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As a mom of three (with a fourth on the way!) and chief stylist of the new subscription-based athletic wear line Fabletics, saying Ginger Ressler is busy is an understatement. A Southern California native and a former Division 1 track athlete, Ginger received her degree in kinesiology and physical education and went on to become a P.E. teacher. She simultaneously became a highly desired fitness model. Fast-forward to not that long ago, when Ginger longed for some comfortable athletic wear that combined combined function with fashion. So what's a mom to do? Well, if you're Ginger, you take your expert knowledge of the human body and keen fashion sense to make this dream come true. In the blink of an eye, she would go on to co-found Fabletics with celeb mom Kate Hudson and serve as its chief stylist—poring over every tiny detail that goes into each piece from the line to make sure its the best it can be.
So how does this busy mom seemingly do it all? Let's find out!
As the mother of three (soon to be four), how do you balance the time and attention you give to your kids, work and personal life?
I set priorities and block out times during the day where I focus on one thing. The No. 1 priority in my life is my kids —there's nothing else I'd rather do than spend time with my kids and my family. My second priority is my workout—it's what keeps me sane! When Mom's happy, everyone's happy, right?
Then, I block out time for work with my teams. I also block out individual time with each of my children. Our weekends are filled with the kids' sports. Since the kids come first, I focus on everything else Monday through Friday, and get in date nights with my husband during the week. I am fortunate to have help, but setting priorities and sticking to them is what helps me balance everything.
Were you always a working mom? If not, how did you decide to make the transition and what were the emotions associated with that?
I wasn't always a working mom—after my children got older and started school, it gave me the time to pursue other interests. Working hard and achieving your goals is a phenomenal thing to demonstrate to your children, especially now that I have a daughter coming. I want to be a role model for her and all my kids. Because of it, they all have a great work ethic—they know nothing is handed to you and you have to put the work in to achieve your goals. My husband and I tell our kids that you are a reflection of the family, so it's also important to us to teach them to be kind and to be good citizens.
What's the one invention you wish existed as a busy working mom?
A clone of myself who can stay home and help with the kids while the other me is working!
What was the best advice you ever received about balancing it all? The worst advice?
Plan ahead and prioritize. You can't do it all, so don't try—don't set up unrealistic expectations for yourself. Learn to be OK with saying no. A lot of women try to overschedule and overcommit. I think that you should do the best job you can do with the time and resources you have. You shouldn't have to feel the pressure to meet crazy demands or expectations. If it's not feasible today, then it'll have to be on the list for tomorrow.
It takes a village for any mom, but for a working mom, it must take a huge village. Who are your go-to people/services?
Shopping online saves so much time—being able to order things like groceries, cleaning products, even toilet paper, and having them delivered saves so much time. There are also so many great food delivery services now that can bring you meals and food that is healthy. Although, everybody's human—I have to admit that pizza delivery has saved me a few times!
As the chief stylist for Fabletics, what is your greatest source of inspiration?
There is so much that inspires me—I get a lot of inspiration from what my closest friends are liking. A lot of what I design also comes from my own fashion sense and what I like. My athletic background also helps inform the designs because I know what is functional for working out, and that helps make sure our pieces work whether they're being used at the gym or worn every day as part of your wardrobe.
Any tips for moms that want to get in better shape but have trouble finding the time (or the energy) to do so?
You have to prioritize it and put it on your schedule. Don't put it off until tomorrow because it won't get done. If you're considering having a baby, or in the process of trying, make the time to work out—schedule the time in your calendar. Exercising and getting into shape before you actually get pregnant will not only make sure you're in great health, but also it'll be easier to continue exercising once you are pregnant because you've always done it and it's part of your routine.
Exercising post-partum is really dependent on the type of delivery you've had. If you had a C-section, you're just out for 6 weeks. For women who delivered naturally, I think it's up to you and your body to know when you're ready. There's no calendar or timeline—I think every woman should do what's right for her. And take it easy after giving birth—your body is in shock, so doing something simple like taking a walk around the block is great to ease back into it.
Incorporate your baby into your workout—your newborn is asleep most of the time, so take advantage of that and create a routine like taking a walk with your baby in the morning. There are also great things like Stroller Strides and mommy & me workouts that help you get active with your baby and also help you meet other new moms.
Since you're currently expecting baby No. 4, have you found all of your pregnancies to be similar or vastly different? How so?
Being pregnant and having gone through four pregnancies, I can say it's been similar experiences. I was lucky that I didn't have morning sickness for my pregnancies.
A lot of people are surprised to hear that I didn't work out with my first two kids! I was a track athlete and worked out every day, so with my first two, I said, "Oh man, I'm taking this opportunity to take a break!" and didn't work out at all. It was actually the worst thing I could do because my body wasn't used to not being active.
I worked out during each of my pregnancies after the first two, and was able to compare my experiences. For me, maintaining my workouts made me feel 100% better—it kept me more energized, and it made bouncing back easier. Your body is already used to working out and in the routine, so workout-wise, it's like your body never stopped. I think maintaining your routine while pregnant keeps your body stretched, flexible and ready for the most important workout of all—giving birth.
The labors when I worked out and when I didn't while pregnant were completely different. I think working out prepares your body. You go into labor and your body is used to working out, so you're flexible and you're strong.
What do you do to unwind and recharge? And related, what are you reading right now?
I like a good spa treatment and a great movie with the kids or just my husband. With three kids and a fourth on the way, I have birth order on my mind, so I'm reading "The Birth Order Book: Why You Are the Way You Are" by Dr. Kevin Leman. I'm really interested in how birth order influences kids' personalities and who they are as people.
6 AM: I get up and get myself together first. I actually lay out my workout clothes the night before, so it's easy in the morning. I jump in the shower to wake up, and put on my Fabletics outfit.
7 AM: I have breakfast with the kids and a lot of times my kids are actually studying in the morning before they get to school. I get them breakfast, we're making lunches and then it's out the door for school. All the kids' clothes and uniforms are set out the night before — that's what I mean about planning ahead — it saves so much time!
8:30 AM: Once the kids are off to school, that's when I have my dedicated hour and a half for working out. Post workout, I have a quick snack.
It's different every day, what I'm doing after my workout. I'm working on Fabletics, or I'm picking the kids up and taking them to their sports practices, or I have appointments for the kids — the doctor or dentist.
12 PM: I have lunch. Especially when pregnant, I make sure to eat regularly.
1:15 PM: This is when the school runs start! I pick up my youngest son and then it's onto picking up my other boys, and then taking them to their practices, and helping with their studying and homework. My oldest son, his day goes until 9 PM, between homework and sports. Depending on the day, my husband and I might have an evening commitment.