An exercise in self-care with Lauren Roxburgh
SmartyPants (SP): Thanks for carving out the time to do the interview. I know having a new baby is insane. How have you kept up your fitness routine during pregnancy, and how have you worked your way back into it after you delivered?
Lauren Roxburgh (LR): While I was pregnant, I was not a big fan of pushing myself too much. I think there’s so much going on and so much change happening in your body that, for me, it’s about doing a lot of meditation, breathing, walking, stretching, and prenatal yoga, obviously. Those were my things. The way I look at it is that you’re going to gain weight no matter what, that’s part of what’s happening.
You need to gain weight in a healthy way – you know, not too much. You find yourself hungrier and just a little bit more… compressed in your body, shifting in alignment. For me, it’s about getting a lot of body work, massages, that type of stuff. More self-care. That works for me. I know some people like to keep running and all that, and I’m a big fan of the rebounder, too. It’s just too jarring on the organs when the baby is trying to nest in there.
SP: After giving birth, what sort of break do you give yourself? I know you’re big on self-care.
LR: The doctors wanted me to model the ancient wisdom of giving your body six weeks to let everything settle back into place – let the uterus shrink back to size and let the other organs come back into place. I’ve been doing a lot of body work and rolling, obviously, and breathing. Breathing is really amazing in helping my body settle. A lot of walking, too. I call it the forth trimester – many people do. I just want my body to come back and I want to adjust to not having that baby in there anymore. I think there is something special that happens to the body when you’re pregnant, so it’s super important not to just jump into a fitness program right away. So many women are so concerned about getting their abs back right away, but you need to straighten out what’s underneath first.
For me, right now, it’s all about nutrition. Eating the right superfoods for breastfeeding. Breastfeeding is amazing because you burn like 800-1000 calories a day, so that’s a workout right there. That’s my workout right now. But it’s funny, women think “Oh, I’m burning so many more calories!” but we’re also sitting around, so it’s not okay to indulge and eat cookies all day. I’m a very active person normally, so for me, I can tell I’m not burning as many calories. I’m not as starving as I normally would be.
SP: How do you find time for yourself to recharge?
LR: I’ve got to ask and accept help, and if that means having a family member come over, or an amazing nanny, so I can take a shower and go for a walk or go do a few things and get out of the house. Eventually it would be nice to start working out again and doing some more my roller stuff and Pilates and more rebounding. When we fill ourselves up, then we can do more and love more. The baby should be in the arms of the happiest person in the household. Then everyone is happier. Taking that little bit of time for ourselves, even though sometimes it feels selfish and you feel guilty…I feel so much better when I do it.
SP: I love that. So, what attracted you to Smarty Pants?
LR: I got the product last year when you were giving them away at an event. I’m a huge gummy fan anyways. Besides a glass of wine or a margarita, I’d pick a gummy over cake or cupcakes any day. It’s the perfect fit – I’m going to eat gummies anyways! I’m really about balance, so I think that, for my life and for my clients, and what I preach having a little sugar…I’m not going to be talking about brownies or cookies or any other candy, but talking about taking those SmartyPants vitamins every day… it’s totally clean. Second, they taste amazing! It’s a perfect fit. I love Courtney and how much love and research she puts into the company. I feel really passionate about them and got my whole family taking them…and my friends, too.
SP: Tell me about your proudest achievement.
LR: There is personal, which is becoming a mom, and finding the love of my life; those are two things I’m very proud of and bring me so much joy and completion. The feeling of having roots. Becoming a mom – nothing beats that as a woman. Professionally, becoming an author and working with the top people on the planet that are at the top of their game. It’s pretty cool to be able to say, “I’m working with people that are the best in their field” so that must mean some sort of energy match. I find that very rewarding to work with people that are the top of their game.
SP: Is there anything you would have done differently if you knew then what you know now? It sounds like everything you have learned has contributed to who you are today.
LR: I think I would just say to my younger self “don’t even worry, it’s all going to work out.” There was a time I went through a divorce – I married my college sweetheart – and then I was single for a little while, and I was like, “Am I ever going to find someone? Am I ever going to have kids?” I think, looking back, just chilling and enjoying every moment, whether they are an up or a down, and making the most of each of those moments by realizing they are going to make us who we are today…I don’t want to be a person who dwells on certain things, but if I look back to my younger self, I would just say, “Chill out, enjoy your life, don’t stress about what’s happening.”
SP: Who has been your biggest influence?
LR: Businesswise and professionally, I would say, as far as what has given me my edge, the teachings of Ida Rolf, the woman who developed Rolfing. Her work has been so influential in what I do and in my philosophy. During my one-on-one sessions with clients, I would say that she’s been the biggest influence and she’s no longer with us.
SP: What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
LR: I love this one. “The answer is always no unless you ask.”
SP: What surprising lessons have you learned along the way as you grow your business and brand?
LR: Surprising lessons…The more I listen to my gut, the more good comes, number one. Number two: the more authentic I am, the more excited people are about what I share.
A big one in my career was during when I started writing for Goop a couple years ago. I was a new mom and I was writing an article about the pelvic floor. I was like, “I’m totally going to write about this, it’s part of the human body we don’t talk about it.” In most fitness, it’s not seen as important in most exercise. When I wrote that article, it went completely viral. I was not expecting that at all. Just taking something I’m super passionate about and being authentic. Taking what I’ve learned from working with clients and just explaining all the benefits and all the things we can do for ourselves, for that part of our body. For me, it was such a norm, no big deal, something I talk about all the time with people. So here I am, putting together this article and thinking, “No big deal,” and then it just blew up. It got so much press. Educating people about their bodies and how, by learning about your body, you can then learn about yourself and your being and your soul, too.
Why are we holding emotions? How can we release those emotions so we can literally be happy and joyful? Which is what we’re meant to be anyway! That, for me, is cool. Just be honest, be authentic. I write about things that I am living myself. I’m very curious about the body, anatomy, the scientific stuff and the medical stuff, but also the spiritual, emotional, mind stuff, too.
SP: I think people are petrified of letting others see who they really are. It’s the whole Instagram life. Just show people who you really are, who cares? Being authentic and transparent is what we need more of.
LR: Exactly. That’s what builds community. It’s easier to find your people.
SP: The final question: What is currently in your Netflix queue?
LR: I love romantic comedies. Rom-coms are the best. I liked The Walking Dead. I was so into that, but then it got too creepy. I also really like The OA. We’re watching The Handmaid’s Tale too.
SP: So good.
LR: I know. You’ll love The OA if you liked The Handmaid’s Tale.
SP: Who doesn’t love a good dystopian tale?