Our body experiences some intense changes during pregnancy, and after. Your After Baby Abs might look and feel different from they did prior to pregnancy. Understanding your abdominal muscles, allowing them time to heal, and target exercises can help you reach your ABA goals!
Regardless of when you’re working on your abs, building abdominal muscles and losing that top layer of fat is important. What can be even more essential is that you remember that our abs are four separate muscles, working together in total harmony!
Abdominal AnatomyLet’s take a quick look at the four abdominal muscles.
- TVA or Transverse Abdominis: Our TVA plays a very significant role in our core stabilization. Especially during pregnancy or rehabilitation.
- External Obliques: Our oblique muscles rotate and side bend our trunk, as well as contributing to spinal stability. These are the most exterior ab muscles of the three flat abs.
- Internal Obliques: These muscles serve the same function as the external obliques, only from the inner abdominal region.
- RA or Rectus Abdominis: Here we have the muscle responsible for the ever popular 6 packs! Our RA provides core stability, trunk mobility, and is trained when we do exercises like crunches.
While all four of our abdominal muscles are equally important, the TVA is one we’d like to highlight! Our TVA muscle acts like a corset in the way that it supports our internal organs, and it helps us maintain good posture.
You want to know the real secret to flattening your ABA’s? Rebuild ALL four of your abdominal muscles, working from the inside out, and starting with activating and strengthening your TVA! There are typically two ways we can activate our transverse Abdominis to improve our core stabilization.
- Bracing: Bracing your abdominal muscles works similarly to how it sounds. Imagine you’re about to be punched in the gut or getting ready to lift something you know is heavy. The clenching or tightening of the muscles without sucking in is called bracing. Isometric contractions will help you reach your goal! Tighten your muscle, hold the position for 6 to 10 seconds, release, and repeat several times.
- Howling: I suppose this one is a bit like a wolf preparing to howl in a sense. Howling occurs when we suck in and compress our abdomen. Contract the abdomen, pull your belly button back in towards your spine, making your abdominal region as small as possible. Once that’s complete, use the isometric hold for 6 to 10 seconds, release, and repeat. This move helps build strength and function control in the TVA. Skip the crunches and oblique curls. ABA is prone to abdominal wall bulging because the external layers can easily overpower the weaker TVA.
C-Section Mama’sPostpartum workout plans will be a bit different for c-section mamas. After all, the tummy was just cut open and sewn back together. However, it IS possible to work on your ABAs after your Cesarean section.
Your after baby abs workout should start with cardio. Any extra weight or body fat gained during pregnancy needs to be burned off before tightening things back up! Take a nice relaxing walk. Tuck your little one into their stroller and get going! If you can swim, that’s another excellent idea.
You could get into some yoga if that’s your thing. Most importantly, talk to your primary caregiver and make sure you’re not pushing yourself too hard. Please, get a green light before moving along, it’s for your safety!
There are so many ways to get yourself back up to par after your pregnancy. Make sure you keep it safe and effective but don’t push yourself too far or too hard. Your tiny human will be counting on you for mo