Exercise While Pregnant

A question I’ve gotten a lot, given my profession (Group Fitness Director at the Y), is if I’m continuing to teach classes, followed up by how I’m continuing to teach classes and exercise in my current delicate state.  (That delicate is total sarcasm btws.  I feel a lot of things.  Tired.  Big-bellied.  Kinda sweaty as it relates to my bra area.  But certainly not delicate.)

As kind of a frame of reference, here’s what I’m teaching in a typical week.  This is definitely down from my old usual – I used I teach one or two classes on Fridays (Zumba and Barre as needed), and I used to teach every Saturday morning Zumba.  I usually try to add a little bit of elliptical or treadmill in on these days – I do NOT do that on Mondays typically.  On Fridays, I work out with Jill, for a half-hour, down from the hour we used to do.  I’ve begun to make arrangements for my Mondays for over the summer, and the same for my Wednesday mornings.

Mondays – Zumba 7:20pm

Tuesdays – Total Body Strength (TBS) 5:30pm 

Wednesdays – 7:30am Cycle

Thursdays – 5:45am BodyPump™, 6:15pm TBS

Fridays – 5:45am BodyPump™ Express (this format is only 45 minutes)

The answer is that it’s doable, it’s all doable, but it’s definitely different.  Here’s how.  (And seriously, keep in mind that this is all going to be very different for everyone.  And that I’m not a doctor.  So don’t go doing something weird.)


So early in, even before I knew I was pregnant, something was different.  I was really fatigued in Flywheel, and assumed that it was the holidays, and that I just needed to sign up for a marathon or something to get my butt into fighting shape.  I continued with HIIT workouts, went to hot yoga, and continued to notice some fatigue, almost as if I was fighting some sort of illness.  In reality, I was starting to make a baby, and we were starting to fight for air, and the hormone dump in the beginning was contributing to my  fatigue and headaches.

  • Certain Core/Ab Work doesn’t really work for me anymore.  For weeks and weeks into the pregnancy, I was able to continue with some core work without much issue.  At some point, being flat on my back became sort of uncomfortable, so I’ve made the switch to demo-ing a lot of these moves quickly, and then switching over to planks, side planks, and standing core work, where my focus is really maintaining a strong core, and not getting a six-pack (obviously).  I believe it has helped some with lower back pain, but I’m not far enough in my pregnancy to definitively say that it’s working against back pain.
  • Lifting feels really good.  Lifting weights is probably one of the things that I’ve not only maintained, but gotten a little stronger with, and I really credit teaching and taking BodyPump™ with that.  My upper body is really strong, and my glutes/quads/hamstrings are really really strong from tons of squats and lunges.  I am careful with weighting squats, and I’m careful with lower back, even though clean/hang and clean and press are some of my favorite lifts.  I make sure to lift juuust enough, and not overdo it, and to really watch my form.  I have not really done a truly heavy deadlift, but just enough, once again, so that I’m engaging my lower back  muscles without completely overdoing it.
  • Running is a challenge.  I was a woman who swore that pregnancy would not affect my mileage, and when it did, it wouldn’t be huge.  It has been a big change.  The way things are set up for me, my son is having a great time, and all the equipment he comes with is really restricting my bladder.  The second I empty my bladder, it begins to fill back up, and when I do higher-impact exercises, I find myself ducking into bathrooms immediately.  So I tend to keep runs to 20 minutes or so.  It was definitely sort of discouraging at first, but I’m keeping up with it in other ways, so I feel okay about it.
  • Cycle feels good…even though I have to dial the crazy back a bit.  I have fallen in love with teaching Cycle, and I really enjoy how I sweat when I’m on the bike.  It really reminds me of a running sweat, without the damage I feel like I’m doing to my bladder.  As I get bigger, I may have to figure out how to accommodate my belly, but for now, it has been really awesome.  I do find on some climbs, I feel like I’m fighting for air, so I have to deal some of the up/down/up/down that shoots your heart rate through the roof back a bit.

I think pregnancy and remaining active is one of those things in which you walk a really really fine balance.  It is a necessity, to sweat each day.  However, within the bounds of a growing and changing body, it it necessary to sweat safely, and more so than ever, do so with proper form.  When you go for a run, the goal isn’t necessarily to kill yourself or burn the most calories, but perform this daily routine in the hopes that labor, delivery, and recovery (that one is the biggie) is as smooth as it is supposed to be.

Anyways, I’m enjoying figuring out what modifications work for me, all while eyeballing things I may like to challenge myself and do once I don’t have a belly in the way.

Pregnant or not, what’s your favorite way to stay fit?

22 Weeks – Changing it Up!

I thought I’d change up the questions this week because I was so late with my 21 weeks update, and I don’t want to bore you with the same exact questions.  Plus, I thought you might be interested in some of the questions I get, almost on a daily basis.  And then maybe you can stop asking me them.  Kidding!  (Kinda).

So I’m 22 weeks pregnant, which means I am pretty well halfway through the pregnancy.  I am not that fat, but I feel whaleish, so my go-to defense mechanism to to make a fat joke before other folks can, and it makes people really uncomfortable.  The baby is about the size of a spaghetti squash, which sounds HUMONGOUS, and is moving around a good bit.  It’s a little boy, and he’s due on September third of this year.

Onto the questions!

How are you feeling?  Really weird, honestly.  Physically, things feel like they changed overnight.  Emotionally/mentally, I don’t feel like myself, and that’s weird for me.  I feel a little uncomfortable in my own skin, and very crabby sometimes.  I feel concerned that I have no real idea of what I’m doing, and that my natural approach is to just “figure it out” like everyone else does.  My lack of freaking out is freaking me out, in a sense.  But a mom recently commented on a post a few weeks back that, pregnant with her second, she doesn’t feel like herself.  The normalizing of that feeling in that statement made me feel much better.  

Are you still teaching?  Of course!  I get really surprised when people ask me this question because teaching is/has been a part of my job.  The classes that have become uncomfortable to teach are Step/Bosu classes, but I’m still teaching Zumba, BodyPump™, Cycle, and whatever else is needed.  I am not running nearly as much because it feels really really uncomfortable, like I’m hurting my bladder.  Even now, if I’m on the treadmill, I have to go to the bathroom before I start, and I usually have to get off to go again after a few minutes.  I’ve talked to some running moms about this, and sometimes it happens, and sometimes it doesn’t.  I wasn’t meant to run marathons this pregnancy, or maybe any of my pregnancies, but I do what I can.

You look really small!  Is the baby measuring okay?  Um.  I think people genuinely think this is a compliment.  Generally, I think it’s best if you don’t really comment on someone’s size, but folks think that telling you you either look huge or small, and then inquiring about your child’s health is okay.  It’s sort of not, and I have to hold back the urge to roll my eyes when I hear this one.  The measurement question really come from someone who’s really sweet, and I know she just didn’t think.

On the flip, an older person literally asked me if I was getting kinda fat.  When I told her I was pregnant, she seemed less than fully embarrassed,

Do you have cravings/are you sick?  Not really.  You’d really think you could eat nonstop while pregnant, but overeating is really not a thing.  The times I have overdone it, I get awful reflux, and I sit around feeling really really sorry for myself, trying not to puke.  It’s mostly just small meals and snacks, and nothing really in particular that I HAVE to have.  Other than seltzer.  I love seltzer and soda water.  I get loads from the Burger King down the street.

This is another point, but I don’t know how Burger King stays in business.  I go in there every other day or so to get seltzer, and there’re never really more than like 5 people at a time in there.  They haven’t changed the decor in like 30 years either.  I am so lost.

Do you know what you’re having?  Yes!  We’re having a boy.

Do you have names picked out?  No, not really.  We have plenty of time to think about it though, and I don’t really plan to share when we decide.  That’s for us, I think.


21 Weeks (A little late)20 Weeks – Halfway There19 Weeks…it’s a…18 Weeks17 Weeks16 Weeks15 Weeks14 Weeks13 Weeks12 Weeks13087853_10100761203419223_4479589485685359983_n

20 Weeks – Halfway There

We’re halfway through the pregnancy, and I’m enjoying these updates.  Full disclosure – I had a full – on breakdown in the airport today.  I’m overwhelmed, I feel disgusting, my skin is really broken out, and generally, I did not feel like myself today.  Fair warning, please just know that this sort of feeling is not abnormal once in a while during pregnancy, and I think it will pass.

Baby is the size of a: Banana.  Last week was a mango, so I’m not really understanding how exactly that’s growth because I feel like bananas are really skinny, and mangoes are really fat.  Idk, interpret that banana however you’d like.

Due date: Sept 3rd, 2016

Total weight gain:  I have no idea.  Definitely on the higher end of the range I talked about last week.  Maybe 12-14 lbs?

Sleep:   Sleep is still okay, but I am waking up early every morning still to go to the bathroom.  I am struggling with this one.  I spent a lot of the weekend traveling, and I felt like I could not stop going to the bathroom.  So I’m fighting this battle when I’m out to stay hydrated and not have to go to restrooms constantly.

Best moment this week:  I went to Jersey, then into the City to visit some friends and family.  One of my friends was running her first half-marathon, so we went and made a day of it.  The race began in Central Park, and it was a positively beautiful day.  I am glad I went.

Food cravings:   Sparking anything.  I ordered a HUGE bottle of soda water while we were waiting at the race, and managed to down every single delicious drop.  (I definitely needed a bathroom break after that.)

Food aversions:  Meat is kinda grossing me out.  In the beginning of the pregnancy, I managed a few turkey sandwiches, and chicken sandwich here and there, but for some reason, the thought wasn’t doing it for me.  I’ve been dealing with a little bit of reflux, and I don’t know if that is somehow contributing.

Symptoms:  The constant bathroom thing!  It’s literally constant.

Looking forward to:  Sleeping in my own bed tonight.  I miss it.


19 Weeks…it’s a…18 Weeks17 Weeks16 Weeks15 Weeks14 Weeks13 Weeks12 Weeks

Gender Reveal Party!

I totally promised you guys I would share how the whole gender reveal thing went down.  Full warning, if you type in “gender reveal,” there are a number of really caustic responses to the concept.  Generally I was a little ??? at that because it’s one of those things, that if you find them so offensive, you really don’t have to go, but I guess people feel really strongly about them.

If you’re reallllly curious, I’m not going to link the article here, but there is one particular article that was in a popular women’s mag.  The woman seemed genuinely angered at the concept of the gender reveal, stating, “I love cake, but I don’t need to learn about your future kid’s genitalia just to enjoy some frosting.”  I mean, so go get yourself a slice of cake from Whole Foods, and decline the next invite.  No one is forcing you to go, right?

Anyhoo, Austin and I really like to get together with our friends/family.  We have since we got together.  And we thought a little gender reveal would be a neat way to get everyone together on a nice spring day.

So the way it worked: we went to get our anatomy/gender scan on Tuesday, which I talked about before.  It was pretty cool because we literally saw everything.  Brains, limbs, bones, major organs.  We were able to check for markers of major issues, and everything turned out to be developing nicely, which was a nice relief.

You ALSO have the option to find out the gender.  Which again, folks are split on.  Some people are like, “OMG no, you CANNOT find out,” and others are like “I would literally die if I didn’t know.” To each their own right?  But we wanted to find out kinda, have the gender given to this card shop that I love, have them give us confetti poppers, and pop them at a party.

So we had everyone come over around 2, and served really gross food.  By gross, I mean delicious, but it was like fried chicken, mac and cheese, dirty rice, mashed potatoes, potato salad, and desserts.  All prepped by me if you can believe it!  And by that, I mean, we ordered Bojangles.

So halfway through, when folks had been drinking and playing yard games for a while, we gathered everyone out on the lawn, handed our four or five confetti poppers from Thimblepress, and on the count of 3, we popped them to reveal that we were having a little boy!



This picture is facially awful, but if you’re curious about what the bod looks like about 20 weeks pregnant, this is it.


When all was said and done, I was, WE were, just so thrilled to have folks out there to celebrate.  We ended up hanging out super late, and falling into bed really fat and happy.

I’m just so excited to have a little boy.  I know that either way, we’d be happy and thankful for a healthy sweet kid, but I secretly love little boys and how sweet and snuggly they are, and I’m so excited.  We have NO clue on names, but we have some time to decide!

What were you up to this (last?!) weekend?

19 Weeks…it’s a…

You have to wait until the very very end of this post to find out.  No skipping ahead, okay?

Baby is the size of a: Mango.  I LOVE mango.  This is good.

Due date: Sept 3rd, 2016

Total weight gain:  Girl idk.  I’m gonna guess between the 10-12 lb range.  Sometimes I have a belly.  Sometimes not though when I haven’t eaten yet and that is super annoying.  I am very much in a stage when men are starting to think I’ve just gotten into the Cheetos.  It’s so funny, because most of these guys are too scared to ask.  And for good reason, I think.

Sleep:   Sleep has been a weird sort of thing for me.  I’ve been falling asleep ok, but I sort of get up around 3, 3:30 in the morning.  A few nights ago, it was a really terrible dream, and I just couldn’t get back to sleep.  I’m hoping to get a few hours tonight so I don’t want to curse at all during the day.

Best moment this week:  We found out the gender of the baby last Tuesday, and the anatomy scan was great.  It was so detailed.  I saw everything.  The baby’s brain, legs, bones.  The baby is pretty together, it just needs to do some growing.  It needs to be a little bigger than a mango for me to be able to hold it!

Food cravings:   Nah.  Whenever I think I really want something to eat, by the time I get it ready, I don’t really want it anymore!

Food aversions:  About the same.  Nothing super different.

Symptoms:  I pee just NONSTOP.  And you have to drink water or you’ll feel like shit.  But I pee day and night.

Looking forward to:  New York this weekend!  I am hopping on a plane and starting in New Jersey on Friday to see some family, and then Saturday evening/Sunday I am going to see the folks I group chat with on a daily basis from school.  I was gonna drive, but nearly fell asleep driving to DC, and decided to fly up.

So…want to know what we’re having?

It’s a…


LITTLE BOY!  I’ll fill you in on Wednesday on the reveal.


18 Weeks17 Weeks16 Weeks15 Weeks14 Weeks13 Weeks12 Weeks



Have you guys been watching this season of “Girls”?  I feel like the show was like kinda meh last season, and something in Lena really clicked…between her and the other writers, I really, really feel like they’re making some good tv.

Moving right along.

You know how they say to never shop when you’re hungry?  This is even more true when you’re pregnant.

So tonight, after I taught my Zumba class (thank God, because I feel like I did nothing else earlier), I had a real hankering for some dessert.  Unfortunately, I also wasn’t feeling great – a little pukey, and I knew like something terrible wouldn’t feel good.  So I thought about strawberries and Cool Whip, and decided on them with whatever I could throw together for dinner.

Two things.


Shopping for these two things, pregnant and hungry, I thought of every single snack scenario that I could possibly find myself in this week.  And that resulted in the purchase of:

  • Strawberries
  • Cool whip
  • Reddi Whip
  • Peanut Butter
  • Bananas
  • Pop Corn
  • Trop 50
  • Grapes

Heaven help me…I solemly promise that I will not shop again on an empty/pregnant stomach.

Or go to Target.

18 Weeks

How far along:  18 Weeks

Baby is the size of a: Sweet Potato.

Due date: Sept 3rd, 2016

Total weight gain:  I weighed myself early last week and it’s looking to be close to about 10 lbs or so?  I can be super obsessive about the scale, either way, so I’ve made it a point not to weight myself obsessively every single morning.

Sleep:  Sleep is still good.  You guys are going to get tired of this refrain, but I wake up every morning with my urge to pee SO desperate, I nearly die.  My older running friends say that’s a thing as you age, so that’s something we all have to look forward to.

Best moment this week:  I managed to get active every single day this week due to the fact I was in a Fitbit steps competition all week with some folks I know.  I lost, came in second, but it kept me moving every day and hitting my goals.

Food cravings:  I had some nachos last night.  TOTALLY regret it though.  The beans/cheese are really too much for me, and I woke up feeling kinda crappy.  I can do more like nacho salad type things, but the nachos themselves just won’t work.

Food aversions:  The same.  Cooking meat, and fish are just not interesting to me.

Symptoms:  One really gross thing happened this week, and I will let that just be a really fun surprise should you find yourself pregnant.  And my boobs are enormous.  Absolutely enormous.  It’s unreal. Do they make this size?

Looking forward to:  Sunday.  I will officially be 19 weeks then, but we will get to find out if we are having a boy or a girl!  We are having a few people over to play yard games and to find out with us.  I am really really anxious about the scan – that’s where they pick up if anything appears abnormal, so that’s been bothering me the last few days.

In case you missed it (or care)!

17 Weeks

16 Weeks

15 Weeks

14 Weeks

13 Weeks

12 Weeks

17 Weeks

How far along:  17 Weeks.

Baby is the size of a: Turnip.  Turnip for what ::cue Lil’ John song::.

No seriously, I barely know what a turnip is.  This one is a little lost on me.  This other app I use says white onion.  So white onion.

Due date: Sept 3rd, 2016

Total weight gain:  I will weigh in this week.  I have not stepped on the scale in a long time, but my clothes fit okay.  Except my bras.  This week I’m putting in an order for a few new sports bras and going to Soma for a new real bra.  I can’t squeeze into these old ones anymore.

Sleep:  Sleep is good.  I am always waking up to go to the bathroom early on.  Even when I nap.  Which this week, was a crap-ton.  Seriously, I slept all day on Good Friday, and part of the afternoon on Saturday.

Best moment this week:  I went to Step after my class on Tuesday evening, ran on Thursday, and then ran again and cycled on Saturday.  My energy comes in waves.  I am learning to completely take advantage of these pockets of energy.  Which is why I’m writing on a Saturday night and not passed out.

Food cravings:  Nope.  Since I had a good long weekend of eats last weekend, I really chilled on it this week.

Food aversions:  Not really.  Smells are kind of ick to me .  I ate a bowl of veggies with my dinner, and left the bowl on the desk I’m working on.  The smell is irritating me.  And it’s just like snap peas.

Symptoms:  Still really profound pockets of fatigue.  But they are mixed in with some energy.

Looking forward to:  The usual.  I feel like I’m really caught up at work, so time to catch up more on reviews for my team and stuff.  Makes me feel like a real Beyonce when I can be pregnant AND work AND work out at the same time.  Doesn’t always happen.  But feels cool when it does.

And in case you missed it…

16 Weeks

15 Weeks

14 Weeks

13 Weeks

12 Weeks

16 Weeks

How far along:  16 Weeks

Baby is the size of a: Avocado.  Can I tell you something hysterical about this.  Two people have asked me what size it is.  When I’ve told them, they’ve asked what sort of avocado I mean.  I know it’s super ethnocentric, but generally, I feel that the apps are referring to like general Hass, non-organic avocado.

Due date: Sept 3rd, 2016

Total weight gain:  I’m thinking just over that 5-7lb range.  Generally, I have stayed off the scale, but have been great about food.  Lots of green things.  Lots and lots of soluble fiber.  And lots of snacking.

Sleep:  Sleep is great.  Again, I am getting up in the early morning, now when it’s still dark to go to the bathroom.

Best moment this week:  I went to DC to see some friends over the weekend.  Started great, ended somewhat disastrously.  More on that later.  But I love DC, and I really hope that we can move up here in the  next few years.

Food cravings:  I had a really bad-for-you breakfast on Friday.  An egg and cheese biscuit and hash browns as I was leaving for DC.  It was delicious, but as soon as I ate it, I was like k, I’m done with that.

Food aversions:  Still red meat.  Not sure that will change.

Symptoms:  I’m actually still struggling with the headaches and some fatigue.  When I was driving up here on Friday, I actually had to call Austin and pull over for a little while because I was afraid that I was going to fall asleep driving.  I got word last week from my new ob that I’m actually suffering from some issues with my thyroid and I started medication for that at the end of of last week.  I also am going to see my nutritionist who I started seeing even before I got pregnant for some words of wisdom on this. When I wasn’t pregnant, I’d simply rely heavily on more espresso, but when you’re growing an avocado, you have to find healthier ways to cope.

Looking forward to:  Being productive this week.  I’m hoping for a little less fatigue and less falling into bed at the end of the night and more maybe doing things that aren’t crossed of the to-do list at the end of the day.

And in case you missed it…

15 Weeks

14 Weeks

13 Weeks

12 Weeks