Hello! My name is Amber Kuiper, and I couldn’t be more excited to share my story with the #Workitout100 community today!
I’m a mom of four kids under four. We have a three-year-old boy, two-year-old twin girls, and a baby boy who will be a year at the end of the month! Being a mom and soaking up the chaos that comes with my children is an incredible blessing. I absolutely LOVE that I get to be their mommy!
However, I realized early on in motherhood, that in order to be the mom they needed me to be, I was going to have to prioritize self-care.
Here’s the thing. Kids require a LOT of energy. A LOT. And what I found after having my first was that there were so many times when my supply of energy was depleted. It didn’t take much for me to be running on empty, and when that happened, the people I loved the most were affected negatively.
I realized that in order to love my family how I wanted to love them, I needed to be intentional with taking care of myself.
At first I felt guilty. Shouldn’t I be able to be around my child 24/7? It felt selfish to take a break and put him in the childcare center at the gym.
But after a few days, my perspective totally changed. When I had time to break a sweat, release some endorphins, and have some “me time” my outlook on life totally changed. Mentally, I was in a much more positive place. I felt confident, excited, and ready to conquer the world of motherhood.
After my twin girls made their appearance, working out became even more important. I suffered from postpartum depression, and I needed to find ways to combat it. Exercise coupled with my medicine was exactly what I needed to keep my head above water! It wasn’t easy sneaking away, especially in those early months, but thanks to a supportive family, I was able to take care of myself, and in turn I could take care of my sweet babies!
I also started my blog, Mommy’s Me Time, and it was the perfect outlet to share my real life experiences with other moms in hopes of encouraging them in their journey.
Then came my sweet baby number four. I had four kids under three at the time, and life was CRAZY. There were so many times when I felt totally unqualified for the task ahead of me. There were so many times when I didn’t want to take care of myself. Honestly, I felt pretty defeated by it all. It became really tough to be motivated to load everyone up and go to the gym. I still had baby weight to lose, but could not get myself to go after it!
Then I discovered some great in home workouts that I could do with the kids hanging all over me, and I started to see results quickly. It was paired with an awesome eating plan that went back to the basics of whole food nutrition and portion control, and it was exactly what I needed to get back on track. After a couple months of doing that, I felt encouraged to get back in the gym. And now, at age 29 with four kids, I’m in the best shape of my life because I finally committed not only to working out, but also eating clean. In fact, it changed my life so much that I became a health coach and now I get to spend my days helping other moms prioritize “me time!”
If you’re a mom, I can’t encourage you enough to take time for yourself. Whether you’re pregnant, have a new baby, or have teenagers, the time to get started is NOW! Whether you can go to a gym or work out at home, the options are endless! I promise, you won’t regret it. Taking time for yourself will fill you up with all kinds of confidence, strength, and energy, and you’ll have SO MUCH MORE to give to the people you love!
I share many more “real life” mom moments on Facebook, Instagram, and Periscope. I’d love for you to follow along on our crazy, not perfect, incredible journey. Follow me on Instagram: (@mommysmetime), Facebook (Mommy’s Me Time), and Periscope (@mommysmetime).