The Dallas Morning News.
Photo by Lara Solt/Staff Photographer
Before they start lunging and squatting and crunching, the 19 women tend to their babies. They hand them plastic cups filled with Cheerios and fruit. They adjust the sun visors on their identical black strollers and rock hesitant infants back and forth.
Then, they run.
“Let’s get warmed up with a nice long trot,” personal trainer and wellness coach Zac Mudd shouts across the lawn.
Stroller wheels squeak as the line of moms and babies zip across the grass and onto the pavement, a blur of neon-colored Spandex, strollers and faint baby gurgles. The women make a lap of Klyde Warren Park and come huffing back to the starting point, immediately launching into a set of burpees.
“These ladies are a lot tougher than they let on,” Mudd says, glancing down at his stopwatch. “Most of them have some kind of exercise experience. They’ll come in CrossFit and 5K T-shirts. But it’s easy to fall into a slump, to get out of the rhythm of being healthy. Their schedule has been dedicated to taking care of a baby.”
The Stroller Boot Camp, sponsored by the YMCA, is a place where babies are welcome and strollers are used as a piece of exercise equipment, just like yoga mats and resistance bands.
During a phase of a new mom’s life when everything is alien and different, her schedule, body and social groups, the weekly Tuesday morning class is a safe place. Moms can focus on active recovery and connect with women going through similar life milestones.
“Everyone is looking for the same goal, looking to get their abs back and get in shape,” YMCA wellness coordinator Shelli Cheyney says. “Some of the moms are a little bit depressed because they want to get back to the way they were before the baby. They can find someone who is going through the same thing that they are.”