By Guest Blogger Lindsay Brin
It’s so important to understand how you can get a flat stomach again. So many of us are used to traditional ab work, and unfortunately that can create a larger waistline! Yikes!
Why The Core?
One of the reasons why you need to add core exercises to any other workout routine you may be doing is that after pregnancy, your uterus shrinks about a finger’s width every day. In five to six weeks, your uterus will return to pre-pregnancy size. That means in that time it will from the size of a watermelon to the size of an orange. Pretty impressive, right? Your body is remarkably adaptable and your recovery to pre-pregnancy hormone levels, uterus size, etc. is postpartum miracle. Your body is a machine in the several weeks following birth. But you do need to help that miracle along.
There are 2 IMPORTANT muscles that create your flat stomach: the pelvic floor & the TA (transverse abdominis)
A little Science wouldn’t hurt
You need to start by finding your pelvic floor, then training your pelvic floor. The pelvic floor is the foundation to your core. Your abs cannot function without the pelvic floor. The pelvic floor is the bottom of the core–think of a sling from front to back. You will see a number of exercises that include rotation, balance and stabilization in the Moms Into Fitness DVDs. This variety combined with the use of the pelvic floor and transverse create a flat stomach. You can begin pelvic floor movements within 2 days of a vaginal normal delivery. The ab work will begin later (usually 4-6 weeks) once you have your doctor’s permission. This method will not only help you look good but help you do functional things without pain. You can get down on the floor and play with baby, jump without peeing, and lift baby pain free.
Your core is essentially the center of your body—more specifically your abdominal muscles and the muscles of the hips, butt, back, and pelvic floor. All of your core muscles work together as a unit—they are all connected by fascia, a band of connective tissue. Your muscles (and fascia) are stretched during pregnancy. At 6 months everything is back at 90%, and if you help the muscles along you can get that flat stomach more quickly. But you have to use your muscles for them to change!
Engaging the muscles
So you don’t have information overload you can simply watch this video to find out how to use these muscles and make them work within traditional ab work.