Exercise after a second c section! - My EXi Community

My EXi Community

Exercise after a second c section!

Mrsdravenx
Mrsdravenx

Well! I look down at my stomach and I ache to be thin again :( before I had my children i was a size 10/12 and felt at my best around the time, my stomach was virtually invisible, almost flat and i was well pleased with myself as all the careful eating id done had paid off! I then got pregnant with my son and he was born in 2012, via emergency c section! My weight ballooned up to a size 18 after pregnancy and I felt disgusting :(, I had a bit of a saggy belly but thought it was to be expected with the type of delivery i had!

Fast forward 5 years and I fell pregnant again! (She's 10 weeks on Wednesday) and i had a planned c section due to cholestasis and gallstones..My weight again ballooned to a size 18, but after her birth I could get my size 16s back on! I still feel hideous as the apron of flesh has gotten worse :/ so basically the short end of this post was just wondering if there was an exercise or something that could help things snap back into place like I used to be or am I chasing my youth and wasting my time :(?

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CarronM
CarronMAdministrator

Thanks so much for the post. I know exactly how you feel, I am 12 months post c-section (baby number 3) and it is a huge surgery to get over. It is major abdominal surgery, and I don't think women get nearly enough support afterwards (and of course we have to get straight back to work with a little baby to look after!). As a physiotherapist I certainly believe you should do all you can to get your abdominal muscles going again (and so I don't think you are wasting your time at all!), your future self will thank you for it, but please take it slowly - many of the exercise programmes aimed at women (e.g. Zumba, body pump etc) are not suitable at first for post partum c-section mums. I replied to a similar post a few months ago, so I'll paste the reply below:

From a physiotherapist's perspective we always recommend engaging your pelvic floor/deep abdominals first. The easiest way to start is lying down with your knees bent (or you can actually do this in sitting or standing if the little ones aren't giving you much time): Pull up your pelvic floor (as if you are stopping yourself mid flow when going to the toilet) and gently pull in your tummy (you should be able to continue breathing throughout - if you can't, it's likely that you are just working the abdominal muscles on the outside). Try to hold this gentle contraction for 10 seconds and repeat 10 times. If you have any separation of your tummy muscles (you can check this when lying down by pressing in to your tummy around your navel as you lift your head up - if there is more than a 2 finger gap then your muscles are still separated), it may be useful to gently push both sides of your stomach together as you are doing the exercises above.

When you put your details into the iPrescribe Exercise app, it will give you a graduated programme of aerobic exercise. This will gradually build your fitness levels back again, and remember you can incorporate the pelvic floor work/deep abdominal activation into your aerobic exercise (so for example you could think about doing some tummy/pelvic floor holds whilst you are doing a walking programme - perhaps hold over 10 steps, then relax over 10 steps etc). The aerobics videos are really quite nice on the app, but please remember to use the timer function, so that you do not overdo things in the early stages. Once you are feeling stronger, your fitness levels have improved and once you are able to engage your abdominals better you will be able to do more strengthening work and higher intensity exercise (the app gives you the option to switch to high intensity exercise once you have reached a certain fitness level) - but given the fact that you only had a C-section 10 weeks ago, I would recommend that you stick to moderate intensity exercise for at least 6 weeks before attempting high intensity work. Our website explains the difference between the two:

iprescribeexercise.com/abou...

Hope it goes well, thanks so much for posting and if you need any help please let me know.

Carron