Whether you worked out during your pregnancy or just took a lot of well-deserved rest days, it can be hard to get back into a regular workout routine. A new plan from Jamie Eason ramps up over the course of nine months to help you return to beast mode.
A lot of post-pregnancy workout advice is limited to neighbourhood walks and frequent kegels. Those are great, but it's hard to make the leap from those to the exercises you used to do, all while figuring out how to manage your sleep and time. So I love that this plan addresses time management, with suggestions like prioritising sleep and movement (like getting out for walks) before worrying about your workouts and the details of your nutrition.
There's a holding pattern of walks and gentle core exercises to do until you're ready for tougher workouts. Eason recommends waiting until you're getting a normal amount of sleep, and suggests three months as the timeframe.
In this phase she also provides a video to show you how to check for diastasis, a separation of abdominal muscles that's fairly common after pregnancy. I worked with a PT who cleared me for everything but crunches when I had a diastasis, so it's not necessarily a dealbreaker, but check with your doc about that.
When you're ready to begin real workouts, there's a month of circuits you can do while the baby is napping and workouts that involve pushing a stroller or wearing your baby in a carrier. The next month starts with real workouts (and advice to take it easy or push yourself as needed) -- the first exercise on the first day is barbell deadlifts. Aw yeah. The third month -- which will be your sixth month post-baby if you took the full three months for the intro program -- de-emphasises cardio in favour of heavy strength training alternated with rest days. After that, she recommends taking up another of her workout programs, the three-month LiveFit plan, for a total of nine months.
The workouts can all be done at home if you have adjustable dumbbells and barbells, but also translate to the gym. There's a nutrition plan to go along with it, too (sample day: protein shakes, mini pizzas, chicken and veggies). So it's realistic, respects your time, and ramps up from gentle to intense -- not a bad choice for fitness-minded new mums.
Jamie Eason's Post-Pregnancy Fitness Trainer [Bodybuilding.com]