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Exercise for New Moms

The exhaustion of sleepless nights with a wailing newborn or the extra stress that comes from having a new member of the family around may cause you to put your fitness goals on the backburner. Many new moms struggle with losing stubborn pregnancy weight after their bundles of joy arrive. The good news? Incorporating a little physical activity may be just what you need to start to shed those unwanted pounds.

Exercising With a Baby

With everything else to worry about with a newborn, exercise may be the last thing on your mind. If you find it difficult to trek to the gym with your new baby, why not exercise at home? Regular exercise is good for you because it restores muscle strength you may have lost during pregnancy. Having a regular and realistic workout goal planned around your busy schedule can also boost your energy levels, improve your mood and relieve stress — all important factors for new mothers.

Here are a few recommendations and warnings for new mothers anxious to lose their unwanted baby weight and get back into their active lifestyles:

  • If you are breast feeding, don't fret — studies have shown that exercise isn't thought to have any adverse effects on a nursing infant. However, sometimes high-impact workouts can cause lactic acid to build up in breast milk, creating a taste that your baby might not like. To avoid fussiness, you might stick to low-impact exercises like walking, yoga or Pilates while nursing to keep you stress-free.
  • Feeding your baby before a workout is an option if vigorous activity is of particular importance to your workout plan. Pumping before your workout is a good idea in general, as you may be more comfortable while you exercise.
  • Worried about exercising too soon? The rule of thumb used to be waiting for six weeks; however, if your physician gives the okay, you may be able to begin exercising as soon as you feel comfortable. It is always a good idea to check with your doctor first.
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