One day at 3 A.M. my dog began to freak out and wouldn’t be calmed down no matter how much we reassured her. So as a result, I got up out of bed and laid down with her on the coach. (My presence can usually calm her down.) Then we finally fell back to sleep and sometime later I heard my wife yell, MOSES! I think that my water broke, of course I being the intelligent man who I am said, really! Isn’t it a bit early for that. You see our child wasn’t supposed to be born until a month from that day. But thankfully my wife being very intelligent decided to call the hospital , talked to a nurse and told all that happened as a result, the nurse told us to come in. We then packed a bag (remember a month.) and began the drive to the hospital to meet our little one.

 

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After many hours and a bit of sleep my wife gave birth to a baby boy, his name was Josh and I began the journey into fatherhood. I didn’t realize how much it would affect my fitness though and I have learned a few valuable lessons as a parent and of course want to share them with you!

Mobility:
I have spent years investing time into moving well and a big part of the focus is having good joint mobility. It is funny how fast all of that work can begin to disappear when you are carrying a baby around often. I can recall when my guy was very little working with one of my clients on the barbell clean and for a brief second my wrists would not extend and get into a good rack position. I was extremely perplexed, but then realized that I had been carrying a baby in wrist flexion and made my muscles tight as a result.

I also began to feel something that I had not felt for a few years and that was tight shoulder area muscles. My t-spine, pecs and other back muscles ended up getting tight from once again being in slight flexion while carrying around my little guy; then came the elbow pain factor from over use. So I began to apply my knowledge to my situation and came up with some solutions to these problems that wouldn’t be going away any time soon

First of all and the most uncomfortable feeling was what was going on in mid-back, so I began to work even diligently on my mobility, stability and breathing in this area. You will want to do the same, maintain your posture and keep your shoulders healthy with: T-spine mobility drillskettlebell halosArm bars, Turkish get ups and breathing drills. Also of course don’t forget to foam roll as much as you can!

You will also want to spend time on wrist mobility and making sure that your movement is as balanced as possible.

Working out:
You will find this part very challenging to do as a new dad; if you are like me then you feel obligated to help your partner with the little one. But you need to recognize that you need to stay fit for your baby and significant other’s benefit. Now you will not however be able to dedicate a lot of time to it. So you will want to train complex moves with a good amount of intensity in order to either maintain or get results from your training. Just don’t kill yourself; you may not sleep from one night to the other.

Some moves that you will want to incorporate in your training are:

Kettlebell swings
this movement will counteract the baby carry posture and help strengthen your back line.

Farmer’s walks

This will help you stabilize your shoulders and train your posture while working your abs.

You may find doing all of these moves to be very challenging and making time to train difficult, so I want to give you some options to help.

  1. Do shorter more frequent workouts:
    With any child time is a precious commodity, so you will not be able to spend as much time training as before. Instead pick a few complex moves and put them together with a bit more intensity than before, as well-doing super-sets and so-on. Now do this more often than before. (4 to 6 days a week)

    2. Train total body 2 times a week:
    This will cover all of your needs in your fitness for the time being and help you even make progress as you train

    3.Grease the groove:
    This is simple, pick a movement or two and do it on the hour or every two and so-on. For example as I writing this post, I took a break to do pistols. Just keep it away from failure and enjoy the gains!

You as a new dad or even an older one can still stay relatively fit through this busy time of your life and you don’t have to feel guilty about taking time for your health. Staying fit is a gift not only to yourself but your family as well. Just make sure to iron out the details with your partner and have a plan for what you are going to do and how much time you are going to do it in. If you have to work your mobility throughout the day to save time for your strength and or conditioning work, Just figure it out for you and stick to the plan using the points that I gave you and enjoy fatherhood!

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