Are pregnant fitness trainer Chontel Duncan's belly comparison shots inspiring or demoralizing?
Remember super-fit Australian trainer and soon-to-be first-time mom Chontel Duncan? She's the pregnant woman who posted a belly-to-belly shot of herself with a friend whose due date was about four weeks ahead of hers. Except Duncan looked like she was about one minute pregnant, while her friend (who, to be fair, was expecting her third baby) looked like she might give birth virtually any second (by the way, no judgment; I'm a mom of three who looked much more like the friend when I was having my last daughter!).
While the ridiculously in-shape mama-to-be shared the image to make the point that all pregnant women carry differently, it sparked a backlash online with people blasting Duncan for being too focused on her buff physique instead of the needs of her growing baby.
But the HIIT trainer and bodybuilder clearly isn't phased. She took to Instagram to post another belly-to-belly shot with a client, along with this caption: "Happy, Healthy, baking, first time expecting mummy's, 12 weeks to go, 12 days to go, fit pregnancies!" You might've noticed heir bumps are the exact same size.
The fit mom also sounded off on Instagram in response to the haters. She posted a video of herself working out, bump and all, with this as the caption:
"I know this sounds harsh but it's so bloody annoying how the uneducated can't just move on, you have no idea about me, haven't pre-screened me, haven't been to any of my appts, you also aren't even qualified in the field, yes you've had a baby or a number of babies but that's not making you a doctor... Sorry! I'm 100% doing what is 100% safe for my baby & my body, what works for me may not work for the next pregnant lady... that is obvious. If there was any message my message would be that I would love anyone considering to conceive to get themselves in a healthy routine beforehand, to help give them the opportunity to be allowed to continue being physically strong and active throughout their journey. In saying that, you won't know what is thrown at you until it happens as every pregnancy is different an comes with its own set of challenges."
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You go, mama! I'd say most people who slam you are just jealous. Like me. Of course, there is also a showoffy element to these pictures, like you're supposed to feel bad about yourself if you don't look like Duncan does while pregnant. I think that's the reason a lot of women don't like seeing images like this. If everyone carries differently, then why compare?
What is your reaction to this newest belly-to-belly shot?
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Melissa Willets is a writer/blogger and a mom. Follow her on Twitter (@Spitupnsuburbs), where she chronicles her love of exercising and drinking coffee, but never simultaneously.