Lu and I in Ojai (more to come on our awesome 24 hours in Ojai next week); a sweaty me and Napper at Will Rogers last weekend.
Hellooo! Reporting from the last trimester. Past 7 months and still feeling really good, albeit more exhausted here and there. I have to say I do believe that continuing my exercise “routine” throughout pregnancy has really helped me mentally, emotionally and physically stay feeling good. Before I was pregnant I exercised probably 6-7 days a week– hiking, yoga, a short jog, a MDR pilates class. There was a part of me that wanted to just keep on keeping on during pregnancy- in all facets.
HOWEVER, a lovely thing happens during pregnancy- I don’t know if it’s hormones, or chemicals being released compliments of pregnancy, or just a shift that allows the unimportant events/obligations/social acquaintances to naturally fall away, but I have really found myself so much more calm, focused (on the right stuff, mostly!), and relaxed. Ok, back to how this applies to exercise– in the first trimester, according to my lovely pre-natal yoga teacher Patti Quintero at Yoga Works, you really need to back off exercise and slow down as the baby needs your “chi” (energy) so much in those first few months. This was easy advice to follow as I was pretty wiped out in the first trimester.
In the second trimester, you can ramp up your routine which I did attending several of my hardcore regular Vinyasa flow yoga classes at Yoga Works and Yoga Hop in Santa Monica, jogging, hiking and going to the regular MDR (kick your ass!) pilates classes. I’d say I was exercising on average 5 days a week. In the yoga classes, I would follow the class and make modifications for pregnancy – no deep twists, no crunches, no poses where you lie on your belly– and if something felt too rigorous, I would back off.
And then a few weeks ago, my low back started hurting and I was getting more fatigued in general. My incredible friend and acupuncturist, Gianna, told me to back off exercise and take it to 3-4 days a week. This was echoed by the pre-natal physical therapist I have seen twice in the last week. So, I’m listening to them and listening to my body. As it was explained to me, a chemical released in a pregnant woman called relaxin, relaxes all the ligaments (to make way for baby), causing certain muscles- especially around your abdomen to work harder to keep things in place. Therefore, we want to be more gentle with ourselves as working out too much can cause strain and unnecessary fatigue/soreness on the muscles. No thanks!
So my current routine is yoga and hiking or walking 3-4 days a week, lots of stretching and more rest and relaxation than usual– I am embracing it and really trying to let go of my type A thoughts and urges that rest and relaxation equal laziness, and that I am going to turn into a house.
Pregnancy has truly been the greatest gift in self awareness, self love, acceptance and expansion — in every way. Does that sound gushy? Oh my!
What are you other pregnant mamas doing, not doing during pregnancy?
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