Millie Mackintosh is one of my favourite people to follow on Instagram. Whilst I’ve accepted I’ll never be as fit or toned as her, her content is aspirational, empowering and she’s not afraid to admit when she’s struggling with body insecurities.
Following the birth of her daughter, Sienna, Millie has been using the platform to convey body positive messages about sticking two fingers up to ‘post-baby bodies’ and the art of balance (wine and Pilates, anyone?).
How being a new mother has impacted my wellness regime
As a mum it’s more important than ever to look after myself and my health, I want to have as much energy as possible to keep with with my soon-to-be toddler. I don’t have as much time to workout as I used to but I try to do some form of exercise 3-4 times a week, it’s so beneficial for my mind just as much as my body.
The workouts that boost my mental health and fitness
I try do 3 sessions with a PT with light weights and resistance bands to help strengthen and tone, and I like to do one barre or Pilates session a week, which is great for my back pain, alignment and posture. Having some ‘me time’ when I can switch off from being a mum, put on some good music and get my heart rate going always gives me a mental and physical boost and I never regret doing it.
A typical day on my plate
First thing: natural yoghurt, granola, berries and a drizzle of honey
Mid-morning: two eggs scrambled with a buckwheat crispbread
Lunch time: prawn stir fry with rice, asparagus, pack choi and lots of fresh chilli, garlic and ginger
Afternoon snack: half an apple with a teaspoon of nut butter
Dinner: turkey meat balls with gluten-free pasta, courgettes and a sprinkle of feta
The supplements I swear by
I’ve been using Symprove for around 6 or 7 years as part of my ongoing wellness routine and swear by it. I was first recommended it by facialist Nichola Joss after telling her I was having breakouts and she explained I needed to look after my gut health to have healthy skin. I also suffer from bloating from time to time and used to get IBS symptoms but that is much better now. Since using Symprove my digestion is great, and I rarely get ill. I swear by it and am always telling people to try it.
The mindfulness practice I swear by
I used to meditate every morning but that has gone out the window since having a baby! I now do my mindfulness before I go to bed. I use the Calm app and listen to a 15 minute deep sleep track which uses a body scan and breathing techniques to help me switch off from my day and I’m always asleep by the end of it.
My top tips for new mothers about gradually getting back into a good wellness regime
I really recommend Pilates to everyone but especially new mums, it really helped me during my last pregnancy and is great for rebuilding your core and pelvic strength. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself, take it slow and use apps for encouragement. Couch to 5k is great if you want to get into running but don’t know where to start. Most importantly: do something you enjoy, otherwise you will dread it and it will be much harder to keep it up.
My thoughts on the pressure surrounding new mums to ‘get back in shape’
I hate the term ‘bounce back’ – the pressure is ridiculous! Women’s bodies should be celebrated especially after giving birth and growing and creating a life! It’s taken me nearly a year to fit back in my pre-pregnancy clothes and some of them I will probably never wear again. I’m ok with that, my body has changed but it now has a story to tell and I’m so grateful for what it has given me.
My three best pieces of advice for new mums
- Go with your gut instinct, you know what’s best for your baby!
- Take naps when the baby naps, this really helped me to recover after the birth and cope with broken sleep while feeding during the night in the first few months
- Prioritise some ‘you’ time, maybe it’s going for a walk on your own while listening to a podcast, having a massage or going for lunch with your friends.