There she goes again…

A common saying from my family and friends who know me when they found out I was going to be competing in my first ever Power-lifting Competition at 39! I am a person who tends to work well with setting goals for myself and in April of this year, I did just that and could never imagine the amount of pride and internal strength, the competition would give me.

The power-lifting competition had only become something I thought of after seeing my Pherform coach, Leslie and her coaching skills soon after joining Pherform in August 2017. I became very interested in the difference of lifting between bodybuilding style and power-lifting style and realized that my body was reacting in a positive way to this technique and I wanted more! After discussing with Leslie and gathering a few other ladies to join in, we had decided that we would train for a competition in April.

30072860_10160471229755314_8131592933347874389_oTo say the training was hard, is an understatement. The actual lifting yes, it was tough but the program to get to where I was, took commitment and motivation on some days as I was back to being alone in the gym for workouts. In order to prepare and save my strength, I was also not able to attend classes from around 6 weeks before. No cardio, nada. On top of that, I decided to  compete at a lower weight level so had to start a very clean meal plan a month before to maintain my weight for the Under 63Kg Masters Category.

And then the day arrived, from the minute we registered, it was such a natural high. Putting our gear on and seeing our names on the large screen and also seeing so many other women at my age and older, had me so excited that the feeling of women empowerment was overwhelming. I had realized that day, in the first hour, that I HAD to do it again and I hadn’t even competed yet! It was then all up to our coach to help us with her extremely focused guidance so we could switch off from nerves during the event, which was very important. Having her by our side, is something we wont ever forget.

Although you lift alone on the platform, the process leading up to the day was very much something we did as a team and the best of it all is we ALL walked away with GOLD and we had our Pherform Fans in the crowd to cheer us all on.

Time to prepare for the next one….watch this space. 35652318_10160745259580314_8672744254411374592_o

Thank you to Pherform for being a place where I feel at home and safe to be me.  Please get in touch if you want to know more about this fabulous place I call my second home.

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Where’s My Snapback?

The term snapback is defined simply as: returning to your pre-baby body or pre-baby weight.  The significance of a snapback is the lightening speed at which it happens for some women. At 1, 3 or 6 month post-partum many Mamas are 100% back to their pre-baby body!

OK Mamas, is it just me or is the pressure to snapback at an all time high? We also live in the age of the internet MACHINE which is both amazing and creepy at the same time. I’m “coincidentally” bombarded with adverts and offers regarding my post-partum body on Instagram, Facebook, Google – you name it. The adverts are catered directly to me and depending on the day, can really cause some mental and emotional stress to a sleep deprived Mama of 2 boys!

When I’m cluster feeding one baby boy and simultaneously attempting to help my older son prepare for a spelling test – the last thing I want to see as I spell check a word in google (in this particular situation, seeing the word ‘tomorrow’ 19 times you have absolutely no idea if you’re making up the spelling or if tomorrow is even a word), the last thing I want to see as an advert is how to turn my mama belly into tight abs! 

 

I’ve also seen my fair share of  side-by-side images of women showing their pregnancy and post-pregnancy bodies, dates included. It’s quite impressive. Especially because I was NOT thinking about a full body photo at 4 days post-partum. Let me add here, I’m not a hater (usually) these Mamas look amazing and I’m (usually) inspired when I see these pictures. But to be honest, I am left looking down and examining my body afterwards because….well, I still don’t recognize it!

Let’s take a moment and discuss the different types of snapbacks, shall we?

The Natural Snapback: You wanna thank your Mama for a snap like that! (Read that again but rap it Salt’s verse from Salt N’ Pepa’s Shoop). Mothers who simply have “it” in their genes, they can sneeze day 2 post-partum and the SNAP happens instantaneously!

The Passive Snapback: These mamas are the ones that can do absolutely nothing major, a plank here, a salad there and in two months BAM…They’re snapped!

The Breastfeeding Snapback: I really thought I’d be her! The Mama who just breastfeeds. We know, we know, we know that breastfeeding burns calories. These Mamas simply breastfeed (like many of us) but for them, the natural side-effect of breastfeeding is the SNAP!

The Food & Fitness Snapback: I respect these women and would love an ounce of their discipline. So, these are the ladies who have a plan and stick to their plan no matter what. They know the SNAP will only come if they work for it, and work for it they do!

Okay okay, to be honest, I’m likely – well I mean…I’m not working for my snapback as hard as many other Mamas. At the same time, I’ve been quite hard on myself and overly compared my body to other Mamas. What’s crazy about that is I would never negatively compare my baby to other babies or my 6 year-old to other kids. They are beautifully unique and lovely little individuals. So, I’ve been working on taking that same gentle love for them and directing it towards the way I see and love myself!

This is entirely a completely different blog post for another day, but I have to constantly remind myself how amazing my body is! It’s carried, nurtured, protected and birthed two beautiful and healthy babies. My body is a blessing and I need to look upon it and think about it with a lot more kindness!

A snapback for me does not come naturally, passively, or from breastfeeding. I’ll have to work hard for it if I want it. The question then becomes do I really want?

What I’ve realized on this journey called Motherhood is…we need to love ourselves more as Mamas and do what’s best for us as individuals! Let’s refocus our snapback to simply loving ourselves a bit more and doing things that we enjoy. Mamas, after babies our lives are usurped by a tiny human and it never stops, it just consistently changes. So for us, it’s not often we have free time to do things that we (as Mal, not Mom) want to do.

So I repeat, do what’s best for you! If you enjoy a spin class, take that class! If it’s a quiet corner in a cafe with a book, tell us where you found a quiet cafe in Hong Kong! If it’s a daily nap, Mama take that nap! If it’s a post-natal Pilates class, have fun at that class!

I’m worrying less about my snapback and focusing more on loving myself. I hope you do the same!

 


 

 

Mallori, known as Mal, is the creator of 852 Mamas. Originally from California, Mal has lived in Hong Kong for close to 3 years. Mal and her husband of 10 years, David have two beautiful boys: Levi, born 2011 in Abu Dhabi and Malachi born 2017 in Hong Kong.

You can follow Mal on Instagram and her personal blog (which she will eventually resurrect) Brown Mom Abroad.