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How Kayla Itsines Is Approaching Parenting the Second Time Around

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“Being pregnant while raising a toddler is no joke!”

“My pregnancies could not have been more different,” says Kayla Itsines, one of the world’s biggest fitness influencers, co-founder and head trainer of SWEAT, of how varied pregnancies can be. “Rest was what my body was craving when I was pregnant with Arna, and I had a full 26 weeks of nausea, sciatic nerve pain, restless legs and extreme reflux. It was a lot and I’m so lucky that I’ve been feeling so much better this time, it’s been so nice to be able to get out of bed and train.” Speaking to The Memo back in December 2022, before the arrival of her son to fiance Jae Woodroffe: Jax Stokes Woodroffe who came into the world at 6:30am on January 5, 2023, Kayla shared what she had learnt from her first baby, Arna, now 3, and what she was doing the same, and differently for her second. Including managing pregnancy with a toddler (and their big feelings), setting up new spaces for both Arna and the baby, and the parenting tools she swears by.

“Being pregnant while raising a toddler is no joke!” says Kayla but making Arna a big sister is really exciting, “Family is so important to us, and I have such a great relationship with my own sister, Leah, I can’t wait for Arna to experience that incredible sibling bond.” Satisfying her cravings for citrus and Chinotto has helped get her through, but feeling less unwell than in her first pregnancy was a true blessing, “I really enjoyed being able to stay more active and move my body this time around, and then the occasional pregnancy massage has been a great way to unwind.” She also felt more confident about her changing body this time, “Having been pregnant before, I was well aware of the pregnancy journey and what to expect going into it. I’ve definitely felt more confident this time around, both in how my body has been changing physically, but also in my ability to keep training and move with confidence throughout each trimester.” Learnings that Kayla shares in her “Mum Juggle” fitness program.

Kayla says the best advice she’s ever been given as a parent was to get onto a sleep schedule ASAP. “Get onto it as soon as you can, it will help you organise your life and give you back a sense of routine which everyone in the household will be craving.” She’s a fan of any sleep aid that can help make it happen, “A portable white noise machine that will help settle and soothe your baby is a must-buy, as are blackout blinds (especially during daylight savings!). I also love sleep bags and think the Smart Sock is such a genius invention.”

Just like most first time mums, the newborn months were a steep learning curve for Kayla, “I learned about colic, reflux and the importance of a sleep schedule early with Arna, and we’ll be following the same pumping and sleep routine with baby number two.” She admits it’s kind of nice going into a second baby, without so much unknown. “It's really nice to know what I’m in for this time and it definitely feels less stressful as we get closer to the birth. As a second-time mum who will be juggling a newborn with a toddler, I won’t be sweating the small stuff.” Fittingly, the advice Kayla most often gives to new parents is to go with their gut, “There is so much information out there for new parents and it’s easy to feel overwhelmed. Remember, no one knows how to parent your baby as well as you do.”

Wisely, Kayla and Jae planned to lean on the support of their family in the postpartum period. “It takes a village, and Jae and I are so lucky that we live really close to our family. We’re already such a close family and we can’t wait for them to meet the new baby and spend time with them. Having that support and knowing they are close-by if we need an extra pair of hands gives us all of the support we need. We’re really excited to have a summer baby, too. I’m a big walker, so I can’t wait for some long morning walks with the baby in their pram. We’ll have the scooter attachment for Arna to use and as I’ve opted for a C-section again with baby number two, I’m using the 3-in-1 pregnancy, postpartum and C-section band to help me feel more supported.”

As for the nursery and playroom revamp, Kayla has some (truly excellent) tips. In the playroom, she’s set up the Flexa Shop and Cafe and the Fern Living Toro Kitchen so Arna can play with them whenever she wants. “A cafe/shop and kitchen is providing hours of entertainment for Arna. She’s obsessed.” Then, there’s the Liewood Weston Storage Boxes. “Arna has a lot of stuff, and it was just everywhere before I got these boxes. They hide all the things she won’t throw away.” She also vouches for the Henlee Lounger, “Great for kids, but I sit on it all the time and watch all the play happening at the cafe and shop.” A big JNR. LIFE playmat is perfect for Jax’s tummy time, but also to protect the carpet, and she has a nice routine for Jax of tummy time on the playmat then some resting in the Quax Rocking Baby Rocker. The Bunny Tickles Book Shelf is a big hit, “It’s so handy. I love it. It’s decorative, but has a purpose.”

In the nursery, her MVP is the Bunnie Caddie. Loaded with everything she needs for nappy changes, but also for taking to visit family. Smart.


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