Blog #4 Just A Personal Vent

Today I had a vent on Instagram, you may not have seen it so here it is;

In a culture where one can feel pressured about their health & fitness journey… I am going to forever stay true to what I believe in!

I have a brand that I am very proud of & completely passionate about, it fits perfect to Me, because not every Mum works out at the gym, not every Mum attends Yoga or Bootcamp Classes. Fitness can be & mean so many different things! It can be at any level, any size, in any way or form.

This is my body, this is Me! I’ve birthed 3 children, I don’t have abs (I don’t want abs) I do have a great bum though :) I love love loooooove my curves & embrace them completely, I was blessed with them after each pregnancy… and sometimes (God forbid) I don’t have a thigh gap… But I am healthy and I feel absolutely amazing on the inside. I don’t smoke, I love wine though and I do eat the odd cheese burger and chips! I love playing sport & I love that my kids play sport, I do have laziness lows and super amazing highs… Don’t we all?

This post is me almost daily, make up freem hair finger brushed, a tee & my amazing leggings that I designed & created! (Yes you can fold the waist band to show that belly if you like hehe) I am just a regular Mum who embraces my body and yours, & hopes to motivate you by creating a line of comfortable active wear to cater to your body needs as a Mother, to continue to do what ever it is you want to do, whenever you where ever, when it comes to your chosen Health & Fitness Journey.

Blog #3 Is Your Female Guilt- Gene Controlling Your Life?

Is Your Female Guilt-gene Controlling Your Life?
Writer; Danielle Appi
Published; Oxygen Magazine

I just want to take a moment to thank Eve.
While Adam was lining up for his share in the 7 Deadly Sins queue (and I think he took more than his fair share), I’m pretty sure Eve was helping herself to 95% of the available guilt on offer.
Thank you great, great, great, etc., Grandmother Eve.
Thank you for handing down that oversupply of guilt to every single one of your Daughters from the beginning of time til now.

Who is familiar with this scenario?

Him: “I’m heading out for a drink with the boys, see you later”……and off he goes.
Her: “I’m heading out for dinner with the girls. Now, the kids and your dinner is in the oven. The instructions are written on the bench top for when to turn it off. Please feed the kids no later than 6.30 as they need to be in the bath and ready for bed by 7.30 at the latest. Yes, that’s the time we always do it. Make sure that Sally has done her homework as it is due tomorrow and don’t forget to feed the dog or he’ll keep us up all night scratching at the door. Jimmy needs to take a plate of food for a school party tomorrow, I’ve cooked some muffins and they are cooling on the rack. Can you please remember to put them into the fridge before you go to bed or the dog will have devoured them before midnight? Please make sure the kids clean their teeth and don’t forget that the Tooth Fairy needs to come to Sally tonight. The money is on your bedside table with a note to remind you to do this before you go to bed. Ok, call me if there are any problems, I’ll see you later”…..and off she goes.

Do you know what is happening here?

Our Female-guilt gene is in overdrive.
Women since the dawn of time have had to live with a deep-set and often irrational sense of guilt anytime we decide to do something for ourselves. Alone. Solo. No one else.

Why is this?

Why is it that if we want to take an hour to work out, relax, sleep, read a book we have to deal with this gnawing guilt that sits in the back of our head chattering away until the noise gets so loud that we abandon our alone-time and just get back to being all-things-to-everyone.
Blame Eve.

I interact daily with women in my job who constantly struggle with the guilt that they associate with taking any time for themselves to work ON themselves.
Forget exercising daily! These women can’t even commit to 1-2 times a week because of the guilt that they feel at not using their time for more important things like kids, Husband, work, housework, cooking, and the list goes on.

But I ask you, what could possibly be more important than taking care of your health? After all, how will you look after and care for your family if you lose your health?
As a Mother don’t we want the strength and fitness to react quickly in a dangerous situation to protect our children?

As a partner don’t we want to improve our health to prevent disease in order to be around for as long as we can with the ones we love?

As a woman don’t we want to give our families and friends the happiest and healthiest version of ourselves so that they enjoy spending time with us?

And do you know what is even worse than this self-imposed guilt?

The guilt that is created by the judgements of our Sisters. The people who should support and encourage you to be your best and healthiest. Other women who have the Victorian attitude that women, particularly Mothers, must forgo their own lives and identities in order to fulfil their duties as a Wife and Mother. That for some reason see time spent in the pursuit of health and fitness as selfish and self-absorbed.

Now, I don’t care if you are a Wife, Mother, Girlfriend, Daughter or Eve. I believe you have the same birth right as every other human being to be the best, healthiest, happiest, fittest and most amazing person that you can be. No one should make you feel bad or guilty about pursuing these rights. Particularly not another woman!

I’ll admit that I was also born with this very strong sense of guilt and over the years it has certainly been a roadblock to my own exercise efforts.
But with age comes wisdom (and saggy boobs) and I have learned since becoming a Mother that there are a few tactics that you can employ to minimise this sense of guilt. And to get the daily (yes daily) exercise that you have a right to enjoy.

1. Schedule your workouts at times when you know that no one else will be inconvenienced! Sounds simple I know. Now for me that means silly-o’clock early morning workouts. I schedule my “Me-time” at 5-6.30am every single morning, Monday to Friday. I know confidently that at this time of the day I can leave the house and concentrate 100% on me without any distractions or feelings of ‘guilt’ that I should be doing something else. Let’s be honest, if I was at home I would be in bed, not doing something else!
Not willing to get up at 5am in the morning? Then it’s not that important to you. As with all things in life you have to work out what your priority is and what you’re prepared to trade off in order to get it. For me health and fitness is right near the top of my list and therefore I’m willing to trade off morning sleep-ins and late nights. I’m not saying this is right, I’m saying its’ right for me.

2. Schedule your workout during your lunch hour. If you work, take your sandwich or salad and go for a 20 min walk. Sit and eat your lunch peacefully and then enjoy the 20 min walk back to work. Or jump into a nearby gym for a quick 30 min HIIT session that will elevate your metabolism for the rest of the day and have you less likely to reach for the office biscuits later in the day. If you are a stay at home Mum and the kids are at school, no excuses! Get outside or get to the gym for an hour. The washing, ironing, cooking, cleaning will still be there when you get home but you will probably enjoy the benefits of more energy to tackle it when you get home.

3. If you’re a Mum with young children, pop them in a pram and go for a daily walk. Daily! I can’t tell you how much this saved my sanity as a new Mother. The endorphins released from a brisk walk in the fresh air can make coping with tears, tantrums and whinging so much more bearable. Alternatively, join a gym with a great crèche and USE it! My girls loved their daily trips to the gym crèche once we got into a routine. If you are going regularly they develop a great bond with the crèche staff and they’ll learn early how to interact with other kids.

4. Once the children head to kindy or school, schedule your workouts for straight after drop off or right before pick up. I found that this was a great strategy to combat guilt as I wasn’t going home and then back out again away from the ‘things I should have been doing’. I found that if I went home after school drop off the feelings of needing to stay home and get things done overwhelmed me and home I stayed.

5. Incorporate your exercise into family time. I been enjoying the daily habit of a walk with my Daughters when I return home at 6.30am. This routine has been working brilliantly as it gets them up, out of bed and dressed early. It gives them a healthy start to the day so that their minds are switched on when they arrive at school. It gives us quality time to talk about anything without the distractions of technology that surround us at home. And we no longer have the morning shouting match and rush to get them out the door and to school on time. Think of ways to get the family moving and enjoy the family-time. Even if it’s not technically you-time, it is time out without guilt.

6. Finally, and probably most importantly, form a friendship group that supports, motivates and encourages you to be your very best. Find people with like-priorities and goals and schedule time with them. I have been running Boot camps for a few years now and the friendships that have formed amongst the women in my groups are amazing. These women came together initially because they had decided put their health and fitness higher up their priority list. Now, they not only show up each session for the work out, but also for the friendship, and support that they get from their Fitness Sisters. No one is made to feel guilty for being there. No one judges another for their choice to be working out instead of doing housework. Everyone is accepted and cheered for their effort and commitment. This type of support group is invaluable if you are someone who suffers from the guilt-factor.

So my Sisters, there are many things we can thank Eve for, unfortunately the guilt-gene is not one of them.
But, we all have it in us to be stronger than our Sisters past. To stand up and take back our identities. To fight for our right to be the best, brightest, most sensational version of ourselves possible.
Do it for your friends. Do it for your family. Do it for your children and partners.
But ultimately, do it for YOU.

Danielle Appi

Blog #2 The Journey With Our Kids

Writer; Lynsay Graham
Mums ’n Fitness Wear Founder

I feel when I read comments on Group pages, I see a lot of posts from Mums dealing with the usual issues with being Mothers and having kids and reality is, sometimes you just can’t plan ahead, it’s that simple. So many unexpected circumstances come into play being a parent that you really can’t plan your week ahead when it comes to your time and your routine in your fitness diary…

Although I enjoyed bringing my kids with me to Bootcamp, sometimes it was just to busy in class and a 6pm class was right in the middle of dinner time, it just got too hard! Hubby running late from work, Grandad also held up at work, my sister with her softball training… The list of baby sitters comes to an end, and here I am, at home, disappointed I’ve missed my class, guilty for the shit food I ate that day and not being able to burpee it off! The struggle is definitely real… and we all go through it!

With home workouts I feel I need a partner, my hubby asks me everyday to train with him. He can honestly run 5kms in his sleep, his training and mine, is on two different planets! He will train to the point of coming close to a heart attack where as I’ll workout just to get a good enough sweat to walk away proud of my workout accomplishments! Lol I’d probably end up trying to knock him out with his boxing training as well and defeat the purpose of a good cardio burn! Our runs would end up being so competitive we’d end up in a race and pushing each other over, to the cars driving by, may look like an odd kidnapping attempt, with laughter and screaming, then us both on the ground in an awkward rugby scrum… It’s useless & a complete waist of time!

So in saying that I think I prefer to train with women, Mums especially with similar goals to mine, we seem to vibe off each other, and at my Bootcamp, it’s my time and I enjoy it. Fitness for me once reaching my goal weight was really just for the energy side of it. The feeling after a workout is what brings me back. Due to a wrist injury and on the waiting list for surgery, I’m unable to do a lot… But I know once I recover I’ll be back there in my Mums ’n Fitness gear to regain my abs that have unfortunately vanished again :(

I always feel that reading “disappointed” posts, and comments of Mothers agreeing that they too have their low moments, due to the chaotic lives of being Mums, it seems Gyms having daycares don’t help the situation either, but at the end of the day we are only human! We need to stop feeling bad and feeling guilty, and stop being so hard on ourselves when it comes to our*journey in health and fitness*. If we have an off day or week due to the kids being sick, or hubby having a long week at work, or just being exhausted, there is always a new day, that we can re-organise ourselves once again to begin this incredibly hard journey of ours to reach our goals! If it was so easy, we wouldn’t feel the amazing sense of proudness inside when we reach our goals. Keep going, keep pushing, keep your chin up & be happy!

Lynsay xxx

Blog #1 Sky's Journey

Writer; Sky Carden
Mums ’n Fitness Wear Ambassador
Maxine Burn Ambassador

Hi Mummies, I wanted to share a little myself & my journey to a healthy me with you all. I am a 25 year old, married mummy of two gorgeous kiddies, aged 2 & 4. I live in Northern NSW & am a primary school teacher.

After having my second bub back in November 2012 & gaining over 30kgs with both of my pregnancies, I was overweight & living a very unhealthy lifestyle. Not only did I hate what I saw in the mirror, I wasn’t enjoying motherhood like I had with my first born.

My body had changed so dramatically with the excess weight gain through pregnancy that I had stretch-marks where I thought they weren’t possible, skin blemishes, a mummy ‘pouch’, sagging breasts & a very negative self image. It was over christmas that year that I was looking over photos & came across an image that had me in tears. I couldn’t believe that I had let myself get to that point, both mentally & physically.

That moment something clicked in my mind, I didn’t want my children to fall into a cycle of obesity & pick up my bad habits, I no longer wanted to be the person that says ‘no’ to every social event because I was afraid of how I looked & what others thought & I no longer wanted to be labelled ‘just a mum’. It was time to start taking care of me, putting myself first & making some positive changes in my life. Most of all I wanted to find my happiness again, as I felt it had completely slipped out of my life.

So that was it, it was time to make a change. I went to my local kmart & bought some men’s XL oversized singlets to hide my stomach, some cheap daggy tights & a second hand pair of joggers off ebay. I started going to the gym several days a week where I had the trainers write me a basic program. Within the space of a few months I had lost 12kgs & people were starting to notice. I had dropped from a size 18-14 & gained a bit of happiness & some confidence back. Sure, my body wasn’t how it use to be, but it was much better than the months prior.

I look back at photos of me in my daggy old oversized mens clothing & remember how embarrassed I was of myself, I had no confidence whatsoever & can remember feeling like I could hide by wearing them & remain un-noticed by others at the gym. On several occasions during that year (when I was having a ‘skinny day’) I would head to the shops & try on some brand name gym clothing only to feel ashamed that it would give me a muffin top or be far too tight in all the wrong places. Every single time, I would leave the shop feeling deflated, negative & way less confident with myself than when I went in.

I took weekly photos & kept a diary of my progress along the way. As the months went on I came across a 12 week body transformation program (my husband was doing it & convinced me to do it too). We signed up & starting dieting much harder than ever before, as well as training 5-6 days a week. The program saw me lose another 12kgs & by completion I was then lighter than I had ever been in my adult life & fitting into a size 8-10. I had dropped a total of 27kgs in less than a year & could hardly recognise myself.

Although my physical transformation was incredible, it was my emotional transformation that meant the world to me as I had found my happiness again.

Fast forward another 18 months from then & here I am, representing a brand that is all about mums, their happiness, confidence & positive body image, something I never dreamt that I would have, let alone be able to represent!

The images of gorgeous, young, fit women in their tight fitting gym wear plaster our social media, magazines & tv screens every day & it’s hard to have any confidence, when the bodies we see advertised every day seem impossible for us mums to achieve.

I truly believe that Mums ‘N’ Fitness can break that stereotype, one fan at a time. Yes we are mums, but we deserve to feel comfortable in our own skin & confident in the clothes we wear no matter our body shape or size. Clothing needs to fit our bodies properly, look good & most of all, make us feel great when we wear it. No mum deserves to be left in their hubby’s oversized singlet, hiding in the shadows of the gym like I was.

I am so passionate & proud to be behind this Australian brand. I am inspired by the Mums N Fitness social media accounts & realistic images & quotes of a healthy lifestyle and realistic goals. I love looking down my newsfeed & seeing awesome mummas of all shapes & sizes looking amazing in their new purchases!

I only hope that as someone who has been through the darkness & come out more confident & happy than ever before, that I can provide support for those on a similar journey. If Mums N Fitness had of popped up in my newsfeed back when I started my journey, I’m sure it would have restored some positive self image, realistic lifestyle goals & self confidence back into my life a lot quicker.

Mums n Fitness Wear is like no other Australian brand I’ve come across! Designed especially with mummies bodies in mind they fit in all the right places (no muffin tops or tight fitting around the waist), are comfortable, flattering and will leave you feeling confident in your own skin, something that many of us struggle with.

I feel so blessed to be part of the Mums N Fitness team & am excited to see what the future holds! No matter what stage of the journey you are at, you need to embrace your body & believe in the goals you have set for yourself. Being able to feel comfortable & confident in your Mums N Fitness Wear whilst making those dreams a reality just tops it off!

Happy purchasing mummies! xx