I made these cookies for breakfast as I wanted to have a bit of a change from the usual smoothies and porridge. The cookies are completely egg and dairy free. I got them out the oven and within literally 30 minutes, the tribe and I ate them all. None left haha! I guess they were a winner. They were chewy on the outside and soft on the inside, delicious!
Since I will be experiencing my forth trimester soon and I have a lot of mumma followers that are pregnant, I have asked for some nutritional information and some basic survival technicques from naturopath Shannon Stokes from Mums and Bubs Nutrition Clinic. She is a mum herself to two littleys and has survived (just) the 4th trimester twice.
Take it away Shannon…
The journey to becoming pregnant is a magical one. Its either a ‘surprise’ I am here type scenario, a long awaited and joyous time. The journey itself is nuts! Pregnancy is a whole other kettle of fish, a completely natural yet unnatural experience. Getting pregnant, staying pregnant and just being pregnant is an insane journey, and that is just the beginning.
You are a mumma! Congratulations, baby is here you have been through a marathon of hurdles, a tonne of happy gas, 9 epidural attempts, a vacuum delivery, 12 different hands up your clacker at once, an episiotomy or 9th degree tear. You now have that little bundle of joy in your arms. Perhaps you are feeling those kooky love spell feelings straight away, or perhaps you think, oh jesus what have I done? All totally normal feelings. I remember thinking oh, he’s not very cute, in fact he is a bit strange looking and gee my vagina is killing…. me where are those frozen condoms at, all in the same breath!
… All of that aside, baby is here and it’s a whirlwind few days in the beginning.
How does one survive through this sleep deprivation? The healing of the whole birth thing is one thing, but then perhaps breastfeeding is hurting like a bugger and you have grazed nipples or sterilizing a bottle seems to take forever and a day at 3am. You aren’t alone, this period is earth shatteringly exhausting, scary and exciting all rolled into one. Cue the 4th Trimester! So mumma, whilst we learn to look after this babe ( I am happy to leave that to the never ending advice from the mum tribe, in-laws and experts) I am here to help YOU make some tiny changes in your day to keep you thriving.
It starts with you and ends with you. Everything else in between is that tiny babies’. Upon your first morning wake up, (ok, so the first moment you get up for the day) refresh your self with a big glass of filtered water, and take a deep breath. That’s it for now. No matter what is happening, this is a must! Then tick it off daily as it is non-negotiable.
Below are some of my favourite 4th trimester survival guidelines for all new mums and even dads.
1. Do NOT stop your multi, infact this is a time to ensure your nutritional status is up with that of the very best it has ever been. Even if you aren’t breastfeeding.
2. Eat foods rich in good fats, think avocado, coconut oil, nuts seeds, oily fish such as sardines, salmon, qood quality extra virgin olive oil drizzled on eeeeeevvvverything.
3. Make sure you are having macronutrients with each meal and at least a palm size portion of protein at each meal. (macronutrients are the essential nutrients needed in large amounts to sustain energy and basic health. The 3 macros are Protein, Fats and Carbohydrates)
4. Take a quality probiotic daily
5. Don’t focus on trying to lose the baby weight, give yourself a break.
6. Ask for things, I wish I did this more with my first. Ask for help! (you can’t get away with asking for washing to be folded and home cooked meals to be dropped when they are 3.. dammit)! Even ask for a box of nappies to be dropped off. Use that ‘new mum’ thing a little..
7. Say no! if you aren’t up for visitors then say no, if you aren’t up for your cousins and nephews coming over and running a muck, just say no, but don’t feel guilty or think twice about it, they will understand…. And If they dont then.. meh… they will get over it.
8. Accept that some days are bad and some days are good, ebs and flows ladies, mountains and rivers.
9. Spend 5 minutes a day with your legs up the wall, relax those hips and lower back, take 10 deep breaths. (Again, non-negotiable)
10. Spend 10 minutes a day minimum outside in bright morning day light to ensure your body knows its day time and to help regulate those sleep /wake hormones
11. Don’t feel guilty, if you want to look at your phone while feeding bubs, do it. If you want to stay in bed, do it. If watching Oprah is your jam, do it, indulge a little and enjoy doing it. Stop feeling guilty. Guilty feelings radiate negative energy. If it has been a few weeks in a row then, maybe ask for a little help from a loved one and reach out if you are doing it tough… remember its all of those crazy hormones doing crazy things.
12. If you aren’t coping, reach out. You will be surprised to know that a lot of mothers find the fourth trimester insanely hard. No matter who you are, how together you think everyone is, its not the case. Speak up and your tribe will answer.
Enjoy those long loving stares into your babies eyes, explore their features and be fascinated with the whole process.. this too shall pass and then all of a sudden it’s a Tuesday night and you are writing about how to cope through the 4th trimester to a friend in need. Everyone struggles and if you think that its all too much, please reach out. It does get easier and it does get better. Trust me, I never thought I would see past the sleep deprivation either.
Thank you so much Shannon for your time if you wish to contact Shannon or learn more about her, her details are as follows.
I actually cannot believe I am typing the last blog of the Alice In Pregnancyland series. (for now haha) I remember chatting To Tahlia about collaborating with me for the #bumpstyle shoots and now here we are at 37 nearly 38 weeks finishing off the bump series. I have really loved building a friendship with Tahlia from @wyldefolkstudio_ while we did the photoshoots she is such a kind hearted person. I now have a friendship for life with her. Not to mention how blessed I was to collaborate with so many gorgeous labels and maternity brands. throughout the 9 months. A huge thank you to everyone that followed the series and continued to send through such beautiful feedback. Big Love to you all.
The last few weeks I have been on a emotional roller coaster. I have been so excited to meet the little one, I have had mum guilt with my one on one time with Cruzie, I have cried happy tears and I have cried god knows what tears. To me having a good cry really does help me just let it all out, breathe and then let it go. All these new emotions feel like it’s my heart is expanding and I am ready to meet our new little one now.
I finished up work at 36 weeks. Best decision as I was going to work to 37 weeks, the heaviness of nursing and being on my feet got to me a little. So I am so glad to be on maternity leave. It feels so different not having to go to work again.
I have been making the most of my time with Cruzie too. I have been taking him to singing and reading at the library, reading and extra snuggles at night time, park hangs and babycino dates. I am loving being off work with him again.
Everyone has been asking how Cruzie has been? Does he know? I think he knows a change is coming. He won’t let anyone rub my belly but David, he pushes their hand away or pulls my top down. We brought him a little dolly and he has been kissing it, changing its nappy, pushing it around in a pram. It’s so cute to watch. I think he will be a great big brother.
I keep telling myself that I need to slow down as my body is tired, but its true “nesting” is a real thing. I keep thinking of new things to do and clean. I forget to rest and I am on the go all day. Then I have the worse braxton hicks and back ache in the evening. So I should listen to all the advice and just put my feet up. Haha easier said than done though. Plus entertaining my little man. He sleeps well in the afternoon so I should just lay down then and watch some Offspring on tv. Maybe tomorrow? haha.
I went and seen my midwife for a 36 week scan and check up. The cheeky bubbas legs are sitting frog legged but the head is right down there. I keep thinking in my head that the baby will be here early because Cruz came early but I shouldn’t get my hopes up. I discussed my birth plan and what I wanted. My birth plan is to have a natural birth, hopefully not be on the monitor like last time, have a bath or hot shower, use essential oils and just have David in there. David is my rock and he really did help me through the breathing techniques last time. I do still feel anxious about the birth experience and labour but I am just trying not to think about it, what will be will be.
With eating I have been a bit all over the place.
I wake up so hungry and have to eat before I go for a walk. For breakfast I normally have smoothies or protein pancakes. Thats its the I just swap it up between the two.
Then for snacks I have almonds, nuts, apple or a bliss ball. Sipping on so much raspberry leaf tea to ha.
Lunch is lots of greens and a source of protein or a chia sourdough with cheese, figs and cucumber sandwich or the same combo on rice cakes.
I am obsessed with Bolognese at the moment with zoodles (zucchini pasta), I am addicted love it. I also love white fish or salmon with greens for dinner, I have gone off all brown rice and sweet potato probably because my belly already fills so fall at night.
Cravings – organic milk chocolate from Flannerys Health Shop … YUM!!!!
Walking 30-45minutes around the block (filled with hills) but very slowly as I get pelvic pressure. I put my podcast on and enjoy the metime I love it. Makes me feel better. I love doing about 20-40 push ups daily on the kitchen bench and 20 squats on the shower too. About 3 times a week I use my little 2kg weights and do a little arm workout too. If I have having an exhausting day I just don’t exercise at all. Maybe just do a stretch. The last week I have really slowed down, but thats okay, my body needs the rest.
So besides loose boho styles and a few tight comfortable maternity dresses I have been living in maternity leggings and a jumper. Argh so comfy. I do love dressing up the bump, but I feel my wardrobe has become very limited and don’t really want to add to it till the baby is here.
For this #bumpstye shoot I wore a dress I purchased for a hens day a few months back. Its called the FAWN WRAP DRESS and I brought it from the @theselfstyler online. Guess what they just restocked it too. You can buy it HERE. Its perfect to take you through your pregnancy journey and will be great for breastfeeding too. Its not actually a maternity dress but it should be its so comfortable.
Tahlia and I decided for the last bump photoshoot we would find a beautiful spot with long grass (secret location) and invite David and Cruz to come along for some family photos. We had a lovely afternoon watching the sunset and Tahlia came with her family too, so nice. I hope you all enjoy the photos.
Let me set the scene. I am not one of the many ‘insta-fit-mums’ with the minimal body-fat, eight-pack and no cellulite. This is me. I am 30, pregnant with my second child and this is my pregnancy fitness journey. I will touch more on my pregnancy fitness with baby two (below).
Before I get into my journey I want to touch on something that is bothering me on this topic. I originally had intended this post to be about all the fitness options available for pregnant women, instead I began to feel (hormonally) overwhelmed by the key-board warriors ‘attacking’ mothers and mothers-to-be on social media because of their lack of education on the topic. I have the up-most respect for the ‘insta-fit-mums’. I admire their commitment to fitness, health and finding their new balance while pregnant and most of all I admire their strength when it comes to the ongoing (never ending) public criticism they receive about their pregnancy. Can anyone else see a common theme here…? THEIR. A pregnancy journey is exactly that. It is individual. Every woman and her body are different. Recently, I read with great disappointment an article in the Courier Mail on pregnancy ‘insta-fit-mum’ Chontel Duncan. I don’t know her at all, but I do understand her journey is hers and I don’t believe or see anything wrong with advocating for a healthy and fit Mum throughout her pregnancy. She did not say that a pregnant woman has to train like her but instead find a balance that is the right fit for THEIR pregnancy. Again that word their. Why is a woman’s pregnancy and her pregnancy fitness journey anybody else’s to comment on?
I recently saw another ‘insta-fit-mum’, Emily Skye announce her pregnancy on the social media platform to excitement from her followers to mixed criticism when she said she was off to do her ‘normal’ workout. The comments were ridiculous and uneducated. From one follower stating that pilates caused her to have a premature baby, to another stating to just walk because otherwise she will cause damage to her baby. I am baffled. Where has the education gone? Why are we still in a society where women are told to ‘sit and eat-for-two’. Why cant a woman train? with safe variations, like she was pre-pregnancy? I will leave you with that…
Here is my journey. I have had several people ask me how much weight I have put on because I look ‘small’ for my gestation. Question, what is the size of a pregnant belly at 32 weeks? Exactly that there is no perfect size. For me I have never really carried weight around my stomach and found that an easier area to keep toned so both times now my stomach is low, compact and tight. As for weight this is something I have debated about sharing and I have decided not to. Whilst I check-in on my weight, my midwife and OB never have.
So what do I do to maintain my health and fitness throughout pregnancy. To some it may seem like ‘too-much’, but this is MY journey and I am sharing it to help educate women that keeping up your fitness and health throughout pregnancy can and will benefit you. Besides the intensity and modifying exercises throughout each trimester I have ben doing reformer and mat pilates two to three times a week and F45 two to four times a week depending on how I am feeling. I also chase after a 12kg, nearly two year old and puppy who love long walks and park play.
Pilates is something I have always been passionate and addicted to especially as my recovery with Jack was relatively easy made thanks to this fitness revolution. This time I have a reformer at home making it convenient to exercise before Jack wakes without having to go anywhere. F45, especially as I have entered into my third trimester, has been a lifesaver. The motivation, support (physical and mental) the program provides me is exactly what I have needed, especially on the cooler winter mornings. I love doing a 5am workout, coming home and preparing things for the day and knowing my workout is done.
Mentally, emotionally and hormonally this is my fitness regime, that is supported and monitored with my OB and allied health professionals, which works well for me and my pregnancy.
So without professional fitness qualifications here are my TIPS for your Pregnancy and Post-Partum Journey.
Check out – You want real advice check out UB Mumma for professional health and fitness advice.
Don’t judge – don’t judge the ‘insta-fit-mums’ they are humans like you and me and not bulletproof.
Stop comparing – Don’t follow/stalk/screenshot/ postpartum fitness images and sites if it won’t benefit you. Guess what just like your pregnancy journey your post-partum journey is yours as well.
As bump and I moved into the third trimester my anxiety thinking about the birth started to increase. I know I totally got this, but when I laid there at night sometimes and start to think about the pain I was in during my labour with Cruzie. I spoke to my midwife about my concern and she said it’s very normal in the build up of a second birth to feel like this. Cruz was posterior so his spine on my spine so it was a lot of back pain and due to being on a monitor the whole labour I couldn’t travel far to walk it off. I stood next to the bed exhausted with the pain of contractions I was experiencing. However this is just a small part of my memory of the birth I was thinking about. My midwife told me that when these thoughts popped into my head to just think instantly of the moment of the relief I felt when they put my baby on my chest and told me I had a son. So that’s what I have been doing. I think it’s helped a lot.
I also voiced my concern with @themidwifemumma and we both decided that it was great to have her answer not only my questions about pregnancy and labour but my followers too. So last week @themidwifemumma took over my Instagram Story and spoke for an hour about some of our concerns. I wanted to say a huge thank you as she totally put my mind at ease. Feeling very blessed for that experience.
I would say my moods have been a little all over the place again. Feeling very excited about our new arrival but also been a little grumpy towards David at times too due to being tired. I also think that it’s because I’m pregnant and he isn’t haha. No seriously I do love the feeling of carrying out child and feeling those sweet baby kicks. David has been amazing too. So supportive and helpful at home. Overall I would say I have been mostly happy during these weeks. I feel very blessed to have a healthy toddler and a healthy Bub in my bump.
During this time I had my 30th and I turned 30 weeks on the same day. David, Cruz, Bump and I went to Sydney for a holiday, it was so nice to have a little family time together. I really enjoyed exploring and just hanging out with my boys.
I have still been thinking about the one on one time with Cruz too. How it will be limited. But I have been reassured by friends that as a family with more children you all just hang out together and your first child will adapt.
I am super excited to see Cruz as a big brother as he just loves other babies. He gives his new baby cousin lots of kisses and cuddles, it melts my heart.
Last week I received my new pram, I will soon be able to push my two babes around the streets. I am feeling very blessed to be a brand ambassador for the UPPABABY VISTA Double Pram. I am so in love with all its features and Cruz was so excited to hop in his new ride on our daily walks.
Due to my varicose veins I haven’t been doing to much high intensity exercise. I have been walking for 30-45 minutes most days. That’s a workout in it’s self with the pram up and down the hills.
I do 20-40 push ups on the kitchen bench about 5 days a week and some light dumb bell workouts.
To be honest I have been a little slack with the yoga too, only doing it once a week. Just not feeling it as much at the moment. I enjoy walking a little more than yoga and have been getting the same relaxation feels from just that.
I have been enjoying lots stretching. I find the legs in the air yoga pose helps with my achey back, legs and sore feet from veins. Hot magnesium baths have also help too.
I am now at the stage of pregnancy where I feel so hungry for my meal, but then I eat and I get the feeling of fullness after like 4-5 bites… WHY? I want to eat all the food haha! I have just been lots of eating light meals. Sipping on lots and lots of pregnancy tea as well. I love @mamabodytea.
Breakfast – Smoothie or Eggs and Spinach or Protein Pancake (more so on weekends).
Lunch – Some sort of protein (mostly tuna) with vegetables or salad, with sauerkraut on a quinoa wrap.
Dinner – Salmon or Fish with green vegetables.
I have also been making my healthy chocolate a bit a night, to to have a piece right before I go to bed. The recipe is on my Instagram here.
I have been wearing a lot of the same things over and over but I actually don’t mind. I don’t really want to buy anything else Maternity at I don’t have long left. I’m lucky that most of my purchases have been pregnancy and breastfeeding friendly. Still loving my $10 Kmart Tube Skirts with $7 T-shirts knotted, Maternity Tights with Jumper Dresses , Maternity Leggings and Boho Style Dresses. Oh and I live in my CONNIES! Ultimate comfort!
This months #bumpstyle shoot with my gorgeous friend Tahlia from @wyldefolkstudio was fun. We collaborated with my own wardrobe and Mamma Belle Maternity. I have also featured The Blushing Fox and Mama The Label. We need went out for a lovely morning tea with our babes. So nice having someone to collaborate with that I can call a good friend. Thank Tahlia for always being there.
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?
I have had the pleasure of meeting this beautiful woman about two years ago. We went to French twist in Bulimba and it was absolutely lush. We talked all things fashion, blogging, food and photography. I started following Megan on Instagram just over four years ago. We both had a love for Samantha Wills jewels and I loved buying Megan’s pre loved pieces. Megan and I have always stayed in touch, we were pregnant at similar times and our babes are around the same age. Thanks to the world of social media we are able to support one and other when needed. Megan lives in Melbourne so Snapchat and Facebook messenger has helped for us to stay in touch. I know that you will love getting know Megan and her gorgeous daughter Poppy as much as I do.
Get cosy with your bed socks, make a cup of hot tea and enjoy this weeks #showtherealyou feature …
To be honest I don’t really know anymore! It’s only now one year after having Poppy that I am able to get some ‘me’ time back! And also, everything has changed, including myself. For 11 years I worked the same job, and my interests didn’t really change. I also lived at home! Being a stay at home mum, and now home owner, it has been so inspiring, and I have many new interests including cooking, baking, gardening, plants, interior decorating, as well as my old interests of photography, crystals, and Melbourne in general. So I am excited to discover the new ME.
Tell me about a day in the life of Megan?
Poppy wakes me up (very early at the moment), I feed her in bed and we have a little play, I hate getting up straight away! Then we get up, she plays in her play room and I make our breakfast. We then eat together, and she plays again. I like to get any house work done at this point so it’s done for the day. Then she has her morning tea and a nap, we are just transitioning to one day nap now. When she’s asleep I usually have a cuppa and either keep cleaning, or lay down myself if I need to rest, hang washing out, shower and plan my day!
When she wakes up I get her dressed and we will have lunch, outside if it’s nice weather which we love! We haven’t been doing much lately because of the horrible weather, but as it’s warming up I have been taking her out when it’s nice. We live near Williamstown which is a beach town here in Melbourne, and there are so many great parks, cafes, and of course the beach!
Afternoon I get dinner ready for us all, we always eat together as a family which I really enjoy. Then my partner baths Poppy, I do dishes, she goes to bed and we like to have a cuppa while we watch a show together or a movie. This is when I usually go on my phone and catch up with my friends!
Your little girl Poppy is just gorgeous! How are you finding #mumlife
I love it! I have always dreamed of this and feel so blessed to have her. I have had many struggles, I have recently learnt to think of it more as a learning experience rather than a struggle, with your first you have no idea what it’s going to be like, and when something happens it’s literally trial and error till you find what works for you and the babe!
My main concern was sleep, and feeding Poppy to sleep was the only way I could do it. It was heavily taking a toll on my body and mental health. I think I was so extremely tired that I got quite bad anxiety, possibly even post natal depression. I was up all through the night and doing whatever I could to get her to sleep during the day, I had no downtime at all and was constantly stressed. I always wished she could just be awake all day and I didn’t have to worry about it. Her awake time was so fun and happy, but I would dread nap time.
It’s so hard because you feel all these feelings, but then you are so incredibly happy at the same time. I’m sure I’m not alone when I say it can be daunting to get help, you almost feel like you are failing. But I did and it has been life changing, we all get sleep and are much happier for it. What is your favourite quote or mantra?
I don’t have a favourite! I find affirmations and quotes detrimental to a positive mind so I have had many, many, over the years when I have gone through different experiences with work, love, life. I will say this one is a good all rounder “A negative mind will never give you a positive life.” How often do you find the time to move your body? I know it’s crazy busy as a mum! Do you find time at all or is it a challenge?
I have found it a challenge, being so sleep deprived it was the last thing I wanted to do! I love walking, I’m excited now it’s spring and we are only doing one nap I have more time to get out and about with Poppy and move! She will be walking soon too, so I am very excited to chase her around in the near future!
I don’t have much at all! My partner got me a pair of Skins when I was pregnant, I won a pair of Jaggad compression tights, and that’s about as far as my collection goes! Do shoes count? My Reebok X Face Stockholm peach trainers have been life changing, so I’ll say them!
Go to healthy recipe?
We are loving zucchini slice at the moment. And it’s great to pack in the nappy bag to have when we’re out.
But we do have marinated chicken thighs and salad for dinner a lot.
Chicken thighs whole (or sometimes I use tenderloins), splash of olive oil, turmeric, pepper, lemon juice, garlic, splash of soy sauce. I don’t really use a ratio!
The summer salad we LOVE is rocket, mango, and walnuts with a dressing of olive oil, lemon and salt/pepper! Or a greek salad. I have loved following your blog posts over the years! You are a real talent with the camera and such a beautiful writer. Being a mumma is a busy gig do you think you will get back into it?
Definitely! I have slowly started getting back into it, I haven’t had much to share lately, nor did I have the time or energy. I just posted about our sleep training experience, and some family photos. I’m also going to share Poppy’s first birthday party soon which was really beautiful! I always posted about Melbourne and the coffee/food culture, also fashion. I will change the direction of the blog to suit my life now. Do you ever find time for date night? If so where would you go?
We do now! But because we are so use to not doing it we always forget. I could never leave Poppy as I fed her to sleep and she didn’t take a bottle. We have some weddings coming up which I am excited for. I am also DYING to get to the cinema and see a movie together!!!! We have had a few nice dinners together, but it is definitely something we have to do more often.