CrossFit: My Journey to Fitness After Babies

Who says you can’t be fit and be a mama at the same time!?  

I used to actually. Could never seem to find the time. Until CrossFit, that is!

I had always been an athlete growing up so, naturally, CrossFit was right up my alley. I was a pretty competitive gymnast in high school and ended up diving at a D1 university. After college, though, is when I started to struggle. I had no one telling me what to do anymore and I lost some motivation to stay fit after I got married and had our first child. I pretty much did nothing in between having my two kids, except for the occasional walk/jog with a stroller.

Enter CrossFit.

I was six months postpartum after my second baby when my chiropractor told me about his new CrossFit gym and a pretty reasonable six-session bootcamp class. Honestly, I didn’t even know what CrossFit was, but I wanted to sign up just because of the word ‘bootcamp’. I am the type of person who thrives when someone tells me what to do. And if they are yelling in my face, well then, it makes me want to do it even more so as not to disappoint.

I decided to sign up for the sole purpose of having someone there to jumpstart my fitness again. Once I was done with the bootcamp classes, I planned to sign up at my local YMCA, since it’s so much cheaper. “Like I was going to spend the money for an expensive CrossFit gym membership!?” Boy, was I WRONG!

I am not going to sugar coat and say the bootcamp was amazing, because I honestly thought I was going to die a couple times. I woke up after that first class thinking, “Oh My God – What have I done!?”  The second day was even worse. I remember telling my friend that I don’t think I would ever join because I can’t imagine feeling this sore everyday. She told me to give it time… and that once I got into a little better shape, it wouldn’t be so bad. She was right! As the classes went on, I was less and less sore each day.

My favorite part was that the actual workouts during these classes (aka: WODS) are only eight or 10 minutes long!! Heck, I would take eight minutes of hardcore working out over an hour of running any day! With someone telling me what to do and making sure I am doing the WOD correctly and safe, of course I am going to push myself. It’s only eight minutes to give it my all so it motivates me to go harder and faster.  And obviously everything is scalable to your fitness level, so anyone and everyone can do the workouts, no matter your fitness level.

The best part is I was seeing results before that first six weeks was even up. I lost the last ten pounds of baby weight in those first six weeks! My stomach muscles that had been torn apart during my two c-sections were already starting to reappear. My arms and legs had already gotten leaner.

I was officially a believer. I could not imagine EVER going to the YMCA and running on a treadmill after having experienced this. So, of course I got the membership when bootcamp was over. And I made sure to make time for myself so I could make it to at least three classes every week. I told my husband that this was important to me and I needed to do this one thing for myself.

That was six months ago and I can’t believe how far I have come in such a short time. I think I am more fit now than I ever was doing D1 college athletics.  Back then I was always afraid of lifting weights for fear of ‘bulking up’ and now I am lifting heavier weights than dudes. Ok, not really, but some of it is pretty heavy in my book!! I am not afraid to go heavier and push myself a little harder everyday!

I am no longer ashamed of having muscles and being built like an athlete. I would NEVER wear sleeveless shirts in the past because I did not feel very feminine looking with my ‘big’ arms. I would always wear an oversize t-shirt to the gym to cover them, but not anymore! Strong is the new skinny right!? Who needs to be stick thin!? NOT me! I am embracing my muscles and so proud of how far I have come and all that I can do now. And this is just the beginning! I am so excited to see what the future holds!

CrossFit has done more than just improve my confidence and fitness. It has also opened my eyes to different foods and eating better and just being healthier overall. It started as a way to just stay fit and has become so much more than that already. It’s a whole new lifestyle that I love more and more everyday. I see the changes in my body, in my energy, and in my overall outlook on life and I want more. I am addicted to it and the way it makes me feel.

I even competed in a team competition last month with some other fun people from my gym and we did pretty darned good for being rookies. It was an absolute blast!

It also made me realize that, even though I am in my thirties and have a job and a family, I can still take time and do things for ME once in a while!

I have never in my life enjoyed working out but, I find myself getting excited to go online and look at what the WOD will be today. I count down the minutes until it’s time to go to class.

Not only is it a place to get fit, but I have met some incredible people there. These are the people sweating and grunting and groaning with you everyday. They are the ones cheering for you when you are the last one done and telling you how awesome you did when you get a new PR (personal record). These are the people pushing you when you don’t think you can do another rep and ultimately, giving you the strength and motivation to continue on and not give up until you finish. These are the people I call friends. Maybe that’s why I love CrossFit so much, the sense of community is unrivaled and I can’t imagine my life without it now.

I know I didn’t really go into details about what exactly CrossFit is, so if you want to know more – just let me know. I would be happy to explain it further or answer any questions you have. If you are thinking about trying it out – just do it! Many local CrossFit affiliates have an introductory bootcamp class for beginners or you can always try a regular class out to see what it’s like. Most will let you attend one class for free.

I promise, you won’t be disappointed. But be careful – you might get addicted like me!

6 Responses to CrossFit: My Journey to Fitness After Babies

  1. I absolutely love this! You’re such an inspiration for your children and other mamas alike! It’s wonderful how you’re modeling commitment, determination, and health for your little ones. Rock on Mama!!

  2. Your story is so inspiring Heidi! Thanks for sharing.

  3. Great article thanks for sharing your story!

  4. Good for you momma!! I have tons of friends who cross fit and swear by it!! I love inspiring stories like this!! I ran a half marathon a couple months after my son was born, and I am so proud of that accomplishment!! Hooray for promoting fit momma’s!

  5. Good job mama. i’m WAY too cheap to pay for cross-fit but have been loving insanity lately :) w. a 19mo at home it can be tricky, but luckily she still naps once a day so i try to squeeze them in.

  6. Pingback: Sydney’s Birth Story: To VBAC or Not to VBAC? Mama Say What?! | Mama Say What?!

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