Post Natal Journey With Studio Pilates

Written by Alice Bingham

@studio_pilates

I received an email from Studio Pilates on Thursday stating that I had completed my 50th class. I was quite proud of myself that I had achieved this as looking back on the last 10 months, it has been quite the journey. I had an Emergency C Section with our third daughter in January and have transitioned to be a mumma to three young children. Getting to class was sometimes a challenge as the old silly “mum guilt” can creep in, however it is just what I need. The classes are not only supporting my body and helping me to regain strength, they are helping my mental health too. 45 minutes of pure concentration, deep breathing and connecting with my body and seeing what it can achieve in that time. I have really enjoyed the community at my local Studio Pilates – Wellington Point, every client is so encouraging and I always leave with a smile on my face. The instructors are fun but are so professional too. I look forward to my next 50 classes and seeing what I will achieve.

My Post Natal Journey 

I started my Studio Pilates journey at 4 months postpartum, I wasn’ quite ready to return to heavy weights or high intensity cardio just yet, however I wanted to do something that would not only support my body, but help me to rebuild my strength slowly and carefully in my abdomen. I was guided by my Women’s Health Physio to wait to 12 weeks before doing anything to crazy. So when she stated I was ready, she suggest Pilates to me. I was so glad to see I had a local one near my house. Once I started I became in love with reformer. I cannot imagine not having it in my life now. You can read about the first part of my post natal journey (the first 25 classes) with Studio Pilates here, in my first blog I wrote.

Since I last wrote the blog for Studio Pilates, I have now seen some amazing transformations in not only my training at the studio but my body as well. My core is getting stronger and so is the rest of my body. I am able to push deeper in the leg workouts in class and have taken away the head pillow in the abdominal section at the beginning of class, this is a huge win for me. I can now wear ankle weights and feel my Tzone is more engaged during certain moves like”circles” or “bicycles” and I can also hold a plank position for 1 minute 11 seconds on my feet.

I have also seen drastic changes in my posture. My shoulders are back more, when I am performing simple tasks like picking my my kids, I hold in my tummy and switch on my T-Zone. I also do some gentle pelvic exercises with my abdominal workouts (from the Studio Pilates FREE newsletter) too. I am really noticing a huge change within that area.

These are the goals I have for my postpartum body and it is not about weight loss for me. Sure I fit in my old jeans now but I haven’t weighed myself since I was pregnant and I do not plan to either. This is of course my personal journey with Studio Pilates. I would highly recommend giving it a go, try one of their starter packs ( 2 weeks, 6 class passes) to really see how you find it. It took me a few weeks but like I said I cannot picture my life without it now. I have loved the new strength it has given me.

At my local studio (Wellington Point) they have Pregnancy and Post Natal Classes twice a week. You can check the app or call your local studio to see when they have these on. They would be amazing to check out if you are pregnant or recently had a bub as they are suited to support the women’s body during this time.

To read more information about Studio Pilates and Pregnancy you can read this blog. For post natal information call your local studio to help meet your individual needs.

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To find your local Studio Pilates Studio visit here – HERE

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Website –www.studiopilates.com

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The New Me. By Kirsty McKenzie AKA @themummysomniac

I am so pleased and super lucky to be featuring the gorgeous Kirsty McKenzie AKA @themummysomniac for the second time on my blog. Kirsty is a dear Instafriend that I have been lucky enough to meet, and she has helped to guide and support me through my #mumlife journey and with my lifestyle in general. This woman has a heart of gold and is not afraid to share her trimaphs and failures (argh girl thats what I love about you). In my first interview with Kirsty, she shared answers with you all in depth about herself in my #showtherealyou segment (you can read here). This time she has returned to share with you all this raw piece of writing about how she found a new love for her body during her current pregnancy with baby number three. Wow mummas this is a must read for you all as I know you will be able to totally relate with Kirsty no matter what stage you are at with your self love journey. Enough from me, time to hand it over the beautiful Kirsty McKenzie. Arghhh I know you will love this piece as much as me.

Kirsty Mckenzie AKA @themummysomnic

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As my very first (ever) stretch marks began to emerge, somewhere throughout my first pregnancy, I’m afraid to say, I cried…

I don’t think for me, that it was vanity. I struggle with change, or at least I have at times in the past (even chopping my mum bun off recently took some serious commitment). I think for me, simply, it’s hard to see something you’ve become so used to seeing, your own body, change so rapidly. After all, I had become accustomed to my pre-pregnancy body slowly changing over the previous 27 years. Yet the changes that we experience during pregnancy are over but a fraction of the time that we had with our bodies before. After a while, I accepted the changes (stretch marks and new outie belly button to be precise)… even grew to be fond of them. After all, they represent one of my greatest accomplishments in life, my eldest daughter. And believe me when I say ‘accomplishment’, the kid didn’t sleep until she was 3.5, it’s amazing that I’m even half as sane as I am.

When the time came for baby number two, I thought I was prepared for the changes. Yet like each child, each pregnancy can bring with it a whole different set of challenges. My first pregnancy, like my first child, was set out to take me to places that I’d never been before (awake all night… and not voluntarily like in my youth). To push me to let go of the things that I need to, and focus on what’s really important. My second child, like my second pregnancy, came forth to show me just how much I was really capable of pushing things (mind, body and spirit). Just when I thought I had it all sorted out, thought I’d adjusted my headspace accordingly, and knew what to expect, the second child came along to throw all of it on it’s head. To push me to my limits, and to show me just how far my mind and body could stretch, and just how much love I was capable of. There were elements of my second pregnancy, that felt easy, in the sense that I had been there before, I knew the morning sickness would end, that eventually all babies sleep through the night, and that labour is in fact the easy part… and that the hard part is what happens when you bring the baby home. But there are no two pregnancies that are exactly the same, not even for the same person… now I know.

Kirsty 39 weeks pregnant with baby number two. 

Kirsty in labour with baby two.

I bounced back physically from my first pregnancy without any real issues, but my second pregnancy had pushed my body to the extreme, literally (10cm abdominal separation). It saddens me to say, that again, when I dared look in the mirror at my body, a mere 6 weeks later, still looking six month pregnant, I felt complete and utter despair (again I cried). I thought I knew what to expect, but this took me completely by surprise. I threw myself into the chaos that was my life as a mum of two, 19 months apart, and tried to forget. Yet, eventually, bit-by-bit, everything returned to normal, or what would become my new ‘normal’. Some time, patience and a lot of hard work, I recovered, not back to the old me, but to a new and improved me. I realised how amazing, and strong my body was.

Kirsty at 3 weeks and then 6 weeks postpartum, after baby two.

Kirsty 15 months postpartum baby two.

Kirsty 39 weeks pregnant and 39 weeks out
 

I think I had taken so much for granted in the past, but seeing how I’d brought it back (after a very long uphill climb), gave me an incredible appreciation for it.
Fast-forward almost exactly 4 years from the appearance of those very first stretch marks, and I’m sitting fat and happy at 26 weeks into my third pregnancy. I’m not sure what it is, whether it’s having been through some tough times, a little bit of age and maturity, or simply having finally worked out what’s worth worrying about in life, but I’m excited about it… about everything (Ok, still incredibly nervous about pushing a baby out of my hoo-ha, that part doesn’t change). I’ve never felt more comfortable (not so much physically, because we all know that pregnancy has the uncomfortable factor, but in the mental sense) in my own skin. To me there’s something about my pregnancy body that fills me full of life again (literally). There’s a confidence there that I don’t normally possess, a sense of pride and self love that I wish I could feel all the time. Not only have the old marks reappeared, the ones placed on my body by this baby’s two older sisters, but some new ones too. It might sound strange, but in some ways these marks are truly welcomed. Each of my children has left their mark on me, in so many ways. I’ve changed the way I approach life, I’ve learned to stop fighting unworthy battles, to accept what I cannot change, to work with the new me, instead of trying to go back to the old me. I don’t need the old me back, she’s not relevant anymore… her way of thinking, her body, her outlook (I would welcome her sleep habits back though)… because the new me, is so much better.

Kirsty 15 weeks pregnant with baby number three.

Kirsty 23 weeks pregnant with baby number three.
I’m definitely interested to see what my new body will look like after baby number three. I don’t know what to expect, I have to let it all go, and leave my expectations in the same drawer as the pregnancy tests I took (Is it just me, or does anyone else struggle to throw those things away?). I have no idea where this pregnancy will go, but for some reason, at this point (ask me again in another 10 weeks), I’m pretty cool about that.

Wow, thank you so much for sharing this piece of your thoughts with us. I love that you have found this new love and respect for your body and you are helping others do the same without even realising. Want more from this babe? Follow her journey on her Instagam – @themummysomniac and check our her blog http://www.themummysomniac.com/

Kirsty at 25 weeks with her current pregnancy with baby number three.