Out and about
It started about two weeks after giving birth to my third daughter. I was in line at the grocery store and noticed a headline about Trista from "The Bachelorette" losing all of her baby weight in five months. A huge photo of her with a string bikini grabbed my attention and the next thing I knew, I added it to the heap of food I was buying for my family.
I decided I wanted to see how long it would take to get back to the weight I was before my third child. I started out at 145 pounds in June 2007, my first pregnancy appointment. My last weigh-in one week before giving birth was 175 pounds. At my six-week checkup I weighed in at 156 pounds.
My pre-natal swim instructor talked me into joining her boot camp class. I didn't know how I was going to get up so early (a 6 a.m. class) but figured I'd try. With my husband's blessing, the next thing I knew I was up at 5:20 a.m. so I could pump a supply of milk before heading out the door.
I'll never forget my first week at boot camp. I felt every extra pound, my joints were weak and not quite back where they should be. I was slow and felt out of my league amongst women who were in much better shape. It helped that 99 percent of the women in my class were mothers who encouraged me and praised me for even showing up with a 7-week-old baby and two toddlers (ages 2 and 3) at home. Each week got easier and I felt stronger. I also took spin classes, kickboxing, yoga and spent time swimming laps on the other two days a week.
At the end of my second session of boot camp, I stepped into the locker room and onto the scale. Much to my surprise, I weighed in at 145 pounds. I felt tears in my eyes, tears of joy that I really was able to get close to my original weight in less than five months.
While I'm not working out because of my livelihood, like Trista, I am working out to maintain the energy needed to raise three beautiful daughters, who I also want to be a good role model for.
For all those women out there, it can be done! I do not have the six-pack or the bikini body ready to be displayed on a magazine cover, but I do know that it can be done, realistically, without too much lifestyle change and a lot of hard work.