You want to ride as much as you did before you had a baby; but there’s one small thing… that little bundle of joy.
That little bundle that you are completely responsible for and that is completely dependent upon you. As a cyclist, what can you do to improve your post baby fitness?
Prior to your baby’s birth, you had visions of riding as much as you could. You said things like ‘I’ll get up early and ride before my partner leaves for work’ or ‘I’ll do a night ride after baby is in bed’.
Yep, that sounds great, but in reality you are living on two hourly chunks of sleep and there’s no way you’d give that up to get out early for a ride. Sleep is too precious.
So, let me paint a picture for you. You’re the full time carer of a baby (and your partner works during the week), you’re sleep deprived and you really want to ride. But you can’t. The little squirming baby of yours won’t be big enough to come on rides with you (in a trailer or bike seat) until he or she is about one year old. So you’re trapped all week while your bikes mock you every time you walk past them in the garage.
It’s ok. You can still do SOMETHING to keep your sanity and keep fit.
Post baby fitness regime for cyclists
1) Pilates, yoga or a core strength program. Pregnancy and birth can do terrible things to your pelvic floor, abs, hips and pelvis stability. Take the time to re-build yourself by doing something that works your pelvic floor and core strength. There are lots of places you can do ‘mummy and baby’ Pilates or yoga which allow you to bring your baby along.
2) Running. Once you’ve got that pelvic floor sorted and you don’t pee your pants, you can start running. Even though running will never be as much fun as bike riding, you can do it with your baby in a pram to maintain your fitness. Even when they are tiny you can put them in the pram and run! The baby is not guaranteed to like it in the pram, and you may have to stop every 10 minutes to show them that you are still there, or hand them another biscuit, but running is better than nothing.
3) Bike trainer. If your baby is an amazing one that sleeps during the day, you can do a session at home on your bike trainer. You can buy cycling movies to play like ‘The Sufferfest‘ or ‘Spinervals‘ or ‘Pain Cave‘. Or you can just look up free cycling training sessions on You Tube.
4) Baby boot camp/mums and bubs training. You can also sign up for a baby boot camp or personal training course. Most are focused on mums who want to lose baby weight. Even if this isn’t your goal, you can still benefit from the structured fitness sessions and you get to meet other mums wanting to keep fit.
You may even find that your baby sleeps better after being at a fitness class, or outside in the fresh air. Bonus!