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How Long After a C-Section an You Exercise?

Obstetricians recommend at least eight weeks on average to allow your body to heal before exercising, following a c-section. C-section surgery puts a lot of stress and strain on the abdominal muscles and the abdominal wall must be given time to heal before hitting the gym after childbirth.

For the first few weeks, the muscles in the stomach region are extremely painful and even walking briskly may result in pain.  Some women heal quicker than others and require less time, however, the standard waiting period is eight weeks before the doctor releases you to get back to the gym. Six weeks is the standard of time recommended by some obstetricians, while eight to ten weeks seems to be the norm for most doctors.

One of the best rule-of-thumbs is to try a test run at the six week interval to see if pain ensues.  Your first work-out should be light and not include weight lifting.  Walking, slow jogging, or swimming are all great ways to start back working out after a c-section.  If pain occurs, check in with your doctor to make sure nothing is torn or strained.

While you may experience a twinge here and there, extreme pain should not occur if you have healed properly.  Ignoring doctor’s orders may put you back in the hospital for another week if not careful.  Remember to take it slow!

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