In youth, our muscular layer acts like a firm, taut girdle, preventing our intestines, liver, spleen, etc, from just bulging outwards into a soft blob of a ball. The muscular layer, fused to our skeleton, is what gives our core and midsection its underlying shape and stability. Three things happen which undermine this layer. First, as we age, like every other connective tissue in our body, collagen and elastic fibers decrease, allowing the wall the lose strength and sag. Second, fluctuation in weight, in particular with the intra-abdominal fat, can stretch the wall, thereby breaking the elastic fibers beyond repair such that the wall loses its elastic recoil. And finally, pregnancy. Every time you’re preggo, the wall is rapidly pulled apart even more so than any other form of typical weight gain. With each successive pregnancy, the process repeats, doing a real number on the abdominal girdle. Sure, you’ve probably seen some Instagram model who bounced back remarkably, due to genetic luck, free time, and a personal chef and trainer. For the vast majority of the rest of women, real life isn’t so lucky. No matter how many sit-ups, crunches, or planks you do, once that layer is shot, it’s shot. Aint coming back. The only way to tighten it once again, is with good ole fashioned surgical stitching.