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Fitness and Kids

After having children most women want to get back into shape, it's wise to leave it after the 6 week check by the Dr to make sure everything is all settling down correctly and you feel well in yourself physically and mentally. Take it from me, you really need to settle in to your new life with this little person who is totally dependant on you. It's a big change and I didn’t feel like getting into shape till after my 3rd, I knew then that that was it, no more babies and waddling around!

You look at your body after your pregnancies and boy has it has gone through the mill! Stretch marks, lumps and bumps that you didn’t have before and the tiredness is all-consuming. There was a 17 month age gap with my first 2 then a 2 year difference between the 2nd and 3rd. I was so glad when the pregnancies were over, I’d had a difficult first pregnancy and then after that I worried that the other 2 would be the same. So after the 3rd popped out I gave myself a year and then made the decision to start my fitness.

I was a size 16, I can remember the size clearly as I’d gone shopping with my Mum for some clothes, had taken a pair of size 14 jeans to try and ended up having to get the 16. It upset me a little but also gave me the determination to plough on ahead.

The other reason for wanting to start exercising was my mood, I was using wine as a way to relax in the evenings after the kiddies had gone to bed, but it was a vicious circle. Wine isn’t relaxing, in actual fact its a stimulant so you may feel sleepy and relaxed but you’ll be waking up at 3am in the morning willing yourself to get back to sleep as you have a day of looking after 3 children ahead of you! I also felt stressed, tired and desperately needed an outlet for all these feelings that was healthy especially after my past experience with depression.

I had a running machine in the garage and started using it, running for 20-30 minutes at a time at first. Luckily I had a playpen so would put the children in there with toys if I ran when they were awake - normally I would program my exercise in their naps, either in the morning or lunchtime. It worked great, after 3 months I could really see the difference, I felt good, my mood was lifted and my body shape was changing. I cut down on the alcohol which also helped lift my mood and started eating more healthy too. You need to program all these changes into your program to get the full effects and to kickstart your healthy lifestyle change.

All you need is the motivation and commitment to start back to exercising after the kids. There is always time to do something albeit a quick 30 min bodyweight circuit in your lounge, a 20 min run outside or a trip to the gym once your partner is home from work. To get that initial process going takes hard work, focus and you need to want to achieve. After 3 months of consistent exercising it will become a habit, you will have a healthy outlet for all the stresses and strains of being a stay-at-home/working mum brings with it.

Get out there and get moving, make a lifestyle choice that will help you in the present and the future!

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