A long time ago, in a land far away, abdominal exercises were an important part of my workouts. I've been trying to carve out time after I run for crunches but now I have to wonder if I'm completely wasting my time. And this has nothing to do with the fact that when I mention crunches, I feel like others wrinkle up their noses at the thought. Crunches are so 1998. Are they though?
My ab muscles now are an absolute mess. If you're into fitness at all, you know that a strong core is necessary for a strong back. I now have an extremely weak core (due to diastasis recti) ,which means that my back gives me a lot of trouble. For example, I can only last 7, maybe 8 minutes, standing at the kitchen sink washing dishes before I have to sit down and stretch out my back because I'm in so much pain. A few years ago, my primary care physician confirmed that my back pain was as a result of the ab muscle mess. She told me that surgery is the only way to fix it.
Because of other physical damage that occurred when Abbey was born (they pulled her out with forceps so use your imagination), my doctor suggested that I see another doctor for potential repair surgery and that maybe both surgeries could be completed at the same time. I shut down at that point. The thought of recovering from that is frightening.
I've mentioned some of this before here. I guess I'm bringing it up again because I'm frustrated with my situation. I'm constantly reading conflicting information regarding abdominal muscle separation and exercise. Some say that crunches can cause more damage. My doctor, for the record, said that I could crunch away without worrying about making it worse. She did add, however, that I won't see any improvement.
I can't be the only one out there with this problem. Is surgery really our only option? Unfortunately, right now I think it is. I sometimes like to dream that I'm this superstar and a few years from now, I can show everyone that my midsection did improve, even if only a little bit, just from exercise. Dream away, Sarah....
*I want to note that I'm lucky to have carried triplets to 36 weeks. I wouldn't change that for anything.