Wednesday morning, I taught my normal cycling class, and because my office is right upstairs from where I teach, I made my way up to the the wellness floor eventually. I sent emails, sipped water (second job these days), meandered in and out of talking to the trainers, all while I waited for my 10 am meeting to start.
A gentleman who I’ve known from my time at Whole Foods and just from around town, who’s always been a little more familiar to me than I would like, point-blank asked me…
“Do you have something to tell me?”
Mentally, I thought, “are you my probation officer,” but I kind of blankly stared at him until he continued.
“I didn’t know if you were pregnant or if you had stopped working out.”
What. The. Fuck.
Similarly, two nights later, I was actually running on a machine, and a really sweet woman pointed at my belly, and asked “what’s that?”
Now, I don’t fault anyone who wants to tell the world exactly what’s going on with them, and when. If you want to tell folks you’re pregnant the second it happens, if you want to point out that you’ve gained a little weight and you’re feeling weird about it, or if you want to share that you’ve lost, that’s cool.
But along those same lines, should you want to tell some folks, and not others (like strangers whose name you’re not sure of), that’s okay too. You’re allowed. It’s your info to share with whomever you see fit.
Because you don’t owe them any sort of explanation about your body. They’re not your doctor. Your best friend. Or someone with a vested interest in your health. Or your probation officer, as I thought when Mr. Too-Familiar commented.
I think what we all can learn about this is to pay better attention to the comments we make about other peoples’ bodies. Surely, it’s one thing if you are any of the aforementioned parties with a vested interest in a person’s well-being. But it’s certainly another if you’re “just curious,” and fishing for your own curiosity.
As a person in wellness, I’m sensitive to this on both sides. People I interact with on a daily basis lose weight. They gain it. I’ve worked with folks who’ve had bariatic surgery. Folks who’ve transformed their bodies through running. And folks for whom the struggle to reconcile their relationship with food has been a challenge, and who’ve fallen off the wagon and gain tremendous amounts of weight.
In either case, we as not entitled to this information simply because we’re curious, and the best way to approach this is, if you would like to ask, ask if the person would mind, with the full knowledge that they may not, or that they may not want to talk about it.
Anyways, Happy Friday – here’s hoping that nobody points at your belly, and asks, “what’s that!”
So I just got back from one of the first “runs” (shuffles) that has felt somewhat decent since I found out I was pregnant back at the end of December.
I promise you, before I got pregnant, I had all of these fantastic mental plans to be the fittest mom ever. My reasoning was that hey, I’m super fit now, what would change, right?
The first trimester Kicked. My. Ass. And not because I was so sick, but because I was so incredibly tired. Even before finding out I was pregnant, I remember running while I was listening to an episode of Serial, and just dragging myself around, not exactly knowing why I felt that way, but resolving to sign up for a race or something to get my butt back in gear. Woops!
Since finding out, I’ve continued teaching my classes, run a little bit, and supplemented some of my longer, bigger runs throughout the weeks with some time on the treadmill and on the elliptical. I struggle with feeling like I’m not doing enough, but I can only do what I can, and not a whole lot more, so I’ve just stuck to that.
If you’re struggling with any of the same, I don’t know that I can offer a whole lot of wisdom, just what I’ve found to sort of help keep me from laying on the couch for days at at time.
- Decide that staying active will be a priority. This could mean that you might have to redefine what “active” means. It may not be 6 miles in Umstead on Sunday mornings. But it might be hiking, biking, shorter runs, or whatever. But reworking your priorities and making nutrition and staying active will be huge.
- Listen to your body. Admittedly, I still struggle with figuring out if I just suck, or if I’m really worn out because of what’s going on. But I work up sweat without hurting myself. For me, some light cardio and weights have been really good for me. Body Pump feels AWESOME. Running, not so much. So I do what I feel that I can.
- Track it. I don’t know how anyone, let alone the newly-pregnant, did anything without tracking their activity/steps, but my Fitbit has been one of the only things that has kept me on track, especially during those weeks when I could barely muster the energy to get off the couch. The numbers can motivate you to get outside, or hop on a treadmill and…
- Just walk. This is hard to hear for marathoners/ultra runners/crossfitters, but walking is fine. It’s good. It’s okay. And really good when you have a buddy. So take a friend, take your husband, or take some headphones (be careful with them)!
Fit moms, did you/how did you stay active while pregnant?
Hi! I hope you had a great weekend. I miss you. Lots of fun things this week!
Baby is the size of a: Large Lemon
Due date: Sept 3rd, 2016
Total weight gain: I have gained in total, 5ish pounds, but that really fluctuates depending on what I eat/drink.
Sleep: Not as constant. I can get through the day without a nap. My night time sleep is usually interrupted by a bathroom break in the early hours of the morning.
Best moment this week: Definitely more energy. I got through a pretty good workout on Friday with Jill, and it felt good to actually do something that I can draw some strength and energy from. I also taught another Pump on Friday morning – so I feel like some of my mom fog is lifting.
Food cravings: Not a whole lot. I would like some pickle chips. But they’re too hard to acquire and hard on the stomach.
Food aversions: Cooking meat. The smell is so appalling to me. I feel like I can particularly smell blood in red meat, which is so scary.
Symptoms: Just tired, and a little lazy 🙂
Looking forward to: More blogging this week. You guys into it?
How far along: 13 Weeks
Baby is the size of a: Small Peach.
Due date: Sept 3rd, 2016
Total weight gain: I haven’t weighed myself at all this week. My boobs are still huge, and I’m definitely getting more of a belly, but I really just look kinda chubby/bloated rather than pregnant.
Sleep: Constantly. I could sleep any time of the day. This has not changed at all, except I have to get up early like every morning to go to the bathroom.
Best moment this week: More energy this week. I got through all the week, except for Friday without naps. AND we went to Ikea this week and bought some stuff for the house that we’ve definitely needed to buy since we bought the house.
Food cravings: None really. I didn’t do any pickle chips this week, which sound awesome right now, but those require going somewhere and I’d rather sit on the couch and do stuff from here.
Food aversions: Not really! I’m staying away from fried stuff so my stomach doesn’t kill.
Symptoms: A little tired, and I’ve had a few headaches this week. Something about blood volume increasing. I got them a lot super early on, and they went away for a little while, and they’re back. You can’t take a whole lot other than Tylenol, so it’s just kinda living through it.
Looking forward to: Getting our Ikea stuff set up this week.
This isn’t turning into an annoying blog. I promise. But I figured that someone might like the update, and I might regret it if I didn’t update. PLUS I feel like a lot of moms, especially ones that are further removed, get amnesia and try to act like they’ve never heard of whatever symptom you might be having.
How far along: 12 Weeks
Baby is the size of a: Clementine.
Due date: Sept 3rd, 2016
Total weight gain: I’ve put on a few – like maybe 5ish the last time I checked? My boobs are absolutely gargantuan. I’m still waiting on a belly. So that folks aren’t just assuming that I’m bloated. Like I care though. I’m too tired to care.
Sleep: Constantly. I could sleep any time of the day.
Best moment this week: Zumba party – I felt great, and really felt a surge of energy.
Food cravings: I like pickle chips from Village Drafthouse. But since they’re fried, they’re kind of a kiss of death. One really really fun thing about pregnancy is that your digestion slows way down. Food that may upset you a smidge in real life, really have an adverse affect on you while pregnant. Beans and fried things do not feel good whatsoever.
Food aversions: I’ve been veg for a while. I have been eating some chicken and turkey, but it’s a little rough for me, because meat tastes pretty meaty. But the smell of cooking meat is disgusting to me. Red meat in particular smells bloody, and I think there’s a pretty good chance I won’t be eating that any time soon.
Symptoms: I’m just tired. But like I said, I think that’s starting to lift.
Looking forward to: Catching up on things. I always feel like there’s something else to be done. I don’t think as long as I live, that I will ever feel caught up. And more running, now that my energy is slowly seeping back in.
Hi! I have not been posting here with my usual frequency but I have a really good reason, which I will totally get to later. I promise.
First off, how was your freakin’ weekend?
Mine was/is good. These posts are always kind of time warpy, because you pre-post, and you pre-write, and you’re talking about things that are kind of still happening, and you come back to unfinished stuff, and it’s just weird. But my weekend, which is almost over, has been really really good, and really restful.
It started off like a house on fire. Friday evening, we hosted another Zumba/Cardio Dance party at the Y, which featured like 5 teachers for two hours. I ended up working a good bit from home on Friday, so by the time the party started around 6:30, I wasn’t completely worn down. Here are a few shots from the evening.
After the party, Austin was still at a Hurricanes game for some hockey sports, so I headed to the Drafthouse for some post-party food which included some pickle chips (ugh, so delicious even though I despise pickles in their true form) and veggie burgers.
Saturday was another full day. I taught a class, went and helped Austin repair a few things we needed, and snuck a mid afternoon nap in before I hit the couch really really hard and finished the night with cartoons. I was seriously in bed well before midnight, and slept hard until I had to come into work to help Fleet Feet out on a busy(ish) Sunday.
Big Life Thing
So here’s the deal. I’ve been really annoying and “vague blogged” a few things here and there.
So out with it!
A day or so after Christmas, I went out drinking with some friends of mine, then we went to the gay club to dance. I had a great time, but the next day, I was feeling…off. Not hungover, and not sick, but like I had some vertigo going on. Which is the best way to describe it, but probably not 100% even capturing it. I mentioned this to a friend over text, and she responded “knocked up”. I told her there was no way, but stopped by the Walgreens right across the street, and picked up a really, really cheap pregnancy test that came in like a box of two.
It came out positive. So I took the next one.
I showed Austin, who was in a veritable state of shock, and he sort of paced around the yard for a while before I sent him on a mission to pick up a few more fancy tests, the ones you see the commercials for.
Positive, positive, positive.
Of course, at this time, I’m panicking, and had send photo evidence to Chelsie (“knocked up”) who immediately replied with a “congratulations,” and some really fun emojis, photo evidence to Jill, my trainer, and photo evidence to Kaity, all mom friends of mine who I felt would have more insight on if the tests were indeed reading the way I was seeing.
All that to say, is I am pregnant and have been very pregnant since around Christmastime. I have really wanted to share with bunches of people, but it’s kind of conventional wisdom that you don’t share before 12 weeks. Which I really have mixed feelings about, but, I will share more on that later.
Eep! We are nervous – this was not necessarily the most expected or most planned thing right now, but we’re in a good place for it, and there’s no time like the present, right? I think I was more nervous before I told people because I was afraid if I told people I would jinx it, and I’m also good friends with some couples who have struggled with fertility issues, and I’ve been afraid that this would be a lot for them. Which, for the record, has not been the case – everyone has been really rockin’ about it, and I have even had some offers for clothes and books. Which lord knows I could use, because I really have no idea what I’m doing.
So really quickly, let me answer a few of the biggest questions people have had for me.
Your boobs are getting huge!
Not a question. But yes, they are beginning to get out of hand. But what can you do, that’s not something that’s going to change, right?
How are you feeling? Have you been sick?
I have not been sick. I have been ridiculously, hopelessly exhausted. I have never experienced exhaustion like this in my life. I rely solely on naps and drinking lots of water. My doc says it will pass in the next few weeks or so, so I am really looking forward to more of a surge in energy. I have been feeling less deathly the past few days, so I am hoping this means that maybe it’s coming. But I have been in bed well before midnight every single night except a drag show I was at last week.
What about teaching your classes? Will you have to cut back?
I don’t know. As of right now, I am teaching all my regular classes except for my Friday Barre, and I feel great teaching. In Body Pump, I have gone a lot lighter on my squat and my back weight, but overall, I’ve been doing the same. I have cut back on my running, due to nothing other than the fact that I am exhausted, but I’m still running. I’m not sure if that will change, especially toward the end of the pregnancy. But, as of right now, I just don’t know.
All of that said (I feel like I just dropped a damned bomb on you), how was your weekend? Do you have any burning questions for the pregnant workout lady?
So here’s a disclaimer. I am not pregnant, nor have I delivered a baby. But., one of my best friends was pregnant throughout the time I trained for my marathon, and our lives have always been eerily parallel, despite the fact that she lives about 8 hours away in Nashville. As I was going through the whole process – the training, the race itself, and then the after, I asked her about it, and she seemed totally in agreement, that training for, and executing a marathon is kinda sorta like the process of getting pregnant and delivering a baby. Also, fun fact: now that we have kids, we are sworn to secrecy about what happened at her wedding weekend. I am fine with that 😉
How Marathoning is Like Delivering a Child
By: Cheri and Mama Chelsie, cause she’s actually delivered a child.
- You’re pregnant/you’ve registered for your first marathon! So what do you do? You tell your best friends, because you’re kind of so excited, but kind of terrified. What have you gotten yourself into? Oh well, you’ve got forever to prepare for this, right? Right? Why do some people so happy for you, and some people seem so terrified for you?
- Realizing that what you’re about to do is going to be a big deal, you go to Barnes and Noble and sit there with a tea while you read every single book on the topic. You might even bring your laptop to Google some stuff and do some cross-referencing. Why the hell are there so many theories on this stuff? Should I eat seafood? Is caffeine okay? Am I about to get judged for all my choices?
- You tell people. And the world starts to implode. First, it’s a lot of congratulations. Then, a lot of unsolicited opinions. Then a lot of stupid questions. “How far is a marathon?” “Why are you doing that?” “I think my sister ran a marathon once, but she said it made her hate running. [shrugs] Hope this doesn’t make you hate running!”
- Once you get over the initial shock of what happens, you realize, you have to eat well. Gone are the days where you could mindlessly toss back a few cups of coffee, or drink all night with friends because each day when you wake up, whatever’s in your belly is what is coming with you for the run. If something doesn’t agree with you, your body will certainly let you know, and you may find yourself in the bathroom a little more than usual.
- You talk to your friends about how they did it. How did they prepare? What should you know? Some of their advice is comforting. Some of their advice is terrifying. You kind of think you can do it, but you kind of doubt yourself a little bit.
- You start going to bed a little earlier. But it doesn’t really matter, because as you get a little closer to the event, you won’t sleep well anyways. You’ll fall asleep okay, and find yourself stress dreaming about every thing that could possibly go wrong.
- You get a little practice with your longs runs (a few fake contractions). Some of them make you really confident. Some of them are defeating, and you’re really not sure if you can do it. But what choice do you have right now? You can’t back out, right?
- Some really weird stuff starts happening to your body. You’re hungry all the time. But you only want to eat good stuff. Your thighs rub together. Things spread, things come together, and your energy is all over the place.
- Okay, it’s the morning of. You can do this! After 9 months (or less) of training, you are so pumped, and very nervous. And the adrenaline of what’s about to happen to you starts to pull you through.
- Less than halfway through, endorphins are flowing. What are people talking about?! This is awesome! You might even nod your head and high give some passers-by. Mind over matter that’s all it takes. ::hair flip::
- Chelsie was in labor for over a day. Luckily, there is not really that when you’re marathoning. But an hour and a half after those endorphins are flowing, despair comes. What the frick were you thinking? Why did you think this was fun? Why did you tell everyone you were doing this? Now if you were to lay down and die, they will know you failed. You’re breathing heavily. You’re making noises. The only thoughts are the thoughts of your loved ones, and how you have to make it back to them. Not religious? Doesn’t matter. You will be praying.
- The final push. 25.5 miles. People tell you you’re almost there. You hope so, because seriously, you’re not sure you’re going to make it. But you put one foot in front of the other, and keep moving. And suddenly, the finish line appears. And with that, you give it literally everything you have.
- Euphoria. You’re crossing the finish line. And you collapse into a pile of emotion. Disbelief. There are tears and sobbing. Someone puts a medal (a baby) on your chest, and a blanket around your shoulders. There are hugs and smiles. And in the words of Chelsie, “you feel like a million bucks,”
- The would-be Rip Van Winkle. You want to sleep for 1000 years. But you have to call your family and friends who are wondering how/what you’re doing. Ugh.
- The next day, when you feel like like 10 trucks ran you over, you swear that you will never do this again. No one in hell could pay you enough to make you want to do this again. Your chub rub hurts. You want to eat, but you can’t. And you want to slap whomever it was that said this was a good idea.
- The blackout. A few days later, when you’re feeling better and your homies are slapping you on the back for what you’ve done, you literally black out all the crazy stuff that happens to you, and you think that it might be a good idea to do it again. Whaaaaaa? Who would do this more than once!
Happy Valentines week beautiful people! What have I missed about training for a marathon/having a sweet baby?
When I first started teaching Zumba, one particular semester, (I’d started at State when I was in grad school) there was a pregnant woman who would always, always, come to my class. She would wear this purple shirt, and hold her belly when the moves got a little too nuts for her. It was almost her way of saying, “Chill out, not everyone in this class is 19, please respect that.” It was a good reminder for me. She would take it easy when she had to, she wouldn’t jump or anything crazy like that. She always wore this purple shirt, and I believe she Zumba-ed til like 8 weeks before her due date. She was safe, she seemed to know her limitations, and she stayed in awesome shape throughout her pregnancy.
“Isn’t that thing gonna fall out,” a few friends asked, astonished, when I’d mentioned it.
Cause that’s exactly what pregs wants to hear, while she’s afraid of eating fish, taking a sip of wine, and carrying a Birken that’s too big, that her baby is going to fall out of her vagina when she’s on the elliptical. How else can we make women feel incompetent as mothers, folks, please, let me hear it!
But I digress. I was driving home, I think from my own workout on Sunday evening, and was cruising down ridge road when I saw her.
The first thing I actually noticed was that she was wearing a cute top, I’m pretty sure from Lululemon, and it was in a cool color. A kind of lime, and she shared my taste, as she was rocking the 3/4 running tights with it. And then I realized, this woman who was cruising at a pretty decent pace? Was a mom-to-be, probably well into her second trimester, and she was tearing up the sidewalk. I’m inspired.
I now have no excuse to skip out on any of my workouts or any of my runs, if this mom to be can harness her inner goddess, well hell?! When is my excuse ever good enough?