Tuesday, 28 August 2018

My Fitness Journey (pre and post baby)

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I've never been a fitness fanatic, in fact my natural athletic ability is non existent. In school I always excelled in academics but was the kid picked last in games. That said, I've never been someone who needed to watch their weight - not exactly 'bikini body' ready, but never on a diet. Some might say it's lucky - good genes, fast metabolism or whatever and in some way it was. I could eat as I liked and not worry about the consequences. But it also made me lazy, because weight wasn't an issue for me, I NEVER exercised. I would get out of breath walking up the stairs and the concept of lifting weights was foreign to me.


Then I met my husband who was quite the opposite. Naturally athletic, strong and knew his shit when it came to exercise. We sporadically trained together for the first few years of our relationship, but I never really 'got into it' or made it a part of my routine.

Then we got engaged, "I'll be in the shape of my life for the wedding" I thought to myself at the time, but as the date approached and I tried on my wedding dress for the last time, I realised that actually - I needed to keep weight on and not trim down, otherwise my dress would need adjusting. So once again, I packed in the gym and ate as I liked. We got married, the dress looked amazing but honeymoon was another story. Beneath the clothes, I was a bit wobbly. Still only a size 10, but far from toned. I was embarrassed to wear my bikini and had never felt so self conscious as I did then. That was December 2016.

Fast forward to April 2017 and we discover we're expecting a baby, so obviously all thoughts of trying to get in shape go out the window as I battle morning sickness and fatigue in the first trimester. And every other complaint you can make while pregnant in the final two trimesters (I did not enjoy pregnancy at all!)

Our little girl was born 3 weeks early in December 2017. It was an uncomplicated birth and despite her being early, we were both able to go home the next day.
I'd had an episiotomy though and my stitches took a little while to heal, so again I was in no rush to worry about my shape. A new gym was opening in our area though, offering great deals to members who joined in advance of the opening date. So I signed up with hubby, not really giving it much thought as it was opening in March 2018 which seemed like a long way off.

The gym opening came around and hubby could not stop raving about how good it was. 'Biggest Nautilus facility in Europe' (no idea haha), 'loads of machines - you'll never have to weight for equipment' 'ladies only gym is bigger than the gym in town' etc etc so finally I decided to go to shut him up. I was also aware that I had run out of excuses, my uterus had long ago returned to normal size, my stitches had healed and at 19 weeks post partum, medically, there were no reasons why I couldn't start exercising.

So I decided to get serious about fitness, I took my 'before' photos and made an effort to go at least 3 times a week. I joined a Strength and Conditioning class and started lifting weights. I continued to go for 6 weeks at which point I took advantage of a Personal Trainers 'buddy up' offer and decided to have a 4 week block of PT sessions with my sister in law (essentially a pay for one get two deal, so it ended up half the usual price)

The 4 weeks consisted of tracking my calories on Myfitnesspal and trying to hit Macronutrient targets set by the PT. We had 2 one hour PT sessions a week, and continued to attend 2 morning classes a week, as well as Yoga once a week.

At the end of the 4 week block, we both felt like we weren't quite where we wanted to be, so he offered to continue the same offer for another 4 week block. We signed up again.
This time I tried harder with my food (hitting my targets was my biggest issue, alongside lack of sleep) and when we got to the end of the second block, I had some visible results. I was also feeling stronger, my PB's in lifting had dramatically improved and I was so proud of myself for actually sticking to something for the first time ever.




Which leads me to today. I've fallen off the wagon since finishing the PT sessions. And I'm hoping in writing and sharing this post, I'll get back some of the motivation I've lost. I don't want my hard work to be for nothing (and trust me 6am sessions 4 times a week were not just hard, some days they seemed almost impossible, particularly after 4/5 hours sleep!) and I don't want to go back to square one. I'm in the best physical shape I've been in, and that's after having a baby. I want to get my routine back and feel excited about going to the gym again. Tomorrow is a new day, day one of my remotivated fitness journey.

Thank you for reading - I know it's not really in line with what I usually write about, but I feel like putting this out there makes me somewhat accountable.

Do you have any tips for exercising when you don't feel like it? How do you pull yourself out of a slump?




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