In our Q&A with Jasmin, she talks about accepting her body changes after having twins and overcoming Postpartum Depression (PPD) with exercise being her drug of choice. Learn the disciplines that have brought her happiness and enabled her to be resilient.
I reside in Austin, Tx originally from Germany. I’m a wife and first time mother of twins. Prior to having them I helped my husband run his bar in downtown Austin while also having my own personal training business and competing in body building. It’s crazy actually, my husband found out he had to have open heart surgery a few weeks after I found out I was pregnant so at 7 months pregnant I had to support my husband through that life changing circumstance two months before I had to go through mine. What a whirlwind!! I love working out and cooking (especially plating the food). I’ve also begun to enjoy reading again and learning new ways to teach my twins life lessons.
How long have you been a bikini competitor?
Technically a year actually. I prepped for a show in March 2015 but ended up backing out before the show due to angst. It was very hard for me to present myself in front of people because I get so nervous and I constantly criticize myself to the point I had zero confidence of myself of stepping on stage. Let’s just say when I was younger I failed speech, not because of my lack of literary knowledge but the fact I skipped the days we had to present speeches because I was so nervous. But anyways, November rolled around and I decided I couldn’t just give up on my goal of competing so again I prepped. I wish I could say it was hard for me but I enjoyed the changes in my physique and the discipline in my life.
It became an obsession and an unhealthy one because I went into kidney failure twice due to electrolyte deficiency
BUT I persevered through it and I did make it this time to the show. I was blessed with getting first place in novice, and first place in my division!! I was nationally qualified and about to start my journey in the body building world when I found out I was pregnant 4 months after the show.
What body changes did you experience after giving birth?
I went from a 24″ waist to 52″ inches and carried my twins for 37wks 4days. I remember when I first saw my stomach after my c section. My stomach was deflated past my waist line and I had to lift it just to see my stitches. I was devastated. I lost my identity at that moment….or so I thought. I was so happy to see my twins but at the same time so self conscious because I lost what I felt defined me (my physique).
I suffered terrible PPD on top of it and felt like I was just lost in the midst of motherhood.
I could barely walk nor did I have the energy with the new accompanied understanding of “sleepless night”, but I wouldn’t and couldn’t just let go. There was still this little voice in me that pushed me through it. My doctor thought I would be on antidepressants for 6 months at least; boy was she wrong. I had very difficult moments but I managed to wean myself off after two months. I walked everyday when I had the strength to, I worked on rebuilding my core and ate healthily. Working out really has always been my release; besides it does release dopamine the knight in shining armor of my depression tales. I now look at my body, yes my waist has gone back down to 28″ but it also shows remnants of a twin pregnancy. I have the stretch marks and the skin to prove it. Everyday it gets better but it doesn’t define me to have a six pack and to be super lean. What defines me is my character, my relationship with God (which has exponentially grown) and my growth as a wife, mother and human being. I’m not perfect. And that’s ok.
What were your early signs of Postpartum depression (PPD)?
I felt suffocated and couldn’t laugh or enjoy myself. I actually got to the point I couldn’t drink water because I felt like I was drowning. I felt suicidal at my worst but my good friend was a doctor and told me if I was feeling certain things to let him know which I did and he immediately told me to get help. I completely flunked my mental sanity test but I got the help I needed and I feel completely grateful I did. There’s nothing wrong with needing help and it really humbled me reaching out for it.
How do you find the time for your workouts now that you have the twins?
Usually I aim to do them in the morning when they are rested and full from breakfast or I’ll just take them out in my jogging stroller. I aim for 20min, at least, of high intensity intervals a day.
What’s it like having twins?
It’s definitely not what I expected!! I didn’t have kids before so I didn’t know what to expect much less having two; luckily my mom moved in so it gave us an extra set of hands. They have completely opposite personalities so it’s fun seeing how they handle different situations. My son is very active & more advanced for his age. For instance, he was rolling over at 6 weeks and crawling at 6 months. My daughter, on the other hand, is very chill and talks ALOT. I like to think they like each other but we shall see haha. It is hard for me to get out the house though, probably mostly of my fear of having a simultaneous meltdown, but also because I don’t want to veer off my schedule (I’m very anal about my schedule).
Any advise for Mums who want to lose their tummy bulge?
Hydrate, avoid sugars, fatty, greasy, processed, frozen meals, workout when you can, exfoliate and also moisturize! The biggest thing is to be patient, it takes 9 months to make a baby so give your body time to recoup.
My SnapBack wasn’t graceful like the other fitness moms or your favorite celebrity; I’m different. I’m the other fitness model that didn’t SnapBack like the rest of them.
I still have loose skin on my stomach and my abdominal split is still healing but I can say I am abundant in my life and loving myself for more than my outer shell. I show my mind love by reading books & listening to podcasts like Super Soul by Oprah, putting healthy things in my body without worrying about every single calorie, working out, and by starting and ending the day in prayer. These disciplines have brought me immense happiness that I can only be thankful to God for. So don’t be hard on yourself but do strive to be a better more balanced you every day. If you died tomorrow would you look back at your last day knowing you spent your energy wisely and was grateful for being present in those treasured moments we never forget or would you see how you missed those same little beautiful moments because your focus was on the negative in and around you?
What can we catch you doing on your lazy days?
Lazy? What does his word mean hahaha I don’t have those. I am in the process of creating my own future. Down time means reading, research, cleaning, praying and prepping for the next day. I’m blessed to be capable of living and that is what I must work to continue to do.