Ahhhhhhh Saturday . . . such bliss.
I still can’t believe it’s December! Holy Hannah, that kind of snuck up on me.
On one hand, I have opened up my Lindor Advent Calendar (the big one from Costco, because Christmas comes but once a year). On the other hand, Christmas is now officially 17 days away. Good grief.
With the holidays approaching at Mach speed I fully anticipate many, MANY yummy treats.
I’m addicted to cookies. That is my treat of choice. That being said, I do not discriminate against any pastries, pies, or squares.
Unless there are raisins. I’m not okay with that.
Like many people, I trust that I will have a few pounds to shed in the new year. However, this year is a bit different.
Being pregnant, I am not looking to lose weight. I am going to inevitably gain weight, but my goal is to keep my weight gain at a healthy level for MY body.
My Plan of Attack (this time around)
Prior to becoming pregnant the first time, I was quite active. So when I found out I was expecting, I knew that staying active would be best for my growing baby and me.
It turns out that my heart and mind were in the right place, but my execution was totally off.
I knew NOTHING about prenatal fitness, and I ultimately gave up all activity besides walking for the remainder of my first pregnancy. Unless you count lifting 5-pound weights. In bed. While watching 90 Day Fiance.
But, I am an expert on prenatal fitness now (pfft not even close).
What I actually mean is that I did some research and found an amazing little prenatal fitness gem, right in the heart of my city. It is called Fit Your Life and it is owned and operated by two phenomenal fitness mamas. After being cleared for takeoff by my obstetrician (always consult your physician prior to beginning an exercise program), I signed up!
Why prenatal fitness? Can’t you just do any type of fitness class?
No. As I have learned over time (and pregnancies) certain types of activity can be detrimental to your body. Everything is changing when you are pregnant. For example:
Joints are relaxing
Ligaments and muscles are stretching
Organs are shifting
Baby is growing and taking up space
Your sense of balance is declining
These are just a few examples. Thanks little baby:). Mama always wanted to have stretched out ligaments.
Because of these changes, you want to keep your workouts low-impact, and you do not want to do any movements that can harm your pelvic floor or your abdominal muscles. You bet your booty that those muscles are parting like the Red Sea as Baby grows. Don’t worry. It doesn’t have to be permanent or drastic.
Prenatal fitness classes, from what I have learned in my experience, really focus on keeping your core and pelvic floor safe and strong. I have to admit that I didn’t realize it after having my first child, but a growing baby and stretching stomach really puts lots of strain on a woman’s pelvic floor. This can lead to issues like incontinence, back pain, and instability to name a few examples.
After having my first baby, I did feel the aftermath of a weakened pelvic floor when I attempted my first postpartum pushup. I thought my bladder was going to fall out of me. That’s when I called a recommended physiotherapist specializing in postpartum pelvic floor health. She was a lifesaver. Read more about that here.
Needless to say, I am going to be much more proactive this time! Hey, it’s all about learning. I figure we only get one body, so you bet I am going to care for mine.
Why Fit Your Life?
I could just say that I love EVERYTHING about Fit Your Life, but I will narrow it down a bit. What I love most is:
The sense of camaraderie and support among women
The energetic atmosphere
Knowing that I can work at my own pace and that the exercise moves are safe for me
Knowing that I am being guided by knowledgeable professionals
Feeling like there is no shame because we are all in the same amazing boat
How I feel when I leave class: Sore and empowered
All of these positive feelings are truly priceless. It is so phenomenal knowing that you do not have to go through your journey alone.
Chatting with an Expert
Kellie (founder and co-owner of Fit Your Life) and Jamie (co-owner of Fit Your Life) are extremely knowledgeable in their fields. They offer not only a prenatal/postpartum, professional health perspective, but a “mom” perspective as well. They are always eager to answer your fitness or parenting questions. And let’s be honest, they are truly the sweetest women you could ever meet.
Kellie was kind enough to answer a few questions that I had.
What inspired you to begin Fit Your Life?
Kellie: I was inspired to begin Fit Your Life as I neared the end of my first maternity leave. I had worked in the fitness industry for nine years (at that time) and had been a Registered Nurse for three years. My hope was always to combine the two – my passion for fitness with the science of nursing – and here Fit Your Life was born! My goal was to provide the women of Edmonton high quality prenatal and postnatal exercise options in a small and supportive group setting.
What is your professional background?
Kellie: I have a Kinesiology Diploma from Red Deer College, where I specialized in fitness and health promotion. I transferred to the University of Alberta to complete my Bachelor of Physical Education in 2008. I then went on to complete my After-Degree Bachelor of Science in Nursing, also from the University of Alberta. I am a Certified Exercise Physiologist and have completed many courses and professional development opportunities in both fitness and nursing. I have primarily worked in obstetrics since becoming a Registered Nurse in 2011.
What is your favorite part about teaching prenatal and postpartum classes?
Kellie: My absolute favorite part of teaching prenatal and postnatal fitness classes is when I have the opportunity to train a client through her pregnancy, be present through birth, and then continue to work through her fitness journey as she enters the season of early motherhood. To develop this sort of relationship with clients is amazingly unique and extremely rewarding. I am continually humbled by the women who have returned to Fit Your Life for subsequent pregnancies and also by those who transition through our class styles as their seasons of motherhood and life shift. I have clients who have been training with me since Fit Your Life came to be and this is incredible!
Thank you, Kellie, for taking time out of your busy schedule to answer my questions, and thank you to you, Jamie and all the ladies of the Fit Your Life team who bring support, knowledge, and positive energy to each and every class!
In a Nutshell
No matter what city you are in, I HIGHLY recommend doing some research to find a prenatal class that can greatly benefit you and your baby throughout your pregnancy. I have been having the most wonderful experience. It is one hour every week dedicated to staying strong and taking care of me!
I also want to say, please do not ever underestimate how strong you actually are. It is easy to feel discouraged as you gain weight and lose balance and energy. Just know that there are solutions out there for you. I know I found mine 🙂