Rebecca Adlington On Why She's Proud Of Her Stretch Marks And Her Post-Baby Body

Rebecca Adlington has opened up about how her body has changed since giving birth, revealing she’s very proud of her stretch marks.

The 28-year-old Olympic swimmer, who is mum to Summer, two, with her former partner Harry Needs, said she didn’t feel pressure to get back into shape. 

“Things like bigger hips, a flabbier tummy and more stretch marks are seen as negative, but I’m proud of my stretch marks as it means I’ve had a full, healthy pregnancy,” Adlington told HuffPost UK.

“I’ve accepted my body changes and hopefully my daughter sees her mother being a happy, healthy role model to her.” 

Adlington continued: “The first few months after having Summer I honestly didn’t think about my post-baby body.

“My life had just completely changed so I had no time to think about anything else. I personally didn’t feel [the pressure] to get back in shape.

“I never felt pressure from anyone but after a couple of months I was ready to take back control of my body.”

Aside from the pressure some mums face about getting their “pre-baby body” back, some experience other bodily changes after giving birth, such as postpartum hair loss, swollen breasts or even back pain.

One of the changes Adlington experienced was bladder weakness. 

“Although I knew it was fairly common I was really shocked to hear that one in three women suffer from it in the UK, it’s a much bigger number than I imagined,” she said.

Olympian Rebecca Adlington helped Innovo to break a world record title for the most people bouncing on trampolines. (Photo: Innovo)

Adlington added: “As a new mum, you have a huge amount to deal with and adjust to, and bladder weakness is one of the things that I think can most impact your confidence.

“I was determined not to let it affect me and my day-to-day life, so I spoke to friends and trainers to see what they advised and found there are solutions out there.

“Women tend to suffer in silence, which is such a shame when there are really effective things they can try, like Innovotherapy.”

Adlington is currently a spokesperson for Innovo, which is a device that aims to tone a woman’s pelvic muscles to prevent bladder weakness. It is a two-part garment worn on the upper thighs and buttocks connected to a handheld controller, which sends targeted impulses to activate all the muscles of the pelvic floor.

Adlington said women who feel negative about the changes that have happened to their body should not keep it to themselves. 

“All new mums suffer from lack of confidence in one way or another, and we need to support one another and help each other to find solutions,” she said.

“Speak to someone and find a solution for you no matter what the issue.”

Adlington still likes to work out to ensure her body is healthy and tries to fit it in around her busy schedule. 

“Once I’d settled more into life as a mum, I wanted to get my body back and be in better shape again,” she said.

“Summer is two now and attends nursery a couple of days a week so it has got a lot easier. I started with a PT again this year so I’ve created a routine and schedule to ensure I go and stick to it. 

“When Summer is around, I try and fit in a little 20 minute HIIT session when I can (it’s all you need!) – I think it’s important she sees me being active and healthy and she even joins in sometimes. 

“I also try and get out into the garden on my little trampoline which is a lot of fun and gets your heart rate up.”

Olympian Rebecca Adlington helped Innovo ( to break a Guinness World Record™ title for the most people bouncing on trampolines in one location to raise awareness of bladder weakness and the solution Innovo provides.


WISE OLYMPIC WORDS: Rebecca Adlington - 'You Don't Realise How Exhausting It Is Emotionally'

Dear Mum, You Are The Beast

Mums Reveal What They Expected Their 'Mumbod' To Look Like

Also on HuffPost

Love HuffPost? Become a founding member of HuffPost Plus today.

December 2017: Helen Flanagan and Scott Sinclair

'Coronation Street' star Helen Flanagan has confirmed she and her partner Scott Sinclair are expecting their second child. The couple are already parents to two-year-old Matilda. 

December 2017: Candice Swanepoel and Hermann Nicoli

Candice Swanepoel and her fiancé, Hermann Nicoli announced they are expecting their second child together. They are already have 14-month-old son Anacã together. 

September 2017: Roxy Shahidi and Arsher Ali

Roxy Shahidi revealed she is expecting her first child in September, announcing she was having a baby girl.

September 2017: Kim Kardashian and Kanye West

The couple confirmed they were having their third child. It is rumoured that they are having their third child via surrogate. 

September 2017: Jamelia

Jamelia revealed on 29 September she was six months pregnant with her third child. 

September 2017: Adam Levine and Behati Prinsloo

The couple announced they were having their second child. They are already parents to one-year-old Dusty Rose.

September 2017: Brendan and Zoe Cole

LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 06: Brendan Cole and Zoe Hobbs attend the VIP performance of 'Kooza' by Cirque Du Soleil at Royal Albert Hall on January 6, 2015 in London, England. (Photo by Anthony Harvey/Getty Images)

September 2017: Aston Merrygold and Sarah Richards

Aston Merrygold and Sarah Richards revealed they were expecting their first child together. They posted a series of photos on Instagram with the poem: "Could be pink, could be blue, all we know is that we are due."

August: Jack Osbourne and Lisa Stelly

The couple announced they are expecting their third child. They are already parents Pearl, five, and Andy, two.

August 2017: Rose Byrne and Bobby Cannavale

Rose Byrne announced she was expecting her second child with Bobby Cannavale. They are already parents to one-year-old Rocco. 

August 2017: Coleen Rooney and Wayne Rooney

Coleen Rooney revealed she and Wayne Rooney are expecting their fourth child together in August 2017.

August 2017: Ore Oduba and Portia Oduba

Ore Oduba announced his wife was expecting their first child together. 

July 2017: Charlie Simpson and Anna Barnard

Charlie Simpson revealed he was expecting his second child with wife Anna Barnard.

July 2017: Jessica Alba and Cash Warren

Jessica Alba announced she was expecting her third child in July 2017. She and Cash Warren are already parents to nine-year-old Honor and five-year-old Haven. 

July 2017: Danny Jones and Georgia Jones

Danny and Georgia revealed they were expecting their first child together in July 2017. 

July 2017: James Corden and Julia Carey

The couple are expecting their third child, PEOPLE magazine confirmed. 

July 2017: Sam Faiers and Paul Knightley

Sam Faiers revealed she was expecting her second child with her partner Paul Knightley by posting an Instagram photo of herself and her son on 4 July.

July 2017: Nicky Hilton and James Rothschild

Nicky Hilton announced she's expecting her second child with James Rothschild. The couple are already parents to one-year-old Lily Grace. 

July 2017: Andy Murray and Kim Sears

Andy Murray and wife Kim Sears revealed they were expecting their second child together. 

June 2017: Cara Kilbey and Daniel Harris

Former TOWIE star Cara Kilbey announced she was expecting her second child with her boyfriend Daniel Harris. They already have one daughter together. 

June 2017: Katie Piper and Richard Sutton

Katie Piper revealed she was expecting her second child with Richard Sutton on Father's Day 2017. 

June 2017: Julia Stiles and Preston J Cook

Julia Stiles revealed she is expecting her first child with fiancé Preston J Cook.

June 2017: Jaime Pressly

Jaime Pressly announced she was expecting twin boy with longtime boyfriend, Hamzi Hijazi.

June 2017: Luisa Zissman and Andrew Collins

Luisa Zissman announced she was expecting her third child, and second with husband Andrew Collins, on 8 June 2017. 

May 2017: Cheska Hull

Former 'Made in Chelsea' star Cheska announced she was pregnant with her first child with her boyfriend Tom Huggett. 

May 2017: Billi Mucklow and Andy Carroll

Former TOWIE star Billi Mucklow announced she's expecting her second child with her partner Andy Carroll. They are already parents to two-year-old Arlo. 

May 2017: Rag 'N' Bone Man and Beth Rouy

Rag 'n' Bone Man and his girlfriend Beth are reportedly expecting their first child together. 

May 2017: Cara De La Hoyde and Nathan Massey

Cara De La Hoyde revealed she is pregnant with her 'Love Island' co-star's baby, weeks after they split following a year of dating.

The couple, who met for the first time on the ITV show in 2016, broke up two weeks after Cara found out she was expecting their baby.

De La Hoyde said Massey will be supporting her throughout her pregnancy.

She told OK! magazine: "I know a lot of people will think, well you're going to have a baby together so just stay together – but we're not going to do that just to look like the perfect couple."

May 2017: Laura Tobin

Laura Tobin announced she is pregnant with her first child with her husband Dean Brown, during a live broadcast on Good Morning Britain.

Her baby is due in October.

April 2017: Serena Williams And Alexis Ohanian

Serena Williams accidentally announced her pregnancy when she mistakenly posted a private photo of her baby bump to Instagram with the caption "20 weeks".

The 35-year-old found out she was expecting her first baby with her fiancé, Reddit founder Alexis Ohanian, two days before competing in the Australian Open in January.

April 2017: Ferne McCann

Ferne McCann confirmed she was expecting her first child with ex boyfriend Arthur Collins.

This article originally appeared on HuffPost.