Motherhood- The Eternal Balancing Act
Do you also gag every time someone tells you how motherhood and parenting is "all about balance"?
Sure it is.
But something has to give every single time. Rarely have I ever met a mother who feels completely content in her ever changing puzzle of self-care, parenting, partner-ing, career, and sleep. If I ever do, they're just trying to sell me something.
I'm not here to show you how to live your #bestlife. That you have to figure out on your own. What I can tell you, is how important balance is in your training routine. So, if you are up for a challenge, these workouts are for you!
When we are pregnant, we need balance in our routines to prepare for the body's changes and to prevent falls. This could be as simple as squatting as a BOSU or doing single-leg bicep curls. With parenting, we still need these tools, but even more so. Children and all of their accessories only grow over time, and if you're the one lugging everything around, we need to practice proper movement patterns to prepare for this.
Here's one of my favorite compound moves for moms-- a high carry side lunge with a bicep curl.
I use two different weights to simulate real life while also training balance and maintaining proper alignment. The diaper bag, the car seat, multiple kiddos, a bag of toys/ groceries, etc, all weigh differently, so we need to train for this in the gym.
Some alignment cues I like to use:
keep the heels lined up when doing the side lunge
keep the wrists straight in the carry and curl
stick your butt back like you're sitting in a chair
squeeze your butt as you come up from the lunge
stack your ribs over your hips before you curl
maintain your piston breathing via @juliewiebept.
I, too, often ignore my posture when I'm trying to carry a fussy 23lb child, my massive diaper bag, and whatever else I'm lugging around... but it's super important to keep the posture cues in mind when we're out and about. Practicing the breathing strategy to train the core and protect the spine is really helpful too.
If you are currently pregnant :
I LOVED this routine in my second trimester. Please keep in mind that if you are visibly showing and you feel any bunching, pressure, coning, or pulling in your core, you may need to skip the TRX pushups and do these against the wall.
The TRX provides a lot of challenge for muscles as they have to maintain proper form while gently balancing with the rope. Generally, the second trimester is when most mommas have enough energy to complete harder workouts and if it's early on, are still able to do most of these exercises without modification. If you are new to exercising with a TRX, please only attempt the single-leg balance while holding on to a partner, wall, or chair until you feel more comfortable going for the real thing.
Another note--- some prenatal programs will tell you that balance and rotation is to be avoided completely throughout your pregnancy. I couldn't disagree with this any more. We rotate and balance in real life, why not train this in the gym so we can do this properly in real life? Rotation at this point in my pregnancy felt amazing. I was finally able to stretch my spine and I used my legs for the most part. This came in really handy when I finally "popped" in the third trimester, so I'm glad that I had prepared my body in advance!
Please share these moves with your favorite momma and mom-to-be! Contact me directly if you need extra support and would like to set up a complimentary phone consultation prior to training.