I’ve noticed a trend. Something we can thank the internet for, perhaps on both ends. The beauty of the internet is that it’s opened everyone up to create a voice, movement, opinion. It can be wonderful, and at times discouraging and upsetting, especially when said opinion doesn’t agree with yours. Something that has popped up multiple times for me in just the last week are blogs or videos of women talking about their dislike or intolerance for the women online who preach “Fitmom” or “Fitpregnancy”. In this rant on the “fit mom” community, they are discouraging followers from worrying about their fitness goals. In a nut shell, making judgmental statements to allude to the fact that if you are focusing on such goals, you must not be the best mother you can be.
Now, clearly the elephant in the room is that I am one of those women who enjoy posting/talking about life as a mom in fitness, aka Fitmom, who also happens to be pregnant. Now, I’m not going to point any fingers as to who’s right or wrong here, because we’re all going to promote what we believe in. What I am here to do is argue the statements of these women that feel the moms promoting fitness are too focused on themselves and not their role as a mother. I even read as much as a statement that we “must” give in to cravings and not worry if we are gaining an excessive amount of weight, because apparently the more weight you gain, the more you’re “loving” your child. Huh??
Are there extreme cases? Yes. On both ends. I do my best to show a little bit of life as a mom mixed in with my fitness life. But that’s me, and I know not every mom wants to post about their kids and specifics of what they do with them on an hour to hour basis.
Here’s my issue with these women. We live in a society that more often than not, automatically default to the thought that “eating for two” is doubling the calories with zero repercussions . You should not (or don’t have to) exercise during pregnancy. Having a baby means losing your body. You’re selfish if you’re a mom and take care of yourself in any way. If you’re anxious or depressed, there’s medication for that. The list really goes on as to what the average woman thinks of pregnancy and motherhood. Among those thoughts are few that have to do with caring for your child and tending to their every need, want and desire. That typically comes natural to moms. That’s what we’re meant to do.
My issue is, if these are the thoughts most women have, and there are women who have figured out a different way to do things so you’re not losing your sanity, you’re gaining back confidence in your body, not peeing yourself when you sneeze (which one mom claims EVERY mom does after having a baby), have the physical ability to keep up with multiple kids, all while being a loving, amazing, cuddly mom, then WHY would you discourage such a positive powerful message from being spread? Maybe it’s just something to argue and these women feel they haven’t figured it out themselves so need someone to blame, but it personally makes me sad to read. It’s a movement in our society that could move in a positive direction, and discouragement from the lifestyle is the last thing we need.
I’m a huge advocate of power of the mind, that we all have the ability to choose how we want to live our life even in the crappiest of situations. In a book I read titled, Your Pelvic Floor, there was a quote that I absolutely loved. “Don’t confuse something common as being something normal”. This quote could not speak to me anymore if it tried! Maybe it’s the slightly rebellious side of me that loves going against the “norm”, but this is such a powerful message that all women should know before entering pregnancy and motherhood. To the mom who made the video claiming “all women pee themselves when they sneeze post pregnancy”, no, just no. This is common, but really is it normal at 30 years old to be at that point? That, is what you call a weak pelvic floor, something that can be prevented and treated with exercise. God forbid we acknowledge this and want to do something about it. We must be really crappy mothers for neglecting our child to enhance our own self confidence and physical abilities. Guess what, you can do this without your child feeling neglected, and more importantly while your child feels so unbelievably loved. Taking care of yourself is NOT selfish when you can set such an amazing example.
To the mom saying rather than working out we should be “worrying about rocking our child to sleep”, how long exactly do you think workouts are?? I can promise you if you’re doing it right, you can do 30-60 minutes tops with a nutritious diet. That leaves what, 23-23.5 hours remaining in the day to focus on being a mom? If your child naps, utilize some of that time to prepare some meals or get in a home workout. If they don’t nap, let your child learn some independence by playing on their own for 30 minutes while you do those things next to him/her.
Perhaps these moms are confused that us “Fitmoms” live our life inside the gym, only to come home and ignore our children to make chicken and vegetables to then return to the gym for round 4, neglecting their every need and desire in life. Not exactly how it works. To all the women who are on the fence on how they feel on this subject, just know that it is beyond possible to be a MOM while tending to your fitness goals. You do not have to make a choice between the two. All of these statements made by what I can only hashtag as #JudgementalMoms, come from a place of guilt and insecurity, I believe.
Rather than create backlash on the inspiring messages put out by some badass moms in fitness, take a look at how these two worlds can so easily work together to empower women everywhere. Why be a mom when you can be a FITmom, physically, mentally, emotionally.