Exercise after Tummy Tuck & Breast Reduction?

When can I start to work out? I am 4 weeks post op. I had a full tummy tuck and breast reduction/lift. I was highly active prior to surgery and would like to get back to running, yoga, weight lifting, and spin class. When can I start to do sit ups? I am still swelling quite a bit.

Doctor Answers 13

Exercise after surgery

I usually allow my patients to go back to light aerobics about 3-4 weeks after surgery and then return to heavy lifting by about 6-8 weeks. Best to ask your surgeon.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Mommy Makeover - Candidate?

Thank you for your question and congratulations on your recent surgery. Most patients are cleared to exercise by six weeks following a mommy makeover.   It is best to have an in-person follow up examination with your plastic surgeon for recommendations regarding what you should and should not be doing at this time. Good luck in your recovery.

Steven J. Rottman, MD, FACS
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

Exercise after Tummy Tuck & Breast Reduction?

Thank you for sharing your question and congratulations on your TT and breast reduction.  In most cases patients can resume cardio at 3-4 weeks after surgery which largely involves light walking on a treadmill.  Each week patients can increase their speed a mile per hour.  As for weight training most exercises should be avoided for 6-8 weeks after surgery as these exercises stress the muscle repair portion of a tummy tuck.  Hope this helps.

Nelson Castillo, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 68 reviews

Working out after surgery

Thank you for you question. Typically, beginning to resume your exercise regimen can begin at four weeks. Now, it is important to remember that one cannot simply resume where one left off before the surgery. You have to begin slowly and work back up to where you were prior to surgery. At six weeks, full return to vigorous exercise is ok. It is very important to have a very good supportive sport bra. 

Best wishes,

J. Michael Morrissey, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Exercise after Tummy Tuck & Breast Reduction?

Thank you for the question. 

Your plastic surgeon will be your best resource when it comes to returning to specific activities. He/she will know exactly what was done, how you are progressing, and exactly what type of activities you are returning to. Generally speaking, it will be important for you to return to activities in a very gradual/cautious fashion. "Listen to your body" as you do so. Having said that, I ask patients to start walking immediately after surgery, most patients are able to drive approximately 2-3 weeks after surgery, engage in lower body exercises 2-3  weeks after surgery, lift more than 10 pounds 4 to 6 weeks after surgery, and run 6 to 8 weeks after surgery as well. Again, your plastic surgeon will be your best resource when it comes to  relevant advice.


Best wishes for an outcome that you will be very pleased with.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,501 reviews

Exercise after surgery

Thank you for your question.

After a full tummy tuck, you should not perform any type of abdominal exercises for 8 weeks. As far as cardio, you can start at about 3-4 weeks. You may notice some increased swelling afterward, but that is normal. Be sure to ease back in to things, don't pick up where you left off prior to surgery.

After a breast reduction, no heavy lifting greater than 10 pounds for the first 3 weeks. At 4 weeks post-op, you can start doing some weights again but use a light weight and work back up to where you were. Before starting back in to anything you should consult your surgeon to see what their recommendations are. Good luck.

Francis Johns, MD
Greensburg Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 73 reviews

Returning to Full Activity after Tummy Tuck

With #cosmeticsurgery such as #abdominoplasty, we have our patients start on vitamins and supplements two weeks before and two weeks after in order to support preparation and post-op healing.Most patients will be placed in an abdominal binder, which they will wear the first week. There is usually a fair amount of swelling and the binder should be opened several times a day so that there are no pressure points. After the first 7 to 10 days the patient is placed in an elastic garment for compression over the next six weeks. You can return to full activity without restrictions at 6 weeks.

Swelling can persist for several months and will gradually improve and will look better at three months, six months, and even one year. Frequently the pubic area can become very swollen and discolored during the first two weeks due to gravity as this is the lowest area for swelling to accumulate. It is good to allow swelling to reduce before returning to exercise.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 110 reviews

1 month post op, some advices:

Thanks for the question.

Generally speaking, the average Tummy Tuck + Breast reduction patients, exercises tend to allow two weeks after PO, gradually: first, gentle walks without sweating, then, you can go to the gym to do aerobics, and, after four months you can stats with machines excercise and start with light weights, and, if there are no problems, only six months after PO may charge "free weights".

Kind regards,

Emmanuel Mallol Cotes, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 272 reviews

Exercise after surgery

Thank you for your question. Best person to advice you would be your chosen surgeon as every surgeon will have his/her own preferences as to recovery for specific procedures. I advice patients they can return to light activities almost immediately after surgery, normal activities 2 weeks after surgery, and vigorous exercise 4 to 6 weeks after surgery depending on how fast they heal.  We usually experience a slow steady improvement for 3 months or so after surgery. When you start, listen to your body. You will be a little out of condition and a bit sore. But you will get back to where you were before surgery very quickly.  Wishing you a speedy recovery!

Carolina Restrepo, MD
Colombia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Tummy Tuck/Abdominoplasty/Liposuction/Vaser High Definition Procedures/Tummy Tuck Revision

I appreciate your question.

I would recommend that you discuss this question with your surgeon as every surgeon has their own respective post op protocol for his/her patients.  Your surgeon is your best resource as he/she is most familiar with your medical history and how you are healing at this time.

The best way to assess and give true advice would be an in-person exam.

Please see a board-certified plastic surgeon that specializes in aesthetic and restorative plastic surgery.

Best of luck!

Dr. Schwartz

Board Certified Plastic Surgeon


Jaime S. Schwartz, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 93 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.