Y’all know that I’m a big exercise fan. I’ve been through so many DVD programs and walked / ran hundreds of miles over my 30 years. I’m not overly thrilled with going to the gym to workout – looking at the cost and trying to find the time with 4 kids at home, it’s not the best plan for me. Although there are many fantastic classes you can take at a gym, I’d still prefer to exercise in the comfort of my own home.
After having my boys, I tried a few different “regular” workout routines to get back into shape. But I was quickly pregnant again with my daughter, experiencing a lot of lower back pain, and unable to really do too much in the way of exercise. Once she was born, I was determined to get back on the exercise train, and started using Slim in 6. While this definitely helped me to lose some of the weight, I found I was lacking a lot still in core strength.
That’s when I found out about Mutu System and diastasis recti, or separation of the abdominal muscles. I knew I’d had it from my second pregnancy on, but I didn’t know that I could do anything to fix it, and that certain exercises may actually make it worse.
A program that has really been booming and catching my attention lately is cross fit. I’ve been intrigued by the extreme nature of it, and slightly interested in seeing if I could do it on my own at home (as the costs are pretty high to join an actual gym). However, an article from Mutu on crossfit made me stop and think twice as I realized it could actually do more damage to my body than good.
Once you have diastasis recti, those muscles can be repaired and improved, but never quite 100% fixed. Like a rubber band that is stretched too much, muscles that are stretched can become limp, and even with exercise, they’ll never “fuse” back to their normal position.
With a program like crossfit, a lot of the moves can actually make abdominal separation aggravated and worse. Putting that much pressure on ab muscles that aren’t healed after pregnancy (or any large amount of weight gain and loss) will push them further apart and out.
Crossfit isn’t the only problem, though. There are many workout programs that use a lot of moves – jack knife, crunches, pike, overhead weight lifting, etc. – that can cause more damage than good. Pilates, yoga, P90X, running, planks, whatever it is that you’re looking at doing, you need evaluate them based on these moves and learn how to avoid them.
So here’s the thing – specifically, crossfit is cool. Intense, high energy, INSANE, and shows good results –
“IF YOUR CORE IS SUPER STRONG, SUPER
STABLE, OPTIMALLY ALIGNED DURING
MOVEMENT + ABSOLUTELY 100%
(Wendy Powell, Mutu System)
And if it isn’t? Well, here’s what may happen:
1. Your abs will strain outwards creating, or more likely worsening an already existing,Diastasis Recti. They might strain so hard you’ll create a hernia. At best, your abdominal muscles will develop a firm but pooched or protruding, rather than flat, appearance.
2. Your pelvic floor will be put under immense strain and your pelvic floor muscles will be further weakened. They may be entirely ineffective, or they may be hypertonic, but either way, they’re weak and they won’t hold in what they’re supposed to hold in. So you’ll wet yourself. Or worse. They might be under so much strain you create or worsen a pelvic organ prolapse.
As I mentioned, the problem doesn’t just lie with crossfit, but many other programs can also do more harm than good. So check out your abs, determine if you have the core strength and there’s no damage done before you do any of these exercises.
And if you do have abdominal separation, or a hernia, pelvic organ prolapse or issues with your pelvic floor, then check out Mutu System! You don’t have to be newly post-partum to see results either – there are many testimonials from women whose children are grown getting their ab muscles restored!
Bonus: Every year there’s a massive sale, ONE DAY ONLY, THIS Sunday, July 6th, for 24 hours! 43% off any online program, that’s an amazing deal that only happens once a year! Use code WENDY43 to receive your discount and sign up for Mutu System to get back in shape after.
*** The sale is now over, but have no fear! My readers get a special 15% off discount using code servingfromhome. This applies to both the digital 12 Week Program and Focus. (Psst, the 12 week program includes Focus, so go big!).***