Pregnancy causes weight gain that is often difficult to shed after the birth of your child. In addition to all-over weight gain, fat may tend to accumulate in the lower area of your abdomen. To combat this post-pregnancy lower-belly pooch, begin a program of fat loss and abdominal-strengthening exercises. Postpartum women should perform 150 minutes a week of moderate activity, unless otherwise specified by a doctor, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Begin a regimen of physical activity to help you shed fat from all over your body, including your lower abdomen. Perform 30 minutes of aerobic exercise five days a week to meet the recommended amount of physical activity for postpartum women.
Walk briskly, bicycle leisurely or perform low-impact aerobics for moderate exercise. A 160-pound woman burns nearly 300 calories per hour walking at a pace of 3.5 mph and bicycling less than 10 mph. Low-impact aerobics burns over 350 calories per hour.
Perform more vigorous forms of aerobic activity to burn more calories per hour if you have been cleared by your doctor for intense activity. Try jogging 5 mph to burn nearly 600 calories or running 8 mph to burn almost 1,000 calories per hour if you weigh 160 pounds.
Eat a balanced, nutritional menu of lean protein, complex carbohydrates and minimal saturated fats. Eat lean meats and poultry, reduced-fat dairy products and whole-grain pastas, breads and cereals.
Add plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables to your menu to add satisfying bulk that will keep you full longer. Replace sugary snack foods with vegetables and fruit to reduce your caloric intake.
Reduce the size of your portions at meal times and consume more meals throughout the day. Eat five to six small meals instead of two or three large meals to keep your energy level and blood sugar level regulated.
Tone your lower abdomen by performing abdominal-strengthening exercises that target your lower abdomen. Lie on a flat surface, such as a yoga mat on the floor or on a flat weight bench. Bend your knees with your feet flat on the floor.
Tighten your abdomen and raise your feet off the floor. Keep your back against the floor or flat surface. Continue raising your bent knees until they almost touch your chest. Hold this position for one count, continuing to keep your abdomen tight.
Lower your legs slowly to the original position. Repeat this movement for three to four sets of 10 to 15 total repetitions.
Roman Chair Lifts
Use a Roman chair to perform Roman chair knee lifts to strengthen and tone your lower abdominal muscles. Stand in the chair with your elbows and forearms resting on the arm rests. Allow your legs to hang below your body.
Keep your back against the back rest of the chair and tighten your abdominal muscles. Bend your legs and raise your knees toward your chest. Hold this position for one count.
Lower your legs and straighten them to resume the original position. Perform three sets of 15 to 20 lifts.
Perform abdominal-strengthening exercises that target your lower abdomen in conjunction with a consistent full-body strengthening workout at least twice a week for best results.
If you experienced complications during child birth or had a Cesarian delivery, consult your doctor about when and how to begin exercising.