Kimmy Smith is a former professional netballer and corporate lawyer, turned mother-of-two (to Allegra, 3, and Samara, 1). She is also the founder of Kimmy Smith Fit + The Fit Mummy Project, which are dedicated to helping mums feel the way they deserve to feel. Beautiful. Fit and Strong, Healthy and Loved.
Can you please tell us a little bit about what you did before you became a mum?
Before I became a Mum, I was a professional netballer. I played for the NSW Swifts and I was also a corporate lawyer. I kinda burnt myself out doing both of those full on jobs, so when I retired from netball, I quit law and became a personal trainer. For the last 5 years, I have run a group fitness business in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney called East Side Crew.
How did you find the transition to motherhood? Was it harder than you thought, different to how you imagined and what have been the most challenging aspects of motherhood for you?
I found becoming a Mum an incredible experience. I just absolutely adored becoming a Mum and having my little baby girl. I was so happy not to be pregnant any more and to have control of my body again that I was in a bit of a bliss bubble in those early days.
The most challenging part of motherhood so far is having to let go of almost everything that I used to value about myself before I was a Mum. Before I became a Mum, I got a lot of my self worth from being athletic, being a hard worker and high achiever. And now, I am probably none of those things. I just don’t have the time or the drive to push myself to those limits any more and I had to realise that my girls and my family come first at this point of my life. And it wasn’t a sacrifice or anything, because I want them to come first. When I am at home with my family is when I am happiest. So I had to realise that my values had shifted and I guess learn to accept that I was still a good person without all those labels I had given myself.
When you have a newborn, you can sometimes ‘fake it’ and pretend that you can still maintain a lot of your old life. When my first born, Allegra, was a baby, I made a point of keeping a lot of my old life and habits and trying to ‘do it all’.
And then I got to the point where I finally realised that I couldn’t do it all. I couldn’t be up 2-3 times a night feeding and then get up at 5AM to train and be all bright and bubbly and then go home and try and do work while she slept. I was just running myself into the ground and I was constantly feeling guilty that I wasn’t giving 100% to anything.
So I went through this process of slowly stripping back what I thought I needed to be happy and successful. Which was quite confronting for me.
What about the best bits of being a mum?
I feel so lucky to have two little girls that just bring so much love and joy into our lives.
Just all the funny little things that they do. At the moment, two of my favourite things are Samara trying to open mouth kiss me and when Allegra says "I love you Mum, even when your naughty.” And then I say “I’m never naughty”. Of course. But, just those little moments make me so happy.
You have embarked on a bit of a career change since having your two girls. How did this career change come about and please tell us a little bit more about what you are doing with Kimmy Smith Fit and the Fit Mummy Project?
I have. For the last 5 years, I have run East Side Crew and I loved it. But this year, my husband and I moved further south to Cronulla and just the travel and having 2 girls, I just found it all a bit much. I was just feeling exhausted a lot of the time and I knew that I just needed to slow down a little for this point in my life.
This year, I created Kimmy Smith Fit + The Fit Mummy Project because after I had both of my girls, I felt really sloppy and heavy and just not at all how I was used to feeling, which was fit and strong.
And I hated feeling that way. After Samara was born, I started saying to myself, "you are beautiful, you are fit and you are strong." And I would just repeat those words every time I noticed myself grabbing the fat on my belly or a negative thought pattern taking hold.
I wanted to create a way of helping new Mums to build beautiful, fit and strong bodies that they are proud of and helping them to feel good about themselves and their lives. It is such a shame that so many new mums feel ashamed of their bodies at a point in their lives when they should be feeling the most beautiful and empowered.
Kimmy Smith Fit is my website where I share lots of short workouts that Mums can do anywhere plus lots of healthy recipes and inspiration to be a calmer and happier Mumma.
If you could put any slogan on a T-shirt, what would it be? Is there a particular mantra that you try and live by or a go-to motivational line you draw on during challenging times?
The Mantra that I am living by at the moment is “you are enough”. Whenever I feel self doubt creeping in or I feel like I am coming from a place of fear, I say that to myself. You are enough. I think that a lot of our fears and insecurities come from a place of not feeling worthy or not believing that we are ‘good’ enough or ‘smart’ enough. So I find this really grounding and comforting.
Finally, here at The Hood we are all about discussing motherhood as it really is, but also trying to create a really supportive environment for mums and the sisterhood in general. How important is your sisterhood to you, especially now that you are a mum?
My friends are so important to me. I have a few really close friends that I chat to every week and we are just 100% ourselves, we can say anything and there is no judgement, which is so important to me, because sometimes you just need to get stuff off your chest and know that the other person isn’t judging you, or going to hold it against you. So I have a few very close friends who I really rely on to help me to get some perspective when I am feeling a bit overwhelmed or down.
And then there is this incredible online community of women who I have really just discovered. I think we recognise that we are going through the same thing, and all we need is a bit of love and support. Which is so easy to offer. So I definitely believe in the #womensupportingwomen or #mumssupportingmums mantras.