Exercise and Bond With Your New Baby

You love everything about being a new mom -- well, with the exception of the post-pregnancy baby weight. If you’re like many moms, you’re probably wondering how you'll find time for fitness after having a baby.

Fortunately, losing baby weight doesn’t have to be time-consuming and you don’t need to miss precious moments with your baby in order to shape up. The key is to bring your new baby with you to your sweat sessions. Slimming down can actually be fun when you work out with your little one – and it’ll bring you two closer! Use these tips to get started.

Hit the pavement

Whether you’re a walker or a runner, taking your baby with you while you log miles is a great way to lose baby weight. Just wait until your baby is at least 6 months old before using a jogging stroller, since the upright position isn’t safe for a baby who lacks head support. While you’re walking or jogging, keep your baby engaged by talking to her, such as pointing out the scenery as you pass (“Did you see that dog?”). Walking or running together can be a fun and stimulating way for a mother to bond with her young baby – it’ll be a new environment and activity for your baby and it’ll be nice for you to have a little workout partner.

Take a class

From yoga to cardio, many gyms offer mommy-and-me classes. You get the benefit of having an instructor guide you through the best post-pregnancy workouts for losing baby weight, and your baby gets to watch the other moms and babies move about the room.

Take your baby to the mat

Incorporating your new baby into your toning exercises can be fun for both of you. Your baby loves being held by you. Just make sure you are able to maintain proper form while keeping a firm, safe grip on your baby. Start with these three moves:

·         Up-dog stretch: Lie on your stomach and keep your hips on the ground as you lift your chest up toward the sky. Lay your baby on the ground in front of you and shower her with kisses when you come back down.

·         Bench squats: Hold your new baby as you squat down and sit on a park bench or the couch. Engage your core (as if someone is about to hit you in the stomach) as you drive through your heels and stand back up.

·         Shoulder press: Stand up tall with your core engaged and hold your baby securely in your hands. Lift her up in the air and bring her back down for kisses.

On days when working out is the last thing you feel like doing, remind yourself that your new baby needs stimulation and fresh air, too. Knowing you’re doing something healthy for your baby while also losing the baby weight should help get you out the door. And you definitely won’t regret spending this quality bonding time together!