Squeezing back into my gym clothes 

Mum Tums are definitely a wonderful, soft, cuddly reminder that you have brought children into the world. Something to be celebrated. But mine also reminds me that I have a wardrobe full of clothes that I can no longer fit into. I could go and buy more, but in the interest of being thrifty, I decided to make the most of our ridiculous service charge and use the gym on our estate.

The first time was fun; I took along moral support in the form of my physiotherapist friend and his lovely wife. They came to make sure I didn’t just hurl myself at the equipment and break my hip, or worse, the machines. No one wants to be that idiot. I have to live alongside these gym-going residents.

Our physio offered us a gentle workout of lying down and stretching which made me feel quite smug and capable. So we booked in to meet again next week.

This time, he turned into a monster. He forced us into doing burpees (ever tried them? Don’t do it. Dark forces created that exercise), counted us down when holding positions with the SLOWEST counting I have ever heard (definitely NOT seconds as he claimed) and made us work until I collapsed into a sweaty pile of jelly legs on the floor.

But at least I was tackling my saggy stomach. I went home and looked in the mirror and was sorely disappointed to see that I had not yet gained a six pack. I considered ringing up the hospital to check if my friend really was a physio as he claimed…

Thinking that I would kick the programme up a gear, I went out to the gym midweek after my girls had gone to bed. I would have some alone time, a bit of space from baby pace, and feel like an athlete for a few golden minutes. I headed for the treadmill feeling pumped for action.

Guess who was on the treadmill next to me? Miss Fitness UK 2017, that’s who. I tentatively stepped up next to her and just tried to get the conveyor belt going without falling off. This I managed, and I was even able to speed up a little. Check that out Miss Fitness. I sneakily glanced at the screen on her treadmill and noticed that she was running at 79mph at an incline of 31%. Humility resumed. I’d keep practicing. 

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