Category Archives:Fit Pregnancy

May. 10.

Fighting Mental Illness with Fitness

Fighting Mental Illness with Fitness

May is Mental Health Awareness Month! If you are fighting a mental illness it is nothing to be ashamed of. After training many people over the years I have come to realize most of us fight similar mental battles and the more you can open up about it the more you can overcome.

Most of my life I battled depression/anxiety. Doctors actually told me at one point my brain simply does not produce serotonin like other brains. Serotonin is a chemical that stabilizes your mood and acts as a neurotransmitter.

What does a depressed person look like?

         That is hard to say, 1 and 5 Americas have a mental illness and 1 out of 10 are depressed! Depression is debilitating and in the United States has become the leading cause of disability from a wide age range of 15 to 44 years old.  When thinking of a depressed person you would most likely visualize a sad person who cries a lot. This is how depression FEELS! Yet on the outside depression can look successful and depression can look fit!

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I was an overweight kid, an anorexic teen and a depressed obsessed fitness competitor. On the outside I looked mentally and physically healthy but I was not. Exercise was my “out” and food was what I controlled to help live with my depression and social anxiety. Today I have given up control over food and have come to a point where exercise is not always the answer. I have accepted my mental illness and after 28 years finally learned how to take action to combat it.

Am I depressed today? No, but I could be! The way your brain produces chemicals is not your choice. It is a choice to fight though.  

Steps I take to fight depression and anxiety in a healthy way are:

1.       Using exercise in combination with mental health help. Therapy, talking with friends or a life coach in combination with exercise can dramatically help improve your chances of overcoming mental illness.

2.       Incorporating running back into my exercise plan for endorphins. With an unstable mood the endorphins have always helped bring me back to reality and help me feel accomplished.

3.       Nutrition! Eating a balanced diet will help your hormones stay in balance and give your brain and body enough fuel to properly work. Also viewing no food as “good” or “bad” will help create a positive lasting relationship with food as being fuel for the body and not something that can control your feelings.

4.       Be consistent! A study by Duke University compared the antidepressant effects of exercise on three different groups. One group received Sertraline a popular antidepressant, one group exercised and one group received a placebo. The exercise groups all exercised at different levels and frequencies. The group with the largest antidepressant effects was that of the group who consistently exercised for 3-4 days a week for 40 minutes or more.

5.       Be grateful! On repeat! Depression will tell you your life sucks or that no one cares! You have to fight it and tell yourself otherwise over and over!

6.       Set a 6 month goal to fight. It takes about a month to conquer a new habit and about 6 months for your brain to form the habit to where it will no longer be “new” to your brain.  

7.       If you are depressed and food is your drug of choice, use exercise like an anti-venom to the drug (food.) Find a routine and accountability to help you keep a healthier balance during your fight to overcome.

 

If depression and anxiety are holding you back from your full potential please contact us! We would love to hear from you and help you find an exercise routine most suitable for your specific goals!

 

It is also postpartum depression awareness month! It is very real, if you know someone that has recently had a baby please reach out to them so they know to be conscious of PPD signs and to know they are not alone!

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Mental health is JUST as important as physical health!

Sep. 25.

Operation Fit Mom: 6 week Post Pregnancy

Operation Fit Mom: 6 week Post Pregnancy

Ugh! Working out is so hard! I actually complained during a workout yesterday because everything has never been this difficult! When it comes to nutrition, it is relieving to know I can now loose weight without starving or conforming to rigid eating habits. In the past I would loose weight by dramatically changing my lifestyle  (eating less, increasing cardio, eating “clean”) in such ways that I would take two weeks just mentally preparing for it. Then by day 3 I would already be dreaming of foods I’d restricted myself from! And people deny eating this way is a disorder?!

I’m so blessed to have the knowledge and the opportunity to increase my knowledge and learn nutrition more in depth. Though it does not happen in 30 days, I am on track loosing fat eating what I love, never feeling starved and training the least amount possible.

The three workouts I’ve done thus far consisted of 30 minutes of body weight exercises in my living room as my son does not always allow me to go out of the house. Body weight workouts in the past were almost never challenging enough; this time I barely survived even with the 3 minute rest intervals!

My nutritional plan:  Like many new clients struggle, I found it a little bit of a challenge the first two weeks accurately tracking my numbers and getting into the habit again on calculating what I eat. My food increased today as I am training twice per week now. I am still eating flexibly in my macros and approximately 2100 kcals; pizza and Chinese were on the menu today. Carbohydrates are well over 200 so cereal has also been a high carb food of choice this week. I dont time my meals or have a certain amount a day. And I still drink diet coke (its the only caffeine I get!;p) along with making sure I meet my water requirements.

My goals right now: To be patient (lol)..I can not focus on weight goals. I had a few eating disorders in the past so the scale too often could become dangerous territory. I also am not in a calorie deficit due to breastfeeding so my weight may not drop as quickly.

My weight: 171

My 4 week Progression

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4 weeks:
Approximately 3lbs down, only 3-30 minute workouts in the 4 weeks, I eat what I want and track my macros :)..that is all, excited for what the next 4 weeks bring!

A key to success in fitness goals is embracing every step along the way

 

 

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Aug. 28.

Operation Fit Mom: Two Weeks Post Pregnancy

Operation Fit Mom: Two Weeks Post Pregnancy

Training, nutrition, workouts and my progress

What I did during Pregnancy…

Training: once or twice a week with bands, deadlifting and squatting stopped at 32 weeks pregnant, most other training was band work.

Cardio: maybe 10 walks total my whole pregnancy

Eating: I did not track macros at all and ate freely the whole pregnancy.

Weight gain: started 150lbs at 15% body fat, gave birth at 192lbs—42lbs gained

Photo of me the weekend of conception… at least to our and the doctors knowledge.  Was 150lbs and 15% body fat before pregnancy.

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Post Pregnancy…..

14 days post birth: weight 175lbs

Training\cardio: none yet

Nutrition: Started tracking my macros this week. I am breast feeding so I am not in a calorie deficit. I am finding that I probably over ate during my pregnancy because I am HUNGRY! I am eating balanced. Therefore I am eating whole foods but still enjoying foods I love like Cheese Its and ice cream! :)

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Yes, this photo is embarrassing but I am not embarrassed. Through pregnancy I think I learned to live a little! Years of anorexia and exercise bulimia made me such a control freak with my body that I took these 9 months and enjoyed life instead of focusing on what I was eating next. It was a freeing experience that made me quickly reprioritize my life. I am starting my journey back to fit but not letting it control me or take priority over other things in my life.

Check back every month for progress stats and pictures!

By the way we had a beautiful baby boy born 8\12\2014 at 6lbs 3oz.

Fitness comes in all shapes and size, don’t judge a book by its over!

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May. 08.

Eating for Two?

Eating for Two?

Pregnancy training and weight gain: 23 weeks 3 days

Doctors say you should eat normally and not eat for two people, even though you are growing a mini human! Well, the last few weeks that has been easier said than done! :P For about 2 weeks I have had a burst of hunger (is what I would call it); it does not last all day but only an hour or so where I about eat the house down! I realized how much I was eating when myy husband, who is counting his marcos leaves his note pad on the counter;  and some days…most days, I will find that I have eaten more than him!

Prior to pregnancy my metabolism began to really pick up! I was eating around 2200 calories a day and dropping fat training 3 days a week! And I was hungry! Now that I am pregnant I am finding my body still wants at least that same amount of food if not more even though I am training less. During pregnancy your metabolism increases therefore I am bound to be more hungry but now finding myself cleaning out the fridge within 3 days!!

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I will be brave & post a photo :)
23 weeks 3 days pregnant

Thus far I have gained 17lbs! I am not sure if that is “normal” but that’s really not something I am concerned with; my body has never fit any “norm” for a woman’s size or weight. I started this pregnancy journey at 15% body fat so may gain more than most women since I maintained a lower body fat percentage.  I am just trying to avoid stretch marks by growing too fast because I already have plenty of them from my past and I get them easily. :/ Mentally it rough some days to deal with the changes of my body. I have been focused on fitness goals since I was 12 so this is a learning experience for me mentally be able to let go of focusing on my body in that way. With my profession it is hard, I have always done my best to keep my appearance looking fit even through my metabolic damage repair but with the hormones in play and not being able to train as hard..it is out of my control. :(

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Pregnancy training

Training: Full body 2 x a week (yes still deadlifting :)) and usually 1 or 2 walks with my husband

Baby update: He is moving!!!! He is very active and sometimes can be seen kicking.

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 Check in next week! 4 months to go!!!!!

 

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Apr. 05.

Let the Bump Training Begin!

“Bump” Training

The fear of gaining baby weight is a main topic among pregnant women. Because I am a trainer, I do have the peace of mind of knowing how to properly lose the weight once the baby is born but I can see how, for many women, the weight gain can be scary. Your diet is something you no longer control, it controls you! Example; I eat 3 bagels with cream cheese for breakfast every morning!  Or I will need sour patch kids ASAP. This diet is scary even to me; I hate being out of control of my body but what woman doesn’t !

If eating my normal diet is not hard enough, trying to exercise is a struggle! No matter what stage of your life, your mind will plays games! “Why keep striving to workout? You will not gain the same benefits that you would normally; like increasing my deadlift PR or loosing fat!” Yes that crossed my mind… but over the years of training I have become an expert at sorting my feelings with facts. Therefore I train because I know I NEED to.

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On a better note my metabolism is doing a wonderful job.:) I spent the 8 months prior to becoming pregnant working on building my metabolism and all that work has really paid off thus far. I have not worked out in about 5 weeks, maybe once or twice but the degree of exhaustion in the first trimester makes it nearly impossible. I have ate enough carbohydrates and sugar to run a large bus from Florida to New York (given it was run off glucose) and only have gained 3 lbs and I am out 12 weeks pregnant. Which is normal but it is not normal for most bodies who are used to training 5 days a week hardcore and following an eating plan to be able to not rebound once exercise and the diet stops. Now of course it will not maintain forever but for 3 months of being off any plan I am very happy that my metabolism seems to be burning!

Will show baby bump pictures soon!

There is a difference between increasing your metabolism and loosing weight. Keep expanding your knowledge!!

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Apr. 03.

The Biggest Challenge Yet

 The Biggest Challenge Yet

Pregnancy Fitness

     I am almost 19 weeks pregnant and already feeling huge! I know I am gaining fat a little faster than I should so I will just say that now to hold myself accountable. :/ 

So far my thoughts about being pregnant are..I think I will stick with one baby! (lol) My husband and I saw our baby BOY for the first time about 3 ½ weeks ago, it was a very exciting moment. I am not excited all the time for being pregnant is a struggle for me mentally.

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Baby Boy! 15 weeks 4 days sonogram

Stress of life is a given and my life is far from stress-less; usually I would focus on my training and that would somehow help me deal with every other aspect of my life. Training today is far from fun! It is something I am trying to learn from but when you feel like you are taking 100 steps back in your physique and your training it becomes very discouraging. I have been training maybe twice a week! I am still trying to lose muscle therefore hitting the weights twice a week is all I do. Cardio training I only did once a week before pregnancy so why start now!? Haha I can not sprint, run, or pull a sled..so why even do anything!? Silly for some people to hear I’d rather pull a sled than go for walks…must be something about the puking feeling.;)

Uh Oh, She Lifts!
Deadlifting light weight! @ about 18 weeks

Training with the baby has taught me two important lessons about myself and others. First, I feel for my over weight and obese clients whom have never exercised before. I am out of breathe quickly and get fatigued quickly;  I have a new appreciation for some of my clients so much so that I almost want to take it easier on you!;) Second, no doubt I am a fitness freak, fitness junkie and addict because not being able to practice what I preach to the MAX is KILLING me! :P

 

On a happier note…I do crave salads, fruits and vegetables. I do not crave chicken at all! (lol)  I do crave sweets but try to only indulge twice a week.:/ Anorexia to pregnancy is no easy venture but I am determined to do my best in continuing to train during my pregnancy. 

Things I have ate I never thought I would!:

  1. A whole bag of Doritos in 1 day.
  2. 2 whole bags of grapes in 2 days.
  3. No hesitation for eating ANY desserts!
  4. Box of Rits Bits in 1 day.
  5. Box of Cheese Its in 1 day.

Total weight gained thus far: 9lbs

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