Our patients often have many concerns before and after breast surgery. One of the main tips for breast augmentation, and most important to their full recovery, is the question of exercise.
People often want to know how soon they can return to their regular workout routines following an operation such as breast augmentation, breast implants or even breast reduction. Here are a few helpful things you should know if you choose to undergo cosmetic surgery for your breasts.
How long to wait to exercise after breast augmentation or breast lifts, varies with different individuals and how soon their body recovers. But if all goes according to plan, it takes a couple of weeks before a person can feel like their normal energy levels have returned.
Exercise after Breast Augmentation Top Tips
Typically, you should wait at least 48 hours after surgery before engaging in active physical tasks, including driving, jogging and lifting heavy objects or even your children.
As you start to feel your bodily strength returning you may be able to do light exercise, such as walking at a slow pace or using a stationary bike at the gym for low-impact cycling.
What you want to avoid after any breast surgery is an overuse of your pectoral muscles. But the proper type of exercise is essential in helping to restore normal movement and regain flexibility. They can even help show off your form better! A good exercise routine will aid in your recovery, helping to lessen any side effects and get you back in shape.
Remember, before doing any of the below recommended exercises, to have a personal consultation with your doctor or physical therapist. They can suggest a personalized program for you, as well as walk you through the time frame necessary for beginning and continuing with physical activities.
Start with Lower Body Exercises
During the first four weeks post-surgery, give the top portion of your body adequate time to heal, while focusing on movement in your lower half. Leg exercises such as squats and lunges without weights are excellent after two weeks. Avoid Pilates and Yoga poses that require you to strain the upper body. For example, skip the planks and deadlifts and do a stationary bike instead.
Avoid exercising with weights during these initial four weeks. Do brisk walking and playing with your kids instead; gardening involves both movement and healthy fresh air. Avoid any bouncing exercises such as jumping rope and trampoline workouts.
Stretching and Breathing Exercises for Post-op Fitness
Arm workouts that include gentle stretching are encouraged. This helps with blood circulation and helps to reduce swelling after breast augmentation. There are some easy exercises you can do lying down within the first 3 to 7 days following your surgery.
- Lying down, raise one arm above your body, to chest level. Use pillows as props if necessary. With arm raised, try to bend and straighten it at the elbow, flexing slowly. This action will pump lymph fluid from your arm, encouraging blood flow and circulation.
- No less than six times a day, practice your breathing. Also lying on your bag, try to inhale as your chest and abdomen expand. Then exhale, noticing the movement and flow of your chest. You can combine this breathing with the arm raises.
- After three or four weeks, move on to full body exercises that may include leg presses and lunges. Start with light cardio and continue to consult your doctor if you notice any painful sensations while exercising.
- Use a wall as support, raise your arms to chest level and stretch each one, one arm at a time. Twist at your waist while using the wall as leverage for a deeper stretch, the more flexible you become.
Which Exercises Should You Avoid?
Immediately after surgery, some exercises should be avoided altogether, as the implants will interfere with the usual routine. Until you get used to the new sensation of your beautiful breasts, and when your doctor gives you the go-ahead, go easy on yourself.
Exercises to avoid include weight-bearing shoulder movements and exercises that require an extensive range of motion. For example, tennis and volleyball or basketball sports. Kettlebells and heavier weights that involve strenuous or dynamic and quick shoulder movements can wait until four or five months after surgery.
More Tips for Recovery
Use additional support for your breasts when exercising. Until the pain and swelling appear, pay attention that you do not over-exercise — especially if you are a regular fitness buff! Use the time to indulge in other forms of self-care: breast massage and healthy teas, adapting your diet to your new healthier lifestyle and taking care of yourself emotionally. With exercise comes proper rest, but be sure to avoid sleeping on your side after breast implants.
Why not try a new form of low-impact exercise that you have not ventured into before? Light dancing that involves you in fun social situations or easy yoga and basic pilates might be good options. Whatever you choose to improve your body, give it time. Remember, it is better to heal properly than to heal quickly.
Cosmetic surgery is an option for those who are looking to improve their overall appearance and self-confidence. For more tips on plastic surgery procedures and what to expect, contact Dr. Schusterman online for a personal consultation.