Being a mom of two very active boys leaves me little time for myself. Forget that I also have a full-time career, a thriving small business and an active volunteer calendar. But, finding time for exercise is important. You need to exercise to maintain your core strength. I learned this the hard way.
Moms Lose Core Strength During Pregnancy
If you’re a mom or if you’re pregnant, there’s a good chance you’ll lose some core strength during pregnancy and may even experience abdominal separation. If you happen to have a C-section, your road to muscle strengthening is a little bit longer. If you’re like me, you may even decide that you don’t want to do any more core strengthening…ever. But, be careful as that decision is what caused me to spend a year in pain.
You Create Pain When You Don’t Exercise
It’s awkward to think that you’ll have pain because you don’t exercise, but I’m here to tell you it’s the truth. Sometimes exercising causes pain and struggle, but not doing it can cause so much more. If you’re normal, you probably don’t think about strengthening your core, but it’s the key to reducing or eliminating pain all together.
I started having chronic back problems about a year ago. I would wake up in the morning crying because the pain that was shooting up my back was excruciating. My only relief was to lay motionless in my bed and slowly inch-by-inch attempt to get myself upright and walking. I sought the expertise of a chiropractor who explained that I was misaligned and needed treatment to the tune of 3 days per week. The pain that I had was so intense that I would’ve signed up for any treatment plan just to alleviate it.
I progressed to being able to get out of bed without pain after two months. My chiropractor visits were reduced to once per week and I joined a Yoga class to improve my strength and flexibility. I continued my chiropractic treatment for almost a year making minimal progress, until a Yoga injury caused me to stop everything. I tore my meniscus so I was unable to walk. Life seemed pretty crappy at this point.
I knew I needed a better plan. That week I met with a sports injury specialist who walked me through a plan for physical therapy and a last resort, alternative and more intensive plan. I started physical therapy that week.
A few short weeks of physical therapy led to significant progress. I was able to walk normally within 4 weeks and within 6 weeks my back problems started to dissipate. I’m almost finished with my treatment and have only seen the chiropractor once in the last two months. I’m getting better. Strength is returning. I’m back to the gym.
You Must Make Time for Exercise
You must make time for exercise to take care of yourself. Exercise isn’t always about building strength or losing weight. Sometimes it’s about maintaining core strength. When you don’t maintain your core strength it’s hard to do normal activities like cleaning, reaching and picking up objects without throwing your back out. You create more pain by not exercising so prioritize yourself and put exercise time on your calendar this week.