After caring for an infant for the past 12 weeks, trying to “go back to work” for the past four weeks and attempting some semblance of a fitness routine for the past TWO weeks, I have developed a colossal amount of respect for moms who whip themselves back into shape (and still have time leftover to bog about it). While I would love to take an hour or so per day to hit the gym and complete the kind of workouts I previously struggled through, that’s not going to be my reality for awhile. I’m still nursing Ella every two or three hours, making timing an issue (we can’t give her a bottle at the moment because when we tried, she basically went on a nursing strike that led to a very difficult 24 hour period of hysterical crying and battle of wills), not to mention that when I have a free hour to spare, work usually takes priority during business hours. As such, I decided to develop a “something is better than nothing” philosophy and engage in some activities that could be done WHILE spending time entertaining Ella. I’ve generously shared them below.
1 & 2. Stand/Walk as much as possible.
On good days, Ella will sit in her infant lounger for a little bit while I stand next to her and work at my computer. Turns out, standing burns a lot more calories than sitting. Even better, if she won’t sit in her lounger, I’ll pop her in the Ergo Carrier and add some resistance weight to my standing and/or walking/wandering around the house aimlessly.
3 & 4. Pushups and Tricep Pushups
Ella and I are currently enjoying a phase where she adores batting at objects that swing above her head. I place her on a blanket on the floor and let her at it. See below for an example.
While I’m helping her do that, there are lots of things I can do at the same time. Pushups AND tricep pushups fall into that category.
5 & 6. Leg Lifts
Leg lifts and leg circles. I do a set of 10 lifts, 10 circles clockwise and 10 counter clockwise on each side – REALLY feel the burn at the end of those.
Out of everything I need to do, strengthening my core is at the top of the list. I’ve had a perpetual backache basically since Ella was born, and carrying her around, feeding her in oddly twisted positions, etc, is not helping the situation. Then there’s the fact that my ab muscles completely separated and disappeared throughout my pregnancy and didn’t magically return postpartum. So I’ve committed myself to doing about five to 10 minutes of planking per day until they’re back in fighting shape.
This is just the beginning. More to come!