Ab Toning Exercises After C-Section

While many women believe that ab toning exercises after c-section are useless, that actually isnt the case. Though many women find themselves with the mothers apron that comes from having a cesarean section, there are ways that you can start to shrink this area and get yourself back into shape. The trick is you have to do more than simply ab toning exercises after c-section; you also need to diet, do some aerobic workouts in addition to the actual toning work. And while you may be tempted to skip one of these steps, that may be just the thing thats keeping you from fitting into those skinny jeans again.

To help ab toning exercises after c-section work, you will need to revamp your entire diet. If youre still carry around extra baby weight, just as with any weight, you need to take in fewer calories than you are burning off, creating a calorie deficit. To do this, you should increase the fruits and vegetables, limit the processed foods, sugars, and fatty foods that you are eating, as well as try to eat less. This is actually much easier than it sounds too. Start by leaving one to two bites on your plate at every meal. Then, start replacing sugary foods with sweet fruits, regular soda with diet. The smaller changes will add up as you go along, but its up to you to find ways to cut back your calories. By eating only when youre hungry as well as starting to eat smaller portions five to seven times a day, you will start to notice weight dropping away.

The next step to help ab toning exercises after c-section be effective is to include some sort of cardiovascular workout in your fitness program. By taking the baby out for brisk walks of at least forty-five minutes a day, you will help to burn off more calories and increase your metabolism not to mention your energy levels. If you dont have time for a long workout, try to fit in smaller chunks of workouts to add up to the calorie burn that you want to achieve.

Finally, there are a number of ab toning exercises after c-section that you can use to help tone that section of your body. Here are a few that have worked for other moms like you:

  1. Pelvic tilt By lying on your back with your feet on the floor, lift your pelvis off the ground while you pull in your lower abdominal muscles. You can either repeat this exercise or you can see how long you can hold your muscles in and then lower slowly.

  2. Side crunches To help hold in the skin that may be hanging on your stomach, you will want to strengthen your oblique muscles as well. Lying on the ground with your feet on the floor, put your hands behind your head, left up as though you were going to crunch normally and then twist to the side, letting the opposite elbow touch the opposite knee. Slowly twist back to the middle and lower down. Repeat on the other side.

By taking the time to create a plan that can help your ab toning exercises after c-section work, you will not only get your figure back, but you will also get your body in shape to handle the rigors of childhood.


    • Lynn says

      Hi, Priscilla. I’d check with your doctor on this. There are many variables that determine when and if you should do ab work after a c-section. And those factors can only be safely assessed by your doc.

  1. says

    hey my names karissa i had my c section in january. im currently 143 and i want to tighten up my stomach. i dont want this hanging belly and big THIGHS .With exersise and diet will my stomach be flat again?

    • Lynn says

      Hi, Karissa.

      Proper eating and exercise are the key to losing overall body fat. So if you’re belly and thighs are from extra fat… then it will absolutely help! Just remember to make your diet and activity into a lifestyle change and not a quick-fix diet program – they never work :)

  2. Danielle says

    hey, my name is danielle, and i had a c-section 9 months ago. I have lost all of my baby weight, and have been working out. My upper abs are visible, but my lower stomach still has a slight pooch, any advise or workouts that would target my lower abs would help! Thank you (:

    • Lynn says

      Hi, Danielle.

      First… CONGRATS on the baby! And for getting all the baby weight off! The slight pooch on your lower abs is most likely some additional fat. And to get rid of fat anywhere on the body… we have to reduce over all body fat. In other words, we cannot spot train or in other words we cannot do abs and lose belly fat, or we cannot do squats and lose thigh fat.

      To reduce overall body fat, we need to be on a careful eating and workout plan. The workout plan should focus on all of your muscle groups so that you are adding nice, lean muscle all over. The more lean muscle you have, the more calories you’ll burn just by sleeping :)

      1 pound of muscle burns 50 calories while 1 pound of fat only burns 5 calories. This is why strength training is so wonderful for fat loss. It works double-duty almost :)

      Now, your body will take off the fat where it wants to. For me, the area right below my belly button seems to be the last place my body wants to get rid of fat. So in order for me to conquer it… I have to be on a very strict eating and workout plan and get my overall body fat fairly low.

      As for actual lower ab exercises, here’s a page for that. The first 4 exercises are great for lower abs, so is the last one (Ball Rock). Keep in mind though that you want to workout your full body – and not just abs.

  3. Therese Cuprisin says

    Hi. I just had my baby girl and was wondering what types of stomach exercises I can do after a c-section. My doctors said that I can do exercises but were not specific on what I can do.

    • Lynn says

      Hi, Therese.

      If you got the okay from a doctor and they didn’t give any restrictions then it sounds like there are none. I would probably call back and specifically ask if there are any restrictions just to be safe.

  4. Becky says

    Hello I had my son 3 months ago I want to lose my baby fat from him and my daughter that 2. I’m 21 years old 4″11,weight 149 I want to lose 25 pounds, tighten my upper and lower abs, especially that pooch that flappy and hangs a little over my stomach what can I do to reach my goal. I did have a c-section but got the ok from my doctor to exercise

    • Lynn says

      Hi, Becky.

      Thanks for commenting. You’ll want to reduce overall body fat which is done through good ‘ol activity and fresh wholesome foods. So getting active and eating well are going to be your best tool for reducing body fat which is your goal :)

  5. Kelley says

    I had a c-section 14 years ago. I have tried doing crunches, but it hurts. I know ab exercises hurt. But it really hurts where my c-section scar is. Any suggestions?

    • Lynn says

      Hi, Kelley.

      Unfortunately I don’t. This is such a tricky issue because the way c-sections are performed… it tears through your muscle. So if the muscle doesn’t heal properly it can have an affect on things such as ab exercises. My initial impression would be that if it hurts at the scar… then I’d find another exercise to strengthen the core. Plank pose is a great one :)

  6. Michelle says

    Hi there. I recently had a c-section ( one month ago) as my little guy was laying across ways. I was wondering how long it takes for my abdomen to return to semi normal? Compared to when I had a normal delivery for my 5 year old daughter I am this time much bigger. Is recovery slower after a c section? I have been told not to do normal sit ups as they can pull apart the abdominals and cause something called divarication. Are core exercises better in general than straight sit ups? Am I allowed to do straight sit ups?

    • Lynn says

      Hi, Michelle.

      All great questions and your best bet is to talk with a doctor about it. I believe the general rule of thumb is to wait a few months to do any type of significant ab work after a c-section. But depending on how you were cut… there may be certain exercises to avoid/do. Sorry I cannot be more specific but it really depends on your specific case… so your doctor would be your best resource.

  7. Nadine says

    I have had 3 c-sections with the last one being 5 yrs ago i am very discouraged by the gut i have gained I am not sure what i can do to get rid of it if there is any way to get rid of it i have heard many rumors that it is not possible to go back to the flat stomach i had before my boys came. Please help

    • Lynn says

      Hi, Nadine.

      Honestly I’m not sure since I am not right in front of you with all my tools. But what I can tell you is this…

      Don’t be discouraged. You are absolutely beautiful the way you are.

      And if you want to spend some time reducing your body fat… well you know how to do it :) Focus on eating whole foods, drinking plenty of water, getting consistent sleep, doing cardio and strength training.

      Your best tool is to gauge your process not on your belly but on who you are being while you are striving for a healthier you.

  8. Sudha says


    I got delivered on September 22nd with c-section.i have to lose another 5 more kgs to get my earlier weight.But my belly still exists what exercices should be done to get rid of belly.please suggest me.

    • Lynn says

      Hi, Suha.

      5 kgs is not much weight to lose. For the other US folks out there, 5 kgs is equal to about 11 pounds. When you get down to those numbers, I would recommend looking at your diet first. In order to really reduce those last kgs or pounds, you have to eat clean and vary your workout so your body doesn’t get used to the same old routine.

  9. Priscilla Guerra says

    Hi i had twins 6weeks ago i have about 1 lbs to lose to get back to my normal weight but i cant seem to lift my belly still. ive tried different types of girdles and nothing works. Any types of exercising i should try?

  10. guest says

    I have had 3 c-sections and an abdominal hysterectomy. Is there anything I can do to tone the skin that hangs over my scar?

    • says

      Honestly? Probably not… if it’s lose skin. However if you have additional fat and that is what is hanging over the scar, then perhaps :) There are some studies that show drinking lots of water, eating fresh whole foods and being active can reduce the droopiness of skin… but I’m not sure if it will reduce it enough to battle against 3 c-sections :) Plus there is the age factor, gravity in general, and also how you were stitched up.

      My best advice… fall in love with that skin because it’s a part of your history and work on over-all body health :)

    • says

      i.m the same and lost all the weight and stomach,but then quit smoking and got sick and stopped working out now I have this funky stomach pooch with troft like thing gained only 15 pounds exercising again running and situps but i’m 40 now don’t think this belly thing is going anywhere fast

      • says

        Hi, Trisha.

        The good news is it sounds like you are making some really great choices! Quitting smoking is awesome! Chew on licorice root when you want a craving. Sounds crazy, I know… but I heard it works wonders when you have a craving :)

  11. ash says

    hi.. im only 21 yrs old and before having my son who is now 2 i had a AMAZING body.. i weighed 135.. went up to 200.. now i weigh 167… my stomach is ridiculously fat to me and it really tears apart my self asteem.. im trying to get back to my original weight.. but im concerned about this belly i have that pouches over my csection scar as well.. what can i do to get my stomach flatter and a bit tighter.. its wrinkly looking…. :(

    • says

      Hi, Ash.

      Ok first things first… you have to believe you are beautiful! I know you are because we all are and you’re a mom… so that makes you extra-beautiful :)

      I’m serious on that last point. I know that the weight gain can be difficult for many women to deal with after birth. But the good news is that there is something you can do about it!

      You have a lot going for you. You’re young so you more than likely still have a faster metabolism than someone who is older and has been yo-yo dieting for years. And because you’re young, your skin has more elasticity so you won’t have as much sagging.

      So now the question is what can you do? You know… now that you KNOW you’re gorgeous and your new mission is to be the best mom in the entire world and set a healthy example for yourself and your son…

      The answer is pretty simple. Eat as many whole foods as you possibly can and get active.

      Eating whole foods sounds so uppity… but really it’s about finding ways to add more fruits and veggies to your daily menu. Eat less processed food and more fruits and veggies. This one change alone can make lots of changes in your body.

      As an example, instead of eating cereal and milk for breakfast, eat an omelet and throw in mushrooms, tomatoes, bell peppers, onions and garlic. Leave out the cheese and any other non-healthy item.

      Instead of a McDonalds #2 for lunch, have a huge salad topped with all the veggies you love and some lean chicken or tuna.

      Again the idea is to find ways to get more fruits and veggies into your meals.

      Getting active can look like many things: working out at a gym, playing tag and running around with your son for 30 minutes, taking a walk with your family or alone, or anything else that sounds fun to you. The idea is to get moving and get moving every single day.

      I’d start there :)

      • ash says

        thanks so much.. this really helped..:)
        also what excersizes can i do to flatten and tighten my stomach ?
        i am going to start the diet plan u reccommended as well

        • says

          Glad it helped. Keep in mind that exercises strengthen our muscles. The best thing to do to flatten the belly is to eat really well. That will get rid of the extra stored fat and the exercise will help tone up and tighten the muscle. Here are some really good ab exercises

  12. Naomi says

    I had my daughter 5 years ago c- section and I would go up and down in weight but for some reason I can not lose the pouch … Is there some kind of work out I would be able to do to lose it… And even though my husband still says I’m beautiful I feel so embarrassed to even be naked around him I’m not use to looking like this… Lol … But I feel if I find the right work out to do I can get my confidence back …

    • says

      Hi, Naomi.

      A few things…

      1) The right workout will not provide confidence. Loving yourself is something that is not conditional :)

      2) As for losing the pouch… it depends what that pouch is made up of. If it’s simply extra lose skin… there’s not much that can be done. If it’s extra fat, then following a healthy lifestyle is your answer. A healthy lifestyle involves eating enough calories, a sustainable workout routine, enough sleep, proper hydration, etc.

  13. Shiamoore says

    I have had two c-sections my first was six years ago and i lost all the weight and got back down to a size 4/5 jeans.. Now my second one was 13 months ago i have lost the baby weight but i think i have water weight to lose.. My question to u is how do u do that? I work out for atleast 30mins to an hr 3 to 4 times a week i drink nun but water and my calorie intake a day is no more than 1,200.. and its fruits and veggies no fried foods all baked or grilled more fish than hamburger meat.. So what am i doing wron? Im like everyone else i cant lose the pouch and thighs.. I have seen your ab workouts and i do most of them when i work out already.. So is it just goin to b a lost cause or is there anything that i can improve on? Im at 147 now and my doc gave me phentermine 37.5 with a b/12 shot twic a week. Just want to lose 25 to 30 lbs.. please help me..

    P.s. to all the woman on here please remember u are pretty no matter what happens because ur body is the way it is because u gave the world a special gift.. Just take ur time and keep up the work and it will show mayb sooner than later.. To all the mothers i give out my prayers and luck to u..

    • says

      Hi, Shiamoore.

      Thanks for your inspiring PS message. As for your main question… well, I have a lot to say, but I’ll keep it short and focused.

      I’m not sure why you were given a shot of phentermine. I’m not a doctor and I’m not saying your doctor was wrong at all… from your post it doesn’t seem like you’d be a candidate for that drug. So I found that to be odd.

      Also, you’re eating the bare minimum of 1200 calories and if that’s your high calorie point, then it seems you’re under-eating most of the time.

      I don’t know how tall you are so I can’t tell if your fat loss goal is in the proper range. What I can let you know is that you most likely need more calories and a better workout routine.

      • Shiamoore says

        i am 5’3 and my doc has given me the phentermine to help me loss the water weight that im having trouble getting off.. As for my calorie in take i have set my self at that because i was at 1,500 a day so i decided when i started the diet med i would try and cut back calories to.. I do alot od cardio in my workout cuz i have saw that more cardio works more than just toning.. I just want to lose 25 pounds really… Thank u for writing me back it means alot to me.. Im just trying to seek help through woman who understand and know what i am goin through..

        P.s. U are the voice and power of ur on body… Never let anyone tell u what they want u to do always do what u think u need and want to do…

          • says

            Hi, Shiamoore.

            Thanks for the additional information. It’s a bit hard for me to provide specifics without doing a full run down with you, but I would look into interval training for cardio 3 times a week and also a full body strength training routine 3 times a week.

            I’d stick with eating whole, fresh foods as much as possible and keeping your calories around 1450 – 1500.

  14. Jessica says

    My name is Jessica and I had my son June 10, I gained a lot of weight during my pregnancy I was 115 when I found out I was pregnant, and by the time I had my son I was over 175. I was on severely strict bed rest over half of my pregnancy so I did not work out, period. I’m now at 133ish, sometimes a little more sometimes a little less. I would like to loose the last little bit of pregnancy weight but get back too my ‘normal’ size of 105 (I’m 5’1) I’ve started a diet plan, which has a strict meal plan and exercise plan that works the entire body, more of a getting in shape type thing, however although I JUST started this I like many others have sagging/flabby skin/fat If I flex my stomach It tightens up fairly well, but it by no means is toned. I was just curious if there is anyway to tell if what I have is that ‘extra’ skin from extreme weight gain, or if there is hope of loosing the fat and toning it back up sooner than just waiting to see results from the workout/diet plan?

    • sunzetgurl says

      HI we are on the same boat I am 5’0 and was 100 pounds when I found out I was pregnant. I was 140 on my delivery date, but went back to 100 pounds 3 weeks after my C-section. Then when I stopped breastfeeding 4 months ago my weight started going up again. I was 114 last week and down to 111 today. If you like to dance Zumba is so much fun. Then I do leg lifts and side crunches and in a week I think my belly has some improvements. Good luck on your journey.

    • says

      Hi, Jessica.

      Honestly I don’t know :) No one will really know until you get to your goal weight and see what’s left over from all your effort. I’m not sure how old you are, but the younger you are the more elasticity your skin has and the more change it can recover and not be saggy.

      Not the answer you were looking for, I’m sure. But your best bet is to focus on getting back to a health weight and doing it as healthy as you can. Water, fruits and veggies, fish (the oil in it is fantastic) and nuts will be your new best friend because they will give you the vital nutrients your skin needs to look its best and also to lose the weight.

    • Kathryn M0123 says

      We have very similar stories Jessica. My son was born June 10 and I am 5″2 and gained 80 pounds with him. I have lost 60 but those last 20 are hard to get off. I need to increase my excersises and eat less calories. I believe my stomach is fat, not skin. I don’t have a lot if feeling down there but it seems the more I lose the
      more feeling comes back.

  15. James_gaskins07 says

    Hi! My name is Nina and I’ve had 3 sections and I have this hanging stomach that I wanna get rid of. My doctor told me that i wont be able to get get rid of it unless I go through surgrey. I dont wanna have to go through with that. Is there way I get rid of this hanging stomach by excerising

    • says

      Hi, Nina.

      Probably not if the doc said that. Seems like what you may have is skin from the c-sections as opposed to extra fat stored in the belly :)

      You can always eat healthy and be active though for other reasons!

  16. Sabrina_s210 says

    I was wondering if there is a very moderate an exercise that will strengthen my abs because I get this really bad pain when I do an exercises and it isn’t the normal burn you get. I had my son 13 months ago so it couldn’t be because I didn’t wait long enough.

    • says

      Hi, Sabrina_s210.

      Check with your doctor :) Could be a variety of things going on so “moderate” for me could be too much for you if you have an injury or if it’s too soon.

    • says

      Hi, Ritavictoria62.

      Well I would think enough time has passed so we don’t have to worry about starting too soon after your c-section :)

      But tightening anything up is only done through losing extra body fat. The only things that cannot get “tightened” are extra lose skin (from losing a bunch of weight) and sometimes c-section skin that is “folded over”.

      So the best advice I can provide is to start/continue a workout routine and eating plan designed for health and activity to reduce over all body fat. And the body will start shedding the unwanted pounds for you :)

  17. Helen Potter16 says

    hello my name is helen i have had two c – section with my second son i weight 9and half stone i have lost a stone but would like to lose more most of is on my tummy i have an apon where the fat just hangs iam doing kickboxing, cadio traning sternthing traning as well am trying with my diet but my weakness is i love red meat and my down fall is crisp but also my tummy just doesnt seem to go down would pilates help aswell and i know cut the crisp out thank you in advice

    • says

      Hi, Helen Potter16.

      Well the only way to know if your belly is going to go down is to focus in on your weight loss goals and make sure you’re eating enough food, eating good food, and being active.

      It’s always tricky with the skin/fat from c-sections because some of it can be from a bad stitch job and some of it can simply be extra stored fat. Most of the time, the pouch can go away or at least reduce in size by reducing over-all body fat.

  18. Arosel10 says

    I had a c-section almost 4 months ago now, and I am only now beginning to be without tummy pain with every movement. Before this second child was born, I was always very fit and active playing many sports and working out. It’s been frustrating since this last baby, due to my section. I also have a torn iliolumbar ligament, preventing me from lying flat on my back. Are there any exercises you can recommend to help me tone my tummy without having to lie down?

    • says

      Hi, Arosel10.

      Since there is an injury here, your best bet would be to talk with your doctor about they recommend you do. They are best equipped to answer your question. The last thing you want to do is injure yourself :(

  19. andrea says

    I Had a 2 kids and the second child weighed 10lbs 6 oz. I was 150 before I had her and at the end of my pregnancy I weighed over 200lbs. I am so depressed over my mothers apron bc I am no longer with the father of my kids and getting back out here dating is THE hardest thing ever! I can’t afford a tummy tuck I just want to know if I can at least get rid of it. I can handle the wrinkle skin but not the fat I can lift and let fall over the front of my panties. Its so disgusting!!!

    • says

      Hi, Andrea.

      Well the only way to know if your belly is going to go down is to focus in on your weight loss goals and make sure you’re eating enough food, eating good food, and being active.

      It’s always tricky with the skin/fat from c-sections because some of it can be from a bad stitch job and some of it can simply be extra stored fat. Most of the time, the pouch can go away or at least reduce in size by reducing over-all body fat.

  20. Osamezuruth says

    My name is Ruth… I gave birth four months ago through C-section… and now i have a big tummy and i have not been able to return to my formal weight.. what kind of exercise can i do?

    • says

      Hi, Ruth.

      The first thing I would do is get clearance from your doctor about what exercises you can/cannot do. Once you know that, I would begin a workout routine designed to help you lose over all body fat.

      The only way to reduce belly fat is to reduce over all body fat and that’s done through awesome nutrition and working out. You just want to make sure that you can do any type of ab exercise without injuring yourself first :)

  21. kerry says

    my docter told me that having a c section the lower part of your stomach where most women have that pouch, those mussels wont ever work again, thats why when i do cruchese and leg lifts i dont feel anything in my lower abdominal.

    • says

      Hi, Kerry.

      A lot of women experience some sort of scenario as your doctor described. But reducing overall body fat (through a full body routine, eating “clean” and doing cardio) will help. And as the article above mentions… doing side crunches (for example) work muscles that are not necessarily affected by a c-section but help support that area.

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