All About Babies

Kerry Washington Just Got So Real About Working Out After Giving Birth

The Scandal actress set the record straight about her post-baby fitness plan.

Kerry Washington PaleyFest Scandal Jason LaVeris/Getty Images
Kerry Washington may be one of the busiest, most talented stars in Hollywood, but that didn't mean she had to jump right back into her regular routine right after giving birth. Washington recently revealed to People that after delivering her son Caleb Kalechi—her second child with husband Nnamdi Asomugha—she held off on hitting up the gym.

“My doctor made me take my six weeks off, and I did,” the 40-year-old mom of two shared. “It was really important to me to have that downtime and then start working out slowly, which I’m still doing, I am still slowly getting back into it." 

And just nine weeks after having Caleb, Washington returned to the spotlight. “I think you just show up,” she explained. “It’s not like, ‘I’ve somehow achieved some level of perfection, and I’m ready to go back out in the world.’ Sometimes it’s about not letting my own concerns about what I may or may not look like get in the way of a bigger responsibility to the work that I do."

Washington was, however, concerned by gossip that she was rushing back to her fitness routine. "It was rumored somewhere that I was working out a week or two after he was born and it really upset me, actually,” she told People. “I never talk about rumors in the media, but I was really sad that somebody printed that because I felt like, ‘Oh, that makes women feel like they have to start working out’ — like, ‘Oh celebrities work out right away.’ And I was like, ‘No way!’”

The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) say moms who've had a healthy pregnancy and a normal vaginal delivery can start exercising days after the baby is born, but women who've had a cesarean delivery or complications should follow their health care provider's guidance. Still, given the pressure that new moms are under to drop the baby weight ASAP, it's not hard to imagine celeb moms like Washington resuming their workouts as soon as they can. But it's heartening to hear her set the record straight—and make a case for women taking however much time they need for themselves and their baby after giving birth!