New Year, New Mom! Tackle your Trouble Spots: Tummy

Happy New Year Moms!  Now that the family is gone, Christmas cookies are eaten, and presents are all opened, you are probably settling back into your normal life as a mom.  If you are like most people, you are probably thinking about the new year and how you’d like to make it even better than last year.  One of the areas you might like to improve in the New Year is your health.  Let’s face it: as a mom, caring for yourself usually takes last place.  You make sure your kids’ needs are met, take care of your spouse, and after that, if there’s time, you take care of you.  Sadly this often leaves us moms disappointed…with how our clothes fit, with how often we get to exercise, and with our lack of energy.

Let’s make this year different!  To be the best moms we can be, we must take care of ourselves. The good news is that by carving out just 20 minutes a day you can make some big changes this year! Over the next 3 weeks, we are going to tackle the top 3 trouble spots for moms: tummy, butt, and arms. You’ll get a plan that you can do in just 20 minutes a day.  And the best part is that your baby will be right there with you as you use your Ergobaby Baby Carrier in your workout! So let’s get started with our first trouble spot: Tummy!

No other part of our bodies goes through as much change during pregnancy as our tummy.  Sadly, it doesn’t just bounce back to our pre-pregnancy shape easily.  It takes 3 key things to get a toned tummy post baby:

Toning

Since your ab muscles were stretched so much during your pregnancy, they lost a lot of strength. Doing toning exercises for your core will help you regain the strength you need in that area.  But think beyond crunches, there are a lot more effective ways to work your core as you’ll see in the plan below.

Cardio

You also need cardio to get your abs back.  Sadly, you can do hundreds of crunches, but never see your abs because they are hidden under a layer of fat.  The best exercise for fat burning is a combination of strength and cardio.  So add some cardio to the toning exercises for maximum fat burning!

Healthy eating

This one goes right along with the cardio. You can exercise all you want, but if you aren’t fueling your body with good foods, you won’t see results. Fill up on fresh fruits, veggies, lean meats, and whole grain breads.  As a new mom, you want to focus more on WHAT you are eating than on cutting calories.  If you are nursing, you need to make sure you are eating enough calories (at least 1500 per day) to make sure your milk supply doesn’t drop. If you need any more advice on exercising while breastfeeding, check out this blog post. Ready to get started?

20 minute tummy tone plan

Repeat this plan twice a week.  As with any exercise plan, be sure to get your doctor’s clearance before starting any activity.

Warm up

Put your baby in the baby carrier and head outside for a walk.  Walk at an easy pace for 2 minutes to get warmed up.

Cardio

To get your heart rate up, alternate between 1 minute of fast walking and 1 minute of medium pace walking for a total of 8 minutes. If you have any hills nearby, include that in your route.  Pick a loop where you’ll end up back at your house at the end of the 8 minutes.

Strength

Head back inside, but keep that baby in your carrier for these strength exercises.

  1. Zig Zag – Wrap your arms around your baby using your hands to support their head. Lower into a plie squat with knees and toes pointed out. Keeping your hips and legs still, lean side to side engaging the obliques.  Repeat for 10 reps each side, rest, and repeat a 2nd set.Zig Zag
  2. Lunge with rotation – Regaining your balance is very important after pregnancy, and comes largely from strengthening your core. Lunges with rotation help challenge your core and balance effectively.  Step forwards into a lunge making sure your knee stays over your ankle. Then twist your torso towards your front leg. Push back to standing and repeat on the other leg. You are also getting some great leg work with this exercise! Repeat for 10 lunges on each leg, rest and repeat a 2nd set. lunge
  3. Plank – This is probably the best exercise you can do for your core. Take your baby out of the carrier and lay them below you on the ground. Come into a plank position on your elbows and knees (if you are newly postpartum) or elbows and toes (if you are feeling stronger).  Hold this position for 30-60 seconds, rest, and then repeat a 2nd time. Plank

Stretch

Finish by stretching as your baby lies nearby on the floor. Also, be sure to drink lots of water throughout the day.

If you are looking for more ideas for how to exercise with your baby in your Ergobaby carrier, check out this postnatal core video from my fitness program for moms.

 Be sure to check back next week as we tackle our next trouble spot: the butt!

Please use caution when attempting any of the carries, exercise or activities highlighted on this blog.  Please use common sense and caution when using a Carrier.  You should consult a physician before starting any diet or exercise program.  For more information, see our Disclaimer.  For some of the exercises, it is important for your baby to have good head control, modify or skip exercises as needed to keep things safe for you and your baby.

Autumn Bonner

Autumn was blessed to grow up in an active family where she learned to love exercise. She created Tailored Fitness, an online fitness program, to help other moms live healthy lives and set an example for their kids. Autumn lives in San Diego with her surf-loving husband and sweet baby girl Sienna.

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