It doesn’t matter if you’re a first-time mother or on baby number four, getting back in shape after the birth is challenging to face alone. Thankfully, celebrity fitness trainer, wellness coach, and best-selling author Jillian Michaels has done all the thinking for you, with this six-exercise circuit from her new book, Yeah Baby!
In this video, Jillian demonstrates various strengthening moves that will sculpt your whole body.
Do each exercise on both sides as many times as you can in 30 seconds. Do the circuit four times, no more than four times a week. You can complement this strength workout with 20 minutes of low-impact cardio like swimming, biking, and hiking. Wait at least six weeks postpartum to begin – and at least three months if you had diastasis recti or a C-section – and be sure to get your doctor’s approval. Then grab a mat, a resistance band or hand weights and follow along.
Don’t have time to watch? Read the full transcript:
Hi, I’m Jillian Michaels and I’m going to show you a circuit to help you get back in shape after having a baby. Before you start, get your doctor’s approval. Then grab a mat, a resistance band, or hand weights and follow along.
Sumo Squat with Rotator
To start, grab a resistance band or 3- or 5-pound hand weights, and hold the band in front of you. Stand with your feet apart, toes pointed slightly outward. Sink straight down into wide-legged squat, as if you have a heavy tailbone. Make sure to engage your core to prevent putting too much pressure in your lower back. At the same time, pull the band apart in front of you, so your arms are in a T-shape. Come back to the starting position and then repeat as many times as possible (while maintaining good form) for 30 seconds.
Start on all fours in a tabletop position, placing shoulders directly over your wrists and hips over knees. Then extend opposite arm and leg, engaging the stomach to help you balance. Pull your elbow and your knee under your torso to touch, and then extend them again. Repeat as many times as possible (while maintaining good form) for 15 seconds, and then do the same on the other side.
Start in a forearm plank, making a long line from the crown of your head to your heels. Make sure your hips aren’t drooping to engage the core and take pressure off your lower back. Hold for 10 seconds. Then, slowly roll into a side plank, so your elbow is directly under your shoulder and your feet are stacked on top of each other. Your body should be in a long, diagonal line from crown of the head to heels. Hold 10 seconds. Finally, roll through forearm plank to do a side plank on the other side. Hold for 10 seconds.
RELATED: 5 Plank Variations You Need to Try
Stationary Lunge & Bicep Curl
To get started, put your hands on your hips. Start with your feet hip-width apart and step one foot forward, coming into a wide stance with both feet pointing forward and your back heel lifted off the ground. Bend your knees, lowering until both legs form a 90-degree angle. Repeat sequence on opposite side. When you’re ready, add bicep curls to the lunge. Grab 3- or 5-pound weights, or hold both ends of a resistance band in your hands and tuck the middle of the band under your front foot.
Reverse Fly in Crescent Pose
To start, stand with feet hip-width apart, a 3- to 5-pound weight in each hand. Step one leg back, keeping that heel lifted. Bend the front knee to 90 degrees and hinge forward from hips, bringing chest toward front knee. In this lunge, lift arms to shoulder height. Lower arms back down. Do this for 15 seconds and then repeat, switching sides.
Wide Row in Half Squat
To start, stand with your feet hip-width distance apart. Bend you knees until they are 90-degree angles and hinge at the hip, bringing your chest toward your knees. At the same time, holding 3- or 5- pound weights in your hands, extend your arms in front of you and then pull or “row” both weights straight back, keeping your back flat and maintaining your half-squat. Then slowly lower your arms after a pause. Repeat for 30 seconds.