Not Such an Extreme Makeover

One of my guilty pleasures whilst endlessly breastfeeding, (in addition to Home and Away), was watching Extreme Makeover.

If you haven’t seen the programme, the concept is that they take someone dowdy or quirky looking who has an emotional life story (related to their looks) and follow them as they get taken to be surgically altered and beautified by a team comprising some of the top American plastic surgeons, dentists, hairdressers, personal trainers and designers.  In essence they completely overhaul their image within a few short months, also requiring significant reprogramming of their mindset to enable them to cope with the new outer image of their body, and allowing their inner being to ‘catch up’ with the change.

Most people do not want to go through the agony of plastic surgery, but realistically, that is the only way in which you will achieve very fast, extreme, results.  Re-moulding your body from the inside out takes time, dedication, a strong will and a lot of really hard work!

I was talking to my friend yesterday as we pushed our prams up the hill on a sunny walk.  We were comparing notes on the fact that when you look back at photos taken any time ago, you reminisce about that time, and along with it, all of the insecurities you had at that time.  You then start thinking “Gosh, I looked great back then”, or “I was so less wrinkly than I am now!”, “I really shouldn’t have worried what everyone thought about what I looked like in my shorts”, “I should have just got on with things I wanted to do rather than putting them off until I was thinner/fitter/more toned”.

Then you think of yourself at this moment.  Here. Now.

You think of all the insecurities you have in this moment. Here. Now.

You contemplate all of the things you are putting off doing, starting or trying because of these insecurities.

You try to imagine what the you of ten years in the future might say if they looked at a snapshot of you in this moment.

What would they say to you?

Would they say “Yeah, you’re right, just stick to the safe stuff and don’t go out to that baby group/exercise class/for a walk/tread the path you want to because you think you look rough, and fat and wobbly and tired”?

Or would they say “Cor, look at you, you’re doing so well! You should go out and meet other people in the same situation as yourself! You just look like you are pregnant/have had a baby and are coping with all the stuff involved in adjusting to the life of a new mum and running a home!  You deserve to do whatever you fancy doing, and whatever you do now, you will still be ahead of the people who have chosen not to get out of bed or off the sofa today”.

I have a feeling your inner cheerleading voice would win.

You try to keep that in mind from day-to-day, but it is hard when you just want to be ‘fixed’.

I trained a lady once who had had extensive lower body liposuction (at great expense) and had come for a consultation whilst joining the gym that I was working at.  It became apparent that she wasn’t a fan of exercising and was doing even less exercise than ever before following this invasive surgical procedure.  She had presumed that having liposuction to reduce the inches on her bottom, stomach, hips and thighs would be the answer to all of her problems.  At first she had been overjoyed as the compliments flew in.  Over the six months since, she had been left disappointed.

Following her surgery, although happy with the newly trimmer size of her bottom half, and being able to fit into smaller clothes, she noticed that her upper body was starting to fill out with little pockets of fat.  This was causing great distress.  On questioning her lifestyle, it came to light that she had not altered anything about it.  This meant that she was still indulging in all the treats that she enjoyed, and not really taking care to exercise or to build that all important muscle mass to keep her metabolism revving.  Basically, she didn’t actually want to do the hard work involved in changing her body, she wanted a quick fix that would last.

It would be wonderful to have a magic wand that would banish the bits of us that we didn’t like as much as the others, sadly it doesn’t quite work like that.

However, the cells throughout your body are constantly renewing.  You have a completely ‘new’ body every seven years, but your brain cells aren’t replaced in the same way.

Just ponder about that for a moment.

This means that your thoughts are, in a roundabout way, one of the most important permanent features within your body at any one time.  These thoughts can be changed at any moment, especially by taking a different perspective on them.  Just like looking back on old photographs.

If you don’t like something you have the power to change it.

Imagine, in seven years your body will be a ‘new’ version of what you have made it, starting in this moment.

So if you want to get your body back in shape after pregnancy, or change it into the best shape that your body can be for the future, you have to start with what you can accomplish in this one moment, today.  If that is to change your mental state from contemplation to preparing to take action, then that is a big step for you.

You could take action right at this moment by thinking positively about your current state.  If you are pregnant or have been pregnant, your body has undergone some of the most momentous changes possible in a lifetime.  It needs nurturing and caring thoughts directed at it.  Not self berating thoughts or punishment for doing its job.

I have always loved helping people achieve their fitness goals, whether the goals are small or large, because to the person I am training, those goals are the most important thing on their mind.  And that is the important thing to remember.  I care about the results that I get for my clients.  I go that extra mile to give them the information that will help them attain their goals.  I love seeing people making the changes in their lifestyles and becoming, or returning to, the person that they want to be, and feel privileged that I can help along the way.  It is not a quick fix.

I will be behind you, being your cheerleader to remind you of how well you are doing (and I won’t make you say whoop whoop in my classes).  You do not have to be intimidated in my sessions, because, I have been there myself.  I am normal.  I too look back on photos and wish I hadn’t complained at that time, and try to start something now.  After all, an extreme makeover of your mindcan begin right now!

Hope you have a lovely day/evening.


Postnatal Exercise Classes in Devon


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