A very common question I receive during consultations is “how soon can I go to the gym after liposuction?”
It may sound contradictory, but many patients considering liposuction lead very active lifestyles. Most lipo patients are healthy and exercise regularly but cannot lose fat in certain areas of their body regardless of how much they exercise. Liposuction is generally not an option for those who are significantly overweight, but is done to treat problem areas that are somewhat out of proportion to the rest of their body.
Liposuction can be used to treat gynecomastia, the abdomen, love handles and inner and outer thighs. If you’re considering liposuction, keep in mind that everyone’s procedures, therefore recovery time, vary and should be considered on an individual basis before the patient returns to their regular workout routine. That being said, here’s what you should know.
When Can I Return to My Normal Routine?
As far as work goes, my patients typically return to their positions provided it is not heavy labor within one or two days, depending on the extent of the procedure. Liposuction is a real surgery and will require some healing time which will increase with the number of body areas being treated. The amount of fat cells being removed will also affect healing time.
Generally there is some mild soreness or discomfort which decreases each day over a period of weeks. It generally takes one to three months for all of the swelling to go down and you can expect to feel a little different during that time.
For that reason, I usually have patients avoid exercise for four weeks although some may start exercising as early as two weeks. And, when they do return to the gym, I advise they do not try jumping back into their normal routine and take it easy.
What Type of Exercises Can I Do?
Diligent exercisers may worry that if they stop their routine for an extended period of time, they may lose their motivation, however, exercising can cause increased discomfort and swelling and increase the time it takes to heal.
Again, each person is different but if you want and are able to get back to exercising very quickly, I encourage you to do lighter workouts at least during the first month. Avoid more aerobic exercises like running, bicycling, or dancing at first and do more light weight routines. You will want to avoid certain machines that will cause you to pull at the liposuctioned area but that varies by location so discuss that with your surgeon prior to returning to the gym.
So, for those of you who work out regularly but aren’t completely satisfied with your results, contact Dr. Wigoda to discuss your liposuction options and create a plan to get you back to your normal routine safely and rapidly.
For more information about the liposuction procedure, visit our Liposuction FAQs page and watch the video below.