1. Neon Gym Picks & Tips for Working out in the Third Trimester

    Workout Gear in Neon

    Beach season is upon us and it is time to start showing some skin! We all know this means stepping up our gym routine (and using a few extra tan towels!). When it comes to working out, I personally prefer to hit the gym in the AM so I can get it out of the way, but motivating can be tough. Thanks to some neon bright updates to my gym wardrobe, I definitely have more pep in my step (even if it is just to show off the outfit!).

    Here’s what gym garb I am loving for Spring {clockwise}: Under Armour Pulse Sneakers (similar), an EleVen Topspin 1/4 Zip Pullover, a FitBump Theia Patterned Tank {maternity}, and EleVen Power Leggings in Wild Orchid.

    Underarmour pulse sneakers, fitbump tank, EleVen for Venus Pull Over

    Now getting real… staying fit in the third trimester… how am I doing it? Well, I am not a true ‘expert,’ but since this is my second go-around with the whole baby bump thing, I have some life experience in the matter. First and foremost remember to not be hard on yourself. Everyone’s body is different so if some days you just feel ‘off,’ then put those feet up and take it easy. If there are days you are feeling more energized, then take advantage. I have found from both of my pregnancies that working out from the start of the pregnancy through as late into the end as possible kept me feeling better, sleeping deeper, able to get my post-baby-bod back quicker, and overall just feeling better about myself.

    So here are my tips for working out / being safe / and keeping your baby healthy in the Third Trimester:

    • Come up with a schedule: I make plans to workout Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and then assume on the weekend I will take some long walks or be busy running around with the family. I like to alternate with a day off in between so my body can recover. Having a plan keeps me disciplined while taking the days off helps my muscles to be more energized for workout days. If my schedule gets crazy or I am not feeling my best I try to at least do some slow walking on the treadmill!
    • Kick start your week with a class: I always book a workout class for Mondays. It sets a “healthy” tone for the week plus makes me feel better if I did a little too much indulging over the weekend.
    • Stick with what you have been doing: If you have been spinning, doing barre classes, or prenatal pilates, keep up those same exercises, just slow down your pace. Give up the sprints and put down the weights, but try and stick with the class for the duration. 100% stay away from anything you have never done before. Since you know how you feel during and after those exercises you have been doing all along, you can gauge if you are pushing yourself too hard. Some new class may feel fine while you are doing it, but then may leave you limping or even injured afterward. At 32 weeks pregnant I am still doing Flybarre or Soul Cycle once a week. For flybarre, I use 1 pound or even no weights and then for Soul Cycle, I don’t do the sprints or the abs, and I rest when I need to.
    • Hydrate constantly: Bring extra waters or electrolyte drinks into your workouts and drink even when you think you aren’t thirsty. I always force myself to drink at least 3/4 of a 16.9 ounce bottle of water during a workout. Remember you are drinking for two!
    • Refuel right afterward: Have a snack and electrolyte drink immediately after you workout. I always bring a G2 and a banana or granola bar with me so I can have it as I exit the gym. If you don’t eat and drink right away, you run the risk of feeling shaky. Been there and it’s not fun!
    • Focus on Strength: My doctor always stressed that strength training is the most important form of exercise to maintain when pregnant because it helps during labor, so I like to do light weight strength training (using 2 pound weights) at least 2 days per week. Cardio is harder as the time goes on anyways since you are carrying so much weight, so I just try and do a mix of arm and back weight exercises, squats and lunges (no weights because my belly is the weight), and even some yoga inspired abs for a total of at least 20 minutes. When it comes to cardio, I run, elliptical, and spin in the first trimester for 30-40 minutes per session, I elliptical and spin for 30 minutes per session in the second trimester, and then in the third trimester I do a mix of elliptical, spin, and incline walking on the treadmill for 20-30 minutes per session.
    • Avoid Heavy Lifting: While strength training is important, lifting anything too heavy can be very dangerous. Stick with higher repetition and lighter weights. Also be careful to lift with your legs and not from your back! {I must say I was terrified of lifting just about anything in my first pregnancy, but this time around since my 23 pound, 15 month old daughter loves to be carried, I am realizing you can in fact carry more than you think. I would say be careful, but don’t have a heart attack if you by accident lift too much.}
    • Revive: It’s important to mix in Prenatal massages, reflexology massages, and various circulation massages (at a spa or from your husband) when you continue to workout late into the pregnancy. Sometimes sharp pains or muscle cramps can result from not stretching well enough, so it’s important to have someone rubbing your muscles and keeping the circulation flowing. And hell, the way I view it is if you are working out at this point, you deserve it! From mid-second trimester through the end, I go for a prenatal massage every 3-4 weeks and then I get a good foot and calf rub every other week at my pedicure.
    • Kegels: Yes, it’s incredibly important to keep those vaginal muscles strong so you can pop that baby out quickly. Gym or no gym, you can do these anywhere!
    • Prenatal Workout Classes: There are so many days where I wakeup feeling badly for myself and totally unmotivated to workout. Those are the best days to attend a prenatal workout class because you are in a room full of women who totally understand what you are going through but also have a goal of staying healthy and fit. You will be able to cheer on women who are early in their pregnancy (and maybe even answer some of their questions!), while you may be inspired by some women who are still working out, yet are weeks ahead of you. I always walk away with new friends and new motivation after these classes.
    • Listen to your Body: If you are tired, rest. If you are thirsty, drink. If you are sore, stretch. The bottom line is that working out should help you feel better, more flexible, and healthier. If it’s not fulfilling any of these feelings then maybe it’s just not your day! Go home, get a good night sleep, and tomorrow is a new day! Remember this is a time when working out isn’t for being vain and svelt, it’s about keeping your heart, mind, body, and most of all, your baby healthy!

    Spring Workout Clothes Neon Sneakers, Tie Dye Prints

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  2. Eating Paleo while Pregnant

    Paleo diet while Pregnant

    Being pregnant is such a special time in your life, but between cravings and morning sickness, eating healthy may not be easy, especially if you are considering becoming or continuing a Paleo friendly diet. So many people are going Paleo these days for health reasons, especially to help limit processed foods, but is being Paleo while preggers posing a dilemma? ? Jackie Tane, dietitian and co-founder of Skinny Soiree, is here to give Paleo Friendly (“PF”) Preggers Tips to ensure you and your baby get the proper nutrients needed for a healthy pregnancy!

    So first off, what is the Paleo diet? In a nutshell, the Paleo diet, also called the “Caveman” diet, which centers around the idea that if cavemen didn’t eat it then we shouldn’t either. Basically, Paleo approved foods are those that can be hunted, fished or gathered, including: meat, fish, shellfish, poultry, eggs, veggies, and fruits. Off-limit foods include: grains, dairy, beans, and sugar (Don’t worry, there are still ways to satisfy your sweet tooth!). Why? Proponents attribute the rise of obesity and other illnesses (ie: heart disease and diabetes) to the agricultural revolution and the addition of grains, legumes and dairy to the human diet. While there are most likely other factors involved, the Paleo diet certainly promotes lots of fruits, veggies and lean protein. Carbohydrates are not eliminated, but consumed in non-processed forms, such as fruits and root vegetables. 

    On to how Jackie recommends you make this work for you… Jackie writes….

    By far the most common food aversion women experience during pregnancy is to meat and green leafy vegetables – both of which contain super important nutrients needed during pregnancy. While the suggestions provided may help you boost your intake of these foods and nutrients that come along with them, keep in mind that you only need 300 extra calories during pregnancy (the equivalent of 24 almonds and 2 Tbsp of chia seed) – not an intimidating amount of food to get down! And remember, your body actually produces hormones that make it easier to acquire and store nutrients during pregnancy so just relax and do your best.

    A Breakdown of nutrients you and your baby need with Paleo-friendly solutions:

    Calcium aka “the structural” nutrient 

    • Calcium is big time important for you and your baby’s bones and teeth, nerve conduction, muscle contraction, blood clotting, production of energy, and immunity. 
    • Preggers Requirements = 1,000 mg/day
    • PF sources: Almonds (24) = 80 mg calcium, Chia Seed (2 Tbsp) = 179mg calcium
    • Tip: Cereals and starches tend to be best tolerated when experiencing morning sickness. Add ground chia seed and swap the walnuts for almonds in this Paleo friendly recipe for Apple Cinnamon Hot Cereal

    Fiber aka “the filling” nutrient

    • Fiber is SO necessary in keeping your energy levels up, and reducing the risk factors for gestational diabetes and constipation.
    • Preggers Recommendations = 30 grams/day
    • PF sources: Avocado (1 cup) = 10g fiber, Raspberries (1 cup) = 8g fiber
    • Tip: Frozen Berries help curb nausea from morning sickness.

    Folate/ Folic acid aka “the pregnancy” vitamin

    • Folic acid is serious business. Low levels of folate are linked to birth defects, so any woman who is pregnant – or might become pregnant – MUST get enough folate every day.
    • Preggers Recommendations = 800 mcg/day (Ideally start taking pre-natal vitamin 3 months before conception to help ensure folic acid requirements.)
    • PF sources: Cauliflower (1 cup) = 57mcg folate, Spinach (1 cup) = 114mcg folic acid
    • Tip: Since starches are better tolerated than leafy greens, try pureeing cauliflower and adding it to mashed potatoes. Or, if tolerated, add frozen spinach to fruit smoothies – you can’t even taste it!

    Iron aka “the oxygen carrier”

    • Since during pregnancy your blood volume expands to help your baby make his or her entire blood supply — iron needs double! 
    • Preggers Requirements = 27 milligrams/day
    • PF sources: Pumpkin seeds/Pepitas (1oz) = 4.2mg iron, Cocoa Powder (1/4 cup) = 7.2mg iron
    • Tip: Try this chocolate avocado pudding recipe for lots of fiber and iron! It’s also a great swap if you’re craving ice cream. 

    Protein aka “the power” nutrient

    • Protein is the building blocks of your body’s cells, as well as, your baby’s!
    • Preggers Requirements = about 70 grams/day (Aim for that amount as an average over the course of a few days or a week if you can’t meet it in one day)
    • PF sources: Chicken (3oz) = 21g protein – preferably organic, Jay Rob Unflavored Egg White Protein Powder (1 scoop) = 25g protein
    • Tip: If you aren’t tolerating meat well, try mixing the Unflavored Jay Robb Egg White Powder into PF smoothies or hot cereals.

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  3. Pregnancy Safe Exercises

    Yoga while pregnant // FashionableHostess.com

    Guest Nutritionist Post by Casey Simmons {Bio Below}:

    “Hi Ladies! I know we all wish we could look as healthy and beautiful as the Fashionable Hostess with her adorable belly so I’m going to share the most pregnancy safe exercises with you to help you get that fabulous glow she gives off so well!

    Maybe you’re used to being active, maybe you’re not, but when those extra baby pounds are showing, you want to make sure to keep yourself and that bundle of joy in there as healthy as possible. Not only will exercise help you lose those pounds quicker post-pregnancy, but it will boost your mood, improve your sleep, and reduce the pregnancy aches and pains. By strengthening muscles and building your endurance it will also make childbirth easier. The ideal workout gets your heart pumping, keeps you feeling limber and loose, manages weight gain, and prepares your muscles without causing too much physical stress or strain for you or the baby. All you need is 30 minutes of exercise a day to keep your heart and the little one’s heart healthy!

    Here are some great exercises to do throughout pregnancy:

    1. Walking – Walking is safe for your body and easy on your knees. A brisk walk on the treadmill or outside enjoying the weather in the park is wonderful.
    2. Swimming – Swimming is one of the safest exercises for pregnancy as it keeps your body toned without adding weights or stress. It is also great for raising your heart rate without causing overheating.
    3. Dancing (who doesn’t love a little Zumba)! – Dancing is great; just avoid too much jumping, leaping, or spinning.
    4. Cycling – Cycling is a good option because the bike supports your weight, so there is less stress on your body and less chance of falling until you grow to a larger size. When your belly is at it’s larger size, be more cautious as it can put some stress on your body.
    5. Stair climbers – Stair climbers are great for you and your baby. Side rails provide balance support and stepping is a great way to keep your heart rate up.
    6. Yoga – Yoga maintains muscle tone without impacting your joints. Be sure to not lay flat on your back for extended periods of time and don’t overstretch as it can cause muscle damage and increase pregnancy aches and pains. Stretch just enough so your body feels warmed up and ready to get going.
    7. Weights – Weight training is completely fine while pregnant but be sure to do lighter weight and don’t strain yourself.
    8. Last but not least…Kegels! Strengthening these muscles during pregnancy can help you develop control of your muscles during labor and delivery. They will also help with bladder control and minimize hemorrhoids. Best thing is, they can be done anywhere and no one knows you’re doing them! So start doing those kegels ladies! :)

    Exercise tips:

    • Before and after exercise AND every 20 minutes of exercise drink 8 ounces of water to stay hydrated.
    • If you feel yourself too tired to carry on a conversation while working out, then you are done for the day; stop exercising as soon as you start to feel worn out, don’t push yourself.
    • Keep your heart rate around 140 beats per minute, breathe deeply, and wear loose-fitting breathable clothes.
    • Keep up the hard work because that bundle of joy will be here before you know it. Your child will need you strong and healthy to give you a boost with those upcoming long nights!”

    Meet Casey Simmons:

    My name is Casey Simmons; I am a Certified Nutrition Specialist and total gym rat! I grew up with a trainer helping keep me at my prime as I played sports and competed in tennis at a national level. Ever since I finished playing tennis for Florida State University, I have taken it upon myself to keep up that active, healthy lifestyle. Shortly after tennis came to an end, I got certified in nutrition. I currently teach first grade in Tampa, FL and am trying to rub off my healthy habits on the little ones as well.

    I continue to love and learn more and more each day about all types of healthy living and I am so thrilled to be featured on The Fashionable Hostess’ fabulous blog. I hope you enjoy the advice that I share with you and please feel free to contact the FH with any topics you want to learn more about and she can pass on the suggestions. Don’t be shy because I can talk forever about all of the knowledge I have gained over the years!

    For more articles by Casey, check out the Fashionable Hostess Get Fit Section!

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