Wednesday, June 19, 2019

The Importance of Exercise for New Parents

Becoming a parent is wonderful, but it also comes with a significant amount of change. While you can do all the baby proofing and outfit-buying you want, no one goes into this thing completely prepared. It’s a huge overhaul in multiple ways, including how you feel about yourself. Going from a free and single adult to having someone literally rely on you to live is terrifying, albeit extremely rewarding in the long-run. There are multiple things you can do to try and prepare yourself for this new ride, but one of them is often overlooked.

We all know that exercising is good for us, regardless at what stage in your life you are at. However, for new parents, getting active can be a Godsend that is so simple, yet exceedingly effective. We’re not just talking about running a few miles every morning to get back to pre-baby size, either. Exercising can have multiple benefits that go beyond helping you fit back into those jeans you’ve been holding onto. Let’s take a look...

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Feel more awake. It’s ironic really, as raising a newborn comes with being sleep deprived and cranky. It might be tempting to slouch around in your sweats all day, but getting out and about can actually wake you up. When you’re stationary or sit down for too long, our bodies automatically feel sleepy as they’re in “rest mode”. Taking a brisk walk can do wonders for how you feel, enabling you to face the rest of the day. If you’re concerned about taking the baby with you, don’t panic. There are tons of great strollers out there that are specially designed for mamas on the run.

It can help your mood. It’s only natural that having a baby impacts your mood in a big way. Even those that take to parenthood like a duck to water can end up feeling a little down in the dumps. There’s no two ways about it, having a baby is a lot of pressure. Something as simple as a quick 15-minute Zumba DVD session while your baby is sleeping can make you feel more alert. By releasing all those feel-good hormones, you might find yourself less stressed and less tense.

Build a sense of community. Isolation is a common problem new parents face. You might be on maternity leave, but the rest of the world is on the grind like usual, leaving you with a lot of free time. Taking a walk around your local park is a brilliant way to feel “involved” with the world. You might come across other new moms doing the same thing, or find that saying “Hello” to the dog walkers makes you feel less alone. Gyms often have creches/daycare services too, allowing you to squeeze in a quick yoga class, without the stress of finding a sitter.

Better quality of sleep. When babies start to sleep for more than an hour or two at a time, it’s difficult for new parents to snap out of that sleep-wake cycle. We’re all guilty of feeling like we need to be on our guard throughout the night or struggling to unwind. Working out is a natural tension buster that has been proven to improve sleep quality.

What have you got to lose?

1 comment :

  1. I think working out is what I was missing when my daughter was born. I was so puffy for her first year but felt much better once in a workout routine.