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Postpartum Recovery to Fit Mama Part One

Updated: Feb 8, 2022

Sleepless nights and constant feedings, the idea of exercise can be both exhausting and overwhelming. This is exactly why I waited to start an exercise program till I was six months postpartum. My days were filled with movement, with three kids under four life was BUSY. Though I waited to start a program, I didn’t wait to start the road to recovery. I started with how to fuel my body, added in daily movement, breathing, and core recovery.

When it came to food I didn’t track or journal but rather just focused on the quality of food. The daily movement came naturally, I also made it a point to get outside for at least 15 minutes a day, a practice I still do. Breathing, every night as I laid in bed and anytime I sat on the couch I would practice breathing. Core work happened during tummy time or playtime (anytime we were on the floor).

One of the biggest obstacles being a new mom brings is time. It is so hard to find time to shower and eat that the idea of adding anything to your plate can feel overwhelming. When I shifted my focus from having to find the time to do these things to incorporating them into things I was already doing in a day, it was life-changing. This took my three kids and four years to figure it out so….don’t be hard on yourself. Just remember you are doing amazing.

The question I get most often is, what is the number one exercise you recommend for postpartum women? Breathing. Breathing was LIFE CHANGING for me. For YEARS I was in a paradoxical breathing pattern (breathing into the chest rather than the ribs) this caused so much pain. I dealt with neck tightness, pain, and headaches. After a lot of practice, I have been pain-free

for a year. Changing your breathing pattern takes time and practice. You are taking something that is subconscious and trying to change it. Meaning you have to move it to the conscious and practice, practice, practice. Muscle memory will happen and the breathing pattern will change but it will take time.

Now to the fun part. Where do I start? On your back. Lying in bed with two fingers on your rib cage, two fingers under your rib cage, and your thumbs around your back. Breathing in through the nose thinking about pushing that air into those fingers. The goal is to get them all the fingers to move. This may be harder than it sounds. So what if you can’t get the air to go to your fingers? Start with a smaller amount of air. What you would consider a half breathe. Then practice, practice, practice. Anytime you lay down do 3-5 breathes (this will take 2 minutes tops). Once you feel movement into those fingers, it is time to move to a seated position. With the fingers in the same position, sit tall and try to get all those fingers to move.

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