Paralympian Eve McCrystal shares top tips for mums who want to be more active

There are so many incredible benefits to being active. Between improving your mental health, boosting your confidence and increasing productivity, it’s hard to find a reason not to hit the gym, go for a jog or attend a spinning class.

Sport Ireland and MummyPages have teamed up to showcase the many ways you can get involved in physical activity and to encourage you to #BeActive in the lead up to the European Week of Sport (EWOS) which is now in its fifth year.

The aim of this week (September 23 to 30) is to promote sport and physical activity across Europe using the #BeActive. 

There are so many ways to slot exercise into your daily routine, even for you busy mums. Being Active can be running around playing with your children, grabbing a walk with work colleagues on your lunch break, going outside and exploring the great outdoors - whatever gets you moving to lead a healthier and more active lifestyle.

Irish Paralympic cyclist Eve McCrystal shared her words of wisdom for mums and mums-to-be who are hoping to get active.

On being pregnant, she joked, “If I was to go back and do it all again I wouldn’t eat the 105 egg and onion and mayo baguettes, I had daily.

“I would move my body every single day, keep up doing what your body is used to and just take it back a notch or two if needs be. Your body is very good at telling you what it wants to do, just listen to it and enjoy your pregnancy. I would get back to exercise in your own time whenever you feel it's right. 


A post shared by Eve McCrystal (@evemccrystal) on

Jun 19, 2019 at 11:37pm PDT

“I still struggle with an injury I picked up after giving birth, my body was not ready and I pushed through. Take your time and enjoy your baby there is plenty of time to get back on track, do what’s right for you and your family,” Eve shared.

For pregnant women, there are a variety of exercises that are perfect for both you and baby, especially walking. It is easy and takes minimal effort.

Eve admitted, “I was terrible when I was pregnant. I took the news of my pregnancy as a green light to eat whatever I wanted. I did just that. I put on four and a half stone. The only bit of exercise I did was walking every morning for 50mins before work. My second pregnancy wasn't as bad.”

Returning to training after pregnancy isn’t easy, and many mums will feel pressured to snap back to their post-baby body, but Eve stressed to take it easy.

She shared, “I couldn't wait to get going again. I took my maternity leave very seriously the second time around. I had it in my head to do another Iron Man so nine months after my second daughter was born I completed Ironman Switzerland. Honestly looking back, knowing what I now know I did too much. I completely starved my body of proper nourishment. I have no idea how I got around that Ironman physically or mentally. But I did and was very happy with how I raced. Wouldn't recommend it though,” she advised.

Follow in Eve’s footsteps and get active today by checking out the range of activities happening throughout the country during European Week of Sport. Find out more here. This weekend the Sport Ireland Campus are hosting their Family Sportfest as part of European Week of Sport with over 20 different sports in the world class facilities. Check out their website for more information.

One of the best things about exercise is the fact that you always feel so much better afterwards - exercise releases endorphins, so even if you've had a bad day and don't feel like doing anything, your mood will be improved during and after a light workout.


A post shared by Eve McCrystal (@evemccrystal) on

Mar 23, 2018 at 2:31pm PDT

Working out will also help you when it's time for bed. Burning off energy during a class or workout helps to relax you, and most definitely helps you to sleep better.

One benefit that will make your life easier, especially as a busy mum, is the boost in energy you experience after working out. Even when you're tired, doing some exercise will give you more 'get up and go'.

And to top it all off, you will have reduced feelings of water retention, stress, depression and additional weight gain - this all goes hand-in-hand with each other. The benefits outweigh the fear of hitting the gym. Trust us, it's worth it.

For Eve it’s important that she’s installing good habits in her children too. Check out the video below to hear Eve pass on her advice to her daughter.


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Sport Ireland and MummyPages have teamed up to showcase the many ways you can get involved in physical activity and to encourage you to #BeActive in the lead up, during and after European Week of Sport (EWOS) 2019. Click here to find out what's going on near you.