Mother and Baby

Joe Wicks talks weaning and the best parenting advice he's ever been given

Section: Celebrity Mums

Joe Wick's transition from Body Coach to doting dad has been as effortless as his renowned Chicken Curry in a Hurry, which had the entire nation whipping up healthy meals in less than 15 minutes. 

Whether it's his adorable posts of his family, partner Rosie Jones and their 10-month-old daughter Indie, his brand new venture Wean In 15 (genius, huh?) or his social media channels stacked with delicious health inspiration, we can't get enough of the former personal trainer. 

We have a few questions, of course. How is Joe finding fatherhood? What's his most exravagantent parenting buy to date? What are his tips to parents who 'haven't got time to be healthy'?

"You need to find time" he replies matter of factly. "Your health and your happiness are very important too." 

Mother&Baby spoke to Joe Wicks to find out all... 

What surprised you most about becoming a dad?

I think just how wonderful and stress-free it is. Some people try and scare you and tell you it's the end of your life and you're not going to sleep... or you can't go out for dinner or the cinema!

I don't ever look at it like that, I think it's wonderful. I'm glad Indie needs me, even if she cries at night - I love that bond I've got with her. I thought it was going to be a lot harder, I thought I'd need a nanny. I thought I'd need lots of babysitters. We've obviously got the grannies, my mum and Rosie's mum, who will help look after the baby for dinners and stuff, but it's just not as difficult as I thought it would be, if I'm honest. 

What's the best piece of advice you've been given?

To not listen to any advice! Your baby is so individual and everyone has their own experiences with kids and think their way is the best way to do it. But ultimately, your baby is so individual. I've learned on the job, really.

What kind of dad are you?

The reason I feel this way about Indie is that she's a very laid-back, she's a very calm baby. She's not a nightmare and she's really chilled. So I'm always relaxed around her and I make sure I stay laid-back.

I always create a nice, calm atmosphere for her, especially for when she's eating dinner or during bathtimes. I think because me and Rosie are calm, it makes her calm.  

What kind of dad did you imagine yourself to be?

I'm exactly how I thought I'd be, I thought I was going to be a fun dad. I do like taking her out for walks and I get out and about with her. I'm silly!

I jump around with her and pull the silliest faces and I do anything I can to make her laugh. Rosie ends up laughing more than Indie, she looks at me like I'm a weirdo! 

What's the one product that's always in your baby changing bag? 

Mainly nappies, baby wipes and a dummy, that's about it really. I do put a little bit of coconut oil on her, but I'm not a fan of using lots of creams and lotions and like to keep things a bit more organic. 

What's your most extravagant parenting purchase so far?

I'd say probably her pushchair, that was bloody expensive. I didn't realise you could spend a grand on a buggy! The one we got for Indie is from Joolz. 

How have you maintained your healthy lifestyle since becoming a dad?

I'm really lucky that, because I work from home a lot, I can be around them and spend a lot of time with Indie and Rosie. I can take them both on work trips and I'm really fortunate in that respect. If I'm out all day or I'm away working for a couple of days and I don't see them, I really miss them. I realise that most parents have that life, where they have to go to work, come home and put their baby to bed, so I'm really lucky I can be present in my baby's life.

I've got my businesses online, I can take them to America and take them where ever I go and I'm quite proud of that really. 

What're your top tips for parents who find they ‘don’t have the time to be healthy’?

You have to find time! Even when Indie an allergy the other day and reacted to nuts and we had a stressful day,  I thought "I'm still going to get my workout in." So when she was in bed and all okay, I went and did a workout. It's just about finding the time!

You've got to find time for yourself because you're looking after someone and that's wonderful, but your health and your happiness are very important too. You can still be a great dad or mum, but you need to look after your health and prep your meals and get your workouts in. 

Tell us more about your Instagram page, Wean in 15...

It started as just an idea, my brother said to me "One day you should start a cookbook called 'Wean in 15' for baby food" and I laughed and thought, "no that won't ever happen!" But then, I really started to think and actually I'm about to start weaning and it's a really scary time and you don't know what to give them or what's the right food.

So I thought it would be a really great idea to start sharing my experiences and I made a new Instagram solely dedicated to that. The response was incredible, the engagement on the page was mad! Everyone's looking for advice and it's difficult as there are so many confusing messages around about what you can and can't do. So I thought I'd dispel some myths and give out some useful information. It all digital at the moment and will be a cookbook coming out in June 2020. 

What are your top tips for parents who are weaning?

So, my tips for weaning are to have fun and there is ultimately no right or wrong. As long as you're not giving them certain things like salt and honey and certain things you can't give them. Just have fun with it and remember every child is different. We all end up eating, you know, whether your baby doesn't like it at first or rejects it. Be calm and patient and don't make it a stressful situation. If Indie doesn't want her food, we just try again in an hour and then she eats it. It's just a case of being more flexible with it, I think. 

The Joe Wicks x Gousto range is live now, with more recipes launching every week. Lean in 15 recipes are live on www.gousto.co.uk from April onwards. Meals start at £2.98 per person and Gousto offers up to 40 weekly recipes to choose from. 

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