Mr. and Mrs. Coach are having a Baby Coach! Wooohooooooooo! A very exciting, very BIG surprise, to say the least!
I haven’t written a blog in a while, but felt the need to start penning down my experiences. I realise that this might not apply to the majority of my audience, but to be honest, it’s more for my own selfish purposes. And to be doubly honest. I’m pregnant. I do what I want.
Thus begins the Preggo Chronicles, detailing aspects of each trimester that I found the most interesting. My first trimester is split into three parts (obvs.): Mindfulness & Education, Nutrition and, the topic of this entry, Training. Now, in an ideal world, you would always address your nutrition first, but I’ve decided to write the Preggo Chronicles in the exact order that I have approached my pregnancy. And one of my first worries after learning I was pregnant… what am I going to do for my training tomorrow?!
I have worked with quite a few pregnant women before. I know exactly what they should be doing and how to adjust their workouts, but when I found out I was expecting, all I could think was, “What about me?! I have been following competitive programming since about 2014. I must surely be a special case”. So, I immediately set up a call with my coach to tell him the news. We discussed a few options and decided that I would think about where to go next, depending on how I was feeling over the next few days.
The following day, I listened to a podcast with a competitive CrossFitter who was, at the time, about 36 weeks pregnant. One of her comments really stuck with me.
When you’re pregnant, your goals and priorities change suddenly and drastically (maybe this is getting you ready for parenthood?). For this athlete, her goal was no longer to go to Regionals or to get her team to the Games. Instead, it was maintaining her health and fitness so that she could have a healthy pregnancy, the best labour possible, and a speedy recovery. When she found out she was pregnant, she decided to put her competitive programming on hold and stick with regular CrossFit classes. And she never felt healthier.
Hearing that gave me pause for thought. Who am I to think that, at this point in my life, I need some super special programming to keep me on the competitive track right through my pregnancy? Does that type of programming even exist? Why should my goals be so different from the pregnant women I have trained previously? I then re-visited my priorities and realised that I no longer gave a flying rat’s ass about my next competition. The only thing in my mind was doing my absolute best to give the little lima bean growing in my belly the best chance it could possibly get.
With that, I decided to put my competitive programming on hold and started following our class programming regularly, which has been amazing.
But that’s not all!
I also knew there was extra work that needed to be done to prepare my body for the changes coming its way. For this additional work (and also many of the resources that you’ll read about in the Education section), I sought out BirthFit’s Prenatal Programme. BirthFit has completely opened my eyes to a new, holistic way of approaching my training, both prenatal and postpartum. They have loads of information and advice on training, and I recommend anyone who is planning to get pregnant, is currently pregnant, or has just had a baby, check out their website with the quickness.
So now, what everyone REALLY wants to know…
What You Should & Shouldn’t Do for Training during Pregnancy*
This might be a bit disappointing because I’m not actually going to break down the movements that you should or shouldn’t do during your pregnancy (barring one or two). Everyone thinks pregnancy is all about the Black and White. The Do’s and Do Not’s. But, especially for women who have been training for a while, there is so much more Grey area. I’ve seen some women do handstands right up until the final weeks of their third trimester, and some women decide not to go upside down after their first month. Some women are completely comfortable going for a PB back squat, while others are perfectly happy never going above 75%. Every woman is on a different journey with her pregnancy and what was comfortable for me might not be comfortable for you. With that in mind, here are some general guidelines based on my training and coaching experience so far....