Carrie Underwood Shares That "Bouncing Back" After Her Second Pregnancy Hasn't Been Easy

The "Cry Pretty" singer opened up on Instagram about the challenges she's navigating in her postpartum fitness journey after giving birth to her son, Jacob.

Photo: Kevin Mazur / Getty Images for CALIA by Carrie Underwood.

Carrie Underwood's second pregnancy was completely different from her first. For starters, the road getting there was anything but easy. After suffering three miscarriages, she questioned her fertility and thought she'd missed her chance at having more kids. Then, after announcing she was pregnant again in August of last year, Underwood reportedly felt great and was able to keep up with her workouts. But since giving birth to her son Jacob back in January, her postpartum fitness isn't all she had hoped for.

She took to Instagram to share that her body doesn't just feel different; it feels like it lost the strength she once had.

"I'm going to be honest, 'bouncing back' after having Jacob has been much more difficult than after I had Isaiah and I've been pretty hard on myself lately," she recently wrote on Instagram alongside a gym selfie. "I go into the gym and I can't run as fast or as far. I can't lift as much weight or do as many reps as I could a year ago."

Feeling frustrated, Underwood says she's struggled to accept that her body is moving at a very different pace now. "I just want to feel like myself again...for my body to feel the way that I know it can," she wrote.

But after taking a step back, Underwood realized that her mindset needed to change. "As I was working out today, I realized that for the past 11(ish) months, my body has not belonged to me," she wrote. "It was a perfect home for Jacob," she wrote. "And even now it belongs to him every time he drinks his milk."

Embracing her role as mom, Underwood vowed to be more kind to herself as she continues on with her life as a singer, wife, and now mother of two. "As I prepare for red carpets and for life on tour, right now I make a promise to myself to start appreciating what my body CAN do and stop focusing on what it can't," she wrote. "I promise to stop analyzing every angle and every curve and every pound and every meal. I'm going to keep staying the path because it is a journey and as long as I'm always working towards my goals, one day I'll reach them. I'm going to take it day by day, smile at the girl in the mirror, and work out because I love this body and all it has done and will continue to do!"

When it comes to losing baby weight and trying to get back to your pre-baby self, it's so easy to get carried away and simply focus on aesthetic-based results. In reality, postpartum fitness is likely to be an entirely different experience than most moms imagine. (Just look at star trainer Emily Skye, whose pregnancy journey was totally different than she planned.) But the fact that you're able to make time for yourself to get a workout in or even just practice some self-care is worth celebrating and being proud of. Even if your strength isn't what it once was, that's totally okay. Heck, even if fitness has to take a backseat altogether sometimes with a new little one in the house, that's okay, too. Strength isn't always measured in how much weight you can lift, how many reps you can do, or even how many times you can make it to the gym each week. Sometimes strength means having the confidence to meet yourself exactly where you are-or, as Underwood put it, to "stay the path," no matter where that path might take you.

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