Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Top 5 exercises for New Mothers at Home.

So you say there's a new baby in town and life has been turned upside down.  You have gained some serious weight during your pregnancy and as soon as the doctor gives you the okay, you're off and firing.  Ready to get back to the "Pre-Pregnancy" weight or shape, and as fast as possible.

Then it hits.  The time problem.  For some people it is easier to get to a gym then it is for others and a lot of new moms seem to never be able to make it.  Below I will go over 5 of the top exercises you can do, after medically cleared, in your own home, right in front of your baby, in the living room, outside on the deck or anywhere you please.  Just note that this will be a good start and nothing more.  Doing these exercises will take you to a certain point and when the baby is a little older- you can move onto a more advanced program.

So again- make sure you're medically cleared first and then try these at home! Also, in order to lose the baby weight you need to reduce your caloric intake and eat well.

1)- Jumping Jacks- Simple and effective.  Great for increasing your cardio as well as providing a calorie burn.  Do I need to explain how to do jumping jacks?  Mr. Koes would kick your ass if he knew you needed an explanation.

2)- Squat Thrusts- This exercise targets the majority of the muscles in the legs and is a good movement for cardiovascular health. To perform a squat thrust stand with feet shoulder width apart, bend the knees and place the hands on the ground as you would a push up and kick the legs out- to a push up position. Optional here if you want to do a push up, and then bring the legs back in and stand up.  Simple.

3)- Push-Ups- Watch GI Jane for a description and just do it. One of the most important bodyweight movements is the push-up. Push-Ups are great for strengthening the chest, the arms, and the shoulders.

4)- Prisoner Squat.  Stand with feet shoulder width apart, place the hands behind the head, and squat down until your thighs are parallel to the floor, and press yourself back up. Squats work the muscles of the butt, the legs, and the hips.  A great strengthening exercise that can be done anywhere. You can also hold your precious little bundle of joy while doing this movement. They'll like it.. maybe..

5)- Mountain Climbers- Get into the push-up position and start by bringing the left knee to your core. Shoot it back and bring the right knee up.  Repeat this sequence as fast as possible providing a great cardio effect. Doing this movement for a minute or two will humble you.

There was recently a study released that showed a 4 minute Bodyweight Workout (Doing some of the above mentioned exercises at 20 seconds on 10 seconds rest) was comparable to a 30 minute cardio session such as treadmill walking. This is great news and new mothers can get a seriously effective workout while home with their new baby.

A sample workout can be put together like this:

Jumping Jacks x 50 reps
Squat Thrusts x 20 reps
Push-Ups x 20 reps
Prisoner Squats x 20 reps
Mountain Climbers x 40 reps Each Leg
Clean Diaper, feed, burp, repeat circuit.

Finding 4 minutes during your day is possible and if needed, doing a workout like the above 1 set at a time repeated throughout the day will give you some good results.

Always keep the walking in your exercise routine.  Be sure to go through this post here Stretching 101 and make some of the mobility movements and stretches part of your warm-up and cool down.

With bodyweight movements like those shown above and the latest research showing a 4 minute workout to be effective there are No Excuses NOT to exercise.  Start slow, work your way up, and make it a part of your daily life. Get creative and use your baby for some exercises.  You can buy an ergobaby carrier and do the squats, walk up and down the stairs in your house, and so much more.  Have fun and enjoy the new kid.

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