To The Mama At The Gym With The Screaming Baby: Don't Be Discouraged. Keep Coming Back.

by Jill Molloy

To the mama at the gym with the screaming baby:

Oh hey, that’s me! But also probably someone else too.

It’s Friday, and although I worked out each day this week, there isn’t one single day that I got in the full workout I intended. Tuesday, my babe miraculously peed a gallon and a half in the 20 minutes that it takes to get to the gym. It got all over him, and his mama forgot extra clothes that day. I always have extra clothes, except for when I need them. Anyone else? Needless to say, the first 30 minutes of my would-be workout was spent in Baby Gap, because retail therapy.

The very next day I attempted again, only to have my workout cut short by a hysterical baby who needed me. So we left. And I saw the other lady who left in the same fashion that I did.

Something she said made me think that she was just now returning to the gym post-baby and that it had yet to go smoothly. I wanted to tell her how much I hope she keeps with it, but our babies were screaming.

It’s hard getting back into a gym routine after a baby.

Maybe you never were in the gym before your baby, and you have a newfound motivation to live a healthier life.

Maybe your weight is bothering you (I hope you’re giving yourself some grace if that’s the case).

Maybe you’re like me and you tried so hard to stay in shape during your pregnancy and never took into account how hard it would be to work out when you had that cute little monkey clinging to your hip all the time.

Whatever your reason is, I’m glad you’re there, screaming baby and all. And I hope you keep coming back, screaming baby and all.

I have a feeling you’re not sleeping great, at least not always.

I have a feeling that you wish you saw faster results, but geez, you grew a human.

I have a feeling you sometimes feel guilty for taking time away from your baby so that you can invest in yourself, but I hope you remember that whatever it is that makes you a better person, makes you a better mama.

I have a feeling that your back hurts because you are in a constant state of lopsidedness, and that some days you contemplate skipping the gym for the rest of your life and eating leaves every day to make up for it. Please don’t eat only leaves.

I have a feeling you may feel like a beached whale every time you attempt a push-up during those first few weeks, and you’re just straight-up mad because you thought you’d stop feeling like a whale when pregnancy ended. You’ll get stronger, and no you don’t actually look like a whale.

I have a feeling that is seems like it takes an act of God to make it to the gym on time. When does that stop?

I have a feeling that sometimes you think you’re growing biceps by the minute by carrying that baby around, so why even go to the gym? You’re right, your arms look great, take a break once in a while and eat the darn cookie you’ve been craving all week.

But please bring that screaming baby back tomorrow.

Mama at the gym, you of all shapes and sizes, all different levels and capabilities, you’re doing so good.

This post-baby workout journey looks much different than the journey that we were on before our babies. But if you ask me, there’s only one difference that matters: It’s more worth it than ever before.