I’m Over My “Mom Bod”

So let’s rewind to last July when a handful of brave HMB contributors participated in our first ever “Real Mom-Bods Shoot.” I NEVER thought I would do such a thing, yet I jumped in for some unknown reason. Perhaps it was the lure of a vodka and cranberry {or three} under my belt. Kidding. #notreally. And when we all wrote a few sentences on why we ponied up to the challenge, these were my words ::

Honestly, I decided to participate as a challenge to myself. If I am being truly candid, I haven’t always had the healthiest relationship with my body. I tend to pick and pick over my “flaws,” instead of focusing on the parts that I like. And as I have gotten older, I look back at pictures from my 20’s and wonder why the heck I ever thought I looked “bad” or “fat” or “insert other negative language here.” So my prayer is that I will look at these pictures {and it may take a few years, ha!} and appreciate where I was at 35 with young twin children.

And when I reflect on those words, they were totally honest and still rings true in my life. But it just wasn’t the whole story.

I'm Over My "Mom Bod" | Houston Moms Blog

{Let’s get the pleasantries out of the way, lest anyone has commentary. In this pic, I was maybe 102-104 lbs? I am what you would call “vertically challenged” at a whopping 5’2″. I wore a size 0, sometimes 00 depending upon vanity sizing at our various retailers. Are we good now?}

Looking at that girl, she “looks” happy.

She wasn’t. 

Looking at that girl, she “looks” healthy.

She wasn’t.

Looking at that girl, she “looks” like she has her crap together.

She doesn’t.

My friends, I detested my “mom bod” in this picture. Not so much from the outside but because of how I felt on the inside. Icky, unsure of my worth, and sometimes even unlovable. And shouldn’t that inner core, our heartbeat, count the most?

All of social media I saw women of varying sizes and shapes flat out embracing those mom bods, and y’all – MAD props to you. It’s just that I honestly couldn’t relate to that feeling of pride. I desperately wanted to be able to high-five myself and be all, “Oh, yeah, I carried twins and yada, yada, yada. Yay, ME and my hot bod!” But I wasn’t able to do that. Because I knew the truth.

That I religiously counted every.single.calorie that went into my mouth.

That I weighed myself every day. Sometimes twice a day.

That I knew when I was having a “fat moment”— and even worse, it set my mood for the day. {Insert eye rolling emojo here. I am too; it’s fine.}

That I couldn’t walk up the stairs in our house without feeling a little breathless.

I was SO unhealthy. There is such a thing as “skinny fat” people. It’s a real deal. And that’s who I was.

As a former athlete from the time I could walk, all the way to a collegiate athlete, I honestly couldn’t believe I had reached this point. Where was ME? The girl who wasn’t exhausted all the time? The mom who could, you know, mother? I was too tired to do much of anything. Lots of naps. Survival until bedtime, a.k.a. wine time. Snappy attitude with my kids and hubby for no reason. The list goes on and on.

Sure, I had lots of excuses. I had two young children constantly underfoot. I was working 2 part-time jobs from home in between shuffling them to and from school and various activities. I was trying my darndest to be a good wife, good friend, good employee, etc. I was basically a walking martyr without realizing I started wearing that dreaded “M” scarlet letter.

My diet was horrendous during the day. While I have joked about it in the past, breakfast every.single.morning was a turkey sandwich with a side of Cheetos {all natural, but what-ev} followed by pounding about 4-5 diet cokes before 10 am. Lunch was ridiculously similar. I put in a bit more effort for dinner, always trying to cook a healthy meal for the family. But by the time I even got to sit down to eat, I was almost too tired to enjoy it. I would typically scarf a plate full of veggies trying to atone from the Cheetos sin, eat very little protein, and chase it with a couple of glasses of my beloved Pinot Grigio. Then start all over the next day with much of the same.

ENOUGH.

Enough was enough. I wanted my life back. I wanted to feel good again. I wanted to feel like me again. I wanted to have energy for my kids. I wanted to not roll my eyes when people “complimented” me on my body. I mean, I was a size 0, right? I must have it all figured out. Nope. If I got compliments on my body, I wanted it to be because I was doing the “right” things. Getting strong. Showing my kids how food was fuel for both our bodies and minds. I NEEDED to change.

So I did.

Or really, am in the process of.

By what I can only consider an act of providence, a new gym opened near my house. Like, 2 minutes from me, across from the grocery store that I frequent on a ridiculous basis. No.more.excuses. I walked in and with shaking hands and tearful confessions, signed up on the spot. {Quite sure they thought I was crazy, but whatever.} A step in the right direction.

I’m making progress, friends. Things that seemed impossible a mere few weeks ago, I can conquer. I am once again finding that mental toughness that I thought was long gone. I am eating food that nourishes instead of pacifies. I am embracing new challenges, and I’m setting goals for what I want, and believe eventually, I WILL do. Most importantly, for 45 minutes a few times a week, I am ME again. Meagan. Not “just a mom” or “Matt’s wife” or “insert other name here.” Not that those are bad titles. They absolutely aren’t. They just don’t define me as a whole person.

I'm Over My "Mom Bod" | Houston Moms Blog

So I have a new schedule these days. I work out anywhere from 3-5 times a week. I literally crave going to the gym and dang near killing myself in the best way possible. I have the most supportive group of friends and coaches that push me further than I thought I could go. I’ll be totally honest; it hasn’t been easy. It has taken sacrifice from all sides. When I first started, my husband had to parent most nights while I put in my “me” time. The schedule is a bit more relaxed now that I’m settled in, but there are still a lot of moving parts. Many times my kids have joined me at the gym, and I’ve had to put them on the dreaded iPad to get a workout in. I meal plan and grocery shop wayyyyy in advance to make sure I have healthful meals on hand for everyone. I often spend my mornings prepping food so I don’t turn to the “easy” things throughout the day. Clearly, I am not perfect at this whole healthy thing. I still have Diet Coke, but maybe 2 instead of 6 during the day. I definitely indulge in my wine – because kids. But I am eating more real foods, whole foods, things that give me energy. I’m chugging water as much as I can and trying to eat more at consistent intervals throughout the day {It’s tougher than it sounds!}. Honestly, the whole plan/schedule, along with my goal to add 5lbs of lean muscle mass to my frame, is probably a blog post in itself, but that’s the basic premise.

While it’s only been 8 or so short weeks, I’ve already seen changes. I’m still about the same weight and wear the same size clothing, but “things” have shifted so to speak. My shoulders and arms are way more defined. My legs are returning to their pre-baby strength and size. My tummy is still a work in progress, but I can do actual real sit-ups now. Continuously. Without needing to grab my legs to pull myself up like I did the first two weeks. So I know that the core is coming around. My skin seems brighter somehow, and I haven’t had a breakout in well over a month. This is HUGE.

This all started because I didn’t like my mom body. But what I’ve found is that it is so much more than that. It’s about getting back in touch with yourself, discovering what makes you click again, challenging your inner core, and rising to new levels. I didn’t have any lofty bikini goals by any stretch of the imagination. This wasn’t just some kick start to swimsuit season. I just simply wanted to feel good in my skin again.

Recently, we went to the beach. For the first time in a sweet forever since I was a little girl with pigtails and a popsicle-stained grin, I felt GOOD in my swimsuit. But it wasn’t because of how I looked in it. It had everything to do with how I felt on the inside. JOY. ME. WELCOME BACK.

I'm Over My "Mom Bod" | Houston Moms Blog

2 Responses to I’m Over My “Mom Bod”

  1. K Shipley July 8, 2016 at 8:48 am #

    Thank you for sharing your story! Very inspiring and really hits home to me.

  2. Katie July 10, 2016 at 10:15 pm #

    Yes, so much yes! I too am over the “mom bod”. I am told I lost my “baby weight” quickly, but that’s not good enough for me. I want to be strong again, healthy, and ME again. I’m working on it slowly but surely. Thanks for the inspiration to stick with it!!

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