Pregnancy was a whirlwind. You were excited to carry and give birth to your child, but your body went through unexpected and, sometimes, unpleasant changes.
As you adjust to this new life as a mom, how can you get back to shape? Here are a few suggestions.
Pamper Your Skin
The skin on your belly stretched as your bump grew bigger. As a result, there are marks on your belly that look like lightning rods.
Stretch marks are normal. Everyone, including celebrities, has them. You do not have to be pregnant to have stretch marks, either. Weight gain or growth spurt can cause your skin to crack due to the sudden change.
You can minimize the appearance of stretch marks by exfoliating. A papaya body scrub could help make the scarring left by the stretch mark look less noticeable. Some say that products that contain retinol, a powerful exfoliant, can help.
If the streaks still look pink or purplish, prevent scarring by loading on the lotions and oils.
For your face, stay away from any products that have AHA and BHA for the meantime. Your post-pregnancy skin might still be sensitive and chemical exfoliants may exacerbate the problem.If you are struggling with acne, use products that have azelaic acid. For brightening, add vitamin C in your skincare.
Take Your Vitamins
Your body is still recovering. Do not stop taking the prenatal supplements prescribed to you by your doctor just yet. You still need the nutrients that it gives you to make your body stronger, especially now that you are breastfeeding.
You should also look into postnatal supplements. It is designed to have the right amounts of vitamins and minerals that you and your baby need.
Ask your doctor for recommendations.
If you are hoping to shed the weight you have gained during pregnancy, do not run to the gym just yet. Take it easy by doing low-impact aerobics to get you back to shape without injury.
Walking is a great way to exercise after pregnancy. It keeps your muscles engaged and joints loose. You can increase the intensity of your exercises once you regain your strength back.
You should also do activities that target your core. Do crunches and planks to work out your tummy. These exercises can be done at home.
Your pelvic floor would also have taken a hit during labor. After pregnancy, many women experience difficulties controlling their bladder. This is usually temporary and will go away after a while. However, if you want to quicken the healing, you can do kegel exercises.
This does not take a lot of effort to do nor do you need special equipment. You can do it while seated or while lying down.
To do kegel exercises, contract your pelvic floor muscles- much like you are trying to not pee your pants. To see if you are doing it right, when you pee, try to contract your pelvic muscle mid-stream. The flow of urine should stop when you clench down.
Do you know that breastfeeding burns calories? You may be sitting down, but your body is working hard to produce milk for your baby.
In fact, you burn as much as 500 extra calories a day by breastfeeding. Talk about hitting two birds with one stone!
Do not be disappointed if your body does not go back to how it once looked. You carried a child for nine months and, now, you are raising another human being. Learn to appreciate the scars and marks that pregnancy left you because they are testaments of how strong you really are.