6 Little-Known Reasons it’s OK Not to Workout After Baby
So you just had a baby. Congratulations!
After I got the all clear from the doctor to start working out again I felt this guilt because I didn’t want to go back to the gym yet. I didn’t want to workout after having a baby.
I mean I worked out before I was pregnant shouldn’t I want to go back to the gym after?
I feel like when you become a mom there is this pressure from society (and maybe yourself) to “bounce back”. Like nothing happened.
Like you’re supposed to have your pre-baby body back just like those moms all over Instagram.
It caused me a lot of stress and guilt even 6 months after my baby was born. Which led to issues with my milk production and sleep and, well, everything in my life.
All over the guilt of not wanting to work out.
Now, I understand that everyone is different and some people live to work out and that’s just who they are. But if that’s not you I hope this helps take the guilt away (at least some of it).
So here are the 6 reasons why its OK to not work out after having a baby.
1. You just had a baby!
Holy crap woman! You just grew another human being with your body.
That is amazing! And lots of hard work. You don’t need to push yourself to get your body back right away. (I still don’t have my body back and my baby is 14 months old now so don’t feel so bad.)
There really is no rush. I don’t know who decided in our society that we need to brainwash moms to bounce back after having a baby.
You were the safe house for your baby while they grew for 10 months (Let’s be honest the whole 9 months thing is a joke, you were pregnant for 10 months, plus recovery. So you’re basically superhuman).
Relax a little bit. Don’t put so much pressure on yourself.
If you feel like you need to do something for your self-esteem. Then do something you like to do.
Don’t just go balls-to-wall (yes I just said that) because some fitness chick on Instagram says you should. Just start out slow.
Go do something gentle. Go for a walk, do some yoga. Just do something that will make you feel good.
When you’re ready to start being more active (and by being more active I mean ready to leave the house. Even if it’s just to the backyard) these leggings were my all time fave when I was recovering.
I would wear them all the time. They have awesome tummy control that makes you feel secure and tight! Go check them out, I bet you’d like them too.
2. Being a mom is tough
If you’re anything like me you totally forget this one.
I feel like I need to be wonder woman all the time and have my house clean, make a homemade dinner, workout, make myself presentable, and all that lovely stuff.
But being a mom is tough! It always will be. It will be great but tough (but all good things are tough). So giving yourself some slack is so needed!
I have to remind myself that being present is better than being perfect. As long as your kiddos (and you) are happy. You can let things go (like working out hardcore).
Being a mom is tough and you’re doing a great job! (Now go repeat this 5 times!)
Related: 9 ways to battle mommy burnout
3. The lack of sleep
The lack of sleep is what killed me!
My husband only had 5 days off before he went back to work after I had Jman. So after those days, I felt guilty asking him to get up more than once in the middle of the night with our boy.
I know, gender equality and such, but I would rather him be safe at work because he got his (almost) full night of sleep.
So I was the one who did without sleep at night. (Which in his defense, he did get up with the baby the whole night on the weekends so it worked out.)
For me, it was, “why would I want to make myself more tired by getting a work out in?” So I did without. And it was great!
I have never looked back once and thought, “Wow I just needed to work out during that point in life!”
Nope. That thought hasn’t ever crossed my mind. And I’d bet big money that you won’t have that thought either.
4. You’re focused on other things
To be honest I feel like motivation is, well, different to everyone.
I hardly have motivation for things (like washing all of those freaking dishes). But I will tell myself that a clean house is a priority for me. So that’s why I do them, not because I am so motivated to clean.
You just grew a baby and gave birth. Your priorities right now don’t need to be getting a work out in. They need to be making sure your little one (and yourself) are fed and taken care of.
So the lack of motivation is so normal! Please don’t beat yourself up over not having any motivation to get back on the fitness wagon.
And the one thing that no one tells you either is its ok to not have motivation when your baby is a year old too.
If you want to make it a priority in your life then great! But if not, who cares! As long as you’re happy that’s all that matters!
5. This is a big change.
Having a baby at home, whether it be your first or thirty-first, it is a big transition. The minute I got in the car to take my baby home I thought, what do I do now?
Sure you can read all the baby books and go to all the classes but until you experience motherhood for yourself you really have no idea.
So taking your time is to be expected. Don’t let those gym moms you see all over social media make you feel bad for not wanting to work out because you’re adjusting differently.
They probably feel just like you (lost, covered in baby puke, exhausted beyond belief). They just chose to have different priorities. And that’s ok!
6. Going slow is great!
There is no rush. Seriously! You are learning to be a new mom. And if you already have a little one you’re learning how to be a mom of 2 (or 3 or 4).
Everything takes time.
This is your time to learn how to be a great mom to this new little person. (and BTW you already are doing great!) The last thing you need to stress about is a workout.
So take it slow. If you don’t want to work out then don’t. Even if your baby is one and you still don’t want to. As long as you are happy with where you’re at who cares!
Everyone is different. Every baby is different. Take a deep breath and know everything you’re doing is great! Missed work out and all.
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