How Long Until I Can Exercise After a Breast Lift with Augmentation?

Doctor Answers 15

Wait 3 weeks before vigorous exercise after breast augmentation and breast lift

Thank you for your question. Of course you must follow the instructions of the plastic surgeon who performed your surgery.

In my practice I asked patients to wait on average 3 weeks after combination breast augmentation and breast lift before they start vigorous exercise. It is important that the skin incisions on the breast are dry, pink and appropriately healed for 3 weeks before stressing the incision. It is also important to wear a support bra during any exercise activity.

When Can I Return To Normal Activity?

Recovery times following breast augmentation surgery vary from patient to patient. These times are significantly impacted by the nature of the procedure, the patient's employment, and the patient's social situation. It's important to realize that even though breast augmentation is a cosmetic procedure, it's still a significant operation with associated risk. For this reason, premature return to normal activity can result in an increased incidence of complications.

We generally recommend light activity for the first week following the procedure. After one week, patients are allowed to gradually resume normal non-strenuous activities. Strenuous activities and heavy lifting are not allowed for at least six weeks in most cases. At six weeks, most patients are able to resume all of their normal activities.

It's important to remember that every patient who undergoes breast augmentation and breast lift surgery is unique. The specifics of their employment, exercise routine and surgical procedure will have a significant impact upon their recovery. Make sure you discuss this issue with your surgeon. Your surgeon's insights regarding your procedure will provide important information regarding when you can resume your exercise routine. Your breast lift/augmentation represents a significant investment. The best way to protect that investment is to follow your surgeon's post-operative instructions.

Richard J. Bruneteau, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 194 reviews

Exercise after breast augmentation

Thank you for your question. You definitely want to follow your own surgeon's post-op activity instructions. This is a general guide I give to my patients:
1) No heavy lifting or strenuous activity for 6 weeks.
2) Resume walking at a leisurely pace right after surgery (e.g. 2 mph)
3) At 2 weeks, you can walk 2 miles at 2mph
4) At 3 weeks, you can walk 3 miles at 3mph
5) At 4 weeks, you can walk 4 miles at 4mph
6) At 5 weeks, you can jog 5 miles at 5mph
7) At 6 weeks, you can resume all activities, but listen to your body and use discomfort or tightness as a guide so you don't over do it.

Young R. Cho, MD, PhD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Usually 3-7 weeks, depending on the activity

Generally speaking, you should wait for about 3-4 weeks after surgery before doing things like cardio exercises, and 6-7 weeks for strength training and other more vigorous physical activity. However, you should ask your surgeon for their advice.

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 176 reviews

How Long Until I Can Exercise After a Breast Lift with Augmentation?

Every surgeon has their own set of guidelines on this topic. For my patients  early on I worry about bleeding and incisions opening up because of too much vigorous exercise. It takes incisions 6 weeks to gain their maximal strength back so stressing them before that time with strenuous exercise can lead to opening of the incisions. The capsule around the implant takes about 3 months to form from the day of augmentation. I do not allow any strenuous exercise for 6 weeks. No jogging or anything that would cause the breasts to bounce. No heavy lifting for 6 weeks and no pectoralis exercises minimum 3 months an preferably for life. The action of the pectoralis muscle will slowly force your implant towards the armpit and widen the breast pocket causing malposition of the implant. These are my guidelines so make sure you ask your surgeon what they prefer.

Richard J. Brown, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Exercise After a Breast Lift with Augmentation

Every surgeon has their own recommendations on this topic.  For my patients, as they start to feel better (within the first two to seven days), they may increase their level of activity, such as walking around the mall or going to the office to do desk work. At four weeks, they can begin light, non-impact cardio exercise, such a recumbent (sitting back) bicycle or an elliptical. At five to six weeks after surgery they will be released to ease back into full exercise activity. The internal healing process takes longer than you think, so it is important that you return to your regular exercise routine slowly and carefully. When you resume an exercise you have not done in a while, try it in a small dose and see how you feel the next day. If you are sore, you probably pushed yourself too hard. Let your body be your guide to what is the right amount of exercise. Running and high impact exercises are the hardest on your body and you may need to put these off for a couple of months (i.e. an elliptical machine is better than jogging on a treadmill). For breast augmentation patients, it is also better to avoid or minimize pushups and bench press exercises after surgery (long-term) because these can distort the appearance of your implants and stretch out the breast pockets over time.

Robert Cohen, MD
Santa Monica Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 53 reviews

Exercise after breast lift and augmentation

I generally advise no heavy lifting or strenuous activity (ie working out) for 4 weeks after a breast augmentation and lift procedure.  However, your PS is the best person to advise you on activity after your procedure as he/she knows exactly what was done.  Essentially, you need to give time for all your incisions to heal.  Best of luck. Dr. Basu Houston, TX

C. Bob Basu, MD, FACS
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 209 reviews




After surgery we like to tell our patients to wait 6-8 weeks to start exercising your upper body. You can start doing lower body after 3 weeks. Each practice is different make sure you see your PS to see what he is recommending.


Stuart B. Kincaid, MD, FACS (in memoriam)
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
3.3 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Exercise After Augmentation


      I recommend that my patients begin slowly, and then increase gradually over a month.  Begin with low demand exercises such as walking or slow stationary bicycle. By two to three weeks can advance to elliptical training.  If it is painful or doesnt feel right, then back off.



Clifford King, MD
Middleton Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Exercising after lift and BA

You really need to follow the instructions by your own surgeon. There are many different opinions by different surgeons. The one that counts is your surgeon's.

Ronald Schuster, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.