I get asked this question about 1 billion times a day in person, by email, on Facebook, by strangers who just learned what I do, by Mamas who have been working with me for a while, by Mamas who are 9 months pregnant and terrified.
How the EFF do I get rid of this dreaded Mummy Tummy!?!
The answer is both simple and complicated. There isn’t just one thing you can do. You can’t do 1000 sit-ups a day (please, for the love of all things awesome, never do a sit-up. Ever.). There are several factors to helping you tame the Mummy Tummy after having grown a human being.
Today is Part 1 of a 5 part series I am doing on how to get rid of your Mummy Tummy.
Part one is the most obvious (because I like to create suspense 😉 ). Abdominal exercises.
The truth is that your abdominal muscles have been lengthened. They had to make room for your little dude or dudette to grow. Now we have to shorten those muscles and the only way to do that is to contract them. You are probably like, “Duh, Jenn. I have been doing 500 sit-ups and it isn’t working.” To you, I say, of course not. Repeat after me “SIT-UPS DO NOT WORK AND THEY ARE HARMFUL TO YOUR BODY.” Sit-ups just create repeat stress on our spine and perpetuate a posture of hunching that we already do while sitting at our desks or breastfeeding or eating or whatever.
So what they heck does work, you ask? Well, Mamas, we have a specific set of exercises that are particularly helpful to our particular situation. They are called “Inner Unit” exercises (Ha. I said Unit.) These exercises target the long muscles in your entire core, not just the tiny 6 pack muscles that are mostly for show.
Here is a diagram of the muscles I am talking about:
I have a whole series of exercises I do with my personal training clients to work all these muscles as a unit and if you are a part of my bootcamp, you will have a video that teaches you 4 exercises to work on at home. For those of you who are new here, here is an easy exercise that you should be doing regularly to get your Inner Unit working again.
Four point Tummy Tuck
Step One : Get on all fours. Hands stacked under your shoulders, hips stacked over your knees. Keep your neck in line with your spine.
Step Two : Inhale a huge breath, letting your belly grow big.
Step Three : Exhale that breath while, first, doing a kegel, then tightening your lower abdominals (closer to your uterus), then the muscles under your belly button, then the muscles along your middle, then the muscles up by your diagphram.
Step Four : Hold those muscles (including the kegel) in place for a count of 10 while breathing regularly. Really focus on keeping the tension in your Inner Unit even while breathing in.
Step Five : Let it all go and breath regularly.
Step Six : Repeat this exercise 10 times.
This contraction of the muscle while breathing out should be pretty “violent”, meaning very pulled in and strong. Try very hard to keep the muscles as contracted as when you started while you count to 10.
It is exercises like these that are really going to start healing those lengthened abdominals and your Mummy Tummy back on track.
I am currently creating a 4 week program to help Mamas get their tummies healthy and happy again so stick around to hear more details about that.
If you think other Mamas would love to read this 5 part series, please SHARE away! The more Mamas who learn about what’s going on in their bodies, the better!
Baby Mama and Body Boss,
Jenn Green xoxo