This post was originally posted in May 2015. We celebrated my biggest little turning 9 this weekend and without them, fitilates would likely not exist. To mark the occasion, I am resharing how fitilates came to be. As a bonus for reading the fitilates story, I'm giving you my free 6-steps to mastering the ab curl checklist - don't miss it!
After being in the fitness industry for almost a decade, I was just beginning to feel as though I was figuring things out. Tristan, my husband, and I had recently left our big box careers to pursue our own dream of creating our own personal training and fitness studio. In the first year of business, we got married and just shy of a year later welcomed our first little man into our family. While that pregnancy was relatively complication free, 8 weeks ahead of schedule, little man 1 was determined to make his entrance. An emergency C-section needed to be performed and although he was a "premie" he was incredibly healthy and BIG!
I found the recovery from the C-section to not be too bad. It may have been because I was distracted with my new found love for this little man who I could simply not get enough of!! Within the first three months, I was able to resume my normal activities and besides my new scar, I didn't really notice any major post-pregnancy problems.
21 months later, little man 2 was born! My second pregnancy was completely different than the first. No one really knows why little man 1 decided to come so early but they were certain that little man 2 would likely do the same. Not the case. Little man 2 had no desire to leave the comfortable confines of my uterus and after 41 weeks, he was coaxed out with some powerful induction drugs! He was born a VBAC (vaginal birth after cesarean) and I believed the road to recovery would be even easier than my first - that is after all what we're told, right??
At 6 weeks post-partum, I was feeling pretty good. My In-laws were visiting and helping with the littles, so Tristan and I decided to go for an easy run one evening. We got about 5 minutes away from home and I knew something wasn't quite right. Our conversation went something like this...
Me: ummmmm..... I think we need to go back home.
Tristan: Why? What's up?
Me: I am peeing my pants. Like not just dribbling but full on peeing. (can I just add, thank god for black lulu's!!).
Tristan (looking rather embarrassed for me or maybe for himself, lol, and not really sure what to do with this info): Ya ok, let's go back.
And so it began. My distress over why my pelvic floor was failing me. I had never had any issues before and even throughout my entire pregnancy. Yet here I was, full on peeing, every time I tried to run or for that matter do any high impact activity. After purchasing my own package of Poise Pads, it was time to find some answers. Luckily I have a great family doctor who insisted that I not just leave it to fix itself. She was adamant that this did not have to be the new normal, I just needed to be proactive. I had began my training in Pilates at this time and began to delve deeper into the world of core and most importantly, pelvic floor training. I invested in a couple sessions with a Physiotherapist specializing in pelvic floor dysfunction and I began to implement a variety of exercises into my fitness regime.
Slowly but surely, it began to work! I depended less on the Depends (pun intended), and was able to correct the muscle imbalances. I also began to talk more with my clients about this and guess what, I was not alone! However many of my clients had full grown children and had been told that this was just one of the many battle scars of childbirth. They had become accustomed to the leaks or the clenching of their kegals at the first sign of a sneeze. I began to work with them. Implementing deep abdominal work and movement from the inside out became a priority in all of my sessions and classes. The results were amazing - we were moving easier with increased strength and body awareness. There was significantly less strain on the neck and back and significantly more power in recruitment of the core.
It became apparent to me that this training was not to be left in the world of Pilates. That clients needed this type of training in all their fitness pursuits. Many of the principles could be applied to all forms of physical activity. And thus, fitilates (fitness + Pilates) was born!
It has become my mission to increase awareness of the importance core training but even more important PROPER core training to all fitness professionals. Whether you teach Zumba, yoga, are a Personal Trainer or CrossFit coach, the principles can be used across all disciplines. The exercises taught are inspired by the Pilates methodology and infused with modern day exercise science. They can all be adapted to fit your programming. In essence, fitilates is the foundation for everything.
I want to add that I went on to give birth again (vaginally) but this time to little man 3 and little man 4 (yup, twins). And It gives me great pleasure to say that I no longer pee when I run and my greatest accomplishment is to be able to do many consecutive jumping jacks dribble free!! I am my own success story for the fitilates method but so are countless others that I have worked with in the past five years. I'm looking forward to have you join me on this fitilates journey as we change the world, one curl up at a time!
Just for taking time and reading the fitilates story, I have created a FREE worksheet for you to start using right away. In it, you will learn the 6 Steps to Mastering the Ab Curl. The best part, the first 4 steps can be used in every exercise you will ever do and can be done anywhere!!