When I had the twins I was so exhausted. Yes I am sure you can imagine. I had over 30 hours of labour that the doctors and nurses thought was not happening and of course it went on forever and ever! I just wanted to go to sleep. This could not happen. I had the first baby and blanked and forgot for a while that I had to do another. Silly really, but this is what happens when you are sleep deprived and physically exhausted and have mentally left the building as well. I am sure I am not the only one that has done this. (Let me know if you did this too, well if you had multiples)
After I had the babies, they of course went straight to intensive care so I tried to catch up on much needed rest in-between doctors/nurses visits and the NICU ringing for breast milk that I had not made yet! OH GOSH THE PRESSURE!
Once our stay in hospital was over and I was finally home with my two precious bundles of joy and I was of course super tired and zapped of energy. Thank god I cooked and froze dinners for three months to help. More on the blog later about that. I will share some of my favourite meals I froze and what made it easy in the first three months home with new born twins.
One thing that was clearly apparent soon after having the twins was that I was constantly bending over and this in turn was making my neck, shoulders and back ache. This was very annoying. I loved being with the babies but since I had to feed them and at times ended up in awkward positions it of course was not good for me. Has this happened to you?
Not only did I ache, I had to keep on doing the same activity that made me sore! OH how annoying. What can be done you ask?
I went to the gym and found that they did not focus enough on exercises that stretch your body the other way. For example if you are constantly bending and leaning over, why can’t we stretch backwards? Have more movement with stretches that allow you to move the other way rather than constantly putting pressure on the part that hurts or is causing an issue.
Here are some great exercises to help the back, neck and shoulders (Note, this is just what works for me and I am not a fitness expert):
Backstroke. Swimming backstroke stretches and flexes the muscles that you are not using that much and it feels great as your body is having the other side exercised. This I find helps me feel more balanced and helps my neck and shoulders.
- Yoga. Stretching and relaxing with yoga no matter your skill level I find very beneficial. You can either go to a class or have a DVD at home so that you can do it at a time that is easy for you to add to your routine. If your kids are older maybe get them to join in. If your child is still a baby sneak in a relaxation session while they are sleeping if you can.
The cat pose, the tree and the spinal twist ones are my favourite. Not sure if I have listed them correctly but hopefully you know what I mean. I also like the mediation relaxation on the floor at the end. It helps centre you and makes me more relaxed.
- Stretch your arms. I like to put my arm on a door or wall. Then I lean the other way so this gives you the stretch on the other side of your body. I do this to both sides and then it makes all joints and arms feel much more relaxed.
- Meditation. I find a small window to meditate with nothing going on. I know this is hard if you have a house full of kids and activity. I do find that the times the kids are at school I take a part of my day to just sit still and do nothing. I like listening to the stillness, the quiet and just love it. No one yelling, “Mummy!, can you come here!” Sometimes it just takes those moments to make my shoulders and neck relax and it makes the difference to a calmer and more peaceful day.
- Walking. I know it is not exactly exercising the back, neck and shoulders, but it is low impact and it gives the body movement and takes you to a different environment where you can breathe in the fresh air and relax. Don’t under estimate a good walk around the block or say around the park.
- Aqua Aerobics. I love this form of exercise. Not only is it good for your joints being low impact, you are doing more as you have to use the water as an added weight that helps you tone up and get fit. You can push yourself as hard as you like or take it easy depending on your fitness level.
I like most mums don’t take enough time for themselves and I should. It is hard to fit it all in and I hope that some of these tips might help you. It will soon be daylight savings and I cannot wait. More daylight, in warmer weather to be outdoors.
NOTE: I am not an expert in exercise. Check with your doctor if these are right for you.
Here are some links that might help you:
Do you find that exercise programs don’t have stretches to help with the fact that we are bending and leaning over more? I do! I feel that we need to focus more on posture, relaxation and stretching. If we did more of this we might not be having such ailments like headaches due to neck pain and so on. I suffer most from headaches due to tension in my neck.
Let us know what you do to relax and make the aches go away. I must say a massage and a weekend away does wonders also, however does not happen often.