Expert Advice - Nine Months of Never Quitting
By: Tiffany Maruniak, Kickboxing Instructor
Many people approached me during my pregnancy and asked how I could teach kickboxing or Crazy 80s Cardio when I was nine months pregnant. Well, here's the simple answer. I started working out before I got pregnant and I didn't stop when I found out I was pregnant. Many women believe once they become pregnant they can no longer exercise. The truth is, as long as you do not have a high-risk pregnancy or any pre-existing medical conditions, there is no reason that you shouldn't exercise during pregnancy. Of course, you should always consult with and follow the recommendations of your OB/GYN.
As many of you know, I taught classes at Art of the Catwalk throughout my pregnancy (until Marion finally cut me off!). I taught my last yoga class two days before I gave birth. Although there were some nights when I was exhausted and my feet were swollen and sore, I honestly believe that exercising throughout my pregnancy helped me in labor and delivery and during my recovery.
Let me be honest - pregnancy and labor does a number on your body. It doesn't matter how good of shape you are in, when you become pregnant your body stretches, moves, and morphs in ways you have never experienced. And the physical demands of labor are no joke. Many people said that my labor would be easy because I was in such good shape. I won't go so far to say that my labor and delivery was easy, but I will say that I recovered fairly quickly. I didn't have to use any pain medication in the days following the birth, and within a week I was walking for exercise. I did, however, give my body adequate time to rest, and waited the recommended six weeks following the birth before I began teaching classes again.
I also did myself a favor by controlling my weight gain during my pregnancy through a healthy diet and exercise. I did not let myself fall into the trap of "I'm eating for two!" The truth is you're not eating for two. You're eating for one, plus 100-300 extra calories per day. Remember, you're feeding a fetus, not a five year old…or a twenty-five year old. There's no need to double the amount of food you are eating because you're pregnant. I kept this in mind throughout my pregnancy and by the end I had gained 25lbs, which is considered healthy weight gain for pregnancy.
For me, the hardest thing about being post-partum is losing the last 10lbs of the baby weight. I lost 15lbs within a few weeks of giving birth and haven't lost much since. I had a healthy baby boy four months ago and I've still got approximately 10lbs to lose to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight. I just have to keep reminding myself that it took me nine months to put it on, and it may take me nine months to get it off. But, my goal is nine months to lose all the baby weight - no longer.
Having my first child was the best experience of my life so far. He is amazing and I am SO blessed to have him. And, just like his mommy - happy, energetic and he LOVES to kick! Pregnancy has definitely presented a whole new spectrum of challenges that I am slowly trying to conquer, but that's what makes life interesting!!
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The concept and mission of Flex Foods can be summed up in one old cliché "You are what you eat". We believe that healthier food options should be readily available to anyone who makes the decision to take charge of their life through their diet and lifestyle. www.flexfoods.co
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