Using a treadmill to get back into shape after giving birth
Your child is born, and you’re feeling happy, but you really want to start running again, just as you did before you were pregnant. Of course, running right after delivery is out of the question. But with a treadmill at home, you can easily find a few minutes of walking during your busy life with your newborn. So break out your trainers and ease back into form.
Make sure you get the doctor’s go-ahead
Mothers with newborns often wonder when they can resume athletic activities after giving birth. Even if everything went well and you feel fit, you need to take some preparatory actions before you start working out again.
First, you should complete a period of perineal reeducation, also known as pelvic floor rehabilitation. After pregnancy and childbirth, it’s essential that you re-strengthen your pelvic floor, which can become distended during pregnancy. Perineal reeducation sessions are usually prescribed during the postnatal visit, about 6 weeks after delivery.
Next, get the green light from your obstetrician or other post-natal care professional. If you delivered by Caesarean section, you must wait until your body has completely healed. This can take several months. Be patient; do not skip any of these vital steps.
We also recommend visiting an osteopath before taking up athletic activity. They can help you find ways to ease your tension, correct bad posture, and realign your vertebrae or pelvis if needed. In other words, they can reset the small changes as well as the larger upheavals that occur in the body due to pregnancy.
Why not try a treadmill?
Now you’re ready to choose your activity. Have you thought of trying out a treadmill? Let's be clear: this is not the best choice after childbirth. Ellipticals and exercise bikes offer smoother movement and less shock to the body, and are thus more suitable. This is because the pounding that occurs on a treadmill reverberates on the still very fragile pelvic floor.
However, in some cases, a treadmill can be the right choice, such as for those who were already fervent practitioners of a "walking sport" such as running, brisk walking or Nordic walking. With a treadmill, you can very gradually resume your favorite activity. If your spouse wants to lose some of their own “sympathy weight” while working out at home on a treadmill, then you could double the cost-effectiveness of your purchase.
In these cases, ease yourself back into your sport of choice with the treadmill. You’ll discover it has many benefits to coax you back into shape.
Post-pregnancy treadmill benefits
With a treadmill, you can get back into shape at your own pace. Start with walking: an athletic activity that is frequently recommended after childbirth. You can usually start around 2 months after the birth of your child, if you feel fit. In a few weeks, you can begin to alternate brisk walking and running.
The home treadmill is also particularly practical because it fits around your busy schedule. You don’t have to plan for a babysitter. No waiting for your spouse to be available, or for a sunny day. You don’t have to plan much in advance of nursing times if you are breastfeeding. As soon as your baby falls asleep, you can jump onto your treadmill. You can even use it with your baby in your arms or in a baby carrier. It’s now something mother and child can enjoy together!
Another advantage of the treadmill: it mainly works the muscles of the body that are most used during pregnancy. Even if you have to wait several months before you can run again, the treadmill will help to firm up your abs again, and help your legs to rediscover their former toned shape. It’s also an investment in the long term.
With so many benefits, you should consider adding a treadmill to your baby shower gift list, between the onesies and the stroller!
Look for pleasure, not performance
It might not be the first choice after a pregnancy, but the treadmill still has its strengths. So if it's your favorite, choose it: you will work out more regularly on a device that motivates you. Still hesitating? Consider this: if you live in a small living space, treadmills fold up nicely for storage.
Convinced now? Choose a reliable and comfortable treadmill from NordicTrack’s wide selection of quality devices. Finally, remember: don’t worry about “performance.” Your goal should be to get back into shape, to enjoy being able to fully move again without restrictions, and to reconnect with your body.