No doubt, having a baby is an emotional experience. It requires energy, stamina, and a positive outlook. Though you might be tempted to retreat from physical activity after you’ve had your baby, it’s worth it to begin a fitness regimen after giving birth to help balance out your moods and physiology. Here are the physical and emotional benefits that come with working out after you’ve had your baby.
Note: Most exercise will not influence your breast milk quality. However, some research suggests that intense workouts can cause lactic acid to accumulate in the breast milk, which might lead to a sour taste your baby might not like. Therefore, we recommend sticking to a moderate level of exercise. Do what feels right for your body.
Exercise helps revive your flagging energy
Lots of general dissatisfaction can be exacerbated by the simple fact that when you’re caring for a newborn, you’re generally zapped of energy. When you’re tired, everything else in life seems worse and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed, physically and mentally. Since parenthood is overwhelming enough already, whatever you can do to get those endorphins pumping will help you perk up, and regular exercise will certainly do the trick.
Exercise will improve your moods
Hand in hand with the energy revival is the accompanying mood upswing that comes with a workout. Your hormones can run wild after having a baby and exercise will help get them back into balance.
Exercise helps you get back into shape
It’s natural for your body to change shape during pregnancy, but many women feel sad and dejected when they see their post-baby body. It’s important to love and accept yourself and set reasonable expectations for your physique as you start to get back into shape. Though you might not see immediate results, simply starting a new workout program and sticking to it will pay off mentally by making you feel proactive.
Don’t overdo it right away. Work up to your pre-pregnancy exercise regimen over a period of weeks or months. If you don’t know where to start or how much to undertake right away, work with a personal trainer who can evaluate your goals and help tailor a program that will work best for you.
Exercise helps you sleep better (when you’re able to grab some shut eye!)
Though you might feel mentally exhausted, physical activity is sure to wear out your body so that when you do have the opportunity to sleep, you’ll sleep more deeply and won’t get caught in fitful restlessness that cuts into your precious sleep time. Exercise will allow your nightly sleep experience to be richer, which should help you wake up feeling rested.
The period following your delivery will have its ups and downs, physically and emotionally. But you owe it to yourself (and to your growing family) to ensure that you’re a mentally- and emotionally-present parent. Creating an exercise plan that you’re able to follow regularly will help promote your overall inner health and will help you blast away those baby blues in no time.