Tips for creating a healthy postpartum routine
Shannon and Kye from the BUBabble Podcast share their tips on creating a healthy postpartum routine.
I’m going to be straight - I used to have an unhealthy relationship with exercise. I felt like I had to go to the gym 5 days a week, stay there for longer than 40 mins because otherwise it didn’t count (even though half of that time was spent talking or scrolling on my phone) and had to look a certain way. Cue getting into an amazing relationship, getting older, pregnancy and now post partum, boyyy have my views on exercise, fitness and wellness have changed.
Now naturally with my life changing, my body has changed as well. Those date night McFlurry’s, pregnancy cravings and then the ‘I made it through the day parenting’ wine have added on the kilos. Growing, nurturing and carrying a gorgeous child has created a whole new body for me to learn to love. It has been hard to adjust to my new body and sometimes I think about how the ‘young version’ of me would be stressing. Mcflurry’s don’t fit in my nutrition plan? You haven’t had the chance to go to the gym in nearly two years? But the main thing I have realised over the years is that the goal should be ‘to be healthy, not “fit”.
So how do you create a healthy routine whilst getting some exercise in?
Walks with friends:
If you have a young bub and a mum friend, walks are a great way to boost your vitamin d, lift your mood and an excuse to have a coffee and a chat (because you are exercising right?!). Our favourite walk to do is by the water, so the kids can play in the sand and sea after our walk, and there are conveniently coffee shops there!
If you have dogs, walking them with your partner and bub is also a great afternoon ritual. You can have some ‘us’ time while bub is preoccupied with the surroundings.
My bub absolutely LOVES being used as a weight. Usually when we are doing some outside time, I grab him and do some squats and lunges with him. Lift him up in the air and bench him. It’s more for him, but it makes me feel good because I am being active and I don’t know if it is the exercise or his laugh, but it definitely puts me in a better mood.
We have a hills hoist at home, and I take this time to get my squats in. Squat down to get an article of clothing, peg it on the line and repeat! If you have a big load of washing (and if you have kids, the loads are relentless!), you can get quite a few squats in there! Plus some vit d!
When Ollie is playing on the floor, this is usually my time to stretch. I try to do this everyday as I love the feeling of stretching. Now I’m not going full yoga when I do it, but I try to do some simple stretches for 10-20 minutes, focusing on my neck and back at the moment to try to strengthen, protect and loosen them up. If your kid is a bit older, get them involved and tell them to copy what you are doing! It is just as great for them as it is for you.
Going for swims:
Swimming is a great low impact exercise that you can do. If your bub loves the water, go to the pool as a family and do a few laps while you are there. If you are pregnant, swimming is some of the best movement for you! It takes the pressure off all your joints and makes your heavy bump feel weightless.
These are just some of the things that I do to try to keep active without putting too much pressure on myself to exercise. Being a parent is hard work and finding the time to do things for you can leave you feeling guilty for not being that #fitmum you thought that you would be… guilty. Then there is also the whole bounce back culture, but don’t even get me started with that! My main piece of advice to you is to move your body for your mind.