I have had two babies in the last two years, so excuse me for being a tad jiggly around the mid-section. Why is there so much pressure nowadays to get back your pre-pregnancy body within a few months after giving birth? And no, the growing list of Victoria’s Secret models who’ve returned to the catwalk within 3 to 6 months after having their babies have not given the rest of us new mums out there something to aspire to.
First of all, when your entire career is based upon having an awesome body as it is for Miranda, Heidi and Gisele, training 3 to 4 hours a day to get back in shape makes sense. Secondly, how can the rest of us mere mortals expect to look like these goddesses after having a baby when so few of us bore any similarities to them to begin with. Only 1-2% of the population are blessed with the height and slender build to become a successful model so why are they the yardstick for all women, especially those of us that have had kids? Furthermore, while most of us are sisters doin’ it for themselves, these women have an entourage to help them regain their pre-baby shape including personal trainers, dieticians, chefs and most importantly nannies and housekeepers.
I have always tried to stay fit and strong, and during pregnancy was no exception. I exercised three to four times a week throughout my pregnancies but still gained 20kg on both occasions. Following my 6-week postnatal check-ups, I got back into exercising. Our new baby Sara is now 4 and a-half months old and I’m slowly starting to look like the old me again.
I’ve accepted that the skin on my tummy will remain stretched for quite some time and that after taking months for my hips to spread to accommodate a small, growing human being (twice!), I can’t really expect everything to just pop back into it’s original shape overnight. On the plus side, my boobs look fantastic and I’ve now got curves where I’ve never had them before: you’ve always gotta try and find a positive.
It definitely has been difficult to find the time to get to the gym with two kids, but the 3 or 4 hours I get all to myself every week not only helps me to stay healthy and lose my pregnancy weight, it also gives me the opportunity to recharge my batteries mentally and spiritually. This time gives me the chance to do something that is all about me for a change.
I know there are countless numbers of new mums out there who feel that they are lacking the time and motivation to get themselves back into shape but, I guarantee you that if you do, you will be a much healthier and happier as a woman and as a mother. Set yourself realistic goals and accept that losing the weight will take time. Victoria’s Secret can wait because without a nanny, chef and personal trainer of your own, you’ll be too busy looking after your bub to walk down a catwalk anyway.