New Parents Don’t Exercise? We beg to differ! In a recent New York Times article, “New Parents Don’t Exercise,” Lisa Belkin explains parents’ lack of exercise after giving birth – during the beginning confinement stages, relying on others to do simple tasks, and well, lack of showers and overall maintenance. The University of Minnesota researchers concluded that “bringing baby home wrecks havoc with parents’ nutrition and exercise routine.” Specifically, it states that not only do “new parents move less, but they eat more” as well. This has been the topic of conversation amongst my group of Baby Boot Camp moms as of late. As mothers, we know that caring for a newborn can take its toll both mentally and physically, but the majority of us do have the desire to claim that pre-pregnancy body back! Going to the gym may not be ideal; shoot, it may be damn near impossible in the early stages of motherhood, but there are definitely alternative ways new moms can get their exercise in and get back in shape.
A little creativity will yield long term health and wellness benefits.
Why not turn ordinary household chores into workout exercises? The next time you are wiping crumbs off the floor, do some squats; washing the dishes, do calf raises; vacuuming, and do some lunges. Short spurts of exercise can be just as effective as one long thirty minute session.
Taking the baby out for a walk in the stroller is wonderful but why not integrate your baby into your workout? Stroller based fitness classes are designed perfectly to help new moms get fit. Classes combine cardio and strength training while bringing the baby along and sometimes even using the baby as resistance! What a great way to spend time and bond with your child! The best of both worlds!
A resistance band, some free weights, and an exercise DVD of Jillian Michaels is all you need! Wake up before the rest of the family even if it’s once or twice a week and take some much needed time for you to re-energize. While baby does tummy time on an activity mat, you can do some chest presses, lunges, and sit ups or even better, try using the baby as resistance for your exercises, he will absolutely love it!
By Lillian Lee