So here we are prepared for a beatiful family journey and a new professional challenge for myself.
After I have won in 2017 the 5th worldwide fitness title, in Miami, I knew that I wanted to become a mom and that we want to become parents. Back then I was obviously asked over and over again: when is the next competition?
I took the decision, to return back on stage, 7 months ago.
I like to let the things flow and come naturally, so I haven't planned things ahead of time. I wanted to see how my body recovers after the pregnancy.
Let me have a quick recap: I become a mom on 31st August 2018, at 5pm, after 14 hours of labor and a natural child birth. During the pregnancy I took good care of me, so I felt this during the post-pregnancy recovery - the process was - so I believe :)) - faster and easier.
First month after having given birth I just wanted to let my body rest and recover. I was exhausted, because even during the pregnancy, the night sleep was always interrupted (the baby was positioned on the lower part and I needed to use the bathroom every two hours). After the local pain disappeared and I also got rid of the kilos that I accumulated during the pregnancy (10.5kg), I started with some mobility exercises and running slowly-slowly.
After 6 weeks I added some exercises with the body weight (e.g. geno, bendings and push-ups). It felt weird. I remeber it was the first time when I felt something so intense: my legs and hands were shaking when I tried to execute basic exercises. Being an athlete my whole life, I have never before felt this strange feeling of not having my body listening to me. It was like I wasn't myself anymore.
I worked very much on myself. I wanted so bad to not suffer from some sort of postnatal depression and I made it. A lot of sleepless nights, Rareș was getting awake every one or two hours, I was having chronic fatigue, going through hormonal and physical changes; all these were often making me see another person in the mirror. But I overcome this period by telling myself that I am the only one responsible for the changes that I can make and that the love I have for Rareș, this maternal love was filling me up with happiness. I was charging myself with positive energy every time I looked at him and every time I took him in my arms! And I totally mean it! It was like a warm energy field is passing through my body each time I hold my baby in my arms. <3
But I needed something more. A goal. Something that will motivate me to establish a plan and to gain my confidence back. And for me that was: Fitness Universe. The competition takes place every year in Miami, and from 2010 till now I have achieved the beautiful performence of winning 5 world titles.
I had a serious discussion with Dragoș, we analysed the implications and we decided: we are going to travel all three to Miami.
My husband is on paternity leave. So when I run to the gym, he is the one taking care of Rareș. We are raising our son together and so far we are doing great. I'm very thankful for this.
The trainer career I have keeps me "running" all day long. Now that I am a mom, I allowed myself to lower a little bit my standards.
Even so, I hardly was able to face the gym schedule. Only after 4-5 months from given birth I started to respond well to the work gym schedule (to which I returned after only 6 weeks). I was "fluffy", even if on the scale I was in the right parameters. The scale appeared in my house after I found out I was pregnant, otherwise I am not a big fan of counting kilos. :))
I have always had good nutritional habbits.
I eat as simple as possible and as organic as possible. Lots of vegetables, fruits, dairy aliments, eggs, meat on the oven or on the grill, carbs (pasta, sweet patatos, integral crackers) and Herbalife nutrition (protein shakes, vitamins and fish oils). I like sweets but I eat them rarely and in small quantities. I have gotten used with taking healthy choises. It has really become a lifestyle.
I still breastfeed Rareș. So I think that this is a response for all mom's questions regarding breastfeeding, sport, healthy food and supplements. They do work well together. Quality supplements are allowed, and healthy food does not imply dieting, as sport does not imply exhaustion or stress.
I'm saying this because I talked with mothers that told me they are eating lots of sweets and cannot get rid of the belly. When I suggested them to make some changes in the alimentation, they told me that they are afraid they will not have enough milk for the baby.
Now I ask you this: do you think a donnut with chocolate does more good to your baby, then a good steak with vegetables and salad (fruits etc)? Same question about workouts! Work out! Move your body! I have classes, training sessions for the competition and I still breastfeed Rareș. And he has enough milk. I breastfeed him in the morning, in the evening and sometimes even during the day or the night.
I always made sure to be well hydrated, and ate each time I was hungry. I have made healthy choices.
Getting ready for Miami/Miss Finess Universe preparations
The result of an active and healthy lifestyle was visible and after just 7 months my six-pack was again showing up. This was the point in which I regain my resistance to effort back and gain back my confidence in myself.
As I was saying in a recent post. Is very important to do baby steps. To reach a certain goal with hard work, determination, but more important patience. Patience to reach the end of the plan, without too many "right now" expectations.
This is what I have done. I was always focused on the plan.
To quote from a recent post:
"9 months ago I had Rares.
7 months ago I barely ran 3 km. :)
5 months ago I could barely do a gymnastic jump.
3 months ago I started working on my gymnastic fitness elements and it felt like I broke my bones and that I had 100 kilos!
NOW I AM READY! Believe in yourself!"
When my body completely recovered, I was able to do more intense training session, although I had the same nutritional plan, the muscles started to be more defined. Slowly, slowly I went back to the shape I had before. SO, YES YOU CAN! Isn't is wonderful our body? :)
And now I want to give you a couple of details about this competition, because I know that the details are not well known by everybody.
Fitness Universe is a natural federation. This is the first big Fitness competition.
They do anti-dopping tests before each competition on all the professional athletes. To compete on the pro-division you need to have had won a mondial competition before, in order to quilify to this.
There are multiple categories: bikini, model, Musclemania for women and men.
I am joining the Fitness category. Fitness is not body building. Is a combination of performance and nice worked out body.
There are 3 evaluation phases:
1. ( 45% of the final garde) Fitness Exercise - 2 minutes of gymnastics, artistic program or acrobatics (here everybody prepares a program from the field of choice) - I'm doing aerobic gymnastics. They are giving scores for choreography, difficulty, the outfit, the music and the whole show.
2. (45 % of the final grade) Swimsuit. We are walking on the stage as "miss". We need to show the feminine, but well sculpted body, scenic presence.
3. (10% of the final grade) only the top five contestants - Interview from the Fitness & Health area.
I have never dehydrated myself. I have always used healthy and allowed supplements in my plan (Herbalife - protein shakes, vitamins, isotonic beverages).
I eat pretty clean and keep this clean eating habit for about 4 months before the competition. The entire sport history that I have has allowed my muscle to build up some muscle memory and helped me have a well defined body.
I work out a lot. I l work out untill I sweat the life out of me (joking :p - but a lot), and at home I have a lot of determination to stick to the meal plan.
Competing this year, as a new mother, I am mostly doing this bet with myself.
I have already won the trophy. I am talking about the package that I managed to get ready for a competition to which I returned after two years. By the way, you loose the PRO title if you have more than two years break. You need to win another qualifying competition in order to be able to compete in the pro division again.
I am not sure how I will handle the breastfeeding, the little amount of sleep and a competition, but I know this for sure: I COULD NOT HAVE DONE THIS ALONE. And the fact that I will have both Rareș and Dragoș next to me, it will make me stronger and happier.
My passion leads me to happiness!
Find that thing that makes you unstoppable. I will keep you updated with everything that is happening, so I will wait for you on my pages (Instagram + Ig stories + Facebook).
LIVE ACTIVE AND HEALTHY,