“Fitness” can sometimes be a scary word for us mamas and, honestly, women in general. The stigma around fitness and looking a certain way to be considered worthy is a bunch of BULL!!
Yup, hello (imagine me smiling and waving). You are going to hear from a mama (me lol) who STRUUUUGLED with fitness, body image, and self-worth for almost my entire marriage (thus far… nine years. Yahoo!). I’m going to share with you what I learned along the way, what I wished I knew sooner, and what ultimately changed my entire life.
I was pregnant and married to my high school sweetheart, whom I had dated since 11th grade. We were 22 and beginning a new adventure. I mean I should be SO happy right? Two huge milestones in my life and all happening in the same year. BUT I was miserable. I was so sick, so lonely, and full of immense self-hate.
I hated my body. I hated me.
I knew I was pregnant, but I was still embarrassed. I didn’t even want my husband to look at me. Yes, this included the lovely pregnancy hormones not wanting him anywhere near me most of the time. It flat out came down to the fact that I didn’t like what I saw when I looked in the mirror and felt completely worthless. I figured, “Okay, once I have my baby things will FINALLY be normal.”
Well, out came my beautiful baby girl, and things got WORSE. I still looked pregnant? Now why the F did no one tell me this was normal? I mean Kim K and other celebs were on the cover of magazines at 6 weeks with no sign of stretch marks…. So, what was wrong with me? Following the 6 week no sex rule was going to be totally fine with me because, at this rate, I wasn’t going to be having sex with my husband for six months.
The day, yes, the day I got home from the hospital with my baby, I went running. I loved running and had always found it very therapeutic for me, but this time it felt different. I was running because I hated who I was and what I saw. I used it as a punishment for not meeting societies standards. You see this was 8 years ago, and I was not active on Facebook or Instagram (if this was even around), so I NEVER saw anyone who looked like me. I only saw what the media showed me, and let me tell you…I definitely didn’t measure up. On my run, I began to sob. If you’ve never ran 40 lbs overweight, boobs absolutely massive and leaking liquid gold for a good 2 miles while sobbing uncontrollably, IT AIN’T PRETTY. I Legit thought I was having a heart attack.
My poor neighbor Bob just looked at me and yelled “do you need me to call an ambulance, are you seizing?” Trying to catch some breath, I yelled, “NOOOO Bob! WAAAAAAAH! No!” in between sniffles and some snot wiping with my arm. “I’m ok.”
And this ladies was pretty much how the next 4 years of my life would go.
You see exercise is not, I repeat, is not for the purpose of looking the way society tells us we need to. Exercise is solely for you and meant to be there as a tool to help empower you. Exercise allows you to engage your physical body and tap into those interior challenges that you may not otherwise have access to. Exercise helps you achieve such self-awareness that you are able to heal from your past traumas and gain confidence for your future. This is the purpose and reward of exercise NOT a smaller body.
As women and especially mothers, moving your body each day is VITAL for our mental and physical health. I work with mothers every single day who struggle with self-worth and intimacy issues. I work with sexual assault survivors and women with severe depression, and not once have I heard that being active and finding your own version of fitness failed to help them along their journey. The part that’s difficult is not experiencing those rewards BUT staying committed to ourselves.
Someone who is struggling with their self-worth, or even as simple as a mother who has put herself at the bottom of the list, IS going to struggle with staying committed. Someone who is committed to achieving their goals usually have characteristics of someone who will invest fully, focuses on positive outcomes, and is willing to get uncomfortable. Now, I know what you’re thinking… how in the H.E. double hockey sticks will I as a mother be able to go ALL IN and focus on the positives of “MY” fitness journey when I have so many other things to focus on, and no, I can’t get “uncomfortable” when my families livelihood relies on me being consistent with our routine.
I agree 100 percent, BUT these are myths that mothers can conquer, and we can make exercise apart of our life. We can be committed to ourselves.
I am here to tell you how fitness can be a part of your life right now and not completely consume you. You don’t need a gym, equipment, or to spend hours working out. You can start tomorrow in the comfort of your own home with your kids. This is possible, and the benefits of exercise changed my whole life. I thought divorce was my only answer, that I was a terrible mom, and that the things I wanted in life were just not meant for someone like me.
Boy, was I WRONG!
Starting today and throughout this absolutely wonderful experience of getting to write for The Mamahood blog (I love this blog so much), I will help break down how we as mothers and women can create our own version of fitness and let go of our limiting beliefs.
All I’m trying to say is making changes is never easy, but neither is living a life where you aren’t comfortable in your own skin. In the words of Marie Forleo,
“Perfectionism prevents you from becoming achieving and feeling your best.”Marie Forleo
So, let’s start small and simple, and we will evolve over time. This process is fall down, get back up. You have the power to change anything you want in your life when you are committed to you! I can’t wait to get to know all of you better and really change the stigma behind fitness. I implore you to show up for yourself the way you continuously show up for the people you love.
Hey guys! My name is Brittainy Moala and I am a mind and body fitness coach. I have two crazy little girls (send help). I am married to my high school sweetheart and we run a gym together in Idaho. (First time ever living outside of Utah). I am a self-work advocate whose main goal is to help all women rediscover their self-worth. My goal is to provide a safe space in trauma-informed fitness training that allows women to mentally connect to the movements. I believe healing happens when we move our physical body to gain access into our interior challenges. I cannot wait to discuss all things fitness with you guys! I am so incredibly excited to be a part of the Mamahood… who has personally helped me get through some challenging times as a mother. I am so grateful for the opportunity. Can’t wait to get to know all of you!
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