Post Pregnancy Fitness Tips – To say having kids altered my exercise routines over the years would be a tremendous understatement.
Post pregnancy fitness means that your going to need a support system if you want to continue your fitness goals. This can be cumbersome. Adapting to your loved ones and incorporating them into your post pregnancy fitness regime is a lot easier.
My husband and I met in a gym and incorporated fitness into our lives well before we met. After marriage, we built a gym in our basement that features a lot of non kid-friendly free weights and barbells. We also enjoyed playing a lot of tennis together.
Plopping an infant or toddler down at a tennis court and expecting to play a few sets of tennis isn’t an option either. Having kids doesn’t mean you have to end your exercise routines, it just means you have to tweak them. Fitness options are still available right after having children, you just have to adapt a bit. Incorporating children of any age in your exercises is great for everyone involved!
In addition to trying to squeeze in some gym time with my husband during my baby’s sleep schedule, having a rugged stroller for walks was a great way to get moving. Brisk stroller walks were a welcome way to get fresh air and both my son and daughter loved them. I would also like to strap my kids into the body carrier or slings for walks or shopping trips if the weather was poor. I also used to try to use the sling to do squats. My kids loved the up and down motions and used to laugh like crazy.
As my babies became toddlers, I discovered that the Wii Fit was a fantastic option to catch up on yoga and even strength exercise. Exercising with a bright, colorful video game captures the attentions of children. Not only do they want to participate, they happily watched the on-screen action of Mom’s progress with yoga or the fun agility exercises and games. Letting them safely participate and take turns was a great way for them to exercise while I caught a needed breather. I was surprised at how involved they became and it allowed me to fit in some decent workouts.
Another post pregnancy fitness option for you is to get your kids to become involved is Baby Yoga. The Playful Planet Yoga DVDs get kids moving. The best part for me was that I could actually do the kids-oriented yoga routine with them.
Adapting to a post pregnancy exercise routines requires some teamwork. I could still make it to our downstairs gym or treadmill, it just required my husband and I taking turns watching the kids. It’s not easy but it’s manageable if you have great support. Before a recent car accident sidelined all my exercise routines, my husband and I used to go to Bloomer Park to do our infamous “stair workout.” He would run the stairs while I watched the kids on the playscapes and we’d trade off.
Some local gyms and fitness centers offer some great childcare options with memberships. I was fortunate enough to belong to YMCA North Oakland and their childcare facility is fantastic. I’ll put it this way… I’d work out with my husband for an hour or so at the Y and my kids never seemed to want to leave when we were finished. Burn Fitness in Rochester also offers some great child care options while you get your exercise routine back.
Now that my kids are well-past toddler age, they’re into their own exercise through various local sports leagues. My husband’s routine is no longer playing tennis with me. His racket has been dusted off and he plays with our son. If he’s not getting his workout in the basement, he’s taking my daughter to the park to work on her soccer or playing catch with my son to get him ready for Little League. The kids are now of age to join my husband in the gym. Because they’ve been associated with fitness since a very early age, they welcome the exercise and fitness.
I thought my fitness days were diminished when I put my tennis racket on the shelf and said goodbye to my downstairs gym upon starting a family. It turns out that I was just getting started. Now, I have more people to exercise with!
Do you have any post pregnancy fitness tips?