Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Training Post Baby

I'm about two months into the start of post baby training.  It's been a very gradual transition.  A week or two after the little nugget was born I started back with planks and one or two other core moves.  Gradually adding back walking and increasing time.  Then introducing running again after walking felt completely normal. Swimming I was able to start back pretty quickly.  The first time back felt so weird swimming without the little one in my belly.  I got back on my bike as soon as I felt like I could stand sitting on the bike seat comfortably.

Everything is thrown off from pregnancy and child birth.  It's so important to build core and hip strength back and to be careful not to over stretch the first couple of months back, since your ligaments are still pretty loose from pregnancy.  Of course always consult with your healthcare provider about when is right for your body to resume activity and at what level.

This time feels very different than my return with my first child.  I gained a little more weight this pregnancy and the birth was almost half the time of the first one.  It was easier to get back to it this time.  I'm a lot more motivated after #2.  Before #1 I was very burnt out on training and racing before.  I had been racing for about 10 years when I got pregnant with baby #1.  It was time to take a break.  With the semi-retirement and the extra weight I'm very motivated to get back to it this go round.

Balanced training helps me to be a better mom, spouse, and person.  Mixing core/strength, foam rolling, yoga, meditation, swimming, biking, and running help enormously with the stress of raising a toddler and infant along with other daily life stressors.  It's a lot to fit in, but doing even 5 minutes of yoga and/or meditation daily along with my other training do a world of good.

I don't stress as much over missing workouts or schedule changes as I use to.  With one kid it's hard for sure and two even more challenging.  One kid is throwing a fit and the other explodes their diaper and needs to nurse all when you need to head out the door for your workout at the only time slot of the day you have... workout not done.  C'est la vie.  Tomorrow is a new day with new opportunities.  I've learned over the years, and especially since having kids, of letting things go.  Meditation really helps with being accepting things as they are.  (A very good tool to have in your toolbox for race day!)

I was introduced to the meditation app Insight Timer recently.  It's a great tool that has guided meditations or you can do custom sessions.  There are so many yoga videos out there... dvds, apps, online courses.  These things make it easier to incorporate into your daily training with hectic schedules.

It's especially hard to fit in training when you are so tired... getting in at least a 10-15 minutes workout is a great way to feel that sense of accomplishment but not totally zapping the rest of your precious energy when returning post baby.

Snuggle those little ones then get out for some training!

Happy training!
~Coach Angy

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Training During Pregnancy

Training doesn't have to stop while pregnant (as long as the pregnancy is going well and exercise is approved by your provider).  Just need to be smart about it.  Communicate with your care provider and listen to your body.  Generally you bring down the intensity and shorten the distance when you are pregnant.  Most women I know stop running around 6-7 months because they just feel it's uncomfortable after that... but there are some that feel ok running all the way through.  Again, listen to your body and keep open dialogue with your care provider.  I wasn't able to run during my first pregnancy, but my second I have been able to.  Swimming is probably the best sport you can do while pregnant (definitely my favorite behind yoga when pregnant).  Less stress on your joints and takes the pressure off your back and other areas from the weight of the baby.  

Not only does exercising while pregnant help your health but the health of your baby.  It also makes labor easier... by keeping your muscles relaxed (from yoga and stretching... but be careful not to over stretch since your ligaments are looser) and strong.  Also, helps with stamina for labor.

During labor it really helped me to pull from those really tough training days and from really challenging races to remind myself I could do it and deal with the pain.  Meditating and yoga during pregnancy also really helped with coping with the pain of labor.

Here are some of my favorite resources.  Videos, apps, and books.

My favorite late 2nd trimester/3rd trimester youtube yoga videos.

Some yoga dvds:
Prenatal Vinyasa Yoga and Short Forms by The Dolphin Method
Prenatal and Postnatal Yoga by element the mind & body experience

Buff Moms-to-Be The Early Workout (if already in pretty good shape doesn't really feel like much of a workout but keeps you moving and helps stay toned.)

iPhone Apps:
(there's a free version and a paid one. Get more workouts with the paid version)  - workouts are by trimester and are challenging enough if you are already in great shape to feel like you got something out of it but not too challenging so that it's still safe while pregnant.

Kegal Trainer - there is a free version and paid.

Exercising Through Your Pregnancy by James F Clapp III MD and Catherine Cram MS

Runner's World Guide to Running and Pregnancy: How to Stay Fit, Keep Safe, and Have a Healthy Baby by Chris Lundgren

What to Eat When You're Pregnant: A Week by Week Guide to Support Your Health and Your Baby's Development by Dr. Nicole M. Avena

The Pregnant Athlete: How to Stay in Your Best Shape Ever--Before, During, and After Pregnancy by Brandi Dion and Steven Dion