School’s out – but the workouts continue

School holiday workouts: A workout attempted will be way more beneficial than no workout at all. 😉

Here’s a thought of the week for you: Sometimes matters are out of our control – including when the kids are at home on school holidays and we have a small person with us who needs entertaining – it’s easy to knock the idea of a work out on the head. 

I try to keep momentum for my Pilates clients in school hols though. This week on our group Mama Strength Pilates Programme session we worked out with the little ones in the room – the kids dipped in and out – an hour is a long session for the young ones of course. We don’t expect them to engage in anything longer than 20 minutes – and for the moments they’re climbing all over us we just go with it.

I keep some structure of the usual Pilates session going – but yeah – it’s nigh on impossible to get through the whole hour without the little saboteurs getting involved. So Plan B: when the kids start trying to copy or show their own moves we re-engage them in and try something structured (we use team work style exercises/stretches in my holiday sessions – the moves can be tried with kids of all ages).

Obviously a bit of play rolling around with them is great fun – just be mindful of your own safety and of the kids. The little ones love jumping all over us – in Pilates we draw the belly button through to the spine to avoid back injury and protect the lower, inner organs etc.

We just have to re-wire/re-focus the brain and, dare I say, ‘manage’ our expectations of how much structured workout will get done! Keep moving during your workout, know the kids will be in and out of the room…before you know it you’ll have burned more calories than you realise! A workout attempted will be way more beneficial than no workout at all.

I quickly sussed out these family home workout hacks in my lockdown home teaching life…and turned the things I discovered with my Baby-O (my social media name for my little girl) into my parents and kids Pilates session I now teach at music festivals. Photos from lock down Pilates with the family, and my sidekick and I teaching at a festival 🥰😜

Parents & Kids’ Pilates at Music Festivals

Achieve and maintain healthy body weight and help to reduce the food bills

Fruit & Veg Box of dreams!

I’m hearing a common theme of needing inspiration for healthy eating from the parents I’m in contact with, and equally a hot topic in the news at the mo is families worrying about finances / increasing food costs. This week I’ve been sharing tips and re-sharing some blogs I wrote in my Mama Connect Facebook group, with a few suggestions to get some faff free low cost healthy eating going on that should work for the whole family. I’m supporting my Mama Strength Pilates Programme clients to make minimal changes every day to their daily routines to help prioritise themselves and their health on a daily basis in a manageable way. Here are more easy ways to achieve and maintain a healthy body weight, alongside a regular fitness plan (calculate your healthy BMI here). Essentially unhealthy snacking is a major fiend to both body weight and budget, so let’s look at ways we can curb those snacky cravings or avoid over-eating – aand eating less also means lower food bills. Win win all round!:

  1. Get a later brekkie – there’s many mixed reports on ‘fasting’ diets, so feel free to do your own research here (I’m neither advocating or poo-pooing it as I think it varies in the individual), but delaying breakfast until after school drop off maybe means eating closer to lunch and therefore reducing the need for mid-morning snacks.
  2. Brush your teeth after the main course – having a fresh mouth means less likely to want to eat dessert…unless you reallllly want to eat it! 😉 A small drop of Peppermint oil on the tongue also has a similar effect if you’re out and about (check the oil is good enough quality to ingest – I prefer pure, high quality oils like DoTerra).
  3. Essential oils – Sniff ’em, drink a few drops in hot water, massage in to pressure points…oils can play many roles in weight management: curb cravings, increase metabolism, aid digestion, reduce sugar cravings – sooo much potential. I’ll be talking more about these elixirs of nature in the Mama Connect Facebook group.
  4. Drink a glass of water before a meal and eat off a smaller plate – the water makes you feel fuller, and a smaller plate will psychologically make you feel you’ve got enough on your plate.
  5. What are your healthy yummy snacks?? My favourite is a handful of nuts with my morning coffee. Strangely enough the flavours mixed together tastes like some sort of naughtiness! Or find something that you can keep in the cupboard that is at least good quality – organic maybe. On that note – I’ve been saving money on snacking – and now we’re a plant based household, on meat – and getting organic fruit and veg boxes instead.

This Eatwell Guide is a basic but useful reminder of how much of what we eat overall should come from each food group to achieve a healthy, balanced diet.

Ok obviously we want to enjoy life, right? Life’s too short to be completely virtuous, so everything in moderation. So have a think: what little changes can you make, and where you can get – or curb – your naughty craving fixes?

I’m actually in the upper end of my BMI. What am I going to do about it? Firstly I’m going to take a deep breath – remind myself I’m happy with my body, and how powerful and incredible it is, than I’ll REDUCE MY SNACKING AND GET MORE CARDIO going on! 💪💪💪

Join the Mama: Connect. Walk. Talk! group here for ongoing inspiration and motivation, including in person events, like my monthly free Parent and Kids walks.

How can I find myself if I can’t see the wood for the trees?

Sometimes finding a balance between coping with the strain of daily life, or a busy professional world, whilst (as I write in Jan ’21) homeschooling, and then trying to find quality time for fitness, socialising (yes, it will be a thing of the future), or just to be alone with no care in the world just doesn’t seem achievable. Read to the bottom to claim a free trial Pilates session with me!

Be Kind To Yourself & Shine 2021

I’m a pilates instructor, dance teacher, and I have also been a personal assistant for the past 20 years helping busy professional people streamline their lives so they have more time to think strategically, creatively and freely. Transfer this to streamlining lifestyle, homelife, and perhaps there are ways that we can find more time in the day, the week…and find the budget, to be able to have more carefree ME TIME: be able to afford more fitness  – being motivated by a fitness professional to help you achieve goals; to fulfil passions; or for activities, not just for ourselves, but to do with family or friends…

As a fitness instructor I quite often meet their inability to joining in my sessions of: ‘I don’t have enough time’. ‘I can’t afford it.’ And this makes me sad, people! So I got thinking, how can I help my clients overcome these ‘barriers to participation’, and also to remove the mental blocks which will enable them to ultimately attend my pilates sessions, where I take pride in my regular clients’ feeding back that they are so much calmer, or stronger for whatever physical demands of parenting requires? So here we go:

Here are my 3 top tips to work towards streamlining your lifestyle, including:

1. Planning with the household – shared accountability.

A problem shared is a problem halved. What can you share with the people you live with.  Some of us might take on chores/tasks without questioning whether we should be doing it, or if they could be shared with a child. If the child is younger, perhaps start planting the seed of helping around the home now…and make it fun or rewarding! Planning with the family and letting them have input might also increase the chance of their ‘buy in’ to sticking with their responsibilities – hopefully eventually becoming an automated behaviour without your input!

2. Get organised

A weekly planner that is filled out at the start of every week – could be electronic, perhaps on a shared, non-editable tablet, and printable – or it could be a wipeable weekly board displayed in one place in the household. Perhaps a 10 minutes Sunday powow with the family to work out who is going where, what needs to be done, what homework needs to be in, what childcare is needed for you to achieve your Me Time, and most essentially WHERE YOU WILL FIT IN YOUR ME TIME! Connecting organisational digital apps together too is also a brilliant way of planning – Office 365 is great to track tasks, emails, your to do list, prioritising, scanning important letters from school that you keep losing around the house.

3. Financial Planning

Get budgeting – plan your goals you need to spend on – it could be getting a 1:1 fitness instructor to motivate you to your goals.  it could be going kayaking and paying for a membership for a club. And it could be as longer term such as a weekend away with friends.  But plan the budget so you know there’s no additional barrier to getting your me time in.  It could also be something you’re saving towards with the family – something fun for you to do together – me time isn’t just about the time on your own – it’s also making space in your life fo care-free time with everyone, without thinking you should be doing something else.

I’m not generalising in my advice, as we all have different circumstances and home dynamics, and I know some of you will have streamlining your household down to a fine art. My tips are by no means the complete solution.  But I also know the struggles of, for example some single parents, and even if a small part of my suggestions can be implemented, hopefully it’s planting the seed for the chance of a marvellous future, where regular, perhaps even daily time to fulfil passions and hobbies, or sitting quietly alone for more than 5 minutes is a thing.

If you’d like a FREE trial online group Pilates session with Dancing Mama Fitness, complete the questionnaire below, so I can get to know more about the lifestyles of the ‘audience’ I’m speaking to!

Peace and love.

21 Days to KickStart a Healthy, Fit & Mindful New Year

  • Do you need some all round health and wellbeing TLC?
  • Has 2020 left you feeling just meh, stressed and mentally drained?
  • Do you want to know how to strengthen the immune system with foods that we eat?
  • Have you lost motivation for fitness and self care and need some kick start motivation?
  • Do you need to revive your lust for life?
Be Kind To Yourself & Shine 2021 - Health & Fitness Motivation Challenge

Let’s face it, 2020 has been a pretty challenging year, but what if it’s given us a gift? What if it’s given us a fabulous new vision, helped us to re-evaluate what is important in our lives and given an eye opening wake-up call of what’s got to give.

Can you say in 2020 you gave yourself a break, were kind to yourself and allowed yourself to step into your power?

Whether you answered ‘yes’ to the above and now need some 2021 motivation to elevate into that immense power, or if you answered ‘no’ and have acknowledged that something’s gotta give, we’ve got a 21 day plan to give you a guilt free opportunity to be kind to yourself and Shine into 2021: 4-24 January 2021!

Join Be Kind To Yourself & Shine 2021 Here

We’ll be running this for FREE, in exchange for a donation to our chosen charity: The NEED Project, Bedfordshire.

Your hosts will be Alison (@DancingMamaFitness) and Sandi (@SandiRatz PT) – fitness and lifestyle professionals, focussing on prioritising health, balance in wellbeing and passions within busy lives, not just for 21 days, but for longevity.

Sandi and Alison have teamed up with other experts in the holistic wellness industry bringing a whole array of motivational, inspirational and down right life changing knowledge to you, including self Reiki, EFT, self massage and meditation – survival toolkit in times where we can’t always see practitioners face to face, learn how from home!

Throughout the 21 days Sandi and Alison will bring daily inspiration, free fitness and mindset sessions and host parties from Tropic Skincare, DoTerra essential oils, and Juice Plus+ plant based nutrition, introducing some gorgeous, ethically chosen health and wellbeing products to set your 2021 goals off with some quality products.

There will be weekly giveaways, freebies from all experts involved, and two incredible prizes and the end for the winner of a prize draw and the most engaged throughout the 21 days.

Finish the 21 Days feeling Fitter, Focussed and Fabulous. You’re Welcome!

5 Tips to Smash Your Winter Workout

Who’s ready for the dark mornings and even darker nights??

Yeah – me neither. Doesn’t always inspire a workout does it – especially one outdoors.

But I prefer workout in the open, and I’m trying to work out how to make the best still of outdoor workouts. Here’s my 5 tips for fitness motivation whilst smashing the winter workout blues:

1. Get kitted out

My best purchase of all time was a Uni-Qlo calf length ‘duvet coat’ as I call it, which I found when I was pregnant in the sales. I could just about fit my daughter underneath in the baby carrier in later years when we went out for our long walks in whatever the elements were throwing at us. I still love it now for those cosy winter walks – I wore it out for a walk yesterday in the crazy driving rain and felt both Snug and Smug at the same time.

Will you need to be warm? Dry? Need certain footwear to match the terrain or gear to match the activity – balaclava underneath a cycle helmet or raincoat with a peak in the hood to keep the rain off your face?

Granted some of the fitness gear can be pricey, but catch the right time of year and you can bag some bargains. That all said, some of the high street brands have their own fitness ranges these days – I quite often buy from Decathalon – it’s reasonably priced, and their clothing lasts me for a good year too!

2. Choose the location wisely.

Start planning some locations that aren’t too muddy – gravel pathways are usually a good shout for cycling, running or walking with good drainage. On road, or concrete pathways good for cycling – I’m not a fan of jogging on concrete as I used to suffer from shin splints – make sure you’ve got good running shoes for harder surfaces. Or what fitness instructors can you find online to save you leaving the house? I’ve been teaching my pilates clients online and it’s definitely helped out for those who have been shielding…and now for those who quite enjoy staying in for their workout.

3. Choose the time to work for you…

An increase in home working has meant we can work a little more flexibly, with some employers becoming more relaxed, and self employed peeps can also arrange their working day and be kinder to themselves to create the space in the diary for a lunchtime workout – some daylight and fresh air to help revive for the afternoon has huge benefits…unless a workout leaves you wanting to snooze!). Timeblock the week so you can make it happen – and sometimes paying for a course will motivate you to stick at it. Quite often with slightly cheaper rates as an incentive.

By far my winning workout situation is when I build the workout in to a part of my existing routine – lately I’ve been cycling my daughter to nursery and doing a route around the houses on the way home to clock up some miles!

4. …which leads me to strategic planning!

Make sure the type of fitness is relevant for the time of day. An invigorating, power workout in the morning or earlier on in the day will keep us mentally focussed, whilst a chilled Yoga session later in the day may help you to sleep, clear the mind and wind down. Different strokes for different folks of course so find out what works for you!

5. Workout with other people.

Nothing like some good motivation from working with a partner or a group of friends. Make fitness social. If you’re not in each others bubbles, fair enough you may not be able to do any contact sports, but team games where you can socially distance are just fun and quite often lead to a social life too. I wanted to join a rowing or kayaking club – might have to find a daytime or weekend club in winter(!), but the clubhouses quite often also have social nights.

Hope this has inspired you to research the options and talk to others about what they’re doing or enjoy. If you can get through the winter without the dark nights as an excuse not to do it, you should fall in to an easy year round workout routine

Fit For You. Fit For Life.

New Mat Pilates programmes from Dancing Mama Fitness for Beginners and Open Level for those with previous Pilates experience!

Join me here:

Discover how Pilates helps to strengthen and tone whilst improving posture and reducing stress and illness by incorporating it in to daily life.

This 6 week online mat pilates course from Dancing Mama Fitness will take the beginners through the simple steps to understanding the ABC of pilates and how to put into daily practise in order to:

🤸improve strength

🤸improve and strengthen posture/alignment, correct postural issues;

🤸improve physical health – helping to stave off illnesses;

🤸make us happier!

🤸beat stress – Pilates focusses on coordinating movement and breath, known through many practices to calm the mind;

🤸help us live longer lives!

The course will include a complimentary 1:1 session, which we’ll schedule on your registration, where we’ll delve deeper in to anything you’d like to work on. Option of additional 1:1 sessions also available. We’ll meet every Wednesday or Thursday on Zoom for 1 HR Pilates and optional 15 minutes mindfulness relaxation at the end.

Hope you can join me. Get in touch if you have any questions:

10 ways to help support mental health and wellbeing for parents

Whatever circumstances, working lifestyle, or lifestyle adaptations are currently being made given the latest government advice about social distancing during this period of disruption, a large chunk of the population, will probably find themselves with more time at home, and possibly, depending on the age of the kids and work status, with more time with the kids. As parents we’re going to need to be mentally and physically strong for ourselves and our families amongst the catastrophe.

Here are 10 things you can do to help boost your immune system and preserve your mental health and wellbeing whatever social distancing measures you’ve decided or have to take, or if you have to self isolate, that you can do with – or without (possibly after bedtime) – the kids!:

1 Work Out.

Working out boosts the immune system and massively improves mental health. 

For you: There is a mass of online fitness videos, or 1 to 1 personal workout instructors in a huge range of styles.  Virtual learning platforms will become our best friend over the coming months – technology is amazing. Investing in an online personal trainer, who can monitor your workout, will ensure you’re working out safely and to your strengths.

Listen carefully to the safe workout guidelines the online practitioners should provide. Take care, don’t overdo it to avoid injury, and always ensure you have approval from a physician if you feel unwell, have underlying, continuous health conditions, are pregnant, or have given birth within the last 6 months, on the type of exercise that is suitable for you.

For the kids: Cosmic Kids Yoga is fun for kids, and once you search for them, many other kids wellbeing channels crop up in the search!  

Watch this space for ideas for parent and kids work outs together from Dancing Mama Fitness…

At the time of writing (17.3.20) some of us can still get out – can still get to leisure centres.  They’re still open – providing you’ve done your own risk assessment for your health – support them!  The centres I teach in are heightening their cleaning routines and there is reduced attendance by members, so two metres apart from each other is achieved in most classes.

According to new information from Swim England, chlorine kills the virus, so we’re currently ok to go swimming.  The pools are pretty much empty too!

2 Walks in the wild

Nature, fresh air, greenery – exercise, walk, escape the confines of walls and bust some stress. Get some comfy walking boots or trainers and explore – walk far and wide with younger kids in a baby carrier (visit Wear My Babyfor a great collection), or take shorter walks to take time and educate the kids on nature or take a ball or frisbee.

3 Ramp Up the Self Love and Care

Take long baths, have a go at making scrubs and home made shampoos.  There’s so many blogs online, and we can’t necessarily go wrong if the ingredients are entirely natural and applied externally only of course (ahem!). Perfect opportunity to be more careful about the environment with less packaging as a result.

Also time to cook from scratch in mass production, if there’s not usually time to do anything more than bung a ready made meal in the microwave.  Cook with loads of immune system boosting fresh or frozen fruit and veg, and freeze stuff – loads of suggestions of recipes suitable for freezing online.  Read my Dancing Mama blog on Parent Baby Nutrition, Baby Led Weaning Ideas and cooking on a budget here.  Time to take control of what we’re consuming.

4 Meditate or Find Stillness and Breathe.

When our minds are a-jumble with so many different concerns, questions, possibly health issues too, it’s important to try to take some time out and try to switch the brain off. Guided meditation app subscriptions help spark motivation to practise regularly – I love Spotify or Insight Timer.  My little one loves New Horizon Holistic Centre Meditations on either app – I’ve been encouraging her to practise deep breathing (she’s 3 in June). There’s a meditation for everything!

This is Calmer has some good tips on breathing exercises and the benefits here.

Additionally, finding the right, focussed support online can give some really helpful motivation and guidance.  Check out Jane’s current Calmness In The Chaos campaign at Cherish, Transform and Upgrade Your Life’s Facebook Page

5 Read 

For you: Novels, fact, fiction, Motivational self help books, personal or business development…the list is endless.  Feed the mind! Audio books are a good substitute, but we’re more likely to try to multi-task whilst listening, arguably not giving the books full attention!

For the kids: My school friend’s son has started a Facebook page as he believes every child should have a book to read or read to them at night.  Check out Story Time By Max here!

6 Get arty or crafty

Do a quick online shop or support a local craft supplies retailer. Make a master piece. Adult colouring books are beautiful, and brilliant for the concentration.  There may be a craft or skill you’ve been wanting to have a go at. My mum told me I have to mention knitting – perhaps I’ll get her a YouTube channel of her own! Opportunities for being creative with kids are endless – find some inspiration here.

7 Dance, play and laugh

Crank up the tunes, dance with your partner/spouse, dance with the kids, sing really loudly.  That Saturday night out might be on hold for a short while.  We love finding different dance styles on TV, and my little one gets so inspired, lost in a ballet or a fierce contemporary dance piece.

Play is a great escape mechanism.  Lose yourself in a game – physical, strategic or silly games.  Can’t underestimate the joy of a play fight either!

8 Social Media Detox

Social media and technology will either make or break our society. I love this diagram from @From The Other Chair on Instagram.  

  • So hard to disassociate with all the chatter but with increased social distancing we’ll probably be looking at social media and technology far more frequently to communicate.
  • Conflicting evidence on facts could ultimately cause us more unnecessary stress as we consume so much conflicting info and so many different opinions. 
  • Our brains and eyes need a break – studies show that staring at a screen longer will reduce our melatonin, disrupting sleep.  
  • I’m also worried I’m staring at a screen too much and disengaging with my little one, so it will be nice for her to see me unattached from a phone for once!  

9 Socialise (Virtually)

The above said – use technology to help you gather all your best mates, kids, family into a Google Hangouts or Whatsapp video call every now and then from phones or laptops.  Have a virtual girls night in – try to still celebrate the birthdays, Mothers’ Day together. We can’t lose the ability to speak face to face and see expressions and laugh together.  It’s the greatest medicine.

10 Sleep!

Get to bed earlier, wake up earlier! 7.5 – 9 hours sleep is the optimal length of time for the body to really benefit (and kids need more).  Any shorter or longer is not healthy for the body.  Some of the greatest leaders and thinkers are said to do their greatest work early in the morning whilst the rest of the world is still sleeping. Another great blog post from This Is Calmer about the benefits of sleep.

Time for reinvention?

Imagine if this time of unrest is actually a wake up call for us, to re-evaluate our lives and relationships, shake up our bad habits and practises that don’t serve us, and is a gift to practise some self love and care… 

In a time of immense uncertainty in many aspects of our lives, my mantra lately: Where there is tension, there is reinvention.  

Reclaiming my body.

For the last two years I’ve been sharing my body. This week am I going to stop sharing.  I’m starting the painful night-weaning journey.  Don’t get me wrong – it was enjoyable for a while. I enjoyed the feeling of breastfeeding (BF) and nourishing my Baby-O, knowing I’m giving her a good start in life, but as she’s getting older and wiser, she now knows how to play the tantrum card to make me cave in if I don’t give her the goods. I’m over waking up in the night with little vice like hands grabbing, ney, pulling my nipples until I feel like they’re going to twang off. Now I’m ready.  I heard a phrase recently; I’m all touched out.  Sums it up perfectly.  I want to reclaim my body.

Mental Preparation

BF in the early days on our first Parent & Baby Walk!

I’d been waiting over the last few months to feel mentally strong enough to deal with the exorcist style behaviour of my little one when I deny her comfort at night. We’ve also been through major changes moving up to my parents and I didn’t want to take away the one constant in her world until I knew she’d settled. She’s just turned two – I don’t think there is much milk left for her, so I don’t think it’s a hunger thing when she sits up in her cot at night and shouts for ‘Mummy’ or ‘Milk’.

I don’t think she is actually awake either. My mum helped me out earlier on this year with getting her to sleep with no help from me – she can now lie down at the start of the night contentedly at night and fall asleep without BF.  When she wakes up at night and can’t help herself back to sleep, I think she has maybe just roused herself from sleep (maybe to pee?!), sits up immediately, almost as if sleep ‘walking’, and won’t lie back down in her cot.

I try to resist picking my little sleep thief up but, she starts moaning, and, of course as my downfall, for most of her life I’ve just brought her into bed with me and breast-fed her right back to sleep again.  I MISS MY SLEEP!!

Day 1

So last night I steeled myself to battle through screeching and squealing, hitting and kicking which is so distressing, and so loud I’m worried will wake the neighbourhood dogs, and went my first night since her birth, without feeding my daughter back to sleep. 

As morning arrives I have a feeling she’s going to be as tired as me today I’ve gone for 31 hours without feeding her.  Just as I think I’m not producing much milk, by mid-morning my boobs feel like they’re going to explode – like I’m stowing two rapidly inflating beach balls. The pressure. 

I get to an Aqua Aerobics class. The motion of the water as I’m bouncing away almost gives me a massage and the cool water feels so good on my chest! Plus the upper body workout should hopefully boost the circulation, and my increasing beach balls start to feel soothed.

I think they accurately call it ‘Engorged Breast’. Exactly how I feel – Engorged. (I read that cabbage leaves can soothe milk filled boobs? Hmm – attractive!).

Throughout the early night my boobs feel so uncomfortable and I begin to think about the best way to pump some milk. Hand pumping through the pain doesn’t appeal.  The last thing I need now is a squeeze. I have a laugh at myself – I was willing Baby-O almost to come to MY rescue.  I wait to see how the mini mitts clamouring at my nipples at 3am will feel if I resist her milk…and I wait. I wait, lying AWAKE in pain, starting to feel feverish, until she wakes up around 1am and I crumble – she has a feast on both sides, relieving the pressure around my chest.  Baby-O and I both fall back to sleep satisfied and relieved, respectively.

Day 2

Day 2 of my mission, on repeat of resisting the feeding, with the anticipation of the previous day’s discomfort and distress, we are both much calmer.  Miraculously I don’t get the same pressure in my chest. It’s almost as if someone has started to turn off the tap.  I think my milk flow is starting to adapt.

One week later

Over the week to come I’m down to only one ‘feed’ (I think she’s just using me for comfort now as I don’t think there is any milk left!), mostly in the break of day around 4am, when I still relent into a moment of whatever it takes to get Baby-O back to sleep.  This is progress.  She still wakes earlier in the night and I’ve resisted feeding her – hoping it sends the signal of ‘it’s dark and there’s no milk at nighttime’. 

I have no desire to go back to the new-mum reading frenzies of the many conflicting blog/mummy community/sleep expert advice at 2am whether for sleep training tips, minor illness etc, which usually only happened in my bleary eyed state during the night. I always ended up confusing myself even more.  Now I’m going along with instinct, trusting that surely soon enough she’ll crack on…preferably not when she’s 5 and still attached to me.  I hope this is the start of dropping the only ‘feed’ of the day completely.  I have to remember I’ve got this far, it probably won’t take much more to go the final steps – of not bringing her into bed with me at all. I’m hoping soon enough she won’t wake up so much…must stay strong!

I think I’ve cracked it…

Before I know it I’m 2 weeks on and I haven’t breastfed her for 3 days.  I think I’ve cracked it.  She still delves into my top during our cuddles when she’s bumped her knee etc, but I gently prize her hand out, telling her there’s no Mummy’s milk now, and she gives up!

I am having a moment whilst I type this.  It’s the end of an era.  The end of my little girl’s baby phase, as she is no longer reliant on me for her source of liquid food…as much as that is possibly the last time I’ll have another life so dependant on me, it feels empowering. I knew it would have to happen some day soon.  The distressing nights when I never thought it would happen seem a distant memory – and to make me feel like it is all worth while, she actually slept for 10 hours solid last night in her own cot! Then I remember why I’m doing this.  To make a full night’s sleep normal again for me!

We’ve come a long way

I love looking back on my journey with Baby-O and the remarkable things my body has done to produce this perfect little being and the care and nurture I have given to make her as healthy and happy as she is today.  I think about the post-natal recuperation my body has gone through: walking, swimming and doing Pilates to get stronger again; strengthening my posture to repair some niggly tingly muscle spasms after the hours of slouching whilst feeding her, no matter how mindful I tried to be; knowing my pelvic floor has a way to go so I don’t have to cross my legs when I sneeze; and trying to get my dancing fit body back (still a little way to go!).

I feel though this is the last piece in the jigsaw of transitioning her to find her independence, from giving my body to help her nourish and flourish. And for me to transition away from my ‘New Mum’ phase, to the next stage of my woman-hood, by reclaiming back my body. 

Pilates For Parents = Healthy, Happy Parenting

Picturing a Summer of running through fields; on the beaches – effortlessly picking up the kids and spinning round with them as you go, without feeling the heave-ho as you lift them?  It’s the classic, carefree image of parenthood. 

Keeping strong and fit has wonderful benefits for parents, not only preparing the body for all the physical eventualities that comes with having kids, but also helping parents to enjoy play time with them on those great days out and holidays to come.

Having fun play time with kids can physically demanding, as can sitting breast feeding for hours; rocking a child to sleep; managing their raging tantrums!  A stronger body will help you to match their energy whilst reducing the chance of long-term injury to joints and muscles.

Dancing Mama Fitness helps parents prepare for the physicalities of parenthood through Matwork Pilates – the perfect mind and body workout for parents, holistically supporting mental health and wellbeing. 

The many benefits of regular Pilates practice for parents include:

  • improves strength for demanding activities with kids;
  • improves and strengthens posture/alignment, corrects postural issues;
  • improves physical health – helping to stave off illnesses;
  • makes us happier! Happy parents = happy home;
  • beats stress – Pilates focusses on coordinating movement and breath, known through many practices to calm the mind;
  • helps us live longer lives – we want to see our kids thrive well into the future, right?!

It’s not just about making time to respect and care for our bodies and mental health – it’s about the benefits we’re passing on to our children as a result!

Personal Pilates Tuition

Dancing Mama Fitness will set up small group and 1:1 Pilates just for you and your friends. We come to a venue near you, at a time that suits you, for a programme of personal training sessions around Beds, Herts & Bucks.

Bring your babies or young kids to join in with fun sessions incorporating the babies into exercise with and without baby carriers – or leave the kids at home!

We love the outdoors, so if possible we’ll take our workouts to the wild and connect with nature for some feel good, holistic mind and body vibrations too.

Share the cost of sessions with a group of friends – the feeling of personal training on a more affordable level – or treat yourself to a personal, bespoke programme of sessions.  

Example cost: From as little as £8 per person per hour, paying per month and based on a group of 5 people at your home (subject to size/suitability of flooring/terrain!).

Get in touch for more info:

Facebook: @Dancing Mama Fitness

Strengthen the core, the pelvic floor, and feel your stamina return through mindful movement exercise. 

Dancing Mama Fitness

Dance and Fitness training for mums wanting to get their groove back! Strengthen your core, pelvic floor and feel your stamina return.

The Love of Dance brings you the Dancing Mama Fitness concept! As a new mum I found it hard to find a fitness class I could join whilst having a young baby, that suited my childcare needs, time and location.  I’m a dance and Pilates Instructor and needed to get my strength back but couldn’t find the classes to help me.  Surely I’m not alone!
Dancing Mama Fitness will set up small group and 1:1 dance fitness training just for you and your friends. Bring your babies or young kids to join in with fun sessions incorporating the babies into exercise with and without baby carriers, or leave them at home! Babies can also be entertained in the room whilst you work out – I realise this isn’t quite giving ‘you’ time, but realistically, us mums have to compromise sometimes!
We come to an venue near you at a time that suits you, for a programme of personal training sessions around Kent and South East London.
Opt for:
Dance class in contemporary, street or jazz;
Dance conditioning; or
Share the cost of sessions with a group of friends – the feeling of personal training on a more affordable level – or treat yourself to a personal, bespoke programme of sessions. Contact me for more information!

Dancing Mama - Pilates Instructor

Dancing Mama Fitness