the healthiest you can for you and your baby!" -- RPARRATT
"I started walking around a week or two after having my baby. Now Im back a work and my other children are back in school. Now Im having a hard time finding some time to get out and walk. Any Ideas.....I have two children in school sports and a 4 month old baby." -- NCLAUDIAO
"I am due in November so outside walking is going to be out our of the question. However, I am considering going back to the gym as soon as my body and doctor allow. They have a great track where I can strap my baby into a carrier and walk with him. I am pretty excited about this as I am planning on running a 5K in March so have to train. LOL. Praying for an easy delivery and recovery like my two girls were!" -- STACEYSKI
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About The Author
Sara Hambidge
Sara, a graduate of Saint Louis University's Physical Therapy Program, practices at a sports medicine clinic in Cincinnati. A certified prenatal and postpartum exercise instructor, Sara is also a proud mother of one.
Sara Hambidge


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