She’s Here…+3rd Trimester Workouts I’m currently Loving

I’m excited to announce the arrival of our new treadmill! ;-)
treadmillSince we purchased our house a few years ago, hubs and I have entertained the idea of getting a treadmill. We just weren’t sure of where to put it. We have three bedrooms upstairs, and while 1 sat empty for awhile, we knew sooner or later another babe would fill the space. Larry was worried that if we put it in our basement, he wouldn’t be able to use it because he would hit his head on the ceiling. We decided, last weekend, to take that risk.
Instead of purchasing one from craigslist, we opted for a brand new one. I know this machine will be put to great use so I wanted to make sure we had something of great quality that would last us without zero problems. We purchased it from 2nd Wind and are very happy so far with the customer service and sale. They also delivered it and assembled it. I came home from work yesterday and there she was just sitting there, waiting to be used. 2nd Wind will also come out and service it if something goes wrong.
Buying the treadmill forced me to focus on decorating our rec room. Initially, we thought the space would be great for a bar. But then came the Princess Sofia tent, the Frozen ball pit, and a mini trampoline and soon it became Madelyn’s play place. Larry’s dreams of “The Bear Den” will have to be placed on hold…indefinitely :-) Instead, I finally displayed the 2013 Chicago Marathon poster which depicts the Chicago lakefront running path-my favorite place to run. Around it, I have saved bibs from special races (PRs, first 5k/half marathon after baby, etc). Before I hijacked Larry’s “mancave” I made sure he was okay with it and he was. So this is what we have so far:
IMG_4186My second favorite room in our house.
I cannot wait to actually use it for RUNNING! I was able to manage a slow jog for about 2 minutes yesterday and it actually felt pretty good, but I didn’t want to press my luck since it’s been many weeks since I last ran. So instead, I did a walking hill workout while watching Usain Bolt on Ellen. How crazy is it that he was on Ellen the same day our treadmill arrived?! After my hill workout, I did some barre-like glute and thigh work and then headed upstairs for dinner.
My workouts these past few weeks have slowed down dramatically while my motivation has ramped up. (Hello Ragnar Relay 2016!!!)
Things that work for me in the 3rd Trimester
  • Walking! Something that felt uncomfortable for me the majority of my 2nd trimester finally feels okay. I’ve been doing a lot of walking along the lakefront-trying to enjoy the weather while I still can. A have a few different 3 mile routes that I tend to stick to.
  • Riding my bike. I’ve been told that pregnant women shouldn’t ride their bikes because of loss of balance or something. I’m happy to say that my balance to still pretty great and bike riding is still working for me.
  • Elliptical. Hello early 2000’s it’s nice to see you again. I can’t remember the last time I used to the elliptical at the gym before this pregnancy. But the elliptical reminds me of the early days of college when I’d head to the Klotsche center in my fold over cotton yoga pants and t-shirt with a Cosmo magazine in hand. My workout gear has slightly improved and I’ve since switched up the literature-making it a more enjoyable experience.
  • Spin class. My go-to cardio these days. As my belly grows and burpees and jumping around are getting slightly more challenging, spin class has become my replacement when I want a good sweaty workout without the high impact.
  • Barre. Always and forever. The only part I ever have to modify are abs and positions when the instructor has us on our bellies. When I can’t get to a class, I rotate through DVDs at home. My favorite substitute to an actual class are Physique57. They’re challenging, upbeat, fast paced and not super cheesy.

My goal in this pregnancy was to stay as active as I possible could as long as it was safe. I think I’ve done a good job of that. I still feel pretty good until I get to the end of the day and I have some sciatic pain that I’m sure won’t go away now until I deliver, since we’re so close to the end. The only benefit of this is on demand massages from my husband. Maybe we can keep that tradition up post baby?! I’m hoping that staying active will help me come delivery day and to help me bounce back a little quicker after the baby. And exercise while pregnant makes babies smarter…it’s science!

Pregnancy #2 Weeks 29-33

IMG_4175So far this third trimester is just flying by. The month of September was a busy one for us. I’m hoping October settles down a bit so I can finish up some projects around our house before little bebes arrives, but our weekends are filling up. When I look at how close we are to the end, it freaks me out a little bit. Soon we’ll have two little lives to care for and nurture. Yet, when I look back at when I first found out I was pregnant, I feel like I’ve been pregnant forever. It’s a strange feeling, but I cannot wait to meet this little peanut!
Aversions: Nothing really new since I’ve been sticking to what I know works for me. Coffee smells in our house still get to me. I don’t really get this one since I have no problem drinking it, but the smell of someone else making it, makes my stomach turn.
Cravings: Still going strong with burgers and sandwiches. Carbs & protein…it’s what the baby’s craving. I’ve definitely been eating more red meat than usual and I haven’t had any problems with my iron levels this pregnancy. I’m pretty sure that has something to do with it. On the flip side, a cinnamon roll from Cinnabon has been high on my list the past few days. I haven’t had one of these probably since my BMT graduation, roughly 12 years ago.
Workouts: Things are definitely slowing down over here. I still feel good, but I’m not as mobile as I was just a few weeks ago. Exercising while pregnant is a very funny thing and varies from person to person, pregnancy to pregnancy, day to day. While I was pregnant with Madelyn I could walk 2+ miles every day with no problems. I walked (er, waddled) nearly 3 miles the night I went into labor with her. With this baby, walking can be uncomfortable one day and perfectly fine the next. I walked for 20 minutes last week outside and I had such horrible round ligament pain and cramping. But two days prior, I went to a bootcamp cardio class and had zero problems. I’ve been missing running like crazy as of lately and I’m already scoping out races to do in January. I’m still attending spin class at least twice a week and doing barre and the elliptical for cardio. I walked into spin class a few weeks ago and the instructor (whom I’ve never had before) came over to me and asked how far along I was, if I’d done spin etc., etc. He’s like “Well I’ve delivered babies before so if you go into labor, I’ve got you covered!” hah! Thank you sir for that. I plan on pedaling away until baby’s born if all goes well.
Madelyn: We did a big sibling class with her which was fun. It gave me a chance to see where I will be delivering since we’re at a different hospital this time around. Madelyn enjoys walking into the baby’s room, looking around at everything and saying, “This is where I’m going to rock and feed the baby. This is the book I’m going to read to the baby. This is where I’m going to change the baby’s poopy diaper.” haha! I can already tell that she is going to be a big help.
Energy: Sleep the last few weeks has become a fleeting memory. I’ve been waking up at least 2-3 times a night to use the bathroom and when I get up, baby’s having a dance party in my belly which makes it hard to fall back asleep. Somewhere between midnight and 3 am. So that’s fun. I’ve been making it a goal of mine to get to bed every night NLT than 9pm. I’ve also been trying to rest on the days I have off of work while Madelyn’s napping/resting as well. Nap time in our house has also become a fleeting memory. Sometimes they happen, other days they just don’t.
sleepingpackerfanWhat’s new these past few weeks? We found two doulas we really liked. Decided to go with one and then decided I didn’t need one. I was having a hard time justifying spending the money on one when I’ve had an all-natural birth without one. I’ve been doing lots of research on pain management in labor and I’m pretty confident that Larry, the nurses and I’ve got this covered. Also, the acupuncturist I’m seeing offers acupuncture in labor and delivery. It’s $100 to have her come to either your house or the hospital and spend up to 3 hours with you while in labor. A much easier pill for me swallow as opposed to the $600 + I was about to shell out for a doula. I got the clear from my midwife that I’m allowed to have an acupuncturist come in while I’m laboring in the hospital. Baby’s car seat and bases have been washed and are ready to be installed into the car. I’m still gathering stuff for my hospital bag and slowing putting the finishing touches on the baby’s room. I feel like we’ve made a lot of progress on things the past few weeks, but we still have a lot to do and time is ticking away! As it gets closer I’m getting more excited but yet a little more nervous to go into labor. I’m actually looking forward to giving birth again, just more nervous because you never know how it’s going to happen. I also had a dream that she turned out to be HE. So fingers crossed there is indeed a girl in there or else this little boy will be wearing a lot of pink :-)

A Recipe for Back Pain

…Or any pain really! Happy Friday friends! Any fun plans for the weekend? We are embracing the first weekend of fall with open arms. Apple picking and harvest fests are on our agenda for the weekend.
So, I’m not really sure when I first heard about essential oils. I remember someone at work was talking about it and saying, “Who would pay that much money for oils?!” I still didn’t really think anything of them until I was on a girls trip a few months ago and one of my friends brought along her diffuser and oils.
At this point, I became a little bit more intrigued because I was getting really stuffy at night and was looking for an all-natural alternative to help me breath and sleep better. Still, I was having a hard time spending $180 on a starter kit for something I didn’t really know too much about.
Enter Google. Little did I know what I was getting myself into. The world of essential oils is filled with lots of (sometimes contradicting) information. I spent weeks and weeks researching blogs and consulting Amazon reviews before I made my first oil and diffuser purchase.
I wasn’t looking to spend a fortune. I just wanted an oil and a diffuser that would help me breath at night. I ended up purchasing Respir-Aid by Plant Therapy & this diffuser from Amazon. I decided to go with these two based on the reviews and blog posts I had read. Also, if they didn’t work or I didn’t care for them, I wouldn’t be out a small fortune.
The diffuser was only $26 and while it does its job, the quality of the product shows. My biggest complaint about this diffuser is the light…it never shuts off! If I have the diffuser run continuously, the light is red and doesn’t really bother me. But if I have it on an intermittent setting to run a little longer through the night, the light is set to green and it gives off a good amount of light in our room, so much so that I’ve had to wear an eye mask to bed. And even though I wash it out every single day, the lid can sometimes get stuck and tricky to get on.
The glowwww!
The respir-aid oil worked really well and smelled amazing. I added about 8-10 drops to the diffuser. It did help keep my nose clear though and on nights when I didn’t use it, I could tell a difference in the morning.
From there, I started researching essential oil usage & aromatherapy in labor and delivery…game over. A lot of the blogs had mentioned Young Living’s Valor as a must have for all-natural labor and delivery. I messaged my friend (who is a Young Living Rep) asking her about it along with some other “must have” oils for labor. After doing some research on the company I decided to finally purchase a starter kit which included 11 essential oils, a diffuser and a bunch of samples for $160. I figured that would be the most cost effective way to get started and to stock up on different oils and as a wholesaler (<—referral link), you get a discount. So far, it’s been the best investment I’ve made in awhile.
IMG_4044I decided on Young Living because I felt I was getting the most for my money when it came to the starter kit & I had read plenty of reviews of other women who had used Young Living oils while pregnant, so I knew they were safe to use. They also grow and cultivate their own seeds on their own farms. So if you are comparing prices of essential oils between different companies you will notice that Young Living is by far the most expensive. BUT I think of it this way: It’s like buying meat from the farmer’s market. When you buy from directly from the farmer you know what you are getting and most often, the meat is more expensive than if you were to buy it in the grocery store, where they get the meat from different farmers/distributors. Young Living is the only essential oils company that I have come across in my research that has their own farms. While I’m not opposed to giving other oil companies a try (I was pleased with the Plant Therapy blend), Young Living is definitely my go to for oils that I’m using on myself or with Madelyn.
The diffuser I received in my starter kit is amazing and puts my $26 amazon purchase to shame. It is nice to have multiple diffusers though. I keep the YL one on hand to move around the house and keep the Amazon one in our bedroom. I’d like to buy an extra YL one and give keep the Amazon one for the kiddos when they need it since the lights change color.
Since Pinterest is the best place to go for inspiration, I came across a few muscle rubs that looked interesting and useful for not only labor and delivery but for any time something hurts. I’ve been having some lower back pain with this baby, so I was looking for something to help with that.
I made a very easy pain cream at the beginning of the week and tried it out immediately on my lower back and within 5 minutes the soreness was gone and without the stinky, overpowering smell of a typical muscle rub. Two nights ago, hubs gave me an even better back massage than I was able to give myself, and I felt good as new when it was over. I wish I would’ve made this sooner and I honestly can’t wait to use it when I got into labor.
Recipe for Pain Cream
-10 drops of Valor
-10 drops of Peppermint
-10 drops of Panaway
-1 Cup of coconut oil
I put everything together in my kitchenAid mixer and whipped away.
In less than 10 minutes I had an all natural pain cream to help alleviate all the aches and pains that come along with late pregnancy.
I’m always looking for a more natural alternative to medicating and I’m looking forward to learning more about essential oils and how they can help our growing family.
Do you use essential oils? What for and what brand do you tend to favorHave a great weekend! I’ll be back on Monday with a pregnancy update!

Apple Oatmeal

Good morning! I have a yummy recipe to share with you all! It’s been awhile since I’ve made anything worth writing about. Truth be told, Larry’s been doing a lot of the cooking and dinner prep this month. I’ve been either too tired or too busy running around getting ready for baby #2.

September is one of my favorite months of the year. I love the cool, crisp mornings and the warm afternoons and  early evenings. I woke up Monday morning to a cool breeze coming in through my window and I immediately wanted baked oatmeal and a coffee from Colectivo. Fall is definitely in the air! But, since I really didn’t want to get up and get myself and Madelyn dressed just for oatmeal, I decided to make something similar on my own. My for the first time in probably years, I cooked up some oatmeal on the stove instead of the microwave. I chopped up an apple, threw in a cinnamon stick and added some other things and I had a delicious & hearty breakfast for the two of us. With leftovers for the week!


-1 cup of oatmeal
-2 cups of milk
-1 apple cubed
-1 cinnamon stick
-2 tsp coconut sugar
-1 tsp cinnamon
-honey to drizzle
-pecans to top it with

Cook the oatmeal according to the package. Add in cubed apple, cinnamon stick, sugar, cinnamon and honey. Cook until apple is softened and oatmeal is done. Spoon into bowl and top with pecans (optional). Enjoy warm! For this particular recipe I used Trader Joe’s gluten free oatmeal & almond milk and it turned out just as wonderful as the oatmeal at Colectivo!


Heart & Soul

Hey guys! Did you enjoy your extra long weekend? I know we did! Things were very productive over here as we made some progress on baby girl’s room. She will be residing in Madelyn’s old room which is painted turquoise. I’ve been busy adding accents of gold, coral and ivory to help soften it up and give it a little bit more of a girlie vibe. As we are well into September, the final countdown begins. 6 more weeks until this little muffin is officially full term. Madelyn came right at 39 weeks, so I’m optimistic that baby girl will follow in her big sister’s footsteps and not keep us waiting too long.

IMG_2621Last weekend, my mom, sister and I took a little girls weekend to the Windy City. Back in May, my sister and I surprised our mom with tickets to see Dirty Dancing on Broadway at the Cadillac Palace Theater. The show was amazing and so true to the movie. They did a very good job transforming the movie into a Broadway production.


Besides seeing Dirty Dancing, we spent the weekend eating (Italian Village & Frontera Grillboth are highly recommended!) shopping (The Gap on Michigan Ave always has the best baby/kids clothes selection!), and cycling

When I found out that SoulCycle was coming to Chicago, I put this at the top of our to-do list. I knew my sister and mom would love it since they both love biking. I first gave SoulCycle a try in NYC last December when hubs and I went there for New Years Eve. It was the perfect workout to end 2014. We both left feeling great, spiritually and physically.

Chicago’s class was no different. Our instructor, Hallie, was AMAZING! She writes a lifestyle/fashion blog I recommend you check out. Her energy and the music were on. point. When we were walking out of the studio, I asked my mom and sister what they thought. My sister said there were no words to describe how great of a cycling class it was. There is nothing in Milwaukee that even remotely compares. We were so close to signing up for a Sunday morning class, but none of us brought along extra workout clothes so instead we decided to go back on Sunday and purchase some souvenirs :-)

So what’s so great about this $30 workout class? ($20 if you’re a first time rider-totally worth it!) Imagine a yoga studio or swanky lounge paired up with your favorite cardio class, set to awesome music, led by an inspiring instructor. That is SoulCycle. The studio in the Loop has 67 bikes so it’s a pretty decent size, even though the bikes are all very close together. It’s so that you feed off of one another’s energy and ride as a group as opposed to trying to compete with your neighbor. Part of their “pact” mentality.

The studio is dark, and the instructor rides on a raised platform, surrounded by candlelight, while DJing great music and leading an inspirational class. You ride to the beat of the music, doing pushups, up downs, riding in and out of the saddle, etc. I seriously dare you not to dance along to the music on your bike. There were times I got so into, I had to stop and remind myself not to get too out of breath. The feel of the bike is unlike any other cycling class I’ve ever taken, either. The ride is very smooth and I never felt like the resistance was so low that I was going to hurt my knees if I went too fast. The spin of the bike was very fluid. At the end of the cardio section, there is an arms portion (you get to pick your weights) followed by some sprints and then the cool down.


Photo Courtesy of:

Outside the studio, you see this:


Rules 1 & 2 are my favorite. There is NOTHING worse than taking a workout class and having someone’s phone going off or having people talking so loudly to their neighbor that you can barely hear the instructor. So annoying.

You can also charge your phone in your locker while you’re in class:


Pretty neat! The studio is gorgeous. When you walk in, everything’s very clean and white and smells amazing. They also have a cleaning crew come in and wipe down all the bikes and weights which is a huge plus.


I love everything about SoulCycle. You definitely leave with a more positive attitude than when you first entered. Had this studio been there when I was working in a corporate cubicle right around the corner, this would’ve been my place of sanctuary after a long day at the office. We are already planning on a trip back, this time to check out the Old Town studio, before baby #2 arrives.

How does it differ from Flywheel, which is also located in Chicago? Having taken two Flywheel classes and two SoulCycle classes, it’s really like comparing apples to oranges. They are both unique in their own way. The thing that I liked about Flywheel is that you got to see how many miles you covered in a class and how you “ranked” amongst the other clients riding beside you. That was great when I wasn’t pregnant and I came in first place at my first class! But as of right now, and where I am as far as maintaining fitness, that sort of thing doesn’t matter to me. I would feel defeated if I knew I worked hard for being 31 weeks pregnant but still coming in last place in class. I also like the spiritual aspect that SoulCycle offers. You leave class looking at things a little differently. I asked hubs what it was that he liked about it and he said he felt uplifted, which is funny for someone who is not the spiritual type.

If I lived in Chicago, this class would definitely be in my weekly rotation of workouts. Hopefully, we will see one in the Milwaukee area soon! I definitely recommend checking out a class if you live or are visiting an area where they have a studio. You won’t be disappointed.

Have you ever taken a SoulCycle or Flywheel class? What are your thoughts?

Pregnancy #2 Weeks 25-28

29 weeksAnd here we are in my third and FINAL trimester of pregnancy! For the most part, I feel like this pregnancy has just flown by, but when I stop and think to myself, “I’ve been pregnant since February!” then it seems to be taking forever. Especially when all I want on a hot summer day is an ice cold beer. Soon enough :-) For now, I’m enjoying all the movements and acrobatics going on in my belly and embracing my growing bump. This will be our last, so I’m doing my very best to enjoy every minute of it. Even the not so great parts that come along with it. I’m just thankful that I get to do this again.
Aversions:Hard boiled eggs :-( I just can’t at all. I took one bite into one and I fought to choke it down. This makes me sad because this is the easiest and quickest way to eat them. The good thing is that I have access to a kitchen at work, so I usually cook them over-medium when I get into the office. Good news is that salmon is back off the aversion list! Hallelujah! I took a gamble and tried a salmon salad at The Cheesecake Factory last week and it was amazing and I was so happy! After spending the weekend eating birthday cake, my body was craving something healthy and nutritious.
Cravings: I’ve been craving sandwiches more than normal. I could probably eat a sub sandwich every day for lunch if I let myself. About a week ago I started getting nauseous again (I hear that can happen at the end of pregnancy as well) and the only thing that sounded good to me was carbs, carbs and more carbs. So I’ve been consuming a lot more bread than what’s normal for me…which probably explains why I’ve had the biggest weight gain I’ve had all pregnancy between my 4 week appointments.
Workouts: I’m still feeling really good. Although I’m starting to slow down a bit and trying my hardest not to waddle, I’m still working out about 4-5 times a week. I’ve found that it cuts down on the crankiness and just makes me feel better overall. Running as been put on hold until after the new year and I’m okay with that. I’ve been spending a lot more time on my bike and I’ve found a new appreciation in biking. Spinning class has now taken over for running. I can still work up a great sweat without the high impact that running has. I’ve also taken some HIIT classes at barre which still feel great. I tend to hang out in the back corner because my moves are very modified these days :-)
biking28weeksMadelyn:  She falls asleep and stays asleep on her OWN!!!! The first few weeks were rough but we stuck to our routine and now she goes doesn’t require one of us to lay there until she falls asleep. I have the best of both worlds. I can choose to get up once we’re done with our bedtime routine or I can choose to lay there with her for a bit and she’s content either way. This makes my life a million times easier. I think she has some idea of what’s coming to her. She’s been very clingy to us which is unlike her. I assembled our bassinet so that I could clean it up and when she saw it in the basement she says, “This is the baby’s bed? Awww cute!” LOL She’s a character.
Energy: It could be worse, but it could also be better. Sleep is becoming more of a challenge. I wake up every night either having to use the bathroom or because turning over is getting harder and I have to literally sit up to turn to the other side. Annoying. I take advantage of Madelyn’s naps on the weekends and take some time to take my own little siesta.
What’s new these past few weeks?
-I’ve been having some increased SI pain at from about 26 weeks. A trip to the chiropractor will be made this week and I’ve scheduled an appointment with an acupuncturist who specializes in pre-natal/post-natal care for the following week.
-Nesting has hit me with full-force. I don’t remember being this “nesty” last time. But I’ve gone on rampages to de-clutter as much as possible. One Friday night I spent over an hour rearranging our linen/medicine closet. I felt a million times better after I threw out all the old medicine and reorganized.
-We’re looking for a doula. A little late in the game because we still haven’t found one :-/ Last time I was in labor, our doctor was incredible. She stayed with us for about the final 3 hours and directed Larry on what to do to help me feel more comfortable. This time, it’s just him, me and our midwife. I don’t expect she will be that hands on, especially if she has other patients to attend to. And I really want to try for a natural birth this time around as well. I’ve met with a few and have a couple to meet with this week, so I’m confident that we’ll end up with someone.
-I’ve been watching birthing videos and reading books to help wrap my mind around the fact that I’m going to be doing this again…
Some things I’m looking forward to in this final trimester? Feeling more and more baby kicks, the cooler weather, and signing Madelyn up for a big sibling class at the hospital. It will be a fun to see what they teach the kids and we also get a hospital tour with it so she can see where the baby will be born :-) It will be nice for us too because it’s a different hospital than last time, so we’ll know what to expect come delivery day.

Pregnancy + The Barre Code

Happy Friday! Any fun plans for the weekend? I’m looking forward to a low key weekend with my girl after celebrating her three years of life last weekend. We have a date to the farmer’s market and a baby room to get in order.
Speaking of babies… I’ve been very fortunate this pregnancy to be able to keep exercising without zero complications. Now that I’ve entered my third trimester (wait what?!?!), I’m definitely slowing down-but overall I still feel great and I credit that to staying so active through my pregnancy.
While running has officially been put on hold until after baby is born, one workout that remains constant in my pregnant life is barre, specifically classes at The Barre Code.
When I was pregnant with Madelyn, there were no barre studios in my area, so I did Barre DVDs instead. While they were good, nothing compares to taking an actual class and staying accountable.
The one thing that I love about The Barre Code as opposed to other traditional barre studios is that they offer a variety of other classes, specifically those that are cardio based. So far, I’ve been able to modify all the classes that The Barre Code has to offer. While I tend to stick with mostly barre, I sometimes try to sneak in a cardio class. Some days, no matter how pregnant you are, a good sweat session is just necessary.
Here’s a run down of all the classes that The Barre Code in Milwaukee has to offer and how I was able to modify them through my pregnancy, the first two trimesters.
Brawl-(description taken from website) Brawl, which has been recognized by SELF magazine as one of the best workouts in the country, is an intense class that combines cardio kickboxing sequences with strengthening work for the thighs and glutes. 
-Such a fun cardio class! I like it because you actually have to remember and think about what’s coming next, so it’s good for the exercising the mind and body.
First trimester modifications: Not too much to modify in the first trimester. Keep an eye on your breathing and make sure not to get out of breath. That’s the main modification for most of the cardio classes. I was able to still get a good workout in, but definitely didn’t go all out like I did pre-pregnancy. I used to leave that class drenched.
Second & third trimester modifications: Range of motion when doing any core twisting exercises has been limited. You’re supposed to avoid any twisting when you’re into the second trimester, so as the belly started growing I avoided this. Instead of twisting, I would just keep my core center and move my arms (in a punching motion). I’ve also had to dial down the cardio. A few weeks ago, we had a segment that was hook left, hook right, burpee. Repeat. I was able to keep up in the beginning but through out class when I felt like I needed a little break, I just kept doing hooks in place of the burpee and skipping out on every other set of burpees. For moves like diagonal knee raises, instead of jumping I would just keep my supported leg on the ground for every other. That helped control my breathing a little bit. You know your body, and you know what you are capable of.
TBC & Interval (Interval has now been replaced with HIIT)-(description on their website) I combined these two classes because a lot of the moves are the same, it’s just the layout of the class that is different. TBC has a cardio section, but is mainly toning. Where as Interval is mostly cardio with a small section of strength training sandwiched in. I will focus on the modifications I made to the cardio sections and talk about the toning modifications in the barre section.
First trimester modifications: Same thing as Brawl, make sure that you are able to still talk, never work so hard that you’re losing your breath. Always have water with you and drink it throughout class as needed.
Second trimester modificationsThe belly’s starting to grow and jumping, burpees etc are starting to get a bit more challenging. For mountain climbers, I took them to the barre. You can still get your heart rate up and keep your core engaged while placing less strain on your core. On days when I couldn’t do burpees, I would either walk one foot back at a time or walk my hands out to a plank, hold it, and walk my hands back in toward my feet. Things like jump squats, I eventually just went to onto my tip toes and never left the ground. A-Jacks also became non-existent sometime in the second trimester.
Barre Code-(Description taken from their website) A full-body workout that consists of isometric holds and heavy repetition, working muscles to fatigue to develop muscle stamina and endurance. A range of different props are used in each class to challenge the body and engage the mind.
My favorite prenatal class to take at The Barre Code.
First trimester modifications: In the first trimester I didn’t have to modify anything. I kept working my core as long as I could to help keep it strong for labor and delivery.
Second trimester modifications: I didn’t have to start modifying abs until I was well into my second trimester and the bump became evident (somewhere around 20 weeks). Some days I could lay flat on my back without zero problems, but other times I’d get short of breath and I’d have to place the playground ball behind my lower back. It all depended on how the little one was positioned in there but at around 20 weeks I stopped laying down, used the playground ball and kept the “crunching” moves to a minimum. Any movements where the instructor had us in prone position, I would either do on all fours or standing, depending on what it was. Some seat movements started to get tricky. There’s one move that works your hamstrings and seat where you have one foot on the barre and the other in the air. For that tricky move, I just kept my feet on the ground and did hip raises. At 27 weeks, any balance work on the green disc became non-existent. It was challenging enough for me just to do one leg lunges into a high knee without the added challenge of the disc and so I set it aside for later use.  Planks/push ups mostly stayed the same with a few plank modifications and taking rests when I thought I needed it. Thighs and arms for the most part didn’t need any modifications either, which is why I think this class is my favorite for my pregnant belly.
I’m so glad that I’ve been able to keep working out through my pregnancy. I wanted to write this post because when I was doing a google search for pregnancy modifications at The Barre Code, nothing came up. There were a lot of blog posts for other studios that offered traditional barre classes, but I was more interested in the cardio classes and some portions of Barre Code since it is faster pace and intense than most barre classes.
A few *Important* things to keep in mind:
-This is just advice that has worked for me. Every pregnant body/pregnancy is different from one person to the next.
-If you’ve never taken classes at The Barre Code, I wouldn’t advise starting when you’re pregnant. Save it for post-baby. I felt comfortable keeping up with this workout because I’ve been doing it consistently for nearly 2 years now.
-Finally, tell you’re instructor that you’re pregnant!! You may not want to tell everyone right away, but it’s important for the instructor to know. They can offer you different modifications at various stages of pregnancy. Take time to ask them questions before or after class. If I get there early enough, I will usually ask the instructor what she has planned for abs and just adjust my own routine as necessary. My PT gave me a few ab exercises to do that are safe throughout all trimesters of pregnancy, so I usually just stick to those. You might feel funny doing something completely different than the rest of the class, but as they see your growing belly-they’ll get it!IMG_2513-2For more tips on how to make workouts lower impact, check out this post!