Monday, July 22, 2013

Diastasis Recti Go Away...Far Far Away!

So I used to do forestry work about a decade ago and I could lug around a chainsaw with ease.  Today though is a different story.  I am frumpy, poochy, and just feel more like Jaba the Hutt than Princess Leia.  Although I don't think I ever felt like her in the first place, but I think you get the picture.  I have found out that my muscles tore apart and its going to take some time to get them to close again.  It is called diastasis recti and you literally have no abdomen strength.  There is a hole in your abdomen muscles and your organs are exposed till you can get the muscles to bind back together.  I asked my physical therapist how long it took for her to close the gap and she admitted to me it took a year...WTF?!?  A whole year?!?

Geez this whole business of having babies definitely takes a toll on your body and if you are a man then spare me the I understand phrase.  Yes I get that you made the choice to become a couch potato and to lose your definition.  My choice was to have a baby, but not in a million years did I think it would lead to a gaping hole in my abdomen.  I guess it is more likely to occur with subsequent pregnancies and yet it is not frequently discussed amongst pregnant women.  I had never heard of it till my physical therapist showed me why I was struggling just to pick up my daughter.

Well I'm on my way to recovery and who knew that I would be pulling up a pair of spanx over my jiggles.  I certainly had no clue that diastasis recti would make me succumb to buying a pair of spanx.  I mean who wants to wear a binding like corset in this day and age.  Now I don't wear it all the time, but if I am doing a lot of activity then its definitely spanx time!  Good news is that after wearing the one size for about a week, I'm almost ready to jump into the smaller size that they have.  On a good note, I found out that wearing it has helped the gap get smaller.  I really wish I had tried it earlier and I keep telling my pregnant girlfriends that they need to think of spanx the moment they have that baby.

Now there are exercises you can do to help heal and I wear the spanx when doing them.  I kind of visualize the muscles coming closer together as I do them.  I can't help, but think "knit faster, knit faster."  A girlfriend of mine suggested kayaking and I thought wow I don't have the abdomen strength to do anything like that.  I sometimes have to ask my husband to pick up our infant daughter from my arms and then help me up off the floor.  Yeah, diastasis recti is no joke.  So back to the exercises I'm rocking right now and I admit I don't find myself dedicating the time that I need to.  I am just that busy most days.  If you google Sahrmann exercises, you can find a plethora of information or watch the exercises on youtube.  Best part is if you are a LOTR fan then you can conjure up the name it closely resembles.  I swear I wondered what my physical therapist was saying the first time she pronounced it.

Anyway, please don't think you are some badass who can skip to exercise five before you complete the first one.  This is not a race and as I said before diastasis recti is no joke.  If you have ever done the 100 in pilates then the first step of moving your tummy to the ground should be an easy concept for you.  Trust me I'm a long way off from ever doing those 100s.  However, I'm not afraid to admit I'm not ready to do even one pilates move.  You just had a baby so please be easy on yourself.  I think this is even harder because we know how we once were.

Yes a long long time ago...

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