You love your workouts and your time at the gym each day, but you want to improve your curves and wear a bigger sports bra. As an athlete, breast augmentation should not stop you from hitting the gym and performing your regular exercise routine, right?
Unfortunately, while chest exercises after breast augmentation are generally okay after you have healed, there can be a risk associated with chest workouts. If you just can’t go without chest day at the gym, there are a few things you should understand when it comes to chest workouts and breast augmentation before you plan your big day.
Talk to Your Surgeon about Your Workout Routine before Your Surgery
When you meet with your plastic surgeon to discuss breast augmentation, you assume you will be talking about breast size (volume), implant type (saline or silicone) and implant profile. However, as an athlete, it is essential that you talk about your regular workout routine with your surgeon. Knowing the exercises you perform on a regular basis will help the surgeon determine the best implant placement for you. Breast implants can be placed above (subglandular) the pectoralis muscle or underneath (subpectoral). Where your surgeon places your implant can make a difference with associated risks when performing regular chest exercises.
When Can You Exercise after Breast Augmentation
After your breast augmentation, your body needs time to heal. For the first two weeks of breast augmentation recovery, most surgeons will recommend no strenuous activity at all. This can put pressure and stress on your muscles and healing tissue, which can cause complications and slow down your recovery. At this point, short walks are all you can do.
During weeks three through seven of recovery, you can increase your walking time and maybe add in some light swimming or lower body exercises, like cycling. Your surgeon may also approve light upper body exercises, such as shoulder raises. By eight weeks, you will likely be approved to return to normal activity. However, you must remember everyone heals differently, so be sure to talk with your surgeon before getting back into the gym at your full level.
Can Exercises Cause Problems with Your Implant?
The goal of chest exercises is to improve your appearance. However, with implants these exercises can increase your risk of animation deformity. You might be better off focusing on other muscle groups and just enjoy your implants.
So, the big question. Can chest exercises affect your implants or cause complications? The answer is maybe and, in most cases, depends on the location of your implant. For those with subglandular implants, chest exercises are generally safe and come with little risk. However, implants under the chest muscle pose a risk. When performing chest exercises, the repetitive chest muscle contractions can squeeze the implant and affect placement, resulting in a condition called animation deformity, and just the name doesn’t sound good!
Animation deformity is a common condition that affects breast implants placed under the muscle and is aggravated by chest exercises and weightlifting. Animation deformity occurs when movement of the muscle causes the implant to shift. This may cause a plateau where your cleavage should be, creating an unnatural and odd-looking appearance. You may also notice that your breasts show an odd “flexing” when you activate your chest muscles.
While breast implants do not mean you have to give up the gym, understanding your body and how certain exercises can affect the muscles around your implants is essential. Talk with your surgeon in detail about your exercise routine and your goals for both your appearance and your fitness. This will make all the difference when it comes to getting the long-term results you desire.