Dealing with Diastasis Recti and Postpartum Body Image + Progress Pictures
I admit it. After I had Mariah, I imagined a flatter stomach in three months. Not just because of social media’s snap back culture, or because other women seem to go back to their pre-pregnancy bodies from breastfeeding alone. I just thought that’s how my body would work. Although I dropped the weight from my pregnancy in three months, my body, that grew, nourished and birthed a beautiful baby, looked foreign to me.
Stretch marks, loose skin, far-less-than-perky boobs, discolored skin and a stomach that still looked like I was pregnant made my confidence plummet. This wasn’t how I pictured it would be.
Let me be clear, I wouldn’t trade anything for the life of my daughter and the privilege I have in being her mom. This isn’t about that. This is about learning to love myself and my body, no matter the condition it’s in. Even at my fittest, I had insecurities. No surgery, perfectly angled picture or amount of Instagram likes was going to make me feel confident.
Learning to Love Myself
If I was going to gain any kind of self-love, I had to make some adjustments.
Accept my body as it is right now. I’m not perfect. I have flaws, but I’m still beautiful. My body deserves the grace to heal and be nurtured, not shamed.
Enjoy life. My happiness cannot be contingent on how my body looks. I’d never be happy.
Do what I can to actually heal and take care of my body.
Healing my Diastasis Recti
As I mentioned, at four months postpartum, my stomach still looked like I was four months pregnant. I didn’t know what the heck was going on with my body. After some research and watching testimonials of other women on Youtube, I realized I had diastasis recti. Diastasis recti is the separation of your abdominal muscles. During pregnancy, as your stomach expands, the connective tissue gets stretched out, allowing your abs to separate vertically down the middle. It’s most often seen as the “mom pooch.” No amount of crunches was going to fix this. In fact, rushing back in the gym and doing certain exercises actually makes it worse.
I decided to work with Lashonda Jones, Licensed Physical Therapist, Certified Personal Trainer and co-owner of Core Elevation Fitness & Wellness. She showed me step by step how to safely and effectively heal my diastasis and restore my core strength. After our initial video assessment, I learned that I had a four-finger gap in between my abs. I felt defeated already, but I knew I was getting the help I needed. I’m proud to say that after her DR Repair Core Rehab Program, I strengthened my core and my gap was reduced to two fingers. That was a really big deal for me. I could actually see and feel a difference in my core and pelvic muscles.
Now that it’s been longer than 8 weeks, my gap is still getting smaller and my core is still getting stronger. Lashonda’s 8-Week DR Repair Core Rehab Program starts again September 9th and you should sign up now! She’s even offering a special discount for my readers and followers! USE THE CODE JB50 For $50 OFF THE PROGRAM BY THIS FRIDAY, AUGUST 30,2019! If you’re still on the fence, Core Elevation offers a FREE 5 Day Diastasis Recti Challenge, a FREE Clarity Call and a Facebook Support Group.
It’s okay not to be confident 100% of the time. Give yourself grace, commit to a plan and affirm your own standard of beauty. That attitude and strength will make all the difference in the world.