I hope you are all well and the year has started in good spirits for you. It has been one month since I made a public pledge to make time for me. "How is that going?" I hear you cry, well let me tell you while I sit here eating my personal stash of 'after the kids have gone to bed chocolate covered peanuts'. I know, probably not the best way to set myself up to write about exercise and healthy living, but we are all living in the real world here and a mum has to do what a mum has to do.
So other than the indulgent peanuts, I thought it was time to let you know how I have been getting on with the postnatal Mama on the Move programme. In short, OK.
I have to be honest and tell you that I had every intention of doing at least either the Pilates or strengthening programme three times a week, but in reality I have only managed it about once or twice a week alongside any crèche time I can get at the gym on Mondays and Fridays. I have managed it a few times at home, but usually have to have “help” from the little’uns.
The first time I set myself up to follow the routines set out in phase one, I got myself in a pickle. I wasn't entirely sure how to do each exercise or how to breathe, so it was a case of going back to the instruction sheets and videos to check my technique, then rechecking how many reps to do. But I put that session down to a trial session, and got ready for my first "real" go at it.
So there I was ready to do both the Pilates and strengthening sessions and prove to myself that I could find 45 minutes to myself in my house with children around. Things started off so well, I was flying through the strengthening programme and it only took 15/20 minutes to do. Great, let's crack on and do the Pilates. Oh no wait, the littlest little has woken up from her nap and needs a feed, there is no chance I will get to come back, because that is how it goes and there is no point getting het up trying to force these things. Our babies are only babies for a short time, so let’s not miss it by focussing in the wrong places and I was very happy to have done the strengthening work out.
I have to admit, I was feeling a little bit smug with myself afterwards, not only did I get to actually do it, but I didn't think it was that hard, so I must be in much better shape than I thought I was. That was until the next day when it hurt to sit down! I could not work out for the life of me why my body ached so much. It was like I had done a full day of HIIT. It took a little while to work out it was due to those innocent 20 minutes. So hats off to Laura and Tamsin for creating that combination of exercises. It took me about three days to stop whincing every time I moved. Even my little boy offered to rub my shoulders (with his pirate sword, but the thought was there)!
Not fazed by this, I went for it again a few days later and it was a bit easier. Only this time, I had my two gym assistants supervising. I say supervising, but what I actually mean is sitting on me when I was doing the bridge work, demanding I do it again and again and again… as well as laughing when I was doing some of the squat work. It took a lot of persuading to stop Oli sitting on my lap while I was doing the wall squat! I have now started fitting in at least one of the routines after my gym classes when I have time. That way I can be safe in the knowledge I can get it done properly, without being the in-house entertainment. Although I have to admit, it made me smile and spurred me on.
Last week, I promoted myself to the next phase and completed it straight after a circuit class. I avoided repeating any of the exercises we had covered in the class. I really enjoyed it and even managed to complete most of the Pilates session too.
The programme comes with recipe suggestions, which I am sure don't include chocolate covered peanuts, and I am going to start dabbling in the kitchen. My first attempt to create a culinary delight will be a chocolate ice cream made with bananas. Go figure!
I have to admit there have been a couple of side effects of this programme and that is the reigniting my desire to start running again. I say running, I really mean jogging! So I have got as far as downloading a Couch to 5K app and opening it. I just need to get my jogging shoes on and give it a go.
In my last post here, I made a promise to make more time for me and I have been trying keep this promise bit by bit. Not only am I committed to following this programme, I am also making time to get back into my amateur hobbies and tick off my biggest project of late which was to make a memory bear with my boys baby clothes and to weight it to his birth weight. Big by importance, not size, it felt like such an achievement, and an unexpected bonus is that there are a few people who would like me to make the same for them. That is very exciting and has really inspired me. My next task is to make a prate waistcoat for my pirate obsessed boy and re-cover his little armchair. I am sure that will be the beginning of many fancy dress outfits I will need to create over the years.
Anyway, my next steps with the programme is to keep going with phase two for a couple of weeks and then promote myself again. I will also get on with the C25K and report back on progress. I am also going to have to start fitting work in as I start my keeping in touch days this week. I can't quite believe the last six months have gone already but here I am ready for the next chapter in my book.