Nike just dropped an empowering maternity ad that features pregnant and breastfeeding athletes.

"Can you be an athlete? You, pregnant? You, a mother? That depends," the 'Toughest Athlete' ad begins. The film shares clips of more than 20 mothers in various stages of pregnancy and postpartum life, including Serena Williams and USWNT soccer star Alex Morgan, plus track stars Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Perri Shakes-Drayton, Nia Ali, and Bianca Williams.

"What is an athlete? Someone who moves? Sounds like you," the ad continues. "Someone who gets it done, no matter what? You do that. Someone who listens to her body. Also you. Someone who defies gravity. You. Someone who deals with the pain, hits her limit, and pushes past it. Pushing, pushing, pushing. Someone who earns every single win. You, you, you. So can you be an athlete? If you aren't, no one is."

It's a powerful message that newly pregnant and experienced moms need to hear. The things we do with our bodies are incredible. We are athletes.


The Toughest Athletes | Nike (M) www.youtube.com

To keep the mothers featured in the ad safe during the pandemic, all the video shoots were filmed over Zoom. How's that for moms getting things done?

The ad promotes Nike's new maternity line, Nike (M), which launched last fall. Nike says the line is all about reminding moms that they're stronger than ever.

"Pregnancy is the ultimate endurance test. A marathon measured in months, not miles," says the company's website. "Some days you feel powerful. Other days, you don't. But you keep going, because you're a mother. And mothers are the toughest athletes there are. Nike (M) is designed to support you on the ultra, ultramarathon we call motherhood. You are stronger than ever. And we're with you every step of the way."

Nike also partnered with pre-and post-natal exercise expert Jane Wake to create four guided workouts specifically for motherhood in the Nike Run Club app.

Pregnancy and motherhood are truly transformative experiences. It's easy to feel overwhelmed with all the changes to both your body and life. That's why we love seeing pregnant and new moms featured in ads like these. They help remind us that we're not alone and that we're more powerful than we might give ourselves credit for.