How to start your fitness journey after birth

Africa Melane chats with Caroline Jooste, a personal trainer specializing in women’s and children’s fitness at Planet Fitness.

© Dmitry Zimin/

It’s been a few weeks since you welcomed your bundle of joy into the world and all you can do is stand in the mirror and see what your body looks like after birth. Getting your pre-birth body back is no small feat and some would say it will never be the same again, but getting back on a fitness regime after birth is essential.

Not only is exercise good for strengthening and toning muscles, it helps mothers cope with the stress and fatigue of the first few months with baby. This in turn can help with postnatal depression.

How long do you start?

Africa Melane spoke with Caroline Jooste, a personal trainer specializing in women’s and children’s fitness, who recommended a smooth and safe return to physical exercise.

You need to know when your body feels ready. The first thing to do is to wait for the 6-week postnatal check-up and get the green light from your doctor. You can start with a run or a water aerobics class for about 30 minutes a day to slowly get the body back in shape.

Caroline Jooste, personal trainer

Instead of focusing on losing weight, moms should aim to have a strong, functioning body.

Focus on building and rehabilitating the body first rather than losing weight and eventually you can start losing weight.

Caroline Jooste, personal trainer

Getting your body in shape can be a difficult emotional and mental process. Ultimately, part of this journey is accepting your body and the changes it has gone through after giving birth.

Many women don’t realize how amazing their bodies are. Instead, we should accept that this is how God created you and be proud of those changes and work hard to reclaim them again.

Caroline Jooste, personal trainer

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