Better Body After Baby
Get your best post-baby body with total-body exercises that give extra attention to toning your abs. Do these toning exercises twice a week and cardio workouts three times a week.
Hi, this is Alycea Ungaro. I'm the owner of Real Pilates in New York City. I created this Body After Baby Workout exclusively for Fitness and Parents. We're gonna take you through the Cancan now. You're gonna straighten your waist. I want you to move your legs fluidly and you're gonna kick over your shoulders so that we really get the deep core abdominals here. So, we're gonna start by twisting the legs to the right and then the left, and then the right, and kick back to me and bring them back down, and let's take your temple up. Other side. Left and right and left and kick and bend. Repeat. Over and 2 and 3, kick in, bend. And as you get stronger, you can go a little faster. Twist and twist and twist. This is our 4th 1. We'll go for 2 more. To the right, to the left, keep the chest up, to the right, kick and bend and last one, left, and right, really twist the waist, kick and band and relax. We can work this exercise also all the way up to 12 reps. For here today, 6 is a good place to start. We're gonna show you the Bridge Lift now and it's a little variation. It's actually a sequence that you can do that progresses. So, you're gonna start by bridging up with the hips. Keep your arm strong, your shoulders back, and in a perfect world, you'll stay here for 30 seconds, if you can start with 10 that's fantastic. When that's done, you're gonna take one leg up, reach it to the ceiling. I'd love to see this position held for another 10. And then from there, we're gonna lower and lift the hips 5 times. Down up on 1, down up on 2, keep at the bottom foot strong, keep going, that's 3. We take 2 more, and left, last one. And we're just gonna change position, crossing this leg over the other leg. You wanna keep the hips high and the legs tightly crossed, so no daylight between them and we'll do 5 more reps. Here we go, down up 1, bring the whole back, down and up 2, all the way to touch the ground, down up 3, perfect! Down up on 4 and the last one for the big finish, come on up, hold it, and then you can uncross the leg, lower your hip, and roll all the way down. We started with 5 repetitions today, but it's great if you can work up to 12 and don't forget to do the other leg. We're gonna show you The Swivel Plank. Now these are great for strengthening the obliques, which really need support after a Baby. So, you're gonna come on out onto the elbows in a supported plank and stay for a moment. Ideally, you wanna build up to hold this position for 30 seconds before you begin. But I think for starters today, just 10 is enough and then we're gonna go hip-to-hip. So, a little twist, and a little twist, that's 1 set, 2 and 2. Let's work up to 8 to start. There's the 3rd. And you wanna keep the hips from rising. They like to buff up in the air, but keep them low. That's it. Keep going, over, and 6, keep your belly up, and 7. Last set 8, and then come to center, level off, bend your knees and stretch your back to finish. We can work up to 12 sets of that, but 8 is a great place to start. We'd like to show you the Slide Reach. So, Julia, you're gonna stand with 1 heel into the other arch. We're gonna take a full lunge. I want you to really fall out and your eyes should be a little bit downward. When you come back, drag the leg in very close and use the weight to help you, okay? I'll count for you. Fall out and a drag back, good! Use some resistance, fall out and then drag back. Use your stomach when you're doing this and reach out. Squeeze back. The quicker you can strengthen the front leg the better. Fall out. We're gonna go all the way up to 8 for this. This is number 5, and squeeze back. Try to keep the front heel on the ground. And pull in. We've got 2 more. Fall out, beautiful. Squeeze back and last one, nice and high, and then fall back, stand tall, and we're gonna go to the other side, so just step over. Make sure your heel is right into the arch of the other foot. Both arms, shoulders facing forward, big fall, all the way out and squeeze back. Very good. All the way. Fall out. Nice high arms and pull back. Fall out, and make sure your eyes are glancing downward. Pull back. And number 4. Take it out. Squeeze back. Try to keep the ribs in a little bit when you're doing this. Number 5 and pull and big lunge, 6 and squeeze back. Last 2, all the way out and pull and final 1 big fall, squeeze all the way back, hold it, stand tall, and you're gonna wanna repeat this once more to the right and the left. So, we're gonna let Julia take a rest. We're gonna show you The Sparklers now. Just great for toning the upper body. You still wanna use your core and your glutes when you're doing this exercise, so pay attention to your form. Stand in Pilates' stance, heels together, toes apart, use the back side muscles, angle your weight towards each other and let's take 8 little circles to raise the weights from the bottom to the top. So we circle, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, now stay at the top and do 8 more circles; 1, 2, 3, 4, hold strong in your middle and 7, and 8. Now 8 to lower, come down, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, all the way down, 7, and 8. We'll do the whole thing again. Start here and go, 1, 2, hold your ribs in tight, remember to squeeze your glutes this is 5, 6, 7, stay at the top 4, 8, 7, 6, 5, keep going, 4, 3, 2, 1 and lower down; 1, 2, 3, 4, final 4 and 3, and 2, and 1. Finish with the big strong posture. That's great. And you'd wanna work up to 4 sets of that, but we started with 2 for today. To strengthening the upper back, we're gonna borrow an exercise from Pilates known as The Bug. It's kind of like a Bent Over Fly. So we're gonna stand the feet hip-width apart, and you're gonna take a deep knee-bend and a hip-bend all at the same time and your back should be as flat as it can be. Go ahead and round the arms underneath you so you're making a big circle and we will just use light weights for these and then you're gonna lift the arms wide to the side and lower them down. Let's got for 8 reps. This is number 2, and down. See how nice and flat the back is, 3, and down. You don't wanna keep the elbows too bend. Keep them long and down. Let's go for 5. Your stomach is still lifted up the whole time and lower. Number 6 and lower. Last 2. This is 7 and down and last one, 8. And now follow my voice. Just round your head and your arms and stretch over your legs. It's important to roll up through the back here and just come up 1 vertebra at a time. We did 1 set of 8 repetitions, but you can work up to 2 sets as your back gets stronger. We're gonna do The Flip-Grip Pulses. Now these are great for toning your triceps and strengthening the upper back. Pay close attention to how you use your hands and the position of the weights. We'll start in Pilates' stance again. So heels together and toes apart, always holding on to the glute muscles nice and tight, carry the weights just in front of you, not high and you're gonna carry them right behind you getting the triceps to work, and we start by going back and then straight to the hips. Five times, back and straight to the hips, and 3, bring it back, and 4, and back and 5. Here comes the change. On the 6 one, you lift and we just go a little bit down, so halfway is big, that's 2, here we go 3, 2 more like that, 4, and 5 bring it up one more time and now they are just tiny little pulses. Up, 2, 3, 4, 5. Give one good squeeze of the arms and then carry the arms forward. You're gonna do the whole thing again, but with a slight change. Carry the arms slightly in front and flip the grip. So turn the weights up. The heads of the weight will face up and we're gonna take the whole thing again. Start to the back. Carry the arms behind you and right to the hips, behind you and right to the hips. This is number 3. You still wanna hold your stomach in the whole time. And 4, and down. Take your 5th one and down, and now we do half as big, so up, but just a little down, and 2, and down, keep going, this is 3, and down. Lift 4 and down, tall posture 5 and down and 5 tiny pulses, and 2, and 3, and 4, 5 you give a good squeeze of the arms. Here comes our last set. Carry the arms forward and flip the grip again, now the palms face up. Turn your waist and bring the arm back. Here's your final set. Five big ones, to the hips and back, to the hips and back and down, lift up. Last one, and bring it up, hold. We do half as big, 1, and 2 lift, 3 keep squeezing the shoulders and hold. Last 5 tiny pulses, up 2, 3, 4, hold, it should be a good burn at this point and bring the arms down and rest. So we've started with 5 pulses for each variation, but you eventually want to work up to 12 pulses so that 1 set would be 36 reps and that'll really get the triceps. The last exercises in our program are the Wall Slide, and you're gonna find a nice sturdy wall that you're gonna slide up and down against. With your 3-pound weight handy, reach your arms out in front of you. The palms can face down and slide down the wall so you're in a full sitting position. You really going for a sharp 90-degree angle and we can build this up from---- see 15 seconds to 30 and then eventually 60. The arms are gonna come all the way up over head and you're gonna press the heads of the weights into the wall. Keep a sharp angle at the knees, keep the belly in and when you've stayed for the requisite amount of time, lower the arms and slide yourself back up at the wall. Good! We can repeat this 2 or 3 times building up from 3 sets of 15 seconds to 1 solid minute. That would be your goal.