23 Apr My ‘wee’ problem … literally!
Hi ladies, I’m Simone, I’m the director of YummyMummy Fitness, full time self employed, housewife, partner and mum to a very full on 3 year old boy.
4 years ago, my partner and I planned to have our first child- great plan! It (thankfully) happened without too much difficulty and when I found out I was pregnant the fun really began!
The first sign I could be pregnant? Visiting the toilet 10 times more often than usual. Little did I know that this was going to be an ongoing problem during my otherwise perfect pregnancy and far beyond.
After giving birth, I’m sure you can imagine how keen I was to put my sneakers back on and start a hard core “heidiklumlike-getridofbabyweightfast-6hoursaday” exercise regime. I mean seriously… I was just getting my head around being a new mum and still finding time to eat, sleep, wash – all the ‘normal’ day to day activities that all of a sudden become oh so hard with a wee angel hanging off my arm. But ever felt like everything was going to ‘fall out’ down there? Well, Hello Baby! ByeBye continence!
Ladies! I’m owning up and talking about my wee problem in the hope it will help some of you! I will ask you a very important question but I’ll tell you the answer now – it’s NO! Do you want to get back into exercise without properly functioning core muscles?? That’s right – no! Why not? Remember not only do these muscles hold your upper body upright on top of your lower body (looks better that way me thinks), they also protect your spine from any damage and help keep in any weewees, poopoos and farties – be great to keep it that way, right?
I vaguely remember reading and being told about ‘Kegel exercises’ to help this wee problem but hands up – honestly who really does this? 200 Kegels per day?!!I struggle to remember to take my pill every day… So I quickly gave that a miss and thought I’ll deal with it when it turns into a real issue- surely a tiny bit of weerunning down the inside of my leg won’t bother anyone? Sweet!!
To help you understand what I’m talking about a bit better:
Your pelvic floor muscles are part of your core. During birth and labour your core muscles go through horrendous stresses and can sometimes even get ‘injured’. Has anyone actually told you that the back pain you get ‘from carrying baby/toddler around’ is caused by weak/non functional core muscles?
More often than not your muscles have taken some time off and it is extremely important to activate them back into action.
This can easily be done by doing the right core activation exercises – ideally under professional supervision- and breathing techniques.
To safely start this process by yourself do the following:
Lie down flat on your back with your pelvis in neutral position, legs bent with feet solidly on the ground.
Deeply breath into your stomach and out again- imagine watching your sleeping baby breath, their stomach moves up as they breathe in and down as they breath out…. your stomach should be doing just that.
Now every time you breathe out gently engage your abdominals (top and sides of your stomach) and pelvic floor muscles (imagine you are trying to hold in wees and poos at the same time). To check if you are engaging those, put your fingers just to the side of your hip bone on your stomach, you will feel your muscles engage- if you can’t feel it do a little pretend cough and you will feel your stomach muscles engage, that s exactly what it should feel like just without having to pretend cough.
Practice this until you can confidently engage those muscles, then practise the same while standing up.
Once you can master both of those, you can move into a prone hold.
Beginners please practise those on your knees, for the more advanced you can move straight into a full prone hold on your toes.
The goal is to hold this for 1-2mins while comfortably breathing and doing the same engaging movements(abs and pelvic floor muscles) as you breath in and out.
If you prefer to do these and more exercises under professional supervision, we offer ‘Core Rebuild’ classes for new mums, which will help you get full function back without the risk of injuring yourself or doing further damage.
Looking forward to hearing your feedback – I want to help you ladies feel fitter, healthier and stronger during these important years of your life, the part of your life where you create life.
Talk again soon!
PS – pleased to report my wee problem is no problem anymore!