The Fact + Fiction team chat pregnancy, fitness and stylish gym bags with Joanne Sheperd, founder of MUMMACTIV. 

Shop our range of beautiful organizer diaper bags and stylish baby bag totes here

What's the story behind MummActiv?

In 2016 when I fell pregnant with my second son I continued to train 6 days a week (and ran to 32 weeks) despite morning sickness and exhaustion. Towards the end of my pregnancy I started studying my Cert 3 and 4 in fitness on campus at AIF. Being so active I found it hard to cloth my active bump and had to continue wearing my normal gym wear as I couldn't find anything else that was stylish and functional. Most items were hideous in style and sizing!

4 days after giving birth I was back into the gym and started my journey back to regaining my base level of normal fitness. My frustrations continued with not being able to find stylish activewear for my current stage (breastfeeding) and so found myself continually having to interchange sports crops with nursing bras. From this the seed for Mummactiv was planted!

 What’s your vision for the company?

The vision is to continue to design maternity/nursing pieces but also have some great plans in place to aid mums with some of the big issues/problems new mums face e.g.sore breasts. In the new year MUMMACTIV is also planning two community events: 1) Active Mum Jungle Body session raising profits for PANDA (Perinatal Depression and Anxiety) and 2) Releasing a Pink Nursing Crop for Breast Cancer Awareness Month with profits going to Breast Cancer Awareness.

The other part of MUMMACTIV is to help mums become active. Plans are afoot to create active mum blogs, exercise ideas etc and 10 top tips to help mums be active!

What are your favourite pieces from the upcoming collection and where/when can we buy them?!

Favourite pieces from the upcoming Black Collection is the String Nursing Crop - It is sexy, stylish and functional - everyone falls in love with it. The camo Summer 16 collection also has a favourite of mine too. All items can be purchased at

What’s your approach to wellness and training/nutrition during pregnancy?

During my first pregnancy I was part of an academic study looking at exercise during pregnancy. As part of this I swam 3 times a week until the day I had my son. (Labour was fairly short and no pain relief required). It made sense to continue training through my second pregnancy as I was so active before. Up until the morning I had my second son I weight trained and did cardio inclusive of running. (I did modify my weight training and utilised a HR monitor during my cardio sessions) My labour was very very short and no pain relief was used. I honestly believe my training helped me to be in the best state to give birth.

What are your top 5 training tips/top 5 fave workout moves?

  1. BLOCK IT OUT If you timetable it into your day you are more than likely going to stick to it - a bit like a doctors appointment. Schedule it as part of your day and make it non negotiable!
  1. HAVE A PLAN OF HOW YOU WILL SWEAT Writing a workout plan will eliminate time wasting and also finding motivation and ideas once you get to the park/gym/open space etc. Create a theme make it interesting. e.g Olympic theme, pentathlon or HIIT-sprint session or Walk with legs- lunge lamp post to lamp post walk 200 then squat jump etc. Varying your workouts will create motivation and enthusiasm.
  1. BE CREATIVE IN HOW TO TAKE 10-15 Finding ways to include strength training/cardio in a busy schedule can be daunting but be creative. Use the 10-15 minute whilst the kids are eating to do some strength exercises like push ups or tricep dips or squats. Some experts believe that 10-15 bursts of exercise are just as good as a committed hour. Other ways to do cardio put the washing basket 5 m away and frog jump back and forth etc.
  1. MAKE ANY SPACE A HOME GYM You don’t need any special equipment, or a gym membership, to work out. You would be surprised at what exercises you can do with a simple chair! Use the steps, lines on the path, kids soccer ball etc to create a workout that makes you sweat.
  1. BUILD A SUPPORT CREW Like-minded parents are a great support crew. You are not alone. Get others to make you accountable- use social media or community groups to help give you encouragement. The last thing you may feel like doing after a bad night is working out but it makes you feel so much better.

    How often do you work out/what’s your favourite way to stay in shape?

    I train 6-7 days a week with a mix of cardio and weights. I never perform the same workout and are always looking for new ways to move. Circuit training is my favourite - performing whole body exercises (compound movements) in a fast format with limited rest. With limited time being a Mum I like to get the best bang for my buck! (It also means I can train at home with functional moves). Duathlons, Crossfit and Ballet also feature regularly in my schedule.

    What’s your top beauty tip?

    Hydration is the key to clear skin - so that is a given but I love my brows being on point and so use brow gel to give them that fresh look in between brow appointments.

    What 5 things could you not live without?!

    1. My Family
    2. My iPhone/Music
    3. Glass Waterbottle
    4. Lip Gloss
    5. My Gym Bag- which is now the Reese Gym Tote!  

    Follow MUMMACTIV on instagram @mummactiv