Olivia Munn Got Real About the Pressure to 'Snap Back' After Giving Birth

Close Up of Olivia Murr
Close Up of Olivia Murr

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Olivia Munn has nothing but love for her postpartum body. In a recent clip posted to Instagram, the actress, who welcomed her son, Malcolm, in November 2021, shared some honest thoughts about her feelings toward her body after giving birth. (Related: Ashley Tisdale Just Got Real About Her Experience with Diastasis Recti)

In the video, Munn holds her son in her arms, rocking him back and forth to a cover of "Vienna" by Billy Joel. A text box over the clip reads: "My body hasn't snapped back, but it made this little guy so I only have love for it. 💙" She shared more sentiments in the caption, writing, "The postpartum road is rough, but it's so worth it."

It's not the first time Munn has opened up about the realities of being a new mom. She shared photos of herself on Mother's Day earlier this year with a caption about the issues many face after giving birth. "Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there, but especially to the moms who are struggling with postpartum depression/anxiety, still wearing their maternity clothes because you've realized that the snap back is bullshit and so unreal, and feel insecure as they scroll through Insta today realizing they don't have the energy, creativity, or brain power to post a beautiful pic of motherhood," she wrote at the time.

It's no secret that society places an enormous amount pressure on new moms to "snap back" (aka return to the way their body looked before becoming pregnant) after giving birth. Gaining weight during pregnancy is perfectly natural, and so is allowing time for your body and mind to recover afterward. "It took nine months for you to put the weight on, so you should give yourself at least that to take it off," Lisa Druxman, a San Diego-based fitness trainer and author of Lean Mommy, previously told Shape.

While there are certainly mental and physical benefits to doing postpartum workouts (e.g., improved cardiovascular fitness and reduced postpartum depression and anxiety), going too hard too soon comes with risks, Shape previously reported. For instance, when done before your body is ready, strenuous core work can cause separating of the right and left rectus abdominis muscles, delaying the healing process from diastasis recti, and tough workouts, such as long runs and boot camp classes can lead to urinary leakage and pelvic floor pressure. "Returning to fitness is a journey, and you should take it at your pace," Emily Skye, a personal trainer and the creator of the Emily Skye FIT Post-Pregnancy program, previously told Shape.

Munn isn't the only celebrity to speak up about the unrealistic "snap back" concept. Tia Mowry recently shared multiple updates about her postpartum journey on Instagram, encouraging her followers not to "fold to societal pressures." Kate Upton had a similar message for her fans after giving birth. "I tried to push myself early to get back to the gym, eat perfectly and try to achieve this alleged 'snap back,'" she shared in a 2020 Instagram post. "But after realizing how ridiculous these pressures are, I quickly gave myself some slack and lived in the moment as a new mother."

Society still has work to do in terms of letting go of "snap back" culture. But hopefully hearing Munn and other celebrities call out the problematic idea will help new moms quiet the noise that is pressure to return to their pre-pregnancy bodies as quickly as possible and show themselves some love in this new role.