Friday, April 26, 2013

Round 2....

 (week 26)

Where to begin...

I began this blog in 2010 as a reference point for other moms-to-be who were CrossFitting prior to getting pregnant. When I was pregnant with Chloe I found that there was little out there to learn from and base my decisions off of in regards to nutrition, working out, balance, rest and recovery.

Fast forward three years... now there are many more women in the community and through this website I have captured 10 stories from 10 amazing women who were all strong enough mentally and physically to continue working out during their pregnancy. I had the opportunity to train and provide guidance to all these amazing mamas plus a few more not featured here.  I continue to make friends throughout the CrossFit community, both at CrossFit King of Prussia and surrounding affiliates, and help as many pregnant women as I can make healthy decisions for themselves.

I have written far fewer entries then I would have liked and had far less time during this pregnancy (I'm currently 27 weeks) than before but that's what happens when you have your own business and a 2 year old!

For those of you who are not familiar with my story, I gave birth to my daughter Chloe 8 weeks early at 32 weeks 4 days in Delaware.  She spent 3 weeks in the NICU at Christiana Hospital. To this day, besides being small, you would have no clue she was a preemie.  During that time I was strong because I needed to be...there is a mental strength you garner from CrossFit and I was able to use that and wrap it around my situation in those early fall months after Chloe's birth.  That strength coupled with a strong support system from my husband and family allowed me to get through some very tough days!

 To this day no doctors or specialists can tell me why I delivered early. From what I learned the following things can send you into labor: incompetent cervix, low progesterone levels and an infection in the uterus or something wrong with the bag of waters surrounding the baby.  As precautions, this pregnancy I have had ultrasounds bi-weekly from 14-24 weeks to check the length of my cervix (all was great up to 24 weeks!).  From weeks 16-36 I receive progesterone shots to keep the levels high.  I have seen a specialist at UPenn and go to regular visits at my OBGYN but no one is able to provide any concrete opinions on whether I will go early or what the issue was with Chloe's early birth.  So...the next question I get is always well, do you think you worked out too hard?  Based on what the doctors have told me, that plays a minimal role and is actually much healthier for the baby than being sedentary and inactive for 9 months.  The fear of working out is actually for fear of the mother with the increased relaxin in your body and the stretching of ligaments to make room for the baby.

What's different this pregnancy...for one I'm older...obviously. I'm 35 versus 32.  As I mentioned previously, I'm busier (a 2 year old will keep you on your toes).  I'm also in the process of opening another gym (CF Harmony- In Newtown Square). So first of all I have taken more rest days. I have been in a two on one off cycle since November and have taken more/ lest rest as I needed it.  I competed in the CrossFit open from weeks 20-25 and was happy that I was able to complete all workouts as prescribed (that was my goal). I ended up finishing 597 in the region and top 6 in my gym.  Overall I was satisfied with my performance, but this will be the first year since 2009 I'm not making an appearance at Regionals or sending a team...bummed about that but blessed to be pregnant again (for those of you who don't know making another life is hard work too!)

Okay so number 1 - I have taken more Rest. 

I have only avoided or scaled my workouts as I felt uncomfortable or lost the ability to do the exercise. My muscle-up disappeared (please come back in August). My HSPU's remain.  The 20" box Jumps felt funny so I went to 17" and then 13". I can still do Double Unders but only a set of 20 reps...I can no longer string 50 without having to run to the bathroom! I prefer rowing over running, but that's a personal preference.

I was craving some serious sweets in the first trimester, which "fortunately" paired well with the holidays. I did let myself have some treats and listened to my body for the most part by still trying to provide a good balance of PRO, CHO and FAT at each meal.  The nutrition piece is so important for the baby, so I got back on track in the second trimester. Am I still "Paleo"?...nope. I have enjoyed the following, pizza, bread, cheerios, cheese, pudding, milk, and a lot of oranges! But unlike when I wasn't pregnant these things don't make me feel sick. It's almost like you are possessed by another human (oh wait! you are!).
Point number 2 - I let myself eat what I felt my body was craving - but not to excess.

In your second pregnancy - even though I got my body back to where it was prior to Chloe, everything has expanded more and faster! I am trying to accept this and know that this in only temporary.  I also feel that everyone tries to rush through the pregnancy --"when is the baby due. I'll get my body back once the baby is born, I'm going to do this when the baby is born..." I'm trying to remain present throughout this pregnancy and not look towards the end as much as I try to embrace the day and accept what's going on in my body and mind. I'm also doing a lot of mental preparation and hoping for a full term pregnancy so that I can bring home my baby from the hospital 3 days after he's born.

Point number 3 - Remain present.

We found out what we are having this time versus being surprised with Chloe.  We did a cool reveal party so we could share the experience.  Neither Jason nor I knew the sex of the baby at the time of the party. We invited about 70 of our friends and family and asked them to wear pink or blue depending on what sex they thought the baby was... you can see the sides were just about equal!

Point number 4 - Celebrate!

It's a boy...due July 29!

The most important thing to do is trust yourself.  Stress is one of the worst things for your baby so if something is causing you stress, do everything in your power to eliminate it.  If this means scaling a workout, so be it.  CrossFit, like everything, is different for everyone.  You will have some women that feel comfortable doing muscle-ups at week 39 and you will have some women that want to scale earlier.  There is no right answer.  Do what feels good for you, stay in the moment, and know that you will not get another time to be pregnant with this child, so enjoy it and smile as much as you can.

Did you check out our strong pregnant ladies they were featured on the CrossFit Main Page...

 ...these were a few more great pictures from Chris Plentus taken on the same day of our pregnant ladies and mamas and babies!!