Empowering & Strengthening Your Body: Pregnancy & Postpartum Workouts for Every Stage of Motherhood with Coach Kim Perry

Show Notes:

[1:41] Our Reviewer of the Week is Graciebird97, and she said: "I have been listening to this podcast for close to a year now and have become so passionate about educating myself and others on pregnancy and birth! My husband and I have been married for a year and a half & plan to start a family within the next few years. Stephanie, your podcast has made me feel prepared & empowered for when that time comes. I can’t wait to start our family & I will definitely be taking the birth course. I have been sharing this podcast with anyone and everyone who will listen! THANK YOU!"

[2:14] Our guest this week is Kim Perry, who is a CPT, specializing in prenatal and postnatal fitness for new & expecting moms. When she was pregnant with her first daughter, she struggled to find workouts that were effective, safe and fun . . . so she created her own! Now she is a mom to 3 girls and pregnant with a baby boy! She helps thousands of women around the world with her workouts everyday. She has been featured in Women's Health, Motherhood, Forbes & the Daily Mail. Kim received her prenatal and postnatal fitness specialist certification and created her own quick and effective workouts.

[3:53] Has there been a difference between having a boy vs a girl this pregnancy? Kim says it's very different, but there are a lot of other factors and variables this time around. She knows every pregnancy is going to bring different challenges to our bodies, but she also moved across the country. She is also four years older than she was when she had my last. It's been her toughest pregnancy, but she feels so blessed to be able to carry him.

[6:00] Confession time on how Kim got started! She was a fit chick/gym girly back in 2014 even though none of her friends or family liked to workout. She enjoyed having the online fitness community who went to the gym every day and she was able to get workout inspiration from them as well. She was an athlete and ran marathons, but after she didn't have sports to keep her fit anymore, she turned to the online community. Once she was pregnant, she felt excluded from the fitness community because she wasn't losing weight or becoming shredded. She also hated not being able to meet her workouts like before. She wanted to create workouts for moms who were also being told they couldn't do certain things while pregnant. 

[9:15] In 2018, when she was pregnant with her second, she kept getting asked what workouts she was doing because a lot of her community was pregnant at the same time. She wanted to get certified to be able to help other moms and that's when she started designing workouts and programs. 

[10:20] What's Kim's best advice for moms looking to exercise while pregnant? 

1. Check with your health team first!

2. Exercise is always a good idea to start to add into your routine.

3. Start slow. Build your routine slowly.

[12:48] What is Kim's advice for moms who want to work out and don't want to be bored? She wanted to take the fun, fast paced workouts and make them pregnancy friendly and safe for the women and their babies doing them. She also wanted them to be modifiable because some days when you're pregnant, you don't want to be doing high intensity workouts. They're also quick to get them into your schedule and motivate you to work out! She also likes to use a lot of intervals versus counting reps because she feels like that can be tiring.

[14:39] What does a program look like for moms? Everything you do is online for the program. It works because most moms don't have time to do in-person classes. She wanted the workouts to be able to work for anyone's schedule. We need that flexibility as moms. Just press play. It's just done for you so that all you have to do is show up. 

[16:05] How to know when to know when you're ready postpartum. Differentiate between needing to get some fresh air and doing something for yourself versus needing to move your body. Stretching is a great way to get started. You can also do belly breathing. Yoga and going for walks work well too! See how you feel afterwards.

[19:55] Are you cleared to exercise right at 6 weeks postpartum? Some people aren't ready. Some women need more time. The 6 weeks doesn't take into consideration your labor, delivery, or your pregnancy, or if you exercised those last nine months or if you were on bed rest. There's just so many variables.

[20:41] What are the best starter exercises for a postpartum mom? Kim says, "The best thing I would recommend is doing some weightlifting. It doesn't have to be heavy weights, but strengthening our muscles. Really basic exercises, from squats, lunges, doing some deadlifts, getting a little bit of core work in, some very controlled rotations, to keep our mobility nice and strong. Do some upper body exercises because we've got to keep our posture nice and strong during pregnancy, but also after, our whole center of gravity changes when you put 30 pounds in your midsection, protruding out the front. It's great to do some nice upper back exercises, shoulders, chest, everything."

[24:01] Diastasis recti is separation in your abdomen of the two walls down the center and that connective tissue just being stretched. It's totally normal during pregnancy. What you can do is lift your pelvic floor, drawing the belly button in, and then avoiding movements that cause the coning in your stomach.

[29:43] Does exercise affect a mom's milk supply? The milk supply and exercise ratio is different for every woman. Some women don't notice any difference in their supply where some realize they have to eat more calories. Even without exercise, moms need more calories to produce more milk. Eat more protein, eat more frequently, and then also avoid long like steady state cardio type of workouts. Those are what's going to dry up your supply the fastest.

[31:42] Kim shares her experience of switching to home births and midwives from having three hospital births. Her first birth was her worst experience and she left the hospital traumatized and with an infection. Her second birth was very textbook. She had an epidural, baby came out, everything was great. Her third birth was during 2020 so her husband and the student nurse ended up delivering her baby. She feels like her midwives are just so helpful and understanding. They always have so much to offer whenever she has questions or is dealing with certain issues. 

[40:02] Has exercising during her pregnancy been helpful to Kim? She notices the days when she works out that her symptoms feel lessened. She has less back pain and more energy. It helps with her nausea and appetite. When you exercise, you feel good. Eat well, drink water, and stay consistent and check off those workouts each week. 

[42:29] Kim's Social Media:

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