Thursday 18 January 2018

Kate has become the champion of new mums . . . by looking like one

Celebrities could learn a thing or two from the duchess's refusal to conceal her post-pregnancy body

Proud parents: Kate and William outside the hospital for the first time
Proud parents: Kate and William outside the hospital for the first time
Victoria Beckham pinged quickly back to her pre-pregnancy weight
Claudine Keane had her figure back within weeks

Fionnnuala McCarthy

When Kate Middleton stepped out of the Lindo Wing to show off her bundle to the world this week, mums around the world applauded.

Here for the first time was a celebrity showing how a woman’s body actually appears after giving birth. 

She may not have struggled to walk, nor had tears streaming down her face; but her body bore the signs of someone who had given birth the day before. 

There along with the perfect blow dry, trademark eyeliner and nude sling backs, was not a pair of Spanx, but a post pregnancy bump and swollen chest that she made no effort to conceal, as she beamed and waved at the waiting press. 

Her ‘mummy tummy’ or ‘jelly belly’ as it is being hailed in some media has been championed by mums everywhere.

“I think its fab that she showed the world exactly what the 'norm' should be straight after giving birth! Shame on the celebs that have tummy tucks go Kate!” one mum posted online.

But at the same time Kate and William were leaving St Mary’s hospital, one of Britain’s biggest selling magazines hit the shelves with a cover story boasting ‘Kate’s Post Pregnancy Weight Loss Regime’.

This week’s OK! Magazine carries a six-page feature with Kate’s personal trainer assuring readers: “Her stomach will shrink back in no time.”

The magazine has come in for a fair amount of stick for the timing of the feature, given that all new mums are told to wait at least six weeks after giving birth before even thinking about starting to exercise.

“The body has been though a lot of trauma in birth and needs time to heal and recover,” according to Independent fitness writer Karl Henry.  

Kate’s was the most real of celebrity pregnancies.

She didn’t hide from the media throng when she was hospitalised for chronic morning sickness, but came out the front door smiling clutching a bunch of daffodils, when all she likely wanted to do was lie on her couch in a tracksuit.

Every aspect of her pregnancy and now it seems post pregnancy body is in the public domain.  OK! reveals that Kate is 5 ft 10 in, had a pre pregnancy weight of 8 ½ stone and that she gained two stones during her pregnancy.

Most of us keep those details between ourselves and our bathroom scales, but having spent nine months as the world’s most famous pregnant woman, you can be assured the emphasis will now shift from the Kate Wait to Kate Weight.

Put the words “Celebrity Bodies after Baby” into Google, and depressingly you get a whopping 272 million results.

Dramatic post-pregnancy bodies make headlines and sell magazines, and the faster and skinnier, well the better. 

And while the world waits for the first post baby pic of Kim Kardashian, there are plenty more to keep us entertained.

Take Victoria Beckham.  Weeks after she gave birth to her fourth child Harper she appeared skinnier than ever at New York fashion week, the only tell tale signs of new motherhood the dark circles under her eyes.  

She told Vogue magazine her secret was tones of exercise. 

"I worked out a lot," she said. "I ran a lot. I did it six days a week. I become quite obsessive when I get into something."

While it’s likely many new mums would likely relish the chance to run out of the house, there is the small matter of finding a new baby.  And without a live-in nanny, the best most of us can hope for is a few sit-ups on the floor, before we realise how much the carpet is crying out for a hoover. 

Actress Jessica Alba opted to have portion controlled meals delivered to her home every day after she gave birth.   And she also wore a double corset day and night for three months after having her second child. 

 Having gone through the experience of child birth she admitted that wearing the corset “was brutal, it’s not for everyone."


The singer Pink who reveals she gained almost four stone when she was pregnant with her daughter, offers the most realistic advice for new mums. 

She started going to the gym eight weeks after giving birth, and says: “'I was really kind to myself because I was actually really impressed with the fact that I had just had a baby.”


In Ireland we are not immune to a bit of post pregnancy body oohing and aaahing. 

When Claudine Keane appeared on the Late Late Show with husband Robbie two weeks after giving birth to son Robert, there were audible gasps from the audience.

The model was back to her pre pregnancy size eight. Pat Kenny made her stand up and give a twirl, and Claudine insisted that she didn't diet or go to the gym, but had maintained a healthy weight during pregnancy by making a lot of smoothies. 


Kate has come in for a lot of criticism over the years, one of the primary ones being that she didn’t have a proper career. But when it comes to new mums she’s most certainly a role model. By standing there outside the hospital in her Jenny Packham dress and beaming, she proved that not only is a post baby tummy something that doesn’t need to be hidden; in fact, it’s something to celebrate.

Irish Independent

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