‘It looks like a hot mess’: professional runner proudly shares photos of her post-baby body

By Samantha Luiz
23 March 2016

When professional athlete Stephanie Rothstein Bruce decided to take a break from her career to have children, she knew she'd be running into uncharted territory.

“It’s a journey not talked about very publicly as many women see elite runners as these superhuman women with super fit bodies and sometimes can’t relate,” revealed the American runner, who's also an Olympic hopeful. But the long-distance runner didn't allow this preconception to deter her from starting a family. Instead, the athlete, who's now a mom to two sons who are 21 months and 6 months old respectively, is using her post-pregnancy body to inspire new moms around the world. And people are rooting for her.

A photo posted by Stephanie Rothstein Bruce (@stephrothstein) on

With over 26 000 followers on Instagram, Stephanie started the hashtag #journeywithsteph to share her journey as both a runner and mother to two small kids. Along with posting photos of her saggy post-baby tummy, she has been brutally honest about "the months of sleep deprivation, hours of corrective exercises and pelvic/core work, bouts of mastitis, poop my pants runs [and] bladder incontinence." Read more: This mom’s brutally honest pregnancy illustrations will crack you up

"I am partly self conscious," the athlete admits on Instagram. "But you’ll still see me rocking my stomach in my sports bra and race kit when my body is ready. Lots of work to do to get these abs back together and rebuild my core." Read more: This woman is insanely fit – and she’s 36 weeks pregnant
Even though she's been running professionally for five years, Stephanie revealed that "coming back from a baby is like starting at square one". Read more: You won’t believe this model’s pregnancy abs!
"Every exercise and rehab to bounce back will stem from this starting point: neutral back with your pelvis in the right position. It'll take time and patience but will be worth the sweat. #journeywithsteph" "It still looks like a hot mess but the stability and strength is coming back to my core," she wrote on Instagram.
"When I look down I see stretch marks that are here to stay, ab muscles that need continued strengthening, legs that are powerful, and feet that are ready to fly,"
Currently preparing for the Rio Olympics, Stephanie hopes to qualify to run the 10 000m race as part of Team USA.
Fortunately, Stephanie has the loving support of her husband Ben, who's also a professional athlete.

Sources: instagram.com, self.com

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