Way back in the day of clubbing, binge eating crap and doing minimal exercise health and fitness was not on my radar. Over the years my mindset has evolved and I am now in a really good place with consistently working out and eating the right foods for my body.
So how did I start working out at home? The first real workout I undertook was Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred. I’d dabbled with Hannah Waterman, Clair Nazir and other pointless celebrity “workout” dvds, going to body balance and a few spin classes. But it was Jillian Michaels that really kick started my passion for at home workouts. I had some really light handweights, a pair of trainers and a youtube video to get me going.
If you are unfamiliar with the 30 Day Shred, it is a series of workouts, 3 levels, 3 circuits in each level (Strength, Cardio & Abs) that you do continuously for 30 days. Does it work – yes!
I started the Shred just before I got pregnant the first time, it felt good to be active and I carried on doing moderate exercise throughout my pregnancy. As you know I had an emergency C-Section with Amelie so was unable to workout for 6 weeks. I started off lightly, doing the Shred a few times a week. How did I manage to fit in a workout during the newborn days? I just did, I wanted to exercise and change my lifestyle so I made time. Granted I was shattered a lot of the time but when I had the energy to bash out a workout I did, it made me feel really positive mentally and during those dark new mum days I found it a real mood lifter.
I remember Amelie being in her bouncy chair next to me, she then progressed to crawling around the floor so I put her in a kind of jumperoo thing that had lots of lights and activities to keep her occupied. There were days when all she wanted to do was be beside me so I worked out with a small child climbing all over me. I continued to do the Shred until I found out I was pregnant with Charlie, by this time I was getting quite fit and dropped lots of weight. Again, I worked out continuously until Charlie came along (another C-Section) although recovery from a second operation was more difficult.
When the time was right I started working out again. This time I had heard of a brilliant Bikini Body series by Kayla Itsines, this workout was intense but I was progressing to the next fitness level. Trying to fit a work out in with two small children proved a struggle some days but I enjoyed exercise so much I just plonked the kiddies in front of me, gave them a bag of Ella’s Kitchen Puffits and got on with it. I did do a ton of walking with the double buggy, getting out in the fresh air during all seasons was so good for my mental health.
Start off slow – don’t rush into booking a gym membership. Start off your exercise journey by walking with the buggy every day, getting out into the fresh (sometimes freezing) air is fantastic for you and also gets you out and about with the baby.
Write down a few goals – I do this all the time but do not put a time limit on yourself. It could be anything from ‘Aim to go for 4 walks this week’ ‘Drink at least 2 bottles of (500ml) water each day’
Invest in handweights – start light and work your way up. I would absolutely recommend buying a kettlebell either a 4kg or 6kg to get you going. However, there are so many brilliant workout routines including the 30 Day Shred that require no weights.
Do your research – Instagram and Youtube are fantastic pools of information for finding the right work out for you, no matter what level you are at.
Don’t punish yourself – if you can’t manage a workout every day or when you scheduled one in because life gets in the way – it does not matter!! Family and being a mum comes before anything so don’t feel guilty or deflated if you haven’t worked out, there is always another day.
Be proud of yourself – you are doing something positive!
I still struggle some days to find the motivation to work out but I love it so much. It has just become part of my daily routine and I love the way it makes me feel. The way I see it is , the workouts are 20 – 30 minutes in duration, I can either faff about doing nothing and sit on my bum for that short amount of time or I can smash out a workout and feel brilliant for the rest of the day knowing I gave it my all and tried.