Mother’s Day: Sucheta Pal shares strong message on motherhood, postpartum fitness and self-care

If you have just stepped into motherhood, and worried about whether or not you should choose fitness, you need to read this. Celebrity fitness coach and postpartum fitness specialist Sucheta Pal shares how important it is for mothers to prioritise fitness.
Sucheta Pal on postpartum fitness
Sucheta Pal on motherhood, postpartum fitness and self-care. Image courtesy: Instagram/SuchetaPal
Arushi Bidhuri Published: 12 May 2023, 17:29 pm IST
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When you’re pregnant, you’re not just judged for being lazy or sleeping too much – you are also sometimes judged for being too active. Women who exercise during pregnancy or just after childbirth may be judged for either being too selfish or careless. Even though exercise is a health-promoting activity, they are bombarded with unsolicited advice not to workout during pregnancy. But is there any truth to it? This Mother’s Day, let’s find out what celebrity fitness coach and post-natal fitness expert Sucheta Pal has to say about women’s fitness before and after childbirth!

Sucheta took the plunge into motherhood when she turned 37 – typically considered a late pregnancy by societal standards. It was not because she had health issues, but because of the “mental blocks” that made her think that her body will change for the worse. However, now she thinks that motherhood in her 40s “couldn’t look and feel better”. She recently even shared a post on her Instagram that studying to become a postpartum corrective exercise specialist helped her heal herself the right way. 

postpartum fitness
Here’s why mothers should prioritise postpartum fitness. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Mothers should prioritise their fitness 

As awesome as mothers can be, they are often made to feel like they aren’t doing a good enough job. It begins a chain of mom guilt. While they struggle their way to make peace by creating a balance in life, they often forget to prioritise themselves. In this process, they end up feeling weak and tired. 

What they fail to understand is that they need to focus on themselves because only a healthy mother can breed a healthy child. In fact, studies have found that there are several benefits of postpartum fitness. A study published in Obesity Research found that regular exercise and eating right can benefit mothers both physically and mentally. Imagine if you fall sick or have aches and pains, would you be able to have a fulfilling life with your child or your family? Sucheta suggests that women need to prioritise themselves so that they can be healthy enough to take care of their children. 

Also Read: Postpartum exercises: How and when should a new mother indulge

“You’re a woman first, you’re not a mother first, whether you like it or not. So, if you feel strongly for yourself as a woman, I think that love has to show by taking care of yourself,” avers the fitness coach.

Letting go of postpartum myths is vital to start your fitness journey

Regardless of your goal, when you hear or see something in a negative light, you believe that it’s true. And this happens when women begin to step into motherhood. When they see how the bodies of other women around them change, sometimes that triggers a reaction, forcing them to believe myths surrounding motherhood and what comes after. Sucheta also went through the same ordeal when she saw how women around her felt the pressure and how they changed. However, she didn’t let the misconceptions cloud her judgement and she turned to research instead. 

Also Read: Do’s and don’ts for pregnant women! Expert busts 8 pregnancy myths

Putting to rest all the taboos in her mind, Sucheta learned that pregnancy and motherhood will change her body, but not for good or bad. 

“I did my research about exercise during pregnancy and it is actually recommended and very good for you. Secondly, I chose a gynaecologist who was equally into fitness and who actually encouraged me that if everything is fine in the first trimester, all tests are good, please continue with what you’re doing. And third, once I got the green signal, I decided to spread the right word among a lot of women and give them the confidence that their bodies will change.” 

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Check out Sucheta Pal’s video interview for Health Shots right here!

She says mothers should focus on helping their bodies repair and recover the right way. 

“There is a huge gap where women are not given this phase of recovery through movement and fitness, where there has to be core and pelvic floor rehabilitation. There has to be a way that women to learn how to really engage their core and control their intra-abdominal pressure. It’s very different how you have to treat and handle your body in a gym than you were handling it before. So, I’m trying to bridge that gap and create this step in between whereby women are educated through my program on how to recover their bodies, and how to handle their bodies in real-life situations and in gym life situations. All they need is just time, patience, and consistency,” says Sucheta. 

Being fit will empower woman, says Sucheta Pal

When you do something for yourself, you feel a sense of empowerment that doesn’t stem from selfishness but independence and self-acceptance. Plus, doing so will also help you manage your mental and physical health. Sucheta shares.

“You realise the raw power you hold when you become a mother. While you don’t have to be a mother to feel that, that’s when I felt it. Today, when I hit the gym, I hit my sets, I feel more powerful than I’ve ever felt. I can do more things. I can lift heavier, I can dance longer than I used to do before my pregnancy and motherhood.”

postpartum fitness
Prioritising your fitness post pregnancy will make you feel empowered. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

“It feels like you’re running a marathon every day. You’re out of breath, you’re exhausted, and your body is changing – so mothers are basically endurance athletes. Through this period you realise that you are capable of more. When you start your journey in fitness next, you feel empowered because you know you can do much more than what you used to. You realise, as a woman, that you have great inner strength,” she adds.

So, don’t think of pregnancy or motherhood as a full stop in your journey, it is actually the beginning of a phase that will give you fruitful results. The only thing you need is “support and the right guidance to navigate through motherhood and make sure that you love yourself enough to make fitness a priority for life.”

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About the Author

Arushi Bidhuri is a journalist with 7 years of experience in writing, editing, and conceptualizing story ideas across different genres, including health and wellness, lifestyle, politics, beauty, fashion, and more. Arushi has a strong connection in the industry that helps her write concise and original stories as she believes in working towards writing pieces that can enlighten people. ...Read More

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