Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Diastasis recti- "bumps" in the road

I feel that I've reached somewhat of a plateau in my healing from diastasis recti. There is definitely a difference from when I first started working on it, but I haven't seen significant improvement in a while. I can't say that I've kept up well with the exercises, though. I think it's just going to take a lot of hard work to keep seeing improvement.

Here are a few factors and strategies I've been pondering:

Diet/Weight Control

I hesitate to make a complete assessment of my stomach situation while still breastfeeding, as I've still got some "extra love" that my body may need in order to make up for losing all those calories. I know I could be eating healthier, but I am trying not to be too hard on myself during this season. I'm looking forward to summer when fresh produce will be more readily available and I'll be more tempted to eat fruits and veggies.

Physical Therapy

This is a hard one because it needs to be someone who has experience in treating diastasis recti, but it still might be worth it to be evaluated in person as opposed to over the Internet. I know that the way I carry myself plays a large role in pain management. Speaking of which...

Chronic Pain Issues

About a month or so ago I had a lower back episode, and I've had to limit myself since then. It has slowly gotten better but I'm staying away from things like vacuuming. When I go out with David I don't attempt the stairs with him in the stroller. It seems like that is what threw out my back this time, but trying really hard to clench my stomach muscles probably doesn't help either. Anyway, it feels like anytime something like that happens, I feel like I need to just stop and take it easy and only do very gentle movements. Having a normal-looking stomach isn't the number one priority. I have some stretching movements that I do in addition to the strengthening ones, and I try to really shake everything out and "reset" my posture a lot.

More Intense Exercise

It feels kind of funny to write this after the above section, but I've been considering either signing up for a more intense rehab program or just writing out my own exercise schedule for a certain time period and trying to stick to it more faithfully. It's something I want to plan for and take on, maybe in the next 6 months. I know I could just jump in and start tomorrow and maybe have results by summer, but I would rather think about it a little more.

As I've mentioned, I'm trying to be really forgiving towards my body and take my time while I'm still breastfeeding and getting used to other aspects of motherhood. Managing pain and learning how to use muscles correctly are priorities too, while self-confidence doesn't necessarily need to be excluded. Results come and go because of the seasons we have: sickness and health; differing schedules from week-to-week, changing weather patterns; more and less discipline; high and low energy. Life is full of interruptions, so healing happens that way too.

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