Exercising with your baby
We’ve all read and heard it a thousand times – exercising should be a vital part of our daily routine. Never is this more clear than after having a baby. Not only is exercising great for our bodies, but it helps our mental health too. Going for a walk in the fresh air can make the long day after a sleepless night seem (slightly) more tolerable and it’s amazing for your mental health.
So what sorts of workouts can you do while you have a new bub? Here are some of my favourites.
Get walking (with a friend)
One of the best ways to catch up with friends with a young baby is going for a walk. It’s an ideal way to fit in exercise, a chat and if you’re really lucky, the baby will sleep the whole way! Try to incorporate a hill or two so you feel like you’re getting a decent workout in.
That’s why it’s important to find a pram that’s perfect for long walks. You can’t go wrong with the Britax Flexx Stroller. It’s super lightweight so exercising with it is easy, plus it has a telescopic handle so you can adjust it to suit your height. When you get faster and your stride gets longer, you can adjust the handle to ensure there’s enough room in front to walk unhindered.
Another thing to consider is how you transport all your baby’s essentials while you’re on your walk. There’s nothing worse than bub needing to do a nappy change with no supplies when you’re 4km from your car! The Steelcraft Strider Compact Deluxe Edition has a huge storage basket with a 12kg capacity so you can fit everything you need without dramas. Plus it comes with rain and shade covers so no matter the weather, bub is protected.
Safety is paramount when walking. Always use the stroller tether strap and make sure your baby is strapped in correctly so it’s not slouching and uncomfortable.
Mums and bubs yoga and pilates classes
Whether it’s the soothing music, my calming teacher or the lack of pressure to get it all right, I’ve always found mums and bubs yoga and pilates classes to be a really supportive way to get back into exercise. Usually, these classes range from being baby to mum focused. Some of them have lots of songs and activities throughout the poses to keep your bub entertained. Others are focused on you, but your baby is welcome to lie nearby on a mat or in a bouncer.
Any class you find should be led by someone who has special training in postnatal and women’s health. It's important to ensure the exercises you’re doing are right for whatever stage you’re at after birth. You also want a class that encourages you to feed and cuddle bub whenever you need, even if you’re in the middle of that particularly difficult squat exercise!
Mums and bubs outdoor exercise classes
If getting out and about is more your style, then look up some of the many mums and bubs exercises classes. They’re often held in local parks and there are a variety of different types of programs. Some have nannies who care for your babies (particularly handy if you have an older child too!) Others allow you to bring your baby and leave them in the pram while you work out. Many of the programs are run by women’s health physiotherapists who can help you exercise at a safe level without damaging anything in the process.
So what are we waiting for? Let’s get those sneakers on and get going!