Tummy Tuck

How to Get Moving & Stay Moving after a Tummy Tuck

Closeup of a woman's sneakers.

Deciding to have a tummy tuck is an investment in yourself. When you make that investment, you want to make sure you get the most out of your results. While a tummy tuck removes excess skin and fat and tightens the muscles in the abdominal area, giving you those curves you desire, it takes work to keep those new curves and contours. Eating healthy and working out after a tummy tuck will help you stay fit, keep your waistline trim and help you maintain your new curves.

Talk with Your Surgeon about Exercise and Recovery

While you may feel eager to get back into a workout routine after your tummy tuck, it is important to give your body time to heal and rest. During your first week, your focus should be on rest and recovery only. During your tummy tuck consultation, after your tummy tuck procedure and during post-op checkups, your surgeon will go over your recovery timeline and let you know when you can safely progress to light exercise.

Begin with Light Cardio

Once your surgeon clears you for light exercise, your focus should be on light cardio. This can usually start within the second week after your tummy tuck. At this point, you should still avoid any lifting or strenuous activity, but increasing your heart rate and burning some calories with simple daily walks is a great way to start moving and getting yourself into a daily exercise routine. Gradually increase your walking time each day but remember to stop if you feel uncomfortable.

Move to Leg and Arm Exercises

Avoid any exercises that target your core muscles until you receive the green light from your surgeon. Core muscle exercises too early can complicate your recovery.

In the early stages of your recovery, you want to avoid exercises that target your abdominal muscles, as they are still healing. But that doesn’t mean you have to avoid working out. This is a perfect time for exercises that target the arms and legs. This can include things like stationary cycling and an elliptical machine. You may also add range of motion exercises and free weights that focus on your arms and legs, without engaging your core muscles.

Gradually Start Working Out Your Abs

While you must remember that everyone heals differently, your surgeon may clear you for more strenuous activity around six to eight weeks after your tummy tuck. When your surgeon gives you the green light, you can begin to slowly add abdominal exercises back into your workout routine. But remember to take it slow and, if you feel pain or discomfort, stop immediately. Start with simple exercises, such as pelvic thrusts, before jumping into crunches or planks.

Resume Your Pre-Surgical Routine or Create a New Exercise Routine

Once your tummy tuck recovery is complete, you are free to get back to your pre-surgical exercise routine. Sticking with this regular routine will help you maintain your new contours and get the most out of your tummy tuck. If you didn’t have a regular workout routine before your tummy tuck, now is the time to create one. You invested in yourself with a tummy tuck and you can consider a regular exercise routine as your insurance policy on yourself. Healthy eating and regular exercise are not only good for your health, but these good habits will help you maintain your tummy tuck results for years.


How to Get Moving & Stay Moving after a Tummy Tuck
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How to Get Moving & Stay Moving after a Tummy Tuck
Dr. Scot Martin in New Mexico discusses the importance of working out after a tummy tuck to help maintain your new contours and offers an exercise timeline.
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December 9, 2020
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