I gained 37 pounds during pregnancy. Which, I understand, is not a ton, but it was 37 pounds that my body was not used to. I felt huge. I felt tired. I felt slow. And most of all, I felt ugly. And then the stretch marks came because of that extra weight (plus my uterus apparently is suuuuper forward. I was huge. And had a 6lb baby), and I was devastated. All over my belly, my inner thighs, hips, boobs, you name it. I honestly thought I would never be happy with my body ever again. I looked up pictures online of women's bellies with stretch marks postpartum and cried thinking of what mine would look like. Then I looked up pictures of women with stretch marks that had six packs and felt even more discouraged because I have too much of a sweet tooth to ever look like that. So I thought my bikini wearing days were over.
And now, 6 months later, I can finally say that I'm proud of my body. I'm proud of it, yes, for carrying a human inside me then proceeding to sustain that human, but also for the way it's bounced back. Because I worked out through my entire pregnancy, my abs bounced back quickly, and they didn't tear. I had no 6 pack by any means, but deep underneath the squishiness, they were there, nice and solid. I've lost all the baby weight, (not all the inches, though), and gained back the muscle I had lost.
And I owe it all to barre and breastfeeding. If I wasn't teaching barre, I probably wouldn't have much time or motivation to workout. Any time my husband is off work I want to spend as much time with him as possible, I'd rather not spend it working out, ha. So being "forced" to workout has been such a huge blessing. And thank God for breastfeeding. It's quite convenient that He created something to burn calories to help shed the pregnancy weight gain, all while sustaining the child that caused that weight gain.
So, all that to say, I'm happy with my body. I never thought I would be able to say that again. I'm by no means where I'd like to be, and I still hate my stretch marks, but I'm happy with how far my body has come, and I'm proud of myself. I also know I could be where I want to be, but I like sweets too much. And I'm okay with that. Not ready to give them up yet.
So if you know me, you'll know that I mostly just wear workout clothes. And I'm obsessed with active wear. I'd much rather wear a sports bra and leggings than a dress. Because I'm a dancer/barre instructor and that's what I'm used to, and because I'm a mom and, let's face it, comfortable is always the best idea.
So lucky for me (and you, I know I'm not alone), there's a trend right now for cute activewear that goes from the studio to the street with ease. And I don't think this trend will die any time soon.
Here are a few of my absolute favorite activewear brands, and some pieces that are on my birthday list (July 9th, in case you were wondering).
In this picture I'm wearing Beyond Yoga Leggings (which are currently on sale!) and sports bra.