After super-strict celebrity trainer Tracy Anderson gave birth in May, we were nervous. Nervous that she’d apply her hard-core, sometimes body-negative, often bordering-on-unhealthy advice not only to regular women, but to new moms, too. Lo and behold, she has. In an interview with Dujour magazine, Anderson cut right to the snarky chase, noting that “A lot of women use pregnancy as an excuse to let their bodies go, and that’s the worst thing.”
Really, Tracy? Is it the worst thing? Is it actually the very worst thing that a pregnant woman can do? Because I’m fairly sure that the Surgeon General and a lot of other people can think of some greater offenses.
The former dancer isn’t speaking from a place of inexperience; she’s publicly discussed her own awakening after she, herself, “let her body go” during her first pregnancy.
But not this time. This time, she followed her own brand of possibly-crazy advice, and gained just 30 pounds. She also exercised and dieted her way through the pregnancy, telling Dujour that, all along, she knew she’d use it to create a new workout and dietary regimen that employs the methods of her infamous “Metamorphosis” plan, but is targeted at pregnant women. Here’s more from the interview:
“I always knew I wanted to do this project,” she says. “I’ve seen so many women who come to me right after [having children] with disaster bodies that have gone through hell, or they come to me years later and say, ‘Oh, my body is like this because I had three kids.’”
“Disaster bodies.” That’s what you’re doing to yourself, women of America. You’re letting your bodies go “through hell” and allowing them to turn into superfund sites that are toxic and tragic and woefully out of shape. Don’t blame the baby! It’s your own lazy fault!
I can only imagine what fresh self-esteem-wrecking bombs the combination of that attitude and her new plan will create for new moms.
Because her “Metamorphosis” plan is pretty strict–so strict, in fact, that when Rebecca Wilcox tried it, she says she suffered from hunger-induced blackouts. It recommends on an ultra low calorie intake (check out this sample meal plan for Gwyneth Paltrow, Queen of GOOP), prescribes an amount of exercise (at least one hour, six days per week) that few women, pregnant or otherwise, have either the time or effort to fully complete, and focuses more on being “teeny tiny” than on being healthy. None of which bodes well for the ongoing and often unhealthy conversation surrounding post-baby weight loss.
New moms are constantly being told that the most important thing to do during the first few weeks of motherhood isn’t bond with the baby, but rather, battle their postpartum bulge. And it’s pretty disappointing that, rather than making her slightly more forgiving, her pregnancy has simply reinforced her belief that “letting yourself go” is the “worst thing.”
Anderson has, however, found empathy for at least one group of women: Those with large breasts.
“It was like, ‘Holy boobs! Where did they come from?’ I had to stop and put on multiple sports bras,” she laughs. “I texted a few of my friends who have big boobs and I was like, ‘I’m so sorry I was so mean to you about dancing and jumping because I can’t do it right now!’”
Now if only she could text the same thing to all of those women with “disaster bodies” who she’s going to make feel bad about themselves by espousing the belief that every women, ever, should strive to be “teeny tiny,” even after having a child.