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T25 Week 2: There’s Progress!

I was “cleared” to return to exercise on Thursday, after my doctor said I was good to go, he then asked “how long have you been working out already?” because he knows me oh so well.

Second week down, and while there wasn’t any movement on the scale (let’s be honest I had two pretty significant cheat meals in there) my cardio endurance has certainly improved. At this point the only reason I am stopping in the middle is because Little Miss needs some attention. IMG_0328

Lower Body continues to make me want to throw in the towel; Ab Intervals feel like a “rest day”; and those agility with jack feet in Speed 1.0 make me want to cry. It’s possible that I am wearing the wrong shoes (currently in Reebok CrossFit shoes) and that I am on carpet but my ankles often kill me when we do lateral moves.

We checked my ab separation at the appointment and it was very minimal (HUGE sigh of relief). Since having weak ab muscles is a new sensation for me, I added in a 12 minute postnatal ab routine from Body Fit By Amy daily. I didn’t feel a lot of the exercises which is normal, but I could feel myself getting stronger — leg lifts aren’t impossible anymore.

This coming week, I am hoping to try a short run and see how I feel. Considering we will have double Total Body for the next three weeks, I am hoping that some of the extra weight will start to come off. I know that my body needs weight training to really see a difference, but I am trying really hard to follow the schedule, especially since I don’t really have all the time in the world.

6 weeks PP, 4 weeks PP 40 weeks Preggo
6 weeks PP, 4 weeks PP 40 weeks Preggo

Just ignore how tired and unhappy I look in these photos, just you know going off of limited sleep here.

It is hard not to get obsessed with the number on the scale at this point, but I continue to focus on the small wins…like the fact that I was able to zip up a dress this past Saturday that I couldn’t the Saturday before. That I have more energy and continue to feel more like myself.

 

T25 Week One

Ok, so after a full week of barre workouts, I decided what is the harm in doing the first day of T25? If I can’t do it, even the modifications, I stop and just go back to barre workouts and walking.

So I jumped into T25 because I am impatient. I survived though. On the first day (cardio) I made it through the first 10 minutes without having to stop and gasp for air immediately. I’ve been mostly able to complete all the exercises without modification, or at least start them and just do a few seconds of the modifier toward the end.

a double day (back to back) required modification. Dylan was focused.
a double day (back to back) required modification. Dylan was focused.

The hardest part has been getting used to needing to wear two sports bras because these post-pregnancy boobs are a pain in the butt.

I know it is to come, but I do miss lifting weights. I am going to keep on the path because I have seen results. I am 3 lbs away from my pre-pregnancy weight (though I feel like that is an arbitrary number because I was mostly muscle and I don’t think I am mostly muscle right now) but more importantly I was able to zip up a pair of shorts that I wasn’t able to about a week ago. This was really the ah ha goal since it is May in Florida and I can’t live in leggings forever.

Now I know the rest of the next four weeks will be a combination of the different workouts. cycling through on different days, etc. but I am really happy that I don’t have to do lower body AND cardio on the same day again. There are very similar moves in both and I can only take so many lunges and and jump squats.

Total Body was probably my favorite of all the workouts since it had push-ups and it was more of the style of my preferred kind of workout.

keeping Dylan entertained during the workout if she is awake is also a challenge
keeping Dylan entertained during the workout if she is awake is also a challenge

We set goals for July (when I go back to work) and I have Girls’ Weekend scheduled for August 12th, which will require a bathing suit. So I am hoping by then I will be feeling a bit more comfortable in my skin.

we're sweaty but energized
we’re sweaty but energized

This week is my doctor’s appointment and while I have been working out regularly for two weeks now I am hoping I will get the go ahead to return to running and pilates. I think adding in a short run will help me shave off a few more pounds and the pilates trim my waist where needed.

The Postpartum Fitness Game Plan

If you know me, you know that I am incredibly impatient and like to immediately jump into things. So the fact that I haven’t been able to exercise the way I want to is killing me. I had these grand ideas of how I was going to jump right back into my fitness routine like so many others, but having a c-section makes that a little harder.

Right now, I am walking as much as Dylan allows, she doesn’t like the stroller and prefers to be carried…which is hot, sweaty and sticky, because we live in Florida. Again, because I am insane, walking isn’t cutting it…and I am itching to get back into an exercise routine that helps me feel more like myself. This isn’t about losing the weight so much as being more “Laney-like.” Though my current lack of muscle tone is scary.

The game plan as I have currently devised is the following:

Week 4: Begin integrating low impact such as barre DVDs and upper and lower body weight training where appropriate in addition to my walking

Week 5: test the waters with a light jog, continue with barre DVDs/upper/lower body weight training

Week 6: begin modified 21-day fix to help me build my strength back up (likely skipping the abs portions) I have my doctor’s appointment this week and will pray for full clearance and a better idea of what my ab situation is

Week 7/8: continue with modified 21-day fix with a return to pilates

Then pending how I am feeling I am looking to pick up either T25 or start from the beginning with Kayla Itsines’ program. Either one gives me the opportunity to do a quick workout while she is sleeping and at least for the beginning, the Kayla program I can do at home or at our community gym.

I’d also like to eventually go back to spin class and reintegrate yoga (maybe even the ultimate yogi) but I have to be realistic about time. Maybe on the weekends when Josh is home I can do one or two hour workouts, but right now we are focused on building back the habit.

It’s going to be a long road back but for me it is more about getting back into the routine of working out and being strong for her.

 

The End Is Nigh: 39 Weeks

I was fully convinced that I wouldn’t be writing this post. That my little five foot frame wouldn’t make it to “full term.” I was wrong, which is 100% ok, except that literally I am just sitting here trying to stay busy with work and not agonizing over when the Big Moment will come.

There has been absolutely no change in the last few weeks. Each appointment I keep hoping that I will hear something different, but no. I know that doesn’t actually mean anything since it can all change within 15 minutes. I am just uncomfortable as uncomfortable can be and the lovely strangers around me are now providing such wonderful observations such as: you haven’t dropped enough; or it will happen soon, but maybe not today.

Post a 45 minutes walk & lower body weight lifting circuit
Post a 45 minutes walk & lower body weight lifting circuit

In terms of actual symptoms…I hurt every where. I feel like I am dead lifting all day every day, my hips hate me, and it takes significant effort to put on socks and shoes. To the point where Josh is doing it if he is home; if he isn’t I probably spend about 15 minutes doing it because I need a break to catch my breath.

I am getting up probably every 2-3 hours or so to use the restroom throughout the night or just flip over to the other side. I have considered sleeping at a 90 degree angle propped up by my pillow fort but that too eventually hurts my hips.

I am trying to stay as active as possible, lots of walking, squatting and my normal exercise routine followed by bouncing on the exercise ball. I’ve been eating dates every day, and have purchased the ingredients to make the famous eggplant parm that can supposedly put you into labor.

Is this like a Field of Dreams thing...if you sit in her room, she will come?
Is this like a Field of Dreams thing…if you sit in her room, she will come?

This weekend Josh apparently caught the nesting bug and set up the pack n play, stroller, MammaRoo and monitor. While I slept on the couch because constantly napping is the only way I am getting ANY kind of energy boost.

So we will continue to play the waiting game until the kumquat decides she is ready.

35 Weeks: Serious Preparation Going on Over Here

The last few weeks have been consumed by significant Kumquat preparation. We moved into our house (2.5 weeks of home ownership FTW), I had a lovely baby shower, and we hit some major baby milestones including:

Nursery Furniture: Kumquat’s crib, dresser and glider h ave all arrived and we just have a few more items to get — the nightstand and ottoman. Then I can focus on the fun decorating parts. I do feel like I need to get the drawers organized a bit — the clothes are just so tiny! I heard the Ikea drawer organizers are the way to go.

Glider from West Elm, Natart Crib, Naturepedic Mattress
Glider from West Elm, Natart Crib, Naturepedic Mattress

Nursery Decor: My dad is coming back next week to help put up shelving and hang some pictures. We are going with a children’s book theme so I have a few of Josh and my favorite books from growing up all set to go on the wall. We don’t have any of the sheets yet…but she will likely be sleeping in our room for a bit so not sure that is entirely necessary right away.

Nursing Bra Fitting: That was an experience. I was sort of excited to hear that I haven’t gotten wider around, but I am terrified about what those boobs are going to look like when the milk comes in. I got I’ve also got the Cake ‘Rock Candy’ Seamless and Nordstrom’s Seamless. We are attending a breastfeeding class this week, that should be pretty interesting.

Packing the “Go Bag”: I also got most of the items needed for the hospital bag packed. I can’t find my compression socks from the move so need to track those down, but pretty much have everything in there that has been recommended. What are your thoughts on bringing something to put her footprints on? I know some people do it, but not sure I want to add another item to the list.

Car Seat Installation: We can totally take her home! Josh and I headed down to the Fire Station by Boynton Beach last week and learned how to put her in the car seat. I was scolded for all the “missiles” that are still in my car. I need to clean that out this weekend.

Chicco Key Fit
Chicco Key Fit

And now for your regular updates:

Baby Size: Kumquat is apparently the size of a honeydew or around 5 lbs, but I swear my back and legs feel like she is a watermelon.

Total Weight Gain: 22 lbs

Miss Anything: Being able to sit/lay down and get up without assistance. This whole roll to your side and hoist yourself up is kinda annoying.

Cravings: celery and peanut butter and the egg souffles from Panera

Symptoms: At this point, I can’t have anything tomato based at all for fear of an acid reflux flare up. It’s bad. Last Saturday it kept me up most of the night. I also suffered my first Charley Horse of the pregnancy this week. That was incredibly painful and I am still limping around a little.

Exercise: I am struggling with admitting that I do really have to slow down. At bootcamp last week, I got a little pink in the cheeks even though my stamina was fine. And I did 21 Day Fix Lower Body the other day, which may have contributed to said Charley Horse. I’ve cut running almost completely and am sticking to walking on an incline or just doing weight training. 65813966-BB7A-4B9E-8AB2-57CD339E610E

 

 

Workout Review: AcaciaTV

Since I have had a little more down time with the Holidays I called around to several yoga studios inquiring about a prenatal class. Shockingly NONE of the studio owners knew of a class in the area. Keith over at YogaFox explained the economics of it to me — you only have those specific yogis for a set amount of time so it is hard to have a standing class. Better off just modifying at your regular class. Fair enough.

Still, given my inability to back off…that idea makes me nervous. So I’ve been searching high and low for a prenatal yoga DVD, that really gives me the good stretch I’ve been looking for.

AcaciaTV has about 450 streaming workouts — two of which are prenatal yoga flows. It’s really easy to navigate via its drop down menus.

acaciatv homepage

You can also add different workouts to a fitness planner. I really love this function since I like planning my workouts for the week just like I do my menus. It keeps me accountable and I don’t have the excuse of not knowing what I am going to do that day.planner

I’ve already done Hilaria Baldwin’s DVD a few times, and it is good for a quick “trouble shooting” area. So I decided to try Desi Bartlett’s flow. It’s about 45 minutes though the screen says 58 minutes. The difference is that it also includes a sequence where she teaches you how to use a chair for support in some of the poses. I haven’t quite hit that point yet…sort of hope I don’t have to. That’s the idea behind continuing yoga right?
yoga home pageI really like this flow as a nice recovery day yoga flow. I felt relaxed and open after completing it. That’s really what I am looking for in a prenatal yoga flow something that relieves the tension in my shoulders and hips more than anything else.

Having access to this many workouts when it comes time for “body after baby” (I am already shuttering at the thought will certainly keep me motivated. They have workouts from 10 minutes to over an hour. I have a feeling that the 10 and 20 minute workouts are going to be my best friends in those first few weeks. A monthly subscription is $6.99, I haven’t sprung for a subscription yet, as there is a 10-day free trial and want to see how often I use workouts from here before I go all in. Bonus points that I can access it through Amazon Fire and Amazon Video app.

 

My Workouts Lately: The Pregnancy Version

It’s been a pretty long while since I posted — a combination of lots of major life milestones (my sister got married earlier this month so there was a bachelorette party and a bridal shower) and being swamped at work.

And truthfully, I just came out the other end of suffering morning sickness all day everyday, which really put a damper on my active lifestyle. My life pretty much revolved around eating every 2 hours so that I didn’t throw up, but of course being too exhausted in between that time to do anything because I wasn’t really eating that much food and of course the little human growing inside me taking all of my energy.

If I worked out once a week in the first trimester it was a huge accomplishment. Those workouts were a combination of the ones listed below.

Tracy Anderson: Pregnancy Project81RLwu2gFrL._SL1500_

I’ve never done a Tracy Anderson workout before, so didn’t really know what to expect. During the first trimester this was a nice way to get my heart rate up, and bring the nausea down. Tracy is a little spastic — meaning that you have to keep your own count because she sometimes loses count. When we are doing butt exercises I really do feel it. I use 5lb weights compared to her 2 or 3lb, but that’s just me.

Sarah Haley: Expecting More

Admittedly I haven’t done all the workouts in this series, but I have done the majority. They are pretty good workouts for someone who traditionally lifts and does cardio 5-7x a week. It is still a little bit slower than my traditional workouts so I find myself getting bored pretty quickly and easily. Not to mention Sarah’s “cute” instructions to “wave bye bye to baby” (when you are imagining a baby in a chair) makes me roll my eyes and I find myself glad that no one is around watching me do it.

51vU3gDHjrL

 

Fit-Mommy-To-Be: Hilaria Baldwin Prenatal Yoga 

Amazingly, there are no prenatal yoga classes in my area. This is apparently what happens when you live in the retirement capital of America. I have been doing Hilaria’s yoga routine at least once a week and its really helped keep my lower back pain and hip tightness at bay.

81S3REwUEEL._SL1500_

I also continued on with Orange Theory once a week, and pilates at least once a week. Now that I am in my second trimester and have more energy I am adding back in some of my more traditional workouts — treadmill, swimming, burpees. I have to keep reminding myself that I am not “out of shape” just “in a different shape.”

August Goals

Believe it or not, I feel like I did a really good job on my July goals. I didn’t really eat any processed foods, and somehow didn’t find myself constantly reaching for a bag of gummies despite all that was going on with work, it might have something to do with the fact that when I got stressed I did yoga or abs for 10 minutes rather than give in to my sugar cravings.

1. Give in to sleep. I’ve always been a terrible sleeper. At three, I cried hysterically in my bed about  how I couldn’t go to sleep because I had to do my homework. I was also that child that could not take a nap…just couldn’t. Lately though, I have found myself craving sleep more. So I would like to go ahead and say in bed by 10:00pm most nights (probably excluding weekends).

2. Get back to meal prep. We haven’t been meal prepping like we used to…i.e., taking 2 hours on Sunday to do most of the cooking for the week. I think it is time we get back at it (though I feel like I am setting myself up for failure here, because I am literally traveling every weekend except one this month).

3. Swimming. I’d like to get back in the habit of swimming at least once a week. Also the July/August 2015 issue of SHAPE has this ridiculous 30 minute pool workout. It includes laps, burpees, wall kicks, push ups, and more. I haven’t figured out how its safe to do burpees on the pool deck without shoes…but I’ll let you know.

not me...
not me…

How to Stay Fit While Traveling

As we know, I am a frequent business traveler. I have my yoga and cycle studio that’s around the corner, and I get a yoga mat delivered to my room. But what about when I am traveling for leisure?

We recently got back from a cruise, and despite being surrounded by water, found ways to keep fit. In addition to utilizing the ship’s gym every day we also picked excursions that were more on the active side than the leisure.

In San Juan we went on a 12-mile bike ride around the city. We went up a few hills, saw some of the local areas that we otherwise wouldn’t have, and highlights of the city. Our guide told us great local-folklore and made it so that we really could indulge in some of that tasty food I had heard about.Cruise 038 Cruise 041 Cruise 036

In St. Maarten we went snorkeling by the famous beach where the airplanes land right over your head. We got to experience one of the “must do” activities while also getting to swim around and explore the crystal blue waters.101_0210 101_0212 Cruise 063

In St. Kitts we had planned to go hiking up a volcano, but after reading reviews, opted for zip lining instead. It was such a cool experience. While more on the easier side we did still use some of our upper body strength. Cruise 069 Cruise 066

I like to find these kinds of funtivities on our vacations because I just feel like we get to experience more than if we were just shopping. Cruise 101

 

Workout Review: Chaise Fitness

I am apparently very into the whole hybrid class thing right now, and Chaise Fitness absolutely falls into that category. When you first hear you are working with a “chair” images of a sexy little strip tease may come to mind. At least it did for a colleague of mine…but the word chair is used very liberally here. IMG_4197

I took the Reinvention class, as this is their signature class and I wanted to start with the basics. I arrived 15 minutes before class, as instructed to get a tutorial in the chair. Cat (the instructor) showed me some basic moves and introduced me to the bungees and how not to fall off. The chair is more like a padded stool, with a bar that you push down on and you adjust the resistance to make it harder. Then you have these bungees that are suspended from the ceiling. They are there both to work your arms and hold you up. IMG_4198

Here’s something else I learned while being there early….people LOVE Cat. She had recently gotten engaged and her regulars were just so excited for her and brought her gifts. It was a really sweet thing to see.

Anyway, the class itself is a combination of pilates, barre, a little ballet and aerobics.

Cat had us performing pumping moves with our arms in the bungees, core work while balancing on the chair and leg work balancing on the chair while utilizing a small ball.  We did some tricep dips off the side of the chair as well as boat poses and C curves while sitting on the chair.

One of the moves that I felt a little uncomfortable in was a signature chair move included lying on one side on the chair with legs straight and one arm resting on the bar while the top arm remained in the bungee and extended straight.  We then pushed down on the bar lowering it towards the ground and back up again.  This created tension in our arms and core and although we were lying on the chair, we still needed to maintain our balance.IMG_4195

Pikes were also pretty tough, in the fact that you really have to engage your core the ENTIRE time so that you don’t hit the ground at all. We stand on the bar with our hands on the chair, using our abs we allowed the bar to lift off the ground and pushed it back down again in small pulsing movements that worked our abs and legs.  A variation of this move included standing with one foot on the chair, knee bent and pushing the bar down with only one leg.  IMG_4194

They have several other classes, including a Cardio Chair, which was going on when I first got there. And truthfully it terrified me. I’m absolutely going to try it though.