Strong as a Mother: 5 Tips for Staying Fit
BY: AMANDA CAHILL
Let me start by saying that I haven’t always been such an active person. I didn’t grow up playing sports and would try to get excused from P.E. class every chance I had. In college, I used our brand new student gym probably three times and when Brad and I first started dating he had to trick me into working out with him. But somewhere along the way, I began to find activities that I enjoyed and a community that I bonded with and this helped me to not only become more physically active, but strong and determined as well.
From barre classes to running and cycling, I was very active before I got pregnant with Sloane. But from the moment I saw that second pink line on the pregnancy test, my activity level came to a fast and screeching halt. First trimester nausea and exhaustion took a serious toll on me and after a few months of falling out of my routine, it was easier to continue on that path for the duration of my pregnancy.
Flash forward to the 8 weeks postpartum appointment when my doctor gave me the green light for physical activity. I cringed. I didn’t know if I was going to enjoy exercise again, let alone be able to partake in any of the activities that I once loved now that I had a baby to take care of! But, not one to give up, I explored my options. I committed to running using our BOB stroller but it was often too hot for either Sloane or I. I joined a fun outdoor workout class for moms that incorporated strollers, but Sloane would often be just waking up or about to go down for a nap. It soon became clear to me that if I wanted to get active, lose the baby weight, and feel good again I needed to find something that I could do at home and at any time of the day…no matter what.
Then, a friend introduced me to a home workout program that she was doing. The program came with an online community of like-minded women to hold me accountable and support me along the way. Before I knew it, I was hooked. Months later I had not only lost the baby weight, but was in better shape than I was before I was pregnant. I also had increased confidence and energy. I was becoming more interested in cooking and feeling more confident with meal planning and prepping. And I had a daily routine to help me manage the postpartum depression that I was struggling with (read more about my PPD experience here).
It has been almost two years since Sloane was born and I am so proud of the lifestyle that I have adopted for my family and myself. I am proud of my body…its strength, its power, its beauty. I am proud that Sloane will grow up with a strong and healthy mama. I am also proud that I have had the opportunity to share what has worked for me and what I do with other women.
And so, in that theme, here are my tips for staying active and healthy as a mom in the hopes that you too can look and feel strong again!