How I Stayed in Shape During My Pregnancy
I’ve mentioned my pregnancies briefly throughout my blogs, but I really wanted to go into detail about my fitness journey and how I only gained 25 lbs. throughout those nine months. I bet most of you are thinking, “it must be genetics” or “her body just does well with pregnancy.” Well I can tell you it’s certainly none of the above. When I was pregnant with my son in 2012, I gained 50 lbs. by the end of my third trimester. That is twice the amount of the weight I gained with my daughter. So, what’s my secret? What did I do differently? The truth is, I worked HARD to stay healthy and fit this time around. Pregnancy doesn’t have to be all about “eating for two” or being “afraid” to stay active. If you are pregnant or plan to have kids is in the future, here are some tips to help you and your little one maintain a healthy lifestyle!
Set a Goal
Yes, you should have a fitness goal when you are pregnant. Set a specific goal just for those nine months. “I want to gain 30 lbs. during and lose 40 lbs. after,” is NOT a good goal. When I set my goal, it wasn’t necessarily the number that I wanted to maintain. I wanted to eat healthy throughout MOST of the nine months while maintaining a steady workout routine. If you’ve been through a pregnancy, you can agree with me when I say both can be extremely difficult to do!
Don’t Lose Motivation
There will be days that you give into any and all cravings, and there will also be days that you don’t even want to get out of bed let alone think about stepping into the gym. Pregnant or not, we all have those days. The important part is that you don’t let it ruin the bigger picture. Just because you ate that double cheeseburger last night doesn’t mean your goal is now unattainable. Wake up the next day with a positive mindset and motivated to eat right and stay active!
Create a Workout Plan
Nowadays there are MANY different exercise classes and workout routines that can be performed throughout your entire pregnancy. I suggest trying different things to find out what is most comfortable for you and your body. Create your workout routine and plan for a number of days per week to go. My “go to” workout was 9Round, a 30 minute kickboxing fitness routine. 9Round was everything I needed for the entire nine months, and I worked out 3-5 days a week (my goal was three workouts a week, depending on how my body felt) up until one week prior to my due date. There were a few exercises that I wasn’t able to perform, but the trainers were able to modify them for me. One of the benefits of working out at 9Round was the MyZONE heart rate monitor. I was able to keep an eye on my heart rate throughout my entire workout. When I noticed it was getting too high, I would bring down my intensity level or stop for a few seconds. You really have to listen to your body during physical activity, especially when pregnant. If you are feeling tired, don’t be afraid to stop. Most importantly, make sure you stay hydrated!
Focus on Upper and Lower Body Strength
A good friend of mine always reminded me to work on maintaining the strength in my upper and lower body. I am so glad I listened to her! Every time I worked out, I added push-ups and walking lunges (with weights) to my routine. Building and maintaining a strong lower body will help support your body while performing daily activities (walking up the stairs, chasing around your other young ones, walking at work, etc.) as you and your little one grows. Doing the same for your upper body can significantly improve your posture and alignment. Believe it or not, my push-ups (form and quantity) got BETTER throughout my pregnancy.
Make Healthy Eating Choices
Did I eat healthy foods every day for nine months? Absolutely not. I had the same cravings as every pregnant woman would have (sweets, french fries, pizza, etc.)! This time around, I didn’t give into every single craving. The longer I stayed physically active, the better my body would feel. The better my body felt, the healthier I wanted to eat. That feeling wasn’t just during my pregnancy either. Think about it. When you feel great about your body, you want to fuel your body with foods that will continue that feeling! If you don’t know where to start - don’t worry! 9Round memberships come with an AWESOME Nutrition Guide that will not only provide you with education on proper foods, but the online portal will create meal plans designed specifically for you.
Don’t let pregnancy be an excuse to put aside your fitness goals. It’s not as hard as women may think to continue a healthy lifestyle while creating a miracle! You don’t have to have a certain body type or fitness level. You just need to create a plan and always carry a positive mindset! Just remember to talk with your doctor before starting any type of fitness routine.
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