Thursday, 10 August 2017


I've never really been into 'Fitness'. I never got any joy out of spin classes at the gym, or running on a treadmill. When I was younger I used to really enjoy running outdoors but I don't have the stamina for that anymore, and I live in an area that is more 'police sirens' than wild bird calls. I enjoy swimming but it's a lot of faff for an hour isn't it? I never found something that I truly enjoyed or looked forward to and so fitness became a very dirty word in my mind. It was embarrassing to me; I would shuffle up to the gym with my head down and use machines away from everybody else. I'd cringe walking the aisles looking for workout gear that fitted me. Fitness was very much a chore that I attempted to endure, but mostly shied away from.

When I was pregnant with Alex I didn't worry about my weight. I enjoyed eating a hazelnut croissant for breakfast, or a bar of Dairy Milk after dinner. I believed that once Alex was born I would find it easy to snap back into eating healthily. I was no longer eating for two, right? HOW WRONG I WAS. I still get insatiable cravings for random things (mostly chocolate) and now that I'm up a few times during the night to feed the baby I find that I'm even more tempted by midnight snacks or a fizzy drink to get me through the afternoon. I decided that I needed to look into a few exercise classes that I could do throughout my maternity leave so I Googled "Fitness classes with a baby in Berkshire".

Buggyfit was one of the results. I'd seen talk of Buggyfit on various Facebook groups that I'm part of so I decided to message the instructor and find out what the big deal was. I quite liked the idea of doing something outside and popping Alex into his buggy for an hour seemed like a good way to get him to take an afternoon nap. "I'm not very fit or in shape", I confessed shamefully in my message to the instructor. I pictured women in designer trainers running gracefully through parks, chatting away as I huffed and puffed behind the group trying not to throw up whilst dreaming of a glass of wine.

Well I can declare, my fellow "Recently had a baby and currently enjoys eating crisps in between nappy changes with flagrant disregard for the time of day" mommas, that Buggyfit is INCREDIBLE. Buggyfit classes are full of NORMAL, FRIENDLY and INTERESTING women who also huff and puff as we climb hills, and breathe a sigh of relief when we finish a set of exercises. My Buggyfit class is made up of mothers who are working their arses off balancing their adorable tiny babies with all the usual chaos of life. They are shaped like normal women and laugh at the same things I do (such as the time it takes to get a tiny baby out of the house, or how much coffee you can consume in an hour if you know you've got people coming over and you've slept for 3 hours). The Buggyfit gang is warm and approachable, which very much echoes the attitude of the lady who runs Buggyfit in Reading, Claire McMillan.

Claire is the driving force behind Buggyfit Reading. She begins every session with a quick stretch and warm-up and she always asks whether anybody in the group has any injuries or ailments that might affect them during the workout. Claire is knowledgeable when it comes to keeping fit and you can tell that she has a real passion for it. Every class is different (I love this- I get bored very easily) but mainly consists of power-walking alongside strengthening and toning exercises. The classes truly are suitable for all fitness levels because Claire explains little tips and tricks to make each exercise more challenging as we go. Squats become 'squats with a jump' and lunges become 'lunges with arm extensions'. If you want to push yourself there is ample opportunity but also if you want to start off gently you won't be the only one doing so. "What will I do if my baby cries and fusses?!", you may be wondering. You don't need to worry. Claire is the first person to dive into a buggy and entertain a crying baby. She is quite often cuddling one whilst rocking another one in a buggy. Claire is great with the babies, which just makes a workout so much less daunting. At the end of last weeks' class Claire treated us all to some lovely freebies courtesy of Piccolo, makers of organic fruit and veg baby purees. These are beautifully packaged purees full of natural, organic goodness for your little one. Freebies at an EXERCISE CLASS?! Amazing. Unfortunately my baby is 9 weeks old and far too young to eat pureed food. I did manage to find another way to use my Piccolo pouch though. Clue below.

Classes are in Prospect Park, Caversham Riverside and Woodford Park. 
Pricing: £4.00 per class, or £35 for 10 classes.
Timing: Monday and Wednesday 10:15am at Woodford Park
     Monday and Wednesday 1:30pm at Caversham
     Thursday 1:30pm at Prospect Park

I'll see you there!

This post is not sponsored.

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