To all the moms I have judged - I owe you an apology pt2

So what’s a girl to do? How do you balance putting your baby/babies first and still take care of yourself?

I think the answer lies in having a good conversation with yourself. Ask yourself what are your goals and why are they your goals? And are they actually your goals right now, or are they just the goals you always say are your goals? Every mom wants to get back to her pre-pregnancy weight, but ask yourself if you are really in the space where you can give it the time and energy. If you’re not up to it yet, meaning you are exhausted, give yourself permission to be loving and gentle with yourself, honour yourself and your baby, and don’t fight your instincts. If your body says sleep, sleep when the baby sleeps, if your body says eat, eat something great for you and the baby, if your body says move, go outside with your baby and move. When we want something bad enough, we’ll get it, we’ll make it happen. I bet if you’re honest with yourself and you ask yourself how badly you want that body back, you’ll see that you don’t want it as bad as you want some other things right now, like sleep and being able to provide for your baby/babies. And that’s okay. When you want your body back bad enough you’ll make it happen.

My babies are sleeping through the night, so now it IS time for me to get fit. Before kids, when I had a goal of cleaning up my diet, or leaning up a bit, I would sit down on a Sunday night and plan for the following week. I would schedule all my workouts, plan out my veggie omelettes and make sure I had a fridge full of fresh veggies and defrosted meat ready to go. Post-kids, this type of set planning doesn’t work. If my schedule gets blown due to melt-downs (mine or theirs!), naps or miscellaneous events, with the old type of planning I wouldn’t get a workout in. Here’s what I’ve started doing: I plan for three to four workout windows each day.

  • Option 1: 7:30am, my husband watches the boys while I go to the gym before he goes to work.
  • Option 2: between 9am-12 noon, we go to the gym that has daycare, if naps allow it.
  • Option 3: squats, thrusters, burpees and Tabatas in the basement while the babies sleep.
  • Option 4: 6pm, gym time once my husband is done work.
  • If option 1 doesn’t pan out, then we move on to option 2. Ideally, I would have a nanny who comes over every day from 9am-12pm and I would go out to the gym and run errands, but such is life and I am not complaining. I love the independence of being able to look after my boys all on my own. Most days we go for a walk for an hour; this is not even something I would have considered as being physical activity before kids, but it gets us all out of the house, and everyone feels good. As a type A personality, I want the best workout, so it’s a challenge to let a walk be my workout for the day and to not have lifted any heavy weights. But I try to not be all or nothing: if I can’t get to the gym during the babysitting hours, I don’t write off the day and wait until tomorrow, because tomorrow might be the same as today. I do what I can. The ‘best’ workout doesn’t always happen.

    An area I’m sure we can all do better in is to watch what’s going in our mouths, and there is no excuse for me to eat badly as a mom. Babies love the grocery store, there’s lots to look at, so my boys and I get there often to buy fresh food while trying to stay out of the aisles where the nasty corn syrup and soy laden foods are. If I’m going to eat the food off my boys’ trays, I’d better be feeding them great food!! I can’t out-train a bad diet, especially since I eat three to five times a day but only work out three to five times a week. Babies don’t need sugar and grains and neither do I, so it’s the perfect drive to eat, shop and cook food that truly fuels my family’s bodies.

    To the moms who have just had a baby: take your time, ease your way into this new way of life and get to know your little bundle. Pre-children I tried to push moms into getting their pre-baby body back when that maybe wasn’t what served them best at the time. To the moms who are ready to get back at it, it’s time to write out a grocery list and plan your next workout(s). You are the best mom in the world to your babes, and you need to take care of you!

    Guest Blog By: Sarah Hutchison
    chocolate connoisseur

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