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4 Simple Pelvic Floor Exercises for New Moms & All Moms

Hey Mamas,

Pregnancy f—, I mean, messes, your body.

One thing many of us don’t hear enough about, until it’s too late, is the importance of pelvic floor exercises.

The pelvic floor muscles hold the pelvic organs in place, we’re talking bladder, rectum and uterus. You can feel the pelvic floor muscles in action if you squeeze as if your preventing yourself from urinating. Click here for a good visual.

Now, that you know what they are, you’re next thoughts might be, is a weak pelvic floor causing:

  • pain during sexual activity
  • week bladder, aka urinary incontinence
  • constipation
  • lower back pain

At one point or another, I could have checked off all of the above. After countless visits to gastroenterologist, rheumatologist, chiropractor and a slew of tests, I finally found salvation with a pelvic floor specialized physical therapist at Duffy & Bracken.

If you are pregnant, talk to your doctor about pelvic floor exercises you can do during your pregnancy. The more you do while you are pregnant, the better off you’ll be once the baby is out. (Did you know in France physical therapy is part of post-natal care?!!

now, here are some pelvic floor exercises I do, that have greatly improves all – ALL – of my symptoms.

Pelvic Floor Exercises: BRIDEPelvic Floor Exercises bridgePelvic Floor Exercises bridge

While lying on your back, tighten your lower abdominal (as if you are about to poop or the feeling of bringing your belly button into floor below you), squeeze your buttocks and then raise your buttocks off the floor to create a bridge with your body.

Hold for 2 seconds and release. Repeat 20 times.

Pelvic Floor Exercises: BRIDGE WITH LEG EXTENSIONPelvic Floor Exercises bridgePelvic Floor Exercises bridge

Stay in raised bridge, as explained above, continue to squeeze your buttocks. The, press your left heel firming into the floor and extend your right leg fully. Make sure to continue squeezing your butt, so that you’re not engaging your lower back.

Hold for 2-seconds. Return your leg to the ground and repeat with the opposite leg. Repeat 10 times on each leg.

If you’re just starting out, you should fully lower the bridge and rest. Work up to a point where you can do a few leg extensions without lowering the bridge or sacrificing form and that good squeeze.

Pelvic Floor Exercises: MODIFIED PLANK ON ELBOWS

Pelvic Floor Exercises modified plankLay face down on the mat and push yourself into a plank. Make sure your elbows are directly under your shoulder blades. Keep your pelvis tucked in. You should feel mostly glutes, core and upper shoulders working.

Neutralize the neck and spine by looking at a spot on the floor about a foot beyond the hands. Your head should be in line with your back.

Hold the position for 20 seconds. As you get more comfortable with the move, hold your plank for as long as possible without compromising form or breath.

Pelvic Floor Exercises: BIRD DOG

Pelvic Floor Exercises Bird DogPelvic Floor Exercises Bird DogBegin on all fours with your hands directly under your shoulders and your knees directly under your hips. Pull your abs in to your spine. (Imagine someone pulling your belly button from the inside.)

Keeping your back and pelvis stable, reach your right arm forward and left leg back. Don’t allow the pelvis to rock side to side as you move your leg behind you. Focus on not letting the rib cage sag toward the floor.

Reach through your left heel to engage the muscles in the back of the leg and your butt. Return to the starting position, placing your hand and knee on the floor.

Do the same movement on the other side. Repeat 10 times on each side.

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health bars wellness experts love

Wellness Experts Share Best Health Bars, for Smarter Snacking

Hey Mamas,

Do you ever get lost in the health bar section at the grocery store? Do wonder if your power bar is a power fail?

For all you on-the-go, busy mamas, I’ve tapped into 5 wellness and fitness experts to find out what they look for in a good-quality, health bar. Happy snacking.

Tanya Zuckerbrot, MS, RD and founder of F-Factor

Her company recommends No Cow Bars to all their clients. This protein-packed bar is obviously #FFactoryApproved (google it – I’m OBSESSED and will share more about how F-Factor has changed my life and body for the better, in future posts!!) This bar has 20+ grams of dairy free protein, and only 1g of sugar. It’s also Dairy Free, Soy Free, Gluten Free, Vegan, Non-GMO.

Shannon A. Garvia, MDS, RD, LD with KISS in the Kitchen

My favorite on-the-go bars are Thunderbird Bars and RX Bars. I look for bars with real food ingredients (the fewer the better) and ideally are gluten and dairy free, for my own dietary restrictions. Her fav flavors include Cashew, Fig & Carrot from Thunderbird and we both agree that RX Bars’ Chocolate Sea Salt is a winner.

Jeannine Morris, Multimedia Beauty & Wellness Journalist

Being Vegan and Gluten Gree, I love Kind Bars. The dark chocolate, nuts and sea salt are my favorite flavors. Also, the Lara Bars Blueberry is delicious. I never know where I’ll be when I run into a situation where my dietary restrictions can’t be met, so it’s ideal to have healthy snacks like these on hand.

Bianca Jade aka Mizzfit, Fitness Expert, TV Host, Founder of Mizzfit Box

Rise bar is really simple. It’s a protein bar with 5 ingredients or less that’s non-GMO, gluten-free and soy-free. It doesn’t kill your appetite, but it cuts your craving pre and post workout.

Kristin McGee, Celeb Yoga + Pilates Instructor, Author of Chair Yoga & Wellness Expert

She really likes the quality and taste of Clean Eats Bar, which she’s discussing today on Mommy Moments with Pamela. Tune in 1pm EST for our live chat.

Wellness Trends 2017

3 Wellness Trends for 2017 That Are Easy and Worth Trying

 

 

Hey Mamas,

Me again, blog post number two for the week.

Today, I’m sharing 3 Wellness Trends for 2017, that are really worth embracing.

I learned about these trends through my own wellness evolution over the past year, as well as attending an amazing 2017 Wellness Trends event hosted by Well+Good.

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Gotta be honest – I’m not a “wellness expert” or “fit fab mom” or “health coach”. I’m just a gal trying to figure out the best way to live a cleaner, greener, healthier, and more spiritually-sane life. I’ve selected the below three “trends” (FYI I hat this word) because they are easy to implement, make sense, and could make your life a little brighter and better.

Wellness Trends #1 – Anti-Bootcamp Fitness + Body Recovery

We’ve become obsessed with high-intensity workouts and bootcamp exercise classes that leave us gasping for air. I was never into that craze, even though you do see amazing results.  Particularly, after the birth of my son, David, in 2014, I needed to find workouts that didn’t tax my back. That’s when I discovered Fluidity, a barre/pilates-inspired workout that uses your own body weight to delicately sculpt and tone the body, while also helping improve pelvic floor muscles and improve core strength. If you live in NY and LA, you can find Fluidiy classes in a gym. I actually have the Fluidity system at home, and I’ve never owned any exercise machine. Well worth the investment.wellness_trends_2017_8

You’ll also want to invest in a great foam roller. It’s a pre and post exercise essential, to loosen up muscles, prevent injuries, as well as sooth the body at the end of a long day of hustling kids, work, home and all. Check out Instagram for my favorite night-time foam rolling pose for total body de-stressing. My physical therapist calls this move “The Jesus”.wellness_trends_2017_1

Wellness Trends #2 – Collagen Boosting Suppliments

This one is kind-of funny. I’ve actually be on-trend, with collagen, my whole life, thanks to my grandmother!

Every time grandma nudged me to eat bone-broth (in Russian we call is boulon) because it would cure everything, she was right! Bone broth is a natural, age-old, proven way to increase your intake of collagen.

What’s so special about collagen?

Collagen is the most abundant protein in the body – it’s what keeps your joints from squeaking, your skin from sagging, and your hair from shedding. Yup, it’s that amazing. But, sadly, we produce less of it, as we age.

Enter Vital Proteins, my new beauty BFF – no joke! My insta-stories can attest to my love for this NO-GMO powdered collagen, sourced from the best grass-fed beef or wild-caught fish. One or two scoops a day will really help you as you cross into your 30s, 40s and beyond.

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Sharing my collagen beauty smoothie on Good Day Philly with Karen Hepp

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Sharing my collagen beauty smoothie with Autria Godfrey on Good Morning Washington

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Collagen Beauty Drink        ——     1 Scoop Vital Proteins Collagen Beauty Greens, 6oz Almond Milk, 2oz Coconut Milk, 1tsp Almond Paste, 1tsp Raw Honey, 1tsp Matcha.  Blend & beautify

Sometimes I make smoothies, even cookies, using Vital Protein’s Collagen Beauty Greens or Collagen Peptides with Vanilla & Coconut Water. Other times, I pop a scoop into my water or tea. (Check packaging to see which can go into cold vs hot mixtures).

PS I still make my chicken (sometimes beef) bone broths for the family. It’s delicious and easy. Click for recipe, and please don’t buy stock!

Wellness Trends #3 – Crystals and Chakras

Ya, so this one is new for me. I’ve gotten into essential oils, chakra meditations (thank you YouTube) and, yes, even crystal power.

Here’s how I look at it – if something makes you happy, and it’s not causing harm to your or anyone else, why not do it!?

That’s why I’ve placed Rose Quartz, the stone of self-love (selected at Well+Good’s Wellness Trends event from Luke Simon of La Vie En Rainbow)  near my bandstand, purchased numerous stone bracelets that speak to me (and then I google the meaning, to much delight — I always pick what I’m seeking/praying for) and try to do a Chakra mediation every so often.

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Here’s to YOUR Health

May 2017 bestow upon you all the brightness and beauty you seek. And, may you have many reasons to smile.

Remember, a happy mom, means a happy family.

If all else fails, there should ALWAYS be a bottle of Rose on standby.

Always Be Your Best You Pamela Pekerman