It is safe to say my fitness routine over the past 8 months has changed significantly. I have trained many women through their pregnancies and have done my fair share of research on what’s appropriate for them. BUT I will say there is nothing like experiencing it for yourself that will make you REALLY understand.
Even with that being said, I have watched many professional athletes and everyday women like myself do things through their pregnancies that have given me problems and vice versa. My point being, we all have a different experience training through pregnancy and there is truly no one-size-fits-all approach that we can apply to everyone.
The cliche of listening to your body is so true when it comes to training during pregnancy or any other situation that takes you out your norm. Luckily I have always tried to do this, but when having to consider another life inside of my body I have been tuned-in to the max.
So what’s changed for me personally through my pregnancy so far?
5 days per week of modified BP programming – I have been on this same schedule before but I used to have a little more time programmed in for lifts/skill work in addition. Those things have ticked off the list as I have gotten bigger anyway so they no longer exist in my program.
I remind and ask myself…”what is your goal?” That’s easy – Grow a healthy human, continue to move, and do the things to support as smooth a labor as possible (within my control). Before my goal was to conquer all the skills, fine tune my lifts, and build strength. So much has changed there as you can see. I approach workouts with a “get it done – move with a purpose” mindset and if something doesn’t fall into that category I remove it. If something doesn’t feel right that day or the next, I take note and I change it.
This is nothing super new here BUT I am tracking different things. The things I track now are the modifications I do for workouts. So since I have access to the programs early, I copy and paste them into my own document and adjust them in advance based on what I think I can do that week. I make note about workouts and how I feel during and the day after, and write down movements that are ready to be removed from my list.
As mentioned above, I have one goal and that is not to 1RM my lifts during pregnancy. I still work on the movement in the cycle but I fluctuate between 5s and 8s with lower percentages. My goal with the lifts is to be able to breathe through the lift without grinding reps and this has been a game changer. I also like to add a more isolated accessory movement during rest periods. This has been fun for me, and makes me feel good.
I have never been the type of athlete that “enjoys” cashing out in a workout. I like the challenge of more advanced skills but never really pushing myself to the limit in cardio cash out sessions – I just don’t have that switch or black out mode built into my DNA. So this part has been an easy transition. Losing the ability to do skills has been less enjoyable. During pregnancy I try to keep myself moving at a pace that is comfortable but living on the edge of challenging without feeling completely ransacked. Growing a human takes its toll on the body and my energy levels as is – so I like to use the workouts to feel better not to feel worse.
In some ways I feel I am becoming a better educated coach through my own experience, but in other ways I feel like my coaching (specifically my demos) have taken a backseat. For someone who LOVES to demo and coach and be so hands on, this has been a struggle. The control freak in me does not like to ask for help and have someone in class demo for me. The “talk you through this” demo works for some but I know creates confusion for my visual learners. I WILL be back to full steam coaching and I appreciate the patience of my athletes throughout this process until I get there. Thank you for trusting me to be your coach and bearing with the changes that come with this.
So far, everything has been pretty much smooth sailing. I have definitely pushed a little too hard here and there and wake up the next day and realize it, adjust, and move forward. That’s part of the learning process especially with a rapidly changing body for 10 months and beyond. I do feel like I will leave this process and be a better more experienced coach for going through it because now I will be able to relate better and understand more what my pregnant women are going through. Even if no pregnancies are the same there will be some similarities and I will be more ready to adjust, brainstorm, and help them adapt through the process of their own pregnancy and I am definitely pumped for that.
Here’s to embracing the Bluprint Way and a lifestyle of health & happiness.