This weeks #showtherealyou feature is the gorgeous founder of “The Fit Mummy Project”, Mrs Kimberley Smith, AKA @kimmyfitsmith. Kimberley provides other mummas with complete wellness and fitness guide, which preaches beauty, fitness, happiness, health and self love. Kimmy is a mumma of two gorgeous girls, her girls also share the same big smile as their mum (it totally infectious).
Kimberley is an absolute goddess, I know you are going to love this interview with her. She certainly inspires me to live a life of simplicity, promote self love and to be at peace with my body. She just radiates positive energy.
Please put your feet up, sip on a cup tea and enjoy this weeks #showtherealyou…
MRS KIMBERLEY SMITH
Favourite hot drink?
I’m obsessed with Pukka Teas at the moment. I have so many favourites. I am loving the Liquorice and Cinnamon blend for a sweet treat after a meal and the Relax Blend to help me unwind at night time.
Actually – what am I saying – I LOVE coffee! I’m trying to cut down at the moment to give my adrenals some much needed rest, but coffee just makes everything more fun!
Can you tell me who the REAL Kimmy Smith is?
Oh gosh! Big question. I am still trying to figure this one out myself. I think that I am pretty authentic – what you see is what you get with me. But in saying that, I have had so many labels over my lifetime, I was a corporate lawyer, I was a professional Netballer (I played netball for the NSW Swifts and was a member of the Australian Diamonds Netball Squad),I was a business owner and most recently I am a Mum. A large part of the last two years for me is trying to strip back those labels and re-discover who I am without having to pigeon hole myself.
I think that the real ‘me’ is the person I am being when I feel happiest. At that is when Ryan and I are together and playing with our girls. I have never felt more myself than when I am with my girls. Being a mother is the most beautiful and challenging thing I have ever done. I have two daughters. Allegra is 4 years old. She is a beautiful little girl who is just so kind and caring. And so mature! She is such a Mum already! She has 10 dolls who are all her ‘children’ and she takes care of them every day. Samara is my youngest who is almost 2. She is just pure cheekiness. I love the spark in her – it’s a real challenge to let her have the freedom she needs to cultivate that spark and at the same time stop her from causing some serious damage – both to herself and to everything we own!
My husband is Ryan (we started dating in high school!! I wanted to go out for 3 months so we would be considered a “serious couple”! 17 years later – I think we are pretty serious!). We were married in 2008 and I just feel so lucky to have him.
So family is super important to me, but there is also this huge part of me that is always asking for more. To me, that ‘more’ is my health and my work.
I need to take care of myself. I am getting better and better at really listening to my body and giving it what it needs. I spent a huge part of my life (I am 34, so I would say I spent close to 32 years) just pushing my body. Demanding that it perform day in and day out. Always asking it to work harder. Now I am at a point where I don’t want to push myself so much anymore. I want to be able to honour my body and live in a more cyclic way. Taking rest when I need it and working hard when I am feeling energised and vibrant. So being healthy and taking care of my health on all levels (physical, mental, emotional and spiritual) is a huge part of the ‘real me’.
My work is also a huge part of the ‘real me’. I am so passionate about what I do. Becoming a Mum was the most inspiring and emotional moment of my life. They say that when a baby is born, so too is the mother. And that is what I felt like. The moment Allegra was born, so too was the mother in me. And I have been growing into this role for the last 4 years. I think when Allegra was little, I really tried to pretend that nothing in my life had changed, except for the fact that now I had a baby. So I pushed myself to get my fitness back. I pushed and deprived myself to get my ‘body back’ and I worked myself into the ground trying to prove a point. I wanted to prove to myself more than anyone else that I could still do it all, even with no sleep and even less energy.
When I was pregnant with Samara, I just knew that I didn’t want to treat my body that way again. I didn’t want to feel so depleted. I wanted to stop valuing myself by how much I could ‘do’. I wanted to realise that my own wellbeing was worth prioritising.
So I began to really stop and think about how I really wanted to feel. About the type of life I wanted to create. And about how I could begin to accept the fact that everything about my life had in fact changed.
Initially how I wanted to feel was beautiful, fit and strong. Those three words became the start of the Fit Mummy Project which is my complete online guide to post natal fitness and wellbeing. I wanted to help to show other Mummas that we can create the exact type of life we want for ourselves and for our families. That we shouldn’t try to get our ‘bodies back’, but instead, we should be creating beautiful, fit and strong new bodies.
I wanted to create this community of fit, strong, healthy and happy Mummas that are really taking control of their health and happiness.
Tell me about a day in the life of Kimmy?
No day is really the same for me! So this was my Monday last week which is probably more like a typical day for me.
6:30AM Wake and do my morning routine which I call my 3 M’s.
Meditation. I do a 10-15 minute guided meditation. I love the app Insight Timer as it has so many free guided meditations. So I will chose a morning meditation and listen to that in bed with my headphones in.
Movement. I do around 10-15 minutes of movement. Normally this is a short yoga flow to wake my body up and stretch out and tightness that has accumulated over night.
Motivation. I read a little bit and do a little writing. My morning journalling always includes:
Setting my intention for the day.
Listing my Core Desired Feelings.
Listing 3 things I am grateful for today.
Setting 3 mini-goals for the day.
7:15AM The girls normally wake around this time. So I make them breaky and quickly sneak out and grab a coffee before my husband leaves for work!
7:30 – 9AM Normally the girls play and I just eat my breaky and just try to get the house organised for the day.
9AM Drop Allegra to Kindy. She goes to Kindy two days a week.
9:30AM Mums and Bubs. I train around 6 beautiful Mummies at my house. It’s a bit chaotic, but I think that they really enjoy it. We have around 6 Mummies and sometimes up to 8 babies. I have a baby sitter who comes and minds the babies. I focus on a mix of toning Barre style exercises, strength work and a little hit of fitness at the end of each session.
10:45AM I’ll take Samara to the shops and park and get our groceries for the week and she can have a little play. Maybe a sneaky second coffee.
1PM I have lunch with Samara at home and put her to bed.
1-4PM As soon as I put Samara to bed I do 20 minutes of guided meditation. And then I try and get as much work done as possible during this time! I am pretty disciplined when it comes to my work. I don’t get distracted easily. I listen to brain.fm which is binaural beats that help your brain to be uber efficient. They help me to get into that flow state. If I can achieve the 3 things I set out for myself that day, I will also try to do around 15 minutes of Barre style toning workout.
4PM We walk to pick Leggy up from kindy.
4:30PM The girls and I play. Or sometimes they are happy playing together without me and I do a little reading or have a cup of tea for as long as they are happy playing without me. Which is normally around 4 minutes max!
6:00PM Start getting dinner ready. Do the whole dinner + bath routine.
7:30PM Start getting my and Ryan’s dinner ready. Ryan generally gets home around this time.
8:30PM Samara goes to bed! Exhale! We watch a bit of TV. I am loving Big Little Lies at the moment!
9:30PM Leggy generally falls asleep around this time. I have a cup of tea and do a little night time routine of yin style yoga stretches and rubbing essential oils on my temples and wrists to start to wind down.
10PM Bed. I try to read a bit of my book. I normally get one page done and then I’m fast asleep!
What drove you to create your Instagram account/business @kimmysmithfit?
I guess for all the reasons I mentioned above. But also because, to me, Motherhood is a time of huge change. Our bodies change, our work arrangements change, our relationship with our partners change and often our values change. Many women take the view that amongst all of this change, they should try to feel and pretend like nothing has changed. They should get their body back straight away. They should exercise the same way that they used to, they should have the same values and push themselves to work as hard as they used to and achieve as much as they used to.
I want to help women to understand that this is an incredible time for growth. I want to empower women to begin to step into their strength and femininity. To step into their roles of mothers and begin to create an amazing life. Not try to get their old life back, or their old body back, but to create a beautiful, fit and strong new body and a happy and healthy new life as a family and mother.
What do you think attracts women to your site?
Motherhood is an incredibly demanding time. It is easy to lose our sense of self amongst all the obligation. In some ways those early days of motherhood are like the perfect storm.
We are sleep deprived, our bodies are exhausted from the process of giving birth and growing a whole human. Our bodies also still look around 6 months pregnant which doesn’t do wonder for our self esteem. We have all this change going on around us, we have huge expectations of what motherhood should be like and we have zero time to really reflect on all the changes that have occurred. We also have all this mother guilt seeping into everything we do.
I try to speak really openly and honestly about the difficulties of motherhood but also about the joys of motherhood. It is an amazing time and I feel so special and privileged to be able to raise my girls. Sometimes we feel guilty saying how awesome it is to be a Mum. We feel like we are showing off. But I think it’s great!
When I am writing about a challenge I have faced during my journey as a Mum, I always try to include a takeaway. Something practical that each woman can take away and incorporate into her own life.
At the most basic level, this is often a workout that they can do in their living room or at the local park. A simple series of exercises designed specifically for the post natal body that will help her to feel better about her body, shift some energy and hopefully get into a better mental state.
But I also want to help to open women up to a whole new level of self enquiry. Finding exactly what it is that makes her happy and then having the self-worth to go out and make that happen.
What is your favourite quote or mantra?
I have so many. I am constantly saying little quotes mantras to myself.
I constantly say to myself “I am love” We always have a choice, to act out of love or to act out of fear. Fear sounds really dramatic, but it can be as simple as gossiping about someone because it makes us feel included. It can be as simple as keeping an argument going because we are too ashamed to admit we are wrong. It can be something like not ever taking a break because you are scared of what will happen if you aren’t always ‘doing’. So this helps me to come back to myself and chose to act in a more kind and loving way.
Not that I get it perfect, I often am acting from a place of fear. The work one is a huge one for me!
How important is it to you that you find the time to move your body?
You know what I’m going to say here right!! Super important! Movement is one of the most simple things you can do to feel good. Moving your body, even if just for ten minutes a day can have such a significant impact on your mental health and your emotional health. And if you are after physical results, it really does just take 10 minutes a day of consistent exercise.
Consistency is the key.
I think we have been duped into believing that movement needs to be really complicated or hard core. It doesn’t. The best movement for you is what you enjoy. The Fit Mummy Project and my website seek to take away all the excuses that normally come up for Mums. Lack of time, lack of motivation, not sure what to do, not sure where to start, no equipment, no energy.
Whilst we are recovering from birth (which for most women is generally a 6 month period although we normally only give our bodies 6 weeks!) there are definitely some forms of exercise that aren’t good for our bodies. The postnatal period isn’t a time to prove a point or push our bodies to the extreme. It is a time to honour the incredible job our bodies did to bring a child into this world. That is why I always recommend to see a Women’s Health Physio who can assess your beautifully unique body and help you to learn what exercise will be best for you during that postnatal period.
Can you tell us a little more about The Fit Mummy Project?
The Fit Mummy Project is the complete online guide to post natal fitness and wellbeing. It is broken down into two guides, the Exercise Guide and the Nourish Guide.
The Exercise Guide helps Mums to return to exercise in a safe and positive way. It contains over 50 post natal exercises with step by step instructions as well as over 20 safe and really effective post natal workouts. You can start the workouts from as early as 48 hours after a natural birth and then progress all the way to around 18 months post partum. There is heaps of great info from Women’s Health Physio Lyz Evans on pelvic floor and core repair as well as a lot of great tips on how to return to exercise in a way that is going to energise you rather than exhaust you.
The Nourish Guide is a recipe and wellbeing book rolled into one. It is all about taking really good care of your health in a very simple way. It has over 40 simple healthy recipes that Mums can make really quickly and with pretty basic ingredients. It also has tips for surviving and thriving as a Modern Mum. Little life hacks such as meditation for the modern Mum, dealing with sleep deprivation, how to stop competition with your partner over who is more tired!
The Fit Mummy Project is the Guide that I wanted after I had my girls, and I couldn’t find exactly what I was after.
What advice would you give to other people out there wanting to start a blog/Instagram page?
If you are setting it up to grow into something more than a hobby then I would really recommend being crystal clear on your “why, how and who”.
Why is it important to you to share this message? Why are you so passionate about this topic? How do you want to feel when you are writing and sharing? How do you want others to feel when they are reading your words. Who do you want to read your stuff? Who do you want to touch or inspire with your words?
This will help you to become very clear on the type of messages your share and it will also help you to be authentic and consistent.
I think that starting a blog / instagram page is a really empowering process. It is like starting a micro-business. You can test things out, see what resonates and what doesn’t. You can find your voice and really start to develop your message. The more I write, the clearer I get on exactly what my message is.
Also, I think that it is important to remember that online relationships are just like real relationships. You need to give them time and you need to be respectful.
Oh and one other thing – don’t compare yourself! You can definitely get a lot of inspiration from the people and accounts you admire, you can respect the work that they have done, but if you start constantly comparing yourself you are going to lose all the joy you get out of creating and sharing your work.
What is something you practice every single day?
Yoga and meditation. I do some form of yoga and meditation every single day. I can feel myself becoming more and more the person I have always wanted to be and it because of my yoga and meditation practice. Some days are amazing and I feel such a shift in my happiness and my stress levels. Other days aren’t so good. I spend my whole meditation thinking of things I have to do. But I think it all counts – it all adds up.
What does self love mean to you?
I think it means a lot of things. I think that the precursor to self love is self acceptance. Being able to accept our whole self. The good and the bad. Our light and our shadow. Once we can accept all of ourself, then we can being to really show ourselves the love and respect that we deserve.
To me a few of the things that self loves means include slowing down enough so that I can hear the messages my body is sending me. As women, I believe we have a deep intuition. We know deep down exactly what it is we need, but often, we are so busy achieving and getting things done, that we don’t ever stop and listen. When I slow down, I realise what it is that I truly need right in that moment. Self love is also then hearing those messages and then valuing yourself enough to follow through. So self-love might mean realising that you need rest, and then valuing yourself enough to cancel a night out, or say no to an opportunity so that you can give yourself exactly what you are craving.
Perfect date night with your man?
We don’t get too many date nights! We had a night away by ourselves earlier in the year. It was our first night by ourselves in 3 years, so that was pretty special. I’d do that again for sure! But not too soon, I miss the girls too much! Such a shocker.
Can you share with us a perfect #mumlife moment you have had with your gorgeous girls?
The other day they both refused to have a nap. I was exhausted, so I took them both upstairs and we lay in my bed together and watched Beauty and the Beast. Allegra loves gentle tickles and Samara was tickling her leg. I would have bottled that moment if I could have. Seeing them be kind and loving toward each other just makes me feel like we must be doing something right.
One struggle you would like to share as a mumma with others?
Oh gosh, so many. My biggest struggle was probably finding my sense of self as a Mum. I felt really lost after I had Samara. I think I finally realised that I was a full on Mum. I spent a lot of time really discovering what it was that I needed to feel happy and fulfilled as a woman and as a mother. And then I spent a lot more time trying to find the balance between taking care of myself and taking really good care of my girls.
Day to day the biggest thing I struggle with is being present for them. I am working on putting in place better boundaries so I’m not constantly ‘mashing’.
P.S. Mashing is a term created by Jacqui Lewis in the book Mothers’ Mind Cleanse. It’s an amazing read and when she refers to mashing she means when you try to multi-task but actually you just lack presence and awareness in everything you do.
What did you have for dinner last night?
Chickpea fritters and a super simple salad of rocket, feta, walnuts and avocado. Plus a few little treats! A glass of Rosé and some raw chocolate brownie! Amazing!
Thank you so much for sharing Kimmy! I look forward to what you have in store in the near future. Want to get to know the gorgeous Kimmy a little more?
When I first met Rachelle she had this gorgeous big smile from cheek to cheek as she was pushing her son in the pram. She was so proud of her gorgeous little son. We were having a mummy catch up by the beach with other mums we both new. Rachelle had not had much sleep the night before but she was so radiant and looked like she had been on a holiday. That was 6 months ago. Now I call this beautiful lady a great friend and I have enjoyed watching her son grow up with Cruz.
As I got to know this woman I soon come to realise that there was so much more to this gorgeous lady that being a mumma. She had taken a leap and started a magazine … Yes you heard me right, a magazine. #superwomen. I will let you read all about her other long list of inspiring achievements below. I know you wil be motivated by Rachelle too.
I have been looking forward for weeks to sharing this blog post with you and Rachelle is defiantly woman you want to get to know. She has so much knowledge to share.
Meet the woman (editor) behind the magazine, Maximizer. Rachelle Hawken.
What’s the story behind your magazine Maximizer? How did you get started?
Before I had my son I was seeing life coaching clients but knew that once he arrived it wouldn’t be as easy to do client sessions. So I started thinking of ways that I could create something useful and still have that contact with people while also honouring my time and having the flexibility to be with Max when he needs me.
Maximizer is, at it’s heart, a magazine about living your best life but with a focus on minimal and sustainable lifestyle. When I say minimal lifestyle people often think it’s about all-white home design or something. But really a minimal lifestyle is about finding fulfillment in a slower pace of life, with less stuff and more meaningful experiences with our loved ones rather than spending every last dollar on ‘things’.
I love sharing articles from people who have their own take on living more simply, minimally, sustainably and ethically. People are so inspiring when you get to know their stories. Can you tell us all a little bit more about the woman behind the magazine.. You, AKA Rachelle Hawken?
Ha well, I’m a mum to a one year old so some days that’s all I manage to be!
I like to think I’m a pretty positive and happy person and I’ve always been into personal development. In my teenage years I was pretty obsessed with my weight and dieting but somewhere along the way I discovered the benefits of a healthy lifestyle rather than constant dieting in the long term.
That’s one of the reasons I became a life coach; to help other women get out of the negative body image rut and figure out what their true passions in life are. I’ve found time and again that when a woman lets go of the negative views of herself, this whole world of opportunity opens up and everything from her relationships to her career to her confidence levels thrive. That’s when women start making a real impact in the world and in the lives of others!
Oops, I got a bit off track then! I truly feel really blessed with life at the moment. Being a mum is tough going sometimes but I love it and I have the best of both worlds because I help run our business so I can work and stay home with Max at the same time. We’re getting married in a few months and I am so looking forward to going on holidays afterwards!
You have some very talented artwork in your magazine, how do you source artists to feature them?
I’ve been blogging for a few years now and love getting to know other women with online platforms so I actually had a couple artist friends whose art felt like the right vibe for Maximizer.
It didn’t take long for artists to start contacting me from seeing the covers on Instagram so issue 3 is from someone who approached me. I can’t wait for this next one! I’m still on the lookout for artists for upcoming issues so if you have any readers who are artists I would love to hear from them!
You created Maximizer after you had your son Max? How have you found balancing work life and mum life?
Two words: mum guilt! I have a babysitter who comes over to help me with him while I’m in the office which is amazing. Recently we had a busy period so I was working heaps and then I missed him so much, even though he was just in the other room! But then when it’s quiet and I only work one day I really crave some alone time. I guess it’s swings and roundabouts rather than balance! In the magazine you have many articles that inspire us to leave the world in a better place than we found it. What are some of your tips that you can share with us that you preach in your everyday life?
There’s a quote from The Minimalists that sums it up nicely;
‘Love people, use things. The opposite never works.’
I feel that our modern lives with all the advertising and media we are exposed to has us feeling like we are missing something and that the something can be purchased. But we are more than just consumers. We would be giving ourselves and the planet a huge gift if we committed to shopping just a little less and buying only what we need. Especially if we can reduce our use of plastic in the process!
What do you think attracts people to your magazine?
Well I really hope it’s that the articles are positive and practical and by real people!
When you make any lifestyle change the hardest part is knowing what information to trust and not feeling alone. So I hope they are attracted to the community aspect too.
Best moment since starting Maximizer?
Well it has to be the response to the first two issues. It is such a scary thing to put creative work out into the world, especially when there are so many contributors involved because you want it to be seen by as many people as possible for them. When someone emails me to say they loved reading the articles and how they have changed this or that aspect of their lives, it’s the best feeling!
Deciding whether to make access to the community free or not. We recently voted as a group to make it free and it was such a big relief because I really want to build it into something special. I was feeling the stress of having to ‘sell’ it and when I thought about it, it actually doesn’t make sense for a community about minimalism and sustainability to cost money to access.
Since I let people know it’s free we’ve had heaps of new members join so I know it was the right decision! And without that stress I can focus on the fun side of it!