Moving through Midlife | Helping Midlife Moms Move Better, Gain Confidence, and Lose the Midsection Weight

121 | Minimizing Lower Belly Pooch through Posture and Breathing Techniques

November 06, 2023 Courtney McManus
121 | Minimizing Lower Belly Pooch through Posture and Breathing Techniques
Moving through Midlife | Helping Midlife Moms Move Better, Gain Confidence, and Lose the Midsection Weight
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Moving through Midlife | Helping Midlife Moms Move Better, Gain Confidence, and Lose the Midsection Weight
121 | Minimizing Lower Belly Pooch through Posture and Breathing Techniques
Nov 06, 2023
Courtney McManus

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Do you ever feel that your lower belly pooch is becoming more noticeable as you age, especially postpartum or during perimenopause? Ever wonder how your posture and breathing are deeply connected to it? You'll be surprised to discover the significant link between posture, breathing, and abdominal strength, and how mastering these can help you minimize that 'low belly pooch'. I, Courtney, a personal trainer and movement specialist, will guide you with my techniques that will not only help you breathe more efficiently but also actively work your magic on your pelvic floor muscles.

We're not stopping there! Get ready to delve into the importance of posture and movement for overall health and wellbeing. Witness how the way you sit, stand, and move throughout the day can affect your core strength, and learn how to properly brace yourself when lifting weights. I'm supplying you with valuable tips on how to move your body in ways that strengthen your abs, back, and glutes. And guess what? You'll also have access to videos and resources that will help you along the way. So, come join our 'Moving Through Midlife' Facebook group and let's start embracing aging with grace and confidence, one movement at a time.

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Head to www.movingthroughmidlife. com to learn more

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Do you ever feel that your lower belly pooch is becoming more noticeable as you age, especially postpartum or during perimenopause? Ever wonder how your posture and breathing are deeply connected to it? You'll be surprised to discover the significant link between posture, breathing, and abdominal strength, and how mastering these can help you minimize that 'low belly pooch'. I, Courtney, a personal trainer and movement specialist, will guide you with my techniques that will not only help you breathe more efficiently but also actively work your magic on your pelvic floor muscles.

We're not stopping there! Get ready to delve into the importance of posture and movement for overall health and wellbeing. Witness how the way you sit, stand, and move throughout the day can affect your core strength, and learn how to properly brace yourself when lifting weights. I'm supplying you with valuable tips on how to move your body in ways that strengthen your abs, back, and glutes. And guess what? You'll also have access to videos and resources that will help you along the way. So, come join our 'Moving Through Midlife' Facebook group and let's start embracing aging with grace and confidence, one movement at a time.

Support the Show.

Head to www.movingthroughmidlife. com to learn more

Join our Free FB Community:
Moving through Midlife (Powered by Form Fit) | Facebook


or follow me on IG or Tik Tok
courtney_formfit

Speaker 1:

Welcome to Moving Through Midlife. I am your host, courtney, a personal trainer and movement specialist who wants to help you move through midlife with more grace. Each week, we will discuss ways we can show up better for ourselves and our children without the burnout. We will focus on overall health through habit stacking to help increase energy, provide movement snacks to help you move more throughout the day, while also moving your body more, and learn from professionals on moving through midlife with ease so that you can feel confident with aging. Gracefully, grab your earbuds and join me on a leisurely walk while we discuss moving through midlife.

Speaker 1:

Today, I'm sharing with you three ways to work on strengthening your lower abs. So anytime you start podcasts, you're always thinking about like, what's that very first thing I want to say? And so I went back to what are some of the questions you all ask me a lot, and this is one I get quite often, because what happens is, for many of us, whether you are newly postpartum or going through perimenopause, you're going to deal with what you all say well what your lower abs are, or also known as that low belly pooch or the mummy tummy lots of different ways of describing it and they can all be handled the same way. They all may be happening for different reasons that I'm going to talk about a little bit, but, depending on where you are on your journey, we're all going to work on them the same way, and I will always start with two things your posture and your breathing. And here's why. So a lot of you may have tried different ab workouts, which are great, and there are so many different ideas out there for exercises you can do to strengthen your abs. Here's why I wouldn't start there.

Speaker 1:

One depending on how you sit and move throughout the day, you can do that 30 minute core workout, but then, when you're getting up and you're moving, if you tend to be one who rounds forward through the shoulders and are gripping down with your upper abs, you will be creating pressure down, which in turn puts a lot of pressure on that lower belly and you will end up with a low belly pooch. It has to do with your posture. The other one is where you're breathing, and if you are doing certain exercises and you are not breathing properly through those exercises, you may be creating more pressure down or out on your abdominal wall. So those are where I start with any of my programs. We start with your breathing and we start with your posture and then we start to move into these other things. Now, yes, for some of you, you may be able to do some of the exercises and you will start to notice a change. You may not have a problem with breathing. You may have a breathing pattern that is working the diaphragm effectively, which is also working the pelvic floor effectively, so that may not be a problem for you and then for some of you as well.

Speaker 1:

Sometimes it takes working through these core exercises to work on strengthening the abs and the core I'm sorry, the abs, the back and the glutes, which will allow your posture to become better, so where you're standing a little bit more upright and able to move a little bit more efficiently because you're becoming stronger through your midsection. So it's not that it's not possible. I just like to incorporate breathing and posture into your daily life, because I don't look at just what we can do in those 30 minutes. I try to look at things as how can we move more effectively throughout the day? So what is the first way we strengthen the low belly? We need to start with your breathing. Each time you breathe, your rib cage should be expanding fully so that the diaphragm can expand and air should be going down into the core, tapping the pelvic floor and then coming back out and allowing the pressure within the core to actively work those pelvic floor muscles without creating added pressure down or out on the belly. We don't want to fully belly breathe as this doesn't provide full diaphragm expansion. So you may hear people say to take deep belly breaths and yes, that is good for calming you down. The problem is is when that's the only way you're breathing and you're not effectively working into your back. So I like to stop or start all of my clients with back breathing first to start working on that full expansion of the rib cage.

Speaker 1:

You also want to make sure that your ribs are moving in a 360 breathing pattern and breathing into the back and the sides all together. So I like to think of this like a jellyfish. So if you were to breathe in and you place your hands gently around your rib cage and imagine a jellyfish, how it moves all parts of the body equally. So when you breathe in, you should feel all parts of your ribs expanding into your hands, the front fingertips, you should feel it, the sides, into the hand and then your thumb would be wrapped around to the back and you should feel that as well, and I would say that for many of the women I work with, that is where they struggle the most. And once you start to feel the breathing moving into your back a little bit more, you're going to notice less tension and tightness in your mid to low back. So something else to really work towards doing I am going to put a video for you, or a link. Actually, let me do this. I'm gonna put a link to the blog post that I have where you can go through all of this, because I have quite a few videos, so it would probably be easier to do it that way.

Speaker 1:

The second way that you want to work on strengthening the lower abs is to focus on your posture. If you are slumping down with rounded shoulders, head jutting forward and ribs gripping down, so think about that posture. Many, so many people are in. They sit at their computer desk or they're sitting in their car and what's happening? Like you can feel kind of how your ribs are kind of pulling down. You feel how the weight is pulling down from your chest to your rib area. This is putting a ton of pressure down on your belly and when it, when this is occurring, it's either going to go out towards your abdominal wall so think diastasis recti or into the pelvic floor or that low belly pooch. So we're going to need to work on strengthening those core muscles.

Speaker 1:

And remember, your core is not just your abs. Your core is going to incorporate your back, your glutes. It can even move into, I mean, your core is not your hamstrings, but your hamstrings and your glutes work in conjunction with each other, so same as your inner thighs. Your inner thighs are like the anchor to the pelvic floor, which I'm going to discuss in another podcast. But all of these things have to kind of work in conjunction and you will hear me say this time and time again that this you need to look at all movements as a whole body approach. So if you are struggling with things occurring in your core, you can't just focus on your abs. You've got to look at the whole body how the shoulders are moving, how the upper traps so upper neck and back muscles how those are working in conjunction because they can all be involved in the process. So we are going to then work on posture and that is going to be simple techniques to work on strengthening your abs, strengthening your back, your glutes all of that so that you're standing with better posture. And then the third way to strengthen the lower abs is to focus on how you are moving throughout the day. So whether you're doing a workout or picking up your child sitting in a chair, whatever you're doing, you need to focus in on how you are sitting.

Speaker 1:

So many people tend to either lean to one side or cross one leg over always the other leg, that type of thing. Stand with one foot turned out, hips dropped into, like you're jutting into one of your hips. I'm thinking like when you have your child sitting on your side. We can all think of that image, how you kind of push into one hip and rest into it. All of these things are affecting how your body continues to move. So we wanna make sure that we are moving in ways to where that doesn't mean you can't cross your leg. It doesn't mean that you can't put your child on your hip.

Speaker 1:

But if we're going to do those types of things, we need to make sure we do them on the other side, and in the beginning it's going to feel uncomfortable. Why does it feel uncomfortable? Because you're not used to doing it and therefore, like that should be your clue oh, things have changed. My muscles have compensated in one way or another. Things might have elongated or shortened, so if it's uncomfortable, that probably means you need to do it a little bit more.

Speaker 1:

So, making sure to change the side with which you are moving and then that way you're not feeling like I've got to stand in perfect posture all day long, because that is not what we are trying to do. That is not good as well. We should be mobile, we should be moving, we should be moving in our body in many different ways, and this being cognizant of what you do throughout the day will help you to start moving in different ways. This also will relay into when you are working out, making sure that you're paying attention to different things that are occurring in your body as you move and ensuring that you are bracing through your core. So not like really stiff. You've got to think like what is? You know, if I'm lifting 10 pound weights, then I probably don't need to brace as much as if I'm lifting up a 50 pound child or, you know, a 40 pound child, whatever. That may be a little bit different than how I'm gonna brace when I lift up 10 pounds. So making sure that you understand that and all of these things can start to occur naturally as you start moving more, starting to lift weights, starting to understand your body, starting to understand your posture and breathing, and all of this will start to work together in a nice way, not to where you're having to stress yourself out, worrying about am I doing this right? Am I doing this right? It becomes natural. Our body is designed to move and move in a certain way and you will, as you start to get used to that, you will start to notice that.

Speaker 1:

I'd love for you to join me over in the Moving Through Midlife group over on our in Facebook. I will be posting videos in there helping you through things. It's a great way for us to connect. Ask your questions. If you have specific questions, I'm able to help you a little bit more in there, so make sure to check that out. And then also you can join us for our Transform Coaching program, where I'm going to be diving deeper into posture and breathing and form and movement and strengthening, and then we also work on your nutrition, your habits, all of that as well. I hope you enjoyed this episode and found something to take away to help you practice healthier habits, move more or handle the midlife in aging with grace. If you enjoyed this episode, please share it with a friend or leave us a review to help us reach more moms just like you. Head to movingthroughmidlifecom to join the free community or learn how you can move more and feel better in your daily life.

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