Thursday, April 7, 2011

Moms Getting Fit??? (article I wrote for Yummy Mummy)

Can a mother really find time to get healthy & fit with a kid on each hip? If you had asked me this a few years ago, I would have agreed with most of you and said “NO”.

I worked professionally as a dancer in Vancouver and Toronto until I was 25. I never had to worry about my weight and I had a body that could have been an anatomy lesson... but I never really appreciated that until I had children... then it was gone (I thought). I could still feel the stomach muscles... somewhere, but now they were split to the sides and hidden under layers of extra skin, and yes, extra weight. I bought the stability ball, the weights, the resistance bands, the yoga mat... anything that was going to help me lose the weight. But, they all either gathered dust in the corner of my family room, or became great toys for the kids. The stability ball was actually a great way to get my 2nd daughter to sleep... but not used very often for exercising. Even with all the paraphernalia, it was impossible to find time to exercise as a mother! How was I ever suppose to lose the weight and feel comfortable leaving the house ever again??? To top it off, my abdominal muscles had split pretty badly during my first pregnancy and no one could tell me what to due to correct it.

Near the end of my maternity leave with my first daughter, I finally decided to take some courses and learn more about my split abdominal muscles for myself. After my maternity leave, as many mothers do, I decided to make a career change and I became a personal trainer. I managed to correct my muscle split and return to my pre-pregnancy weight.

Once I found out I was pregnant with my second child, I decided to study more about pre & post natal fitness and I began teaching Baby & Me Fitness classes. With this pregnancy I was better educated and I was able to keep in great shape. I continued to train, workout and instruct right up to the end of my 8th month. The entire pregnancy was more enjoyable and I had more energy and less discomfort. I was also able to enjoy the comfort of a drug-free home birth.

I felt that there was a huge void in the fitness industry – there were no easy and affordable options for a new mom to workout and keep her infant or young toddler close by. As a result, I have opened Beaches Fitness – a private, personal training studio geared towards mothers. There is an attached playroom for kids and younger infants are kept safe and entertained while mom achieves her goals. I offer a flexible schedule and discounted rates for new moms. I find there are so many women that have a hard time loosing the weight and they do not have the support system they need to take care of themselves. We are so busy taking care of our kids and the households, we forget to put aside 3 hours of the week and get fit! Not only is this important for our health, but for our self-esteem and emotional well-being.

Now, I am not saying that I have the body I had in my early 20's... but I am proud of my body and I truly feel like a Yummy Mummy.

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