Watching as my class huff and pant as they ran up the hill, I egged them on. “You can do it,” I yelled. “Keep going.” It was May 2006 and I’d been working as a personal trainer for two years and my business was thriving. “We’re done. See you all next week,” I said to my class of ladies as we stretched at the end of another gruelling session. “Not me,” one of my regulars said. “I can’t get a babysitter.”
Later that night, I started to think about all the mums in my classes. Many battled to lose their baby weight after giving birth as they couldn’t find the time to get away to exercise regularly. Then I had an idea. “I’m going to develop an exercise class where people can bring their kids along,” I told my husband, Tim. “It means mums can get their bodies back in shape without having to worry about who will look after the baby.” “Sounds like a great idea,” Tim encouraged, so I launched Mums and Bubs Boot Camp.
The mums in my fitness class loved bringing their babies along and the results were great. Mums would jog with their prams, getting their bodies into shape without having to stress about finding a babysitter. When I fell pregnant in August 2007, I couldn’t wait to join in the classes with my own baby.
My daughter Cobie was born in May 2008. True to my word, I took her to class. Giggling away in her pram, I could tell she loved being involved as much as I did. I’d lead the class and encourage the mums with their bubs in prams. Eager to get rid of my excess pregnancy weight, I wanted to adapt my class to include more toning exercies for the stomach area but also wanted to be sure they’d be child-friendly, so I incorporated Pilates into my group sessions.
“We’ll be using your little bundles of joy as weights,” I said to the mums as I lay on my back and lifted Cobie into the air. Soon, the mums were toning their tums while their babies were squealing with delight as they wiggled around in the air.
The exercises were a hit and I developed a class devoted just to Pilates called Pilates and Prams. Now, Cobie is my little demo baby, and she’s more than happy to show how things are done. I’m hoping my ideas will grow with her as one day she’ll be too heavy to lift!