Mummy Tummy, Or Diastasis Recti?
You're probably reading this because you've had a baby (congratulations) and you want to know how to get rid of your "mummy tummy".
Now our society is pretty fixated on "bouncing back" after pregnancy.
The problem with that not only that it's unrealistic, but it is also damaging to a new mama's self confidence.
As new mama's, you not only have to keep a new tiny human alive, while remembering to feed yourself too, you also have to look hot in a bikini!
I'm sorry, but f**k that!
During pregnancy, the tummy grows right? You get a bump.
Well your tummy consists of many layers of muscle and tissue that stretch and shift as the baby grows.
After you've given birth, the muscles will still be stretched, and it will take a while for those muscles to tighten again. When the tissue down the midline of your 6 pack muscles stretch, this is called a diastasis recti.
100% of full term pregnancies result in diastasis recti. It is a natural part of the process.
Most of the time, the muscles and tissues will tighten and reconnect on their own. Other times, they won't.
If you find that you still look 5 months pregnant, you may need to speak to a post natal fitness professional, to see what you can do.
Doing 100 sit ups a day with the goal of strengthening and flattening your abs could actually do more harm than good. So it's worth seeking the help of a professional to be sure.
The same goes for crash diets. Your body needs nutrient dense foods to rebuild and repair itself. I won't go into it now as that's a whole other topic but in short.
Starvation doesn't work so don't do it.
Firstly, how do you know if you still have a diastasis?
As mentioned before, a diastasis is when the tissue between your 6 pack muscles (rectus abnominus) is weakened and stretched. This means that the lower muscles and organs can protrude through the gap. Causing you tummy to bulge and look fatter than it is.
Diastasis recti can also mean that your body isn't able to manage load properly. Causing issues with balance, pelvic floor function and lifting (your children and at the gym).
How to check:
1. Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor.
2. Find the linea alba. It is the line that runs from the middle of your ribs, to your pubic bone.
3. Starting at the top (ribcage), do a little sit up, while supporting your head, and feel if how wide the gap is.
4. If there is a gap (e.g. 1, 2, 3+ fingers wide), make a note of how deep the fingers can go.
Relax out of the crunch before moving down your tummy, to avoid putting too much pressure on your tummy, back or neck.
5. Do this all the way down to your pubic bone. Making note at the top, 2 mid points and base.
If you do have a diastasis, you may not have it all the way from ribs to pubis. Below are a few different variations that may help you visualise.
Something can always be done!
If you have discovered that you do have a diastasis, don't fret. It's certainly not the end of the world. With the help of a Holistic Core Restore® Coach, you can learn how to manage load, close the gap, and return to exercise safely.
Click here to view more about our diastasis programme.
Our goal as Holistic Core Restore® coaches, is to assess your body and get it functioning optimally through breathing, exercise, stretching, hydration and great nutrition!
Check out our great results below and read our testimonials.