So we have all seen the mummy bootcamps and the appeals to new mums about come with us to get your 'pre-baby body' back. (For the record I hate this term and will never endorse this but that is a conversation for another day)
I have seen and been one of those mums taking part in those classes, all in the quest to get my 'old' body back. Believing that we have done a good job at taking a step back in that direction. Our red faced, sweaty exhausted bodies can take a little rest that night safe in the knowledge that we are doing well.
(And you are! Getting out the house as a new mum to go move about energetically for an hour is no small feat so be proud that you did that)
What would you do if I told you that instead of moving forward the journey to feeling more normal in your body is moving further away?
I get it, the longing for your body before you ever got pregnant. It is a challenge to get used to the changes in your body and if I am totally honest I am still struggle with this at times.
I get days were I wish I could fit into clothes a little easier. Especially with my brothers wedding in a few weeks and I am thinking my usual style of dress isn't going to work this time.
You go to these classes and feel great. The guilt is lifted for a while for the wine you had the other night or the bar of chocolate you demolished. You are on a high from the endorphins from the exercise and you feel a little bit of your old self there again if only for that hour.
But you maybe struggled to hold your pee so had to run to the toilet or maybe you leaked a little during those burpees.
Later that night or the next day you have lower back pain and you put it down to running around all day and the exercise is going to help right?
So what does this all mean?
After going through pregnancy and labour (even if it was a C Section) your pelvic floor will not be the same. Even in the most simplest of pregnancies and births your pelvic floor still needs time to heal.
By adding even more pressure that these classes do with jumping, running and straining to lift heavy weights before proper rehab means you put yourself at risk for more serious pelvic organ dysfunction.
So before you decide to go for a run a few months down the line consider a few things.
Have you stopped breastfeeding (if you were in the first place)?
Do you get any leakage of any kind, even if it is only when you really really need to pee and you sneeze?
Do you have any heaviness or bulging feelings in your vagina?
Do you have get lower back pain after a lot of activity?
Do you have pain when it comes to sex?
If any of the above applies to you I would love it if you would stop for a moment and rethink your exercise choice.
I am not saying this is definitely the wrong choice for you or that you won't be able to go back to these classes or running again.
What I am saying is that you deserve to know all the facts and make an informed decision on how best to proceed.
I have said it before and I will say it again, if you have the ability to go and see a Women's Health Physio then get an appointment. It has made a big difference to me and the other women who have asked me about it.
I know that this might not always be an option so my advice is to go to a trainer who specialises in pre and post natal training. Make sure you chat with them about how you are feeling and they will help with some exercises that will strengthen your pelvic floor and your core as a whole.
If I can be of any help then send me a message on my facebook page or email me and i'll help any way I can.