It’s taken me over 30 years to be proud of myself. To say and actually mean, “I’m proud.” Of myself.
After having my daughter 3 years ago, I wrote a post about coming full circle. How I somewhat shocked myself when I slowed down, didn’t try to kill each and every workout, and focused my workouts on function rather than fitness. And the result? My very first somewhat of a six pack! After baby! I mean, normally you hear all about how after baby, that’s it. You’re never going to get your pre-baby body back…and if you do, it’ll take years. So it wasn’t my goal. I just wanted to feel good, spend time with my new baby, and reconnect with my husband as we both assumed new roles and transitioned life from “the norm” to “the new norm.” PS, what’s actually “the norm” anymore?
So I was proud of myself then. I posted the picture even though I was really hesitant. I thought there was good meaning behind it and I wanted to share what I was thinking.
Fast forward to 2016, and it’s time for me to unveil my most recent 9-month vs. 9-month photo. I’m pretty stoked (yes, I said stoked) for this one. Because with my daughter, pregnancy was completely new. I was scared. I didn’t want to hurt my growing baby. All I did was walk, some basic strength training, and way more yoga than I ever thought I would…
Along came baby #2…
I ran up until about 34 weeks (only once or twice a week), I strength trained throughout (with real weights), and did a TON of functional movements. While I may have been exercising more than during my first pregnancy, I made a conscious effort to slow things down and make sure I was doing what was best for baby…and me. I had to let go of some things because I just couldn’t be in GO mode 24/7. And that’s OK. Listening to your body is the most important part of prenatal exercise.
I truly think my strength training made this pregnancy so much easier on my body. And I think it’s the strength training that led to a pretty quick recovery. So much so that I signed up for a triathlon. Even though triathlons are considered endurance events, I don’t think I’d be able to complete it without the foundation the strength training gave me. This was the same triathlon I did after my daughter was born. I will be honest and say I finished it three years ago, but it was tough. Really tough. But this time…I actually placed 2nd! What?!?!? And I actually felt pretty good at the end. I've never been known as speedy or fast. I usually register for races that I think I’ll enjoy, I’ll have fun training for, and so I can push myself towards a goal. Again, it wasn’t my intention, but I surprised myself. My goal was to do better than the last time, and I did. I’m proud of what my body has accomplished in the last year and a half. I’m proud of myself for training smart. I’m proud of my second place finish!
So without further ado, here’s 9 months pregnant and 9 months postpartum. The picture on the left was taken 2 days before I went into labor. The race photo was taken 2 days before my son turned 9 months.
Now, get out there and train smart…be proud of all you do…I’m proud of you!