I used to think that once I'd had children I could kiss good bye to feeling confident in a bikini ever again. I read articles about how much harder it is to get in shape after having a baby, people told me it damages your body specifically your stomach beyond repair.
That your body shape changes and you get cellulite and stretch marks and that there was nothing I could do about it!
Well for some girls that's enough to put you off motherhood all together... but there is a light at the end of the tunnel, from someone who has been there done that, I can clear up a little of the uncertainty with the following Myths Vs Facts:
My body will never be as good after having children.
Your body will go through lots of changes during pregnancy, you put on weight, your abs separate and your ligaments loosen. And don’t get me wrong it doesn’t all go back to normal over night. But it’s very possible to get a great figure even after you’ve had kids. I know plenty of mums who train and actually say their figure is better now that before they had kids (me included).
If you have a big baby or C-section/difficult labour you can kiss good bye to your chances of ever having abs.
Your size, your babies size, the type of labour doesn’t affect your ability to get back in shape after having kids. I put on 3 stone during pregnancy, my little girl weighed 9lb 6oz when she was born and that was after 42 hours of labour and an emergency C-section.
I’m pregnant so it’s ok to “eat for two”
If you eat more calories than you burn you will put on body fat, simple as that! When you’re pregnant you do burn more calories than normal, you are growing another little human after all. But your baby needs good nutrition, if you’re not eating it, your baby will take what it needs from your body which is why pregnant women are more likely to suffer from vitamin & mineral deficiency’s if they have a poor diet. I craved all sorts during pregnancy, some healthy things some not so much, you do have to listen to your body but don’t use it as an excuse to gorge yourself as you’ll only have to work harder to get back in shape afterwards.
I won’t have time to work out when I’m a mum.
Yes kids/babies are time consuming, but an hour’s workout is 4% of your day… look at how much time you spend watching TV, browsing the internet or doing other non-essential time consuming activities per week… it’s committing the time regularly to doing something that is potentially going to make you feel uncomfortable that is the problem. You’ve had a busy day, you’re tired, do you really want to go and sweat it out in the gym?
Probably not, but look at the long term goal, focus on what you want to achieve. Working out is a great stress relief and once it’s done you’ll be a hell of a lot more glad you did it that if you didn’t. Once you get into a routine you’ll be surprised at how addictive it becomes, because like bad habits your body will also become accustomed to good habits… make exercise one of them and enjoy the results.
So the moral of the story is… Being a mum is no excuse for not achieving your fitness goals. 9 months of pregnancy followed by labour and parenthood… that’s the hard part. Working out a few times per week is nothing in comparison… Be Fit, be healthy, be happy, it’s a great example to set your kids!