Pregnancy and exercise: Baby, let’s move!

During pregnancy, exercise can help you stay in shape and prepare for labor and delivery. Here’s the lowdown on pregnancy and exercise, from getting started to staying motivated.

By Mayo Clinic staff

Pregnancy may seem like the perfect time to sit back and relax. You may feel more tired than usual, your back may ache, and your ankles may be swollen. But guess what? There’s more to pregnancy and exercise than skipping it entirely. Unless you’re experiencing serious complications, sitting around won’t help. In fact, pregnancy can be a great time to get active =97 even if you haven’t exercised in a while.

Why exercise during pregnancy?

During pregnancy, exercise can:

  • Ease or prevent back pain and other discomforts
  • Boost your energy level
  • Prevent excess weight gain
  • Reduce the risk of gestational diabetes, pregnancy-related high blood pressure and postpartum depression
  • Increase stamina and muscle strength, which helps you prepare for labor

Pregnancy and exercise: Getting the OK

Before you begin an exercise program, make sure you have your health care provider’s OK. Although exercise during pregnancy is generally good for both mother and baby, you’ll need to proceed with caution if you have a history of preterm labor or certain medical conditions,including:

  • Poorly controlled diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart disease
  • Placenta previa, a problem with the placenta that can cause excessive bleeding before or during delivery

Pacing it for pregnancy

For most pregnant women, at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise is recommended on most, if not all, days of the week but even shorter or less frequent workouts can help you stay in shape and prepare for labor.

Walking is a great exercise for beginners. It provides moderate aerobic conditioning with minimal stress on your joints. Other good choices include swimming, rowing and cycling on a stationary bike. Strength training is OK, too, as long as you avoid lifting heavy weights.

If you haven’t exercised for a while, begin with as little as five minutes of physical activity a day. Build up to 10 minutes, 15 minutes, and so on, until you reach at least 30 minutes a day. If you exercised before pregnancy, you can probably continue to work out at the same level while you’re pregnant ; as long as you’re feeling comfortable and your health care provider says it’s OK.

In general, you should be able to carry on a conversation while you’re exercising. If you can’t speak normally while you’re working out, you’re probably pushing yourself too hard.

Remember to stretch before and after each workout. Drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated, and be careful to avoid overheating. No matter how dedicated you are to being in shape, don’t exercise to the point of exhaustion.

Activities to approach with care

If you’re not sure whether a particular activity is safe during pregnancy, check with your health care provider. It’s best to avoid any exercises that force you to lie flat on your back, especially as your pregnancy progresses. Activities such as scuba diving and hiking at high altitudes are generally discouraged, as are contact sports and activities that pose a high risk of falling , such as water skiing, downhill skiing and in-line skating.

Staying motivated

You’re more likely to stick with an exercise plan if it involves activities you enjoy and fits into your daily schedule. Consider these simple tips:

Start small. You don’t need to join a gym or don expensive workout clothes to get in shape. Just get moving. Try a daily walk through your neighborhood. Vary your route to keep it interesting.

Find a partner. Exercise can be more interesting if you use the time to chat with a friend. Better yet, involve the whole family.

Use a headset. Listen to music or a book while you exercise. Use lively songs to energize your workout.

Try a class. Many fitness centers and hospitals offer classes designed for pregnant women. Choose one that fits your interests and schedule.

Get creative. Don’t limit yourself. Consider hiking, rowing or dancing.

Give yourself permission to rest. Your tolerance for strenuous exercise will probably decrease as your pregnancy progresses.

Listen to your body

As important as it is to exercise, it’s also important to watch for danger signs. Stop exercising if you notice:

  • Dizziness
  • Headache
  • Shortness of breath
  • Chest pain
  • Abdominal pain
  • Vaginal bleeding

If your signs and symptoms continue after you stop exercising, contact your health care provider.

A healthy choice

Regular exercise can help you cope with the physical changes of pregnancy and build stamina for the challenges ahead. If you haven’t been exercising regularly, use pregnancy as your motivation to begin.

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“Kimberly Lou Gets Your Conscious and Subconscious Mind to Work Together…”

“Kimberly Lou has the uncanny ability to peek into a person’s mind, gather your thoughts on many aspects of your life (family,diet,fitness,relationships,etc). She helps you organize and put your thoughts into the proper perspective. Amazingly, Kimberly Lou gets your conscious and subconscious mind to work together to get the desired results. A wonderful experience.”

Jan Jackson ~  Texas

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How To Hire A Qualified Personal Trainer

How-To-Hire-A-Qualified-Personal-Trainer-Kimberly-Lou

 In this day and age, just about anyone can obtain a personal training certificate in a matter of a weekend.  What sets a qualified personal trainer or health coach apart from the rest and how can you easily choose the right one for you? This article will help you “Get Clear” on what questions to ask yourself when hiring your next personal trainer, and most importantly, how to explain to them exactly what you want. 

How to pick your qualified personal trainer.
First and foremost, just because someone looks like they are in good shape, doesn’t mean that they are a great personal trainer.  Oh the horror stories I have seen and heard about people who have hired their fitness professional from a reputable gym to be left feeling defeated emotionally, physically and psychologically. How will you know if your trainer is the right fit for you?

Here Are The Top 9 Qualities To Look For In A Qualified Personal Trainer that may help you take the guess-work out of your decision.

  • They ask a lot of questions and they keep the focus on you.
  • They perform a complete Health Screening and Fitness Assessment before writing your program.
  • They write a plan of action for you and give you the steps to easily achieve your goals, in a simple way.
  • They explain exactly why you are doing your program the way you are.
  • They clearly explain each exercise they have chosen for you, why they are doing them, and how they will benefit you.
  • They quickly modify an exercise on the spot if it’s not working for you at that time.
  • They know how and when to thoroughly progress you.
  • They tailor your program specifically to fit your needs.
  • They are up to date with all the current trends.

Getting clear on your weight loss and fitness goal.
Even the best personal trainer can’t help you, if you don’t know what you want.  Before stepping foot in a gym or picking up that phone, ask yourself, what is my goal?

  • Do I want to lose weight? If so how much?
  • Do I want to gain muscle?
  • Do I want to feel healthy?

What type of motivation style works for you?
 Next, you may want to get clear on the training style that works for you.  If you are just starting out after being sedentary for a while, or have just had a baby, then a boot camp style class or military style fitness instructor may not be the right fit for you right now, at this time. I have had clients come to me injured after taking a boot camp class.  Clearly that wasn’t the way to start after being stagnant for a while. If you don’t know exactly what you want, then find someone who will listen to your needs and who will be patient enough to help you come up with your very own goals together.  Just make sure that your goal feels right for you. 


In addition, remember you are going to be spending a lot of time with your newfound friend.  What type of person do you want to spend your precious time with?  What type of motivation style works best for you and your personality?  Are you the type of person who works best with an encouraging coach, or do you need a swift kick in the behind to get you moving? Do you work better with males or females? 

Here are some questions you can ask that may help you.

  • Are they qualified?  What are their credentials and how long have they had them? If you are searching for a qualified personal trainer it’s best if you hire someone who has had at least 10,000 hours of experience behind them, especially if they will be working with someone who has injuries.
  • Are they patient?
  • Do they listen to you and your needs?
  • Do they communicate in a way that you can clearly understand?
  • What type of training would they do to prevent injuries?
  • How will they know when to progress you?
  • What training styles do they specialize in?
  • Can they give you examples or references as to how they have helped clients achieve success in the past?

Do they know how to help you with your nutrition plan?
In addition, I hear clients say that the trainer put them on a restricted diet so they could lose weight fast, but what happened was that their body felt deprived so they quickly went back to their old eating habits.

Conclusion
Once you have gotten clear on your goals, the next thing to do is pick up the phone. Again, don’t just assume that all trainers know what they are doing.  There are some great trainers out there, however there are a lot who don’t know what they are doing.  Even the most prestigious and reputable gyms hire brand new trainers sometimes even though they mean well and may have a great training program, they may still haven’t gathered their sea legs yet. 

You are making a huge investment on yourself, and why not? Do you really want someone who is charging you top dollar to use you as his or her practice?

Until next time… let’s lighten up and have fun while we REPAIR, BUILD, & SHRED.

Kimberly Lou

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As an Advanced Fitness & Wellness Specialist Kimberly Lou helps groups and individuals achieve their lifestyle and fitness goals the fastest, healthiest way possible, creating a sustainable lifestyle and a body built to last.  

Through her personal training and signature program Repair. Build. Shred, which is customized just for you, Kimberly Lou will teach you how to break through barriers that have held you back from your true potential, and then help you develop an action plan to get you moving towards obtaining your daily, short-term, long-term, ensuring results that last. Just go to www.KimberlyLou.com for details.

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What’s Food Got To Do With It?

There’s this image a lot of expectant mothers have. They see their own moms coming to help with the birth and the new baby. She’s a sort of universal mother-image, incredibly patient and nurturing, all knowing, peaceful and loving.

Well, that image got blown out of the water for me when the friend I was living with at the time invited her mom to come and stay with us for a month and a half. She was three months further along than I was, so I got to observe her mom’s behavior close at hand; a gift for me, although gift was not the word I would have used at the time.

My friend’s mom turned into someone neither of us recognized, although I’m hearing from others her behavior was not unusual.  One friend shared that her mom threatened to commit suicide because she didn’t get her way about the baby shower. Who are these people throwing temper tantrums when they don’t get their own way?  Where are our real moms?

My friend wanted a home birth.  When the time came, she had everything in place but her mom became frantic because her labor lasted nearly three days.  Her mom walked around like a mad woman, complaining and carrying on, telling me I had to get my friend to a hospital.  Finally, my friend told her mother to leave.  The baby arrived almost immediately.  I can just picture the little one holding onto the sides of his mom’s uterus, thinking, I’m not going to be born into this negativity!  Get grandma the heck out of here!

Needless to say, as the time approached for me to give birth, I was very cautious about my own mom.  For as long as I can remember, my mom has been something of an energy leech.  I always ended up being her care-giver but this time just had to be different.  I made it very clear that I wouldn’t have the energy to take care of her, my newborn baby and myself at the same time.  This birth was not going to be about her.  My mom seemed to understand.  She agreed and said she’d do everything she possibly could to be there for me.

For a little while, I was ecstatic about having my mom with me.  I had created an amazing version of her in my head, seeing her as nurturing and comforting.  Since my father had died just a few months earlier, I was craving this parental care.

The call came about a week before my due date.  It was my mom. “Hi honey, How are you? Fine mom; how are you? Not so great honey.  I just got back from the doctor and I have really bad news. And I didn’t say anything before because I didn’t want to take the focus off you,  Guilt trip alert!  I knew what was coming next.

Kimmie, I just got back from the doctors and they say I have a failing kidney, my heart is bad. I have high blood pressure, I’ve been getting dizzy, and I can’t see well at night. To top it off, my car is on the fritz and I’m afraid to drive it, but I’m so excited about the baby and can’t wait to drive down there, three hours after dark, to see you.  We’re gonna have so much fun. I thought to myself, Are you fucking kidding me?

She was clearly letting me know that when she got here it wasn’t going to be about me or the baby at all.  It was going to be her way, and we were all going to have to nurture her.  I felt torn.  What was I supposed to do?  My mom’s sick, and I’m getting ready to have my baby in just a few days.  I didn’t want here, but then if she didn’t come, I would be the asshole.

I sat and cried that whole night.  I so wanted a nurturing mom that I had let my guard down and trusted that she could be there for me. The violins were playing so loudly in my head, I’m surprised I was able to get clear.  Why was I expecting her to act differently?  This is how she had been since I was a child.  I knew she wasn’t going to be able to be there emotionally for me, so why was I trying to get water from a dry well?

Finally, a friend helped me realize that my mother was loving and nurturing me, but in different ways.  For example, she gave me most of the money to hire my friend Sayida, who was my doula and who nurtured me throughout my entire labor.  My mother really did love and care for me, it just wasn’t in the way I wanted to experience it.

I decided I couldn’t have her with me, and wrote this email.

 

Hi Mom,

I just wanted to say I’m so sorry for what has happened to you.  It must feel so overwhelming to have all of these conditions going on.

It got me to thinking.  I think it’s best that you take care of yourself, and make sure you get better.

I need you to love and nurture yourself back to health, and I feel like I would be worrying about you with your hip, your heart, your kidneys, and then having you drive here, alone. All the while me trying to take care of a newborn baby.  So my suggestion is for you to get well, and then when I have the energy and the baby is past her 30 days, I’ll drive to you.

I know you’re excited to meet Summer, but the most important thing right now is your health, and that means more to me then anything.  It’s important that you take care of yourself before you race down here to take care of us. We’ll be fine.

I love you and please let me know if you need anything. I will keep you informed with everything play by play.

See you soon.

Kimberly Lou

 I called her a few days later, expecting another huge guilt trip.  But there was something different this time.  She told me that she had done a lot of soul searching and that she really admired me for being strong. She said that because I was setting my boundaries and standing up for my child, it gave her a reason to do the same in herself.

Miraculously, after she read my note all her problems weren’t an issue any more.  All the symptoms from her heart, her hip, her kidneys, high blood pressure, and her dizziness; All of it went away.

The same with my friend’s mom, the mom who had been so irrational about her daughter’s home birth.  Because my friend had responded to her with love, and lovingly set her boundaries, she didn’t have anything to argue about.  After she went home, she started eating healthier and lost thirty pounds.  She started living life again, and in fact her husband asked her if she was cheating on him because she had this newfound confidence to set her own boundaries and not take his abuse anymore.

People, we dictate how others treat us.  If someone is manipulative, controlling, overbearing, it’s our own doing, because we are allowing them to be that way TO us.  The minute you say ‘No More, that person will either shift or go away.

I can honestly say that I am so thankful to my friend’s mom for staying here for over a month, because it taught me to set my boundaries.  And because I did, I was able shift the relationship with my own mother.

Even my friendships are much better now and I am more respected in my community, because people know where they stand with me.  They don’t have to guess.  Now I attract respectful people into my space.

Some of you may ask, what does this have to do with losing weight and being thin?  I say EVERYTHING!  When we set our boundaries and stand up for ourselves, we no longer need to have that whole box of cookies to nurture and comfort us.  We don’t need to keep that protective layer of fat on, because we know that we’re worthy of so much more.

Have fun,

Kimberly Lou

 

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Make a List of Friends You Can Count on to Support You

When you are making changes in your life, you may experience a set back or two. As you get closer to a major breakthrough, you are likely to have unexpected feelings pop up. Your past may replay itself in the form of irritability. It can show up as anger, sadness, or feeling on the verge of tears for no apparent reason, which is why they are called breakthroughs.

At this time, you should not punish yourself, but acknowledge that some major transformation is happening. To assist you through this process, make a list of five friends you can call to support you. People who will not cosign your BS (Belief System), but who will hold a positive space for you.

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