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Fit Pregnancy

Fitness Influencer Massy Arias Struggled to Accept Her Post-Baby Body: ‘Changes Can Be Emotional’

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Massy Arias
Target

Known for her washboard abs and super-ripped muscles, fitness influencer Massy Arias had trouble accepting her post-baby body at first.

“It took me a while to get comfortable looking at the different changes happening in my body,” Arias, 28, tells PEOPLE. “Just like any woman would tell you, changes can be emotional as much as they are physical, and I had a hard time in the beginning.”

The health coach, who was recently named an ambassador for Target’s C9 Champion line, says she started to accept her new shape as she cared for her daughter Indira, born on Feb. 28.

“After giving birth and seeing how all the changes I was experiencing were for a great reason, I started becoming more loving of my new body and what it was doing — feeding and protecting my baby girl,” Arias explains. “I knew I had the tools to get my mind and body right later on, but my focus needed to be enjoying this new person.”

“My body just went through a marathon and I needed to appreciate the miracle of life. The stretch marks, the cellulite, the discoloration of the skin, and even the hair loss were all worth it once I had her in my arms.”

Okay so here it is, 9 days #postpartum. Recovering and eating as best as I can with enough caloric surplus for milk supply. I've been counting my macros and using my 8-week macro friendly program which is available on my website (click link in my bio). You saw how active I was during my pregnancy and how well I ate. I had a natura labor with no complications (thank God and to this lifestyle). I am still practicing what I believe in : food is medicine and I don't deprive myself from any food groups. I just EAT WHOLE AND EAT WELL. Mantain my protein intake high to support muscle (thank you @trusupplements for that amazing plant based protein. That was my life savior and still is). I drink about a gallon of fluids (mostly water). With the macro calculator on my program I've hit "mantain" with no exercise (of course). And apply 600-800 extra calories to support my milk supply. It's amazing what you can do when you know specifically what to eat. I do miss movement but first, I have to heal properly. THIS POST ISN'T INTENDED TO SET ANY EXPECTATIONS OR TO BE NEGATIVE. WE HAVE ALL DIFFERENT JOURNEYS. I LOVE YOU GUYS WWW.MASSYARIAS.COM _____________________________________________________________ 9 días #postparto Recuperandome y comiendo lo mejor que pueda con surplus calórico para el suministro de leche. He estado contando mis macronutrientes y usando mi programa de 8 semanas que calcula tus macros que está disponible en mi paguina (haga clic en el enlace en mi bio no aún en español ). Todos ustedes vieron mi actividad y mi nutrición durante mi embarazo. Practico lo que creo: la comida es medicina y no me privo de cualquier grupo de alimentos. Mantengo mi % de proteína alto para mantener mi masa muscular lo más que pueda (gracias @trusupplements por esa increíble proteína a base de plantas, que fue mi salvación antes y durante mi embarazo. Bebo alrededor de un galón de líquidos (principalmente agua). CADA MUJER ES DIFERENTE ! ESTA PUBLICACIÓN NO ESTÁ DESTINADA A ESTABLECER EXPECTATIVAS PARA NINGUNA MUJER, NI SER NEGATIVA. TENEMOS DIFERENTES JORNADAS Y COMIENZOS. NO SE LES OLVIDE. LAS AMO!

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And though Arias felt like she had lost some control over her body, it was still in excellent shape, which made Indira’s natural water birth less painful.

“I am a true believer that I was able to have an easier delivery because of the proprioceptive awareness fitness builds,” she says. “As you become more active, you become more in tune with your body. I was able to listen to my doula’s cues during delivery and know exactly what I should have been feeling and what muscles to use to push Indi out smoothly and with no complications or major tearing.”

RELATED VIDEO: Pregnancy is Different for Everyone

 

After such a smooth birthing process, Arias was cleared by her doctors to resume working out in just four weeks — but that doesn’t mean it was easy for her.

“Even though my body healed, my mind took a while longer. That first workout was mentally painful for me. I didn’t feel as in tune with my body as I did before,” she says. “I wasn’t feeling any connection with my pelvic floor, my core, and most parts of my body. Everything felt out of place and that was hard to cope with.”

Oh hey there, it's been a while since I've posted a gym selfie. Muscle finally coming back and I'm feeling strong. If you are wondering I'm doing no traditional methods of cardio. Just heavy lifts, HIIT, and mobility training. I'll post a clip from my leg day session today because it was killer! Ladies, my cute little outfit from #c9attarget . I'm feeling these basketball shorts so much I'm going to be wearing them all summer! Currently standing at 5'8 1/2 " 151lbs (weight has never been how I measure my progress and neither should be how you measure yours. Focus on how you feel and how you look in the mirror). I've been only focusing on my performance. The harder I train, the more my body keeps responding. Happy Thursday Fam. WWW.MASSYARIAS.COM #ma30day #anewkindofstrong #childofgod _____________________________________________________________ Feliz jueves mi gente! Tenía tanto tiempo que no publicaba un selfie en el gym. Mi músculo ya comienza a repararse y veo mi imposición corporal en mejores condiciones cada semana. Si me preguntan yo no he hecho cardio prolongado. Solo me he enfocado en levantar pesado, entrenamiento de alta intensidad que es una forma de cardio pero que ayuda a construir músculo, y trabajo de movilidad. Ahora mismo peso 151lbs (mi peso nunca ha sido la unidad que mide mi progreso y nunca debería ser la de ustedes tampoco. Enfóquense en cómo se sienten y cómo se ven en frente del espejo). Mientras más salgo de mi zona de comfort, más mi cuerpo responde a dar cambios positivos. Buena vibra mi gente! Los amo! #hijadecristo

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These days Aria is learning to tap into her mom strength, which aligns perfectly with the C9 Champion ad campaign she shot at just three weeks postpartum.

Massy Arias
Target

“Like the slogan reads — ‘A New Kind of Strong’ — it’s exactly what I’ve had to do ever since becoming a mother. Finding within my ‘new normal’ a new kind of strong,” she says. “I’ve had to re-invent myself, adopting new roles I’ve never thought I’d be playing.”