You must exercise. But not for awhile. In fact, when you start back to a regular execise routine will vary enormously from one woman to the next. The key is to start at the right time and at the right intensity. Your uterus needs time to heal and an episiotomy can be sore for days or even a few weeks postpartum. You can start a gentle walking schedule as soon as you feel up to it if you’ve had a uncomplicated vaginal delivery. Gradually work up to brisk walking with your baby in a stroller. You’ll need more time to heal if you’ve had a Cesarean, so discuss the best exercise schedule with your physician. Six weeks is usually the earliest most doctors recommend returning to a more vigorous exercise routine after an uncomplicated birth. But in reality, it can take up to a year before some women feel enough like themselves to even think about vigorous exercise. One study of mothers who had given birth to healthy, full-term babies found that one in every four of them did not feel physically recovered even six months after delivery. They were battling fatigue, hemorrhoids, constipation, low sex drive, frequent colds, and…well you name it. The message here is to be patient with yourself, but at the same time start including some form of exercise as soon as you can.