pregnancy : gaining weight or gaining confidence?

There’s so much emphasis on pregnancy weight gain. At each doctors appointment, our weight is monitored, assessed and commented on. Every time we step outside, a friend, family member or even a stranger comments on our shape, our size or how ‘big’ we are.

As our pregnant bodies change and grow, it can be reeeeally difficult to love each extra curve, bump and wiggle. Our culture tells us that we need to be thin, to a small waist, a thigh gap and smooth skin.

But during pregnancy? Our bodies change. We lose our small waist, our skin stretches, our thighs rub together and our butt grows to match our belly. We might retain extra fluid making every part of our body rounder and puffier than normal.

And somehow…we need to accept all of this. Overnight (well, almost) our perspective of our bodies needs to change. But does it? For most, no!

Learning to love ourselves throughout each change, learning to love our bodies even with the extra wiggles, learning to love our minds even though we may forget where we leave our phone every time we put it down, and learning to love each moment, to really BE in each moment.

Our female bodies do INCREDIBLE things during pregnancy and post-pregnancy. We grow a HUMAN! Seriously! Our heart is working harder, we have 1.5L more blood than normal, our stomach shrinks, our kidneys move locations, we our hips change shape, our joints become stretchier, the curvature of our spine increases, the amount of air breathed in and our of lungs increases by 40% and many more changes. The amount of changes we see on the outside are small compared to what’s happening on the inside!

So let’s forget about what the scale says, let’s forget about the comments that others make about our pregnant or post-pregnant bodies, and most importantly, let’s forget about what our ‘negative self-talk’ is saying when we look in the mirror. In those moments, let’s remind ourselves that we are beautiful, in this very moment, we are beautiful. Not later, when we lose those extra pounds, but right now. Right now we are beautiful.

My prenatal and postpartum fitness programs aren’t focussed on keeping you thin, keeping your thigh gap, or getting your ‘body back’. They are about building confidence, taking small steps to help bring strength and balance to your body.

Instead of getting ‘bikini ready’ or getting your ‘body back’, let’s focus on what really matters! Let’s aim to be as healthy as we can in all aspects of our health.