Did you look in the mirror one day and think your derriere was as flat as a pancake? I did, it still is. Building back your booty takes time and patience, neither of which you have as a mum.
There are many changes that occur during pregnancy which contribute to this, the first being hormonal. Relaxin is a protein-based hormone which in non-pregnant women assists with regulation of the menstural cycle but in pregnant women it, as the name would suggest, relaxes the muscles and connective tissues in and around the pelvis to get us mamas ready for childbirth. However the effects of relaxin can be felt throughout the whole body and up to 6 months post birth, longer if you are breastfeeding.
To add to this, there are many postural shifts that women see during pregnancy. The weight of the growing baby and therefore abdomen may pull the pelvis forwards which can lead to an ‘anterior tilt’ i.e. you will arch your lower back to compensate. When this occurs your glutes will lengthen and weaken while your hip flexors and hamstrings will tighten to pick up the slack. This pulls your body out of alignment and will create muscular imbalances which should be addressed postpartum. Your glutes are a key part of your core and work together with the pelvic floor so strengthening them will have a big impact on how your body feels.
So how do you strengthen them? Well first ‘retraining’ your body will be key including:
Once you have mastered these techniques then you can start working on inner range training to shorten the stretched and weakened gluteus maximus and increase strength in your deep core.
Some starter bodyweight strength endurance (high reps) exercises that you can do at home whenever you have time, include: lying or side kneeling leg raises, glute raises, glute bridges, clamshell, donkey kicks, fire hydrants, lunge variations and squats.
Once you have regained some strength in the glutes and deep core then resistance can be added. I’d first start with pilates resistance bands or loop bands before adding weights.
Get in touch for a personalised programme to work that booty!