If you've read my book and blog you know how passionate I am about promoting healthy lifestyles and inspirational health related programs because of the difference this has made to me in my life.
Well this week I have the pleasure of bringing to you my interview with the very inspiring knowledgeable owner and creator of POWER MUMS Ellie Burscough
Power Mums is fun, outdoor classes specifically designed for Mums. Our classes incorporate cardio games to increase fitness and have fun, strength and toning circuits to tone up those areas we all worry about, boxing, flexibility and balance to regain balance lost in pregnancy. No two classes are the same to avoid boredom and plateau.
"Power Mums isn't just about exercise it's a community of strong, powerful women."
It's a great place to meet new Mum's, whilst supporting and motivating each other.
We have monthly outings to get to know each other a bit more like dinner and drinks, rock climbing and family fun days. We have monthly prizes, challenges and fitness testing to see what areas each person has improved in every four weeks.
The best thing is we have qualified babysitters at every class. So the Mum's can bring their children with them whilst also having some much needed time for themselves!
2. What inspired you to start Power Mums?
After I had my daughter I wanted to lose my baby weight and feel good about myself again. I couldn't find any outdoor classes where I could bring my daughter with me and that fit within my budget. I realised their was a huge gap in the market.
I managed to lose the 20kg's I put on in pregnancy in 5 months, with no gym. I did it by myself. I then lost a further 9kg's and am now smaller, fitter and healthier than I ever have been.
I had always been interested in health and fitness and helping people and wanted to help other Mum's going through this journey. I know that a lot of Mum's need that support and motivation and felt that group training would be the best way. That's how Power Mums was born!
3. What in your expert opinion is a good time for new mums to start on their weight loss plan?
Each person is different. The most important thing is to start slowly and gradually and ease back in to exercise. Listen to your body, you know how far you can push yourself. If anything starts hurting, you feel run down or in the early stages your blood flow increases then ease back. These can all be signs that you have pushed yourself too hard.
Although I lost 20kg's quite quickly, 10kg's of that was in the first week and was obviously from the birth. I started off with lots of walking and built up from there. Although exercise and weight loss was important to me, in the early stages I enjoyed the time with my new family and wasn't too strict with my diet and exercise.
4. What would you recommend as a good healthy weight loss goal average per week for mums who are not breast feeding?
Healthy weight loss in general is usually 0.5kg's-1kg per week. If you have more weight to lose or if you have just had a baby you usually lose a lot more in the beginning. Small, gradual changes help you to incorporate healthy choices in to your life long term. Try to avoid fad diets, shakes and pills. These kind of diets usually help you lose a lot of weight very quickly but then you end up putting it all back on. They are not a healthy way to lose weight or keep it off long term, especially for new Mum's.
5. What is a healthy amount of weight a nursing mum can losing each week before it could potentially effect their milk supply?
Breastfeeding can help Mum's to lose weight quicker as you burn extra calories (up to 500 calories per day!). I am still breastfeeding my 14 month old daughter and I know that it has really helped me to lose weight, although everyone is different.
Going on a very low calorie diet of 1200 calories or less could decrease your milk supply. This type of diet is not recommended for anyone, particularly breastfeeding Mum's. Eating more actually helps to boost your metabolism. Eating 5-6 small meals throughout the day will not only help with weight loss but will help you avoid eating larger portions (and unhealthy options) at lunch and dinner and keep you full throughout the day.
6. What would you say are five important food's to include during healthy weight loss for nutritional benefits for breast feeding mums?
1. I know it's not a food but the number 1 thing has to be water.
Breastfeeding can make you very thirsty. Make sure you have a bottle or glass of water next to you when you are feeding. Drink water before, during and after feeding to keep up your hydration levels.
Breastfeeding Mum's should aim for 2-3 litres of water per day.
2. It's important for all Mum's to make sure you are getting enough iron in your diet. Try lean red meats, beans, spinach or a boiled egg to boost your iron. Vitamin C helps iron absorption, whereas caffeine inhibits absorption.
3. Make sure you are getting enough fruits and veggies so that your body and your baby are getting a variety of vitamins and minerals. The recommended serving of fruit is 2 per day and 5 servings of veggies (1 servings of veggies is half a cup).
4. Eat whole grains and try to avoid processed foods. Whole grains provide healthy carbohydrates, energy and fibre which prevent constipation and leave you feeling full for longer. Try brown rice, wholemeal bread or quinoa opposed to white bread, rice or pasta.
5. Avoid too much sugar and sugary drinks or caffeinated drinks. These will give you a quick sugar hit but bring you crashing down. If you are eating a good, balanced diet you will get more energy and feel healthier.
These guidelines are important for all females not just breastfeeding Mum's. The main things breastfeeding Mum's need to think about is getting extra water and calories. If you feel hungry or your milk supply is dropping make sure you are eating enough food and the right foods.
7. What are the most effective exercises for toning that 'mummy tummy' area?
The most important thing for getting rid of your baby belly is a healthy diet. Eating well helps to strip the fat from this area (and the rest of your body). This coupled with cardio exercise and strengthening/toning exercises will help you get a nice, flat tummy again.
Hundreds of sit ups or crazy ab machines wont help. It is much more effective to eat healthy, walk and be aware of your core when exercising and throughout the day. Switching your core on during exercise also helps to support your back, avoiding injury or strain.
8. How much exercise a day should a new mum aim for to start seeing results?
As I mentioned earlier the most important thing is to start slowly and gradually build up. Listen to your body, you are the best judge of what is working for you and when you have done too much.
Start off with some gentle walking and build it up over time. Remember to do your pelvic floor exercises usually straight away for most people. Avoid bouncing exercises in the beginning like jogging, skipping, jumping. And don't start abdominal exercises too soon.
9. What are your personal favourite exercises?
I love heavy weights, boxing and interval training. Particular exercises I love jump squats and skipping. I've played soccer for 5 years and would love to get back in to it next year. I also hope to compete in a figure competition. Probably not most people's favourite things, but I love to push myself!
10. What would be the piece of advice you would share most with your power mums?
To avoid fad diets and quick fixes. Weight loss takes time. Making small gradual changes over time will help you to lose weight and keep it off. A healthy balanced diet, coupled with cardio and strength training will help you to do this. Most of all love your body and yourself whatever stage you are at and make healthy eating and exercise fun!
Power mums can be found at:
And on FACEBOOK: