For nine months your baby was a part of you. And now, one of the best ways to get your body back in shape and to help your baby adjust to the outside world is to keep her close to you.
My favorite mom-baby fitness activity is to dance with my baby – couples dancing at a whole different level.
Sometimes I’d put on some energetic music by African group, Kotojo (Music that "if it doesn’t make you feel like dancing, you must be dead!"). Sometimes it would be a soft mixture of lullabies from around the world, accompanied by gentle rocking moves.
Move your core, swing your hips, tuck in your butt and then stick it out, bend your knees slightly and dance in a squatting position. Hold your baby away from you at times, above your head or in front of your chest. Be creative (safely!) and move your body in different ways. Remember, no one’s watching except your little one and this super-young crowd tends to be pretty easy-going
With moves like these, you will work out your muscles even more. Better yet, not only are you up and moving – but your baby adds another 7 – 15 pounds. You get an even better workout.
And your baby gets to feel the movement, developing small muscles as he adjusts and recalibrates his equilibrium with each movement. And watch out for some of the extra muscle-building moves. On especially boisterous days, or when a heart-stirring song comes on, he may excitedly grab at your hair or nose. Or maybe gleefully join in with the music with her own crooning while softly bopping your shoulder with her hand.
And don’t just stop when the music stops, keep fitness simple by making this kind of regular exercise part of your daily routine. Carry your baby with you around the house as you do other activities. Use a baby carrier that settles your right against your chest. This position keeps the extra weight close to your center of gravity, making it safer to move around.
As you do some simple chores, talk on the phone, move around, keep the extra weight of your baby on you, helping you get rid of the excess weight of pregnancy fat off of you.
And as for your arms, just holding and lifting your wee one does wonders for your biceps, triceps and everything in between. I was amazed at how solid my arms became with each baby-episode in my life.
So hold your baby, dance with your baby, move with your baby. Fitness might never be quite so enjoyable.