Today, we are so excited to have Brenda Holian, the owner of the brand new (today is the Grand Opening!) Baby Boot Camp location in West Hartford/Farmington Valley here to tell us everything we always wanted to know about pre- and post- natal exercise.
A resident of West Hartford since March 2012 when she moved to CT from New York City, Brenda previously worked full-time as a CPA and part-time as a certified personal trainer. After her son was born, she quickly realized that she needed to shift her professional focus to a more meaningful career. She decided it was time to leave the corporate world to focus on her son and on her passion for helping people achieve their fitness and nutritional goals.
As a nationally certified personal trainer with additional certifications from Baby Boot Camp in pre- and post- natal exercise, Brenda is the perfect resource for expecting and new moms when it comes to fitness.
As my pre-natal yoga teacher always said, “a pregnant woman is the ultimate Olympic athlete.” And after just watching the Olympics, who wouldn’t want to feel like an Olympian? What makes a pregnant woman the ultimate Olympian? Elite athletes have a chance to rest between workouts; a pregnant woman does not, she is continuously pregnant and her body is constantly working. A pregnant woman must therefore be strong. More and more studies are being conducted that show just how strong a woman is during pregnancy and dispelling the myth that pregnancy is a time of frailty for women. Throughout your entire pregnancy, your body is working to grow a baby while preparing for the ultimate Olympic event: labor and delivery.
Exercising during pregnancy goes a long way in helping your body become ever stronger, better preparing your body for the “main event.” Exercising helps to reduce backaches, constipation, swelling, and bloating. Resistance training promotes muscle tone, strength, and endurance to help your body withstand the demands of giving birth. In some individuals exercising can shorten labor time and decrease recovery time. Additionally, the endorphins released during resistance training help to increase energy and improve mood.
So what types of activities should you be doing? The answer, in short, is whatever you were doing before you became pregnant, with only a few exceptions. The general rule is that you can continue to work out at the same intensity as you did before you became pregnant, unless you were not working out at all. It is appropriate to begin an exercise routine if you were not previously working out, as long as you begin very slowly. You should avoid activities that have a high risk of falling, as your balance will become off-center as your baby grows. Also, contact activities should be avoided to prevent impact with your belly. Now for the mandatory disclaimer: ALWAYS consult with your doctor before beginning any exercise routine, as only they can tell you if you have a contraindication to exercise.
What’s in it for the baby? On average, babies born to mothers who exercise are 14oz lighter than babies born to non-exercising mothers. However, exercising does not increase the risk of having a baby with a low birth weight. Babies born on the low end of normal have less of a chance of becoming overweight or obese. In an age where childhood obesity is on the rise, this is great news. Babies born to mothers who exercise have been better able to handle the demands of delivery and have quicker recovery periods after labor. So why not start your baby off on the right track to a healthy life?
Of course, there is no need to stop exercising after the baby is born. Many of the physiologic and morphologic changes that occur during pregnancy persist for 4-6 weeks after delivery, so exercise during this period should be kept to short walks and only with the okay from your doctor. After 6 weeks and with your doctor’s permission, exercise can resume, lightly at first and then with increasing intensity as you feel ready.
Post-natal exercise has numerous advantages as well. Your expanding uterus pushes against your abdominal muscles, stretching them out as the baby grows. Resistance training helps tone your muscles to firm up those abs. According to the Center for Disease Control, about 15% of women experience some level of postpartum depression (PPD), and exercising has been shown to reduce instances of PPD. Just like with pre-natal exercise, the endorphins released while working out help fight fatigue and improve mood. And we all know that in the first few weeks with a newborn, sometimes coffee just isn’t enough.
So perhaps you’re wishing that there was a fitness class catering to the needs of pregnant women and new moms. Well there is! Starting TODAY, Baby Boot Camp will be held at The Shoppes at Farmington Valley in Canton, CT. Baby Boot Camp is a fitness class that is designed for pre- and post- natal women, allowing them to get a great workout while their children ride along in the stroller. Are you interested in learning more? Get all the details below.
Hope to see you there!
Baby Boot Camp–Avon, Farmington, West Hartford
Owner: Brenda Holian
For more information, you can email Brenda at email@example.com or call her at 703-200-6551.
Monday, Wednesday and Friday 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. at The Shoppes at Farmington Valley (in the case of inclement weather, the class will meet at Canton Indoor Golf, which is off Route 44 just past The Shoppes at Farmington Valley).
Classes are 60 minutes in length and involve strength training, cardio exercises and core work, while incorporating Pilates and yoga.
See website for pricing details.
Grand Opening Special: Sign up within 48 hours of the grand opening on August 20, 2012 and receive 25% off your first package. Sign up during the remainder of the week and receive 15% off your first package. Additionally, at the end of class there will be a raffle where one participant will receive a month free!
Thanks again to Brenda for being our guest poster today! Do you have additional questions about Baby Boot Camp or pre- and post- natal fitness? Ask Brenda by leaving a question in the comments section below! Also, be on the lookout for Brenda’s upcoming guest post all about the Baby Boot Camp experience.
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