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The One About the Gym.

UUUUUUUGGGGGGHHHHH the one about the gym.

Dude, I wanted to start this post with a story about how hard it’s been to regain traction with losing the baby weight and then end with a BAM I NO LONGER WANT TO BURN MY SHAPEWEAR IN A BONFIRE.  But no.  That is sadly not the case.

The road to my last pregnancy was paved with fertility drugs, miscarriage, depression, and other terrible crap.  Ends eventually justified the means and I was beyond grateful to find out I was pregnant after such a journey.  (The little Guy is my favorite guy.)  My son was born eight months ago and he is exactly who we had been waiting for.

Table all the parental happies for a minute, though, because this post is not about infertility.  Or the little Guy.  It’s about the tarnish that’s settled onto the word “just” in the sentence, “I’ve just had a baby.”

No.  I did not just have a baby.  I had a baby eight months ago.  And I still feel like I’m trapped in the postpartum schlubby chub club.

So I joined a gym.

I used to go to the gym a lot.  It was kind of a family thing and while I never sculpted a physique that would stop traffic (unless a vehicle actually hit me), I was stronger and healthier and slimmer than I am now.  I didn’t feel ashamed of my shape and I wasn’t avoiding my closet in favor of athleisure wear.

Oh yeah.  “Doing absolutely nothing in my active wear” has been a theme these last eight months.

Postpartum anxiety didn’t help (better now, though) and neither did the c-section recovery.  I didn’t feel great after my first c-section and, despite rumors I’d heard that the second one is easier, I did not find that to be true.  Add in some wrist and hand issues (I ended up with breastfeeding injuries, which feels silly as eff to type but is actually a thing) and my body felt like something I was renting out instead of taking ownership of.

That did not feel good.  I want change.  Can’t wait around for change, though.  Have to chase change.  Change is exhausting.  So is this paragraph.

So about a month ago, I joined a gym.  It wasn’t a cheap decision, but the gym feels low pressure, has great hours, and also provides childcare for small baby people, so I have no excuse NOT to go.  Also, something about paying for it makes me less likely to NOT go because I hate throwing money away.  So I’ve been going.  Despite feeling shy (is exercise timidity a thing?) and despite feeling flumpy, I’ve been going.  I use the treadmill and the free weights and I’m debating a class or two if I can find some glasses and a fake mustache to wear while participating.  I’m trying not to weigh myself but instead using a particular pair of pants as my barometer for progress.

I hope to see some progress soon but I’m trying to find small victories in the steadier blood sugars and increase of energy.  And also in the “hey, I left my house and didn’t spend the entire day juggling kid requirements only.”

Hopefully, in time, I’ll schedule my shapewear bonfire, but in the meantime, I’ll try and find some pride in taking small steps now.  Especially wearing these mad cool glasses and this fake mustache.

11 Comments Post a comment
  1. Seo #

    Giiiirrlll… exercise timidity? Genius. That’s totally a thing. I just never knew what to call it. As a childless twenty-somethin’ who requires between four and thirty pep-talks to put my running shoes on, I just have to say that I think you deserve an award for getting yourself to the gym. You got this. Day by day. The bonfire will be here before you know it.

    04/26/17; 12:24 pm
  2. Don’t we all battle with the decision whether to join a gym or stick with those “free” options in life?
    Training for a triathlon forced me to join a gym because…there are not too many large bodies of water here in NYC. I can relate to you about being shy to join a class (we all have the weirdest fears) and do want to make the gym truly feel worth the monthly cost.
    Keep up the good work. Also, as someone that is not type A, I force myself to set goals with friends to help keep each other accountable. Helps keeps the gym routine more consistent instead of the boom-bust that happens when I do everything alone.

    04/26/17; 12:36 pm
  3. ❤❤❤ You go Mama! I had my daughter 10 months ago and I’m in the same boat as you! Trying to love my body for the crazy awesome thing it just did while also wanting to remember what a flat belly looked like! There is a lot of pressure on post partum bodies and I hate it!

    04/26/17; 12:54 pm
  4. Erin #

    I feel you on the breastfeeding injuries, I *still* have a sore shoulder from straining it in the first couple months. I’ve been very lucky in that breastfeeding has sucked up all my baby weight, but I’d still like to be exercising more! I have a gym membership I haven’t used in ages, but it doesn’t have childcare.

    04/26/17; 2:43 pm
  5. There seems to be something about paying for the gym that just gives that extra motivation to want to actually use something you are paying for. Continued success on your path to getting where you want to be health wise.

    04/26/17; 4:00 pm
  6. Sheryl says I can join the gym as soon as I paint the entire house. I sense irony in her voice.

    04/26/17; 8:37 pm
  7. Good Job! (DOC cheerleader on duty:)! I can relate. I finally got off of the couch after several long bouts of illness; first a long cough thing, then a wicked stomach virus thing, and finally the flu…all the while dragging myself off the couch to chauffeur the kids here and there…
    Anyway, I went to a Yoga class which was followed by a mini Tai Chi class that I decided to try. I felt energized afterwards. Nice to get back into the swing of things.
    A toast then: Here’s to a few sore muscles, great BS numbers, and a good night’s sleep!

    04/26/17; 9:57 pm
  8. Kathleen #

    Love u and ur beautiful post baby body. I have no kids, I’m older than u and I don’t have the energy to join the gym. Congrats Chickie. Keep doing it for all of us that already gave up!

    04/26/17; 10:59 pm
  9. You got this, Kerri!

    04/26/17; 11:22 pm
  10. Jennifer #

    So wait… all those celebrities immediately losing the baby weight just from breastfeeding and “chasing the kids around” isn’t really a thing? Well that’s a shocker. 🙂 As a 7-months pregnant-lady-with-T1D, I appreciate your candor and admire your motivation. I can’t wait to be on the other side soon!

    04/27/17; 10:40 am
  11. I think this is an excellent decision, even if it’s expensive! You’re reaping so many rewards for the money you pay, right? A healthier body, more energy, a fresh outlook, some you time, and confidence building. Gooooo Kerri!

    PS. When I’m feeling exercise timidity or otherwise unmotivated, my go-to is to to ride a recumbent bike and read a magazine or watch SVU on my phone. Not the greatest cardio, but better than nothing and pretty fun…depending on the SVU episode, anyways 😉

    And I remember you had issues with plantar fasciitis a while back. If you’re treadmilling, make SUPER sure you’re devoting enough time to core strength and overall mobility. I’ve been doing a lot of research into this recently…… after a lack of mobility caused my own issues with my plantar everything. The book Ready to Run, by Kelly Starrett, has been helpful to me in maintaining strength and flexibility. Bonus– all the mobility standards in the book give you more non-weight-related benchmarks and things to feel good about!

    04/27/17; 7:51 pm

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