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Diapers and Dumbells: Coach Laura

Diapers and Dumbells: Coach Laura

My daughter Hannah was born on June 19 at 7:07pm –  7lbs 15 oz.

Life before Hannah was pretty simple (and selfish) and revolved primarily around health and wellness. As a gym owner and a nutrition coach, I worked out when I wanted – for as long as I wanted, and went wherever I wanted – whenever I wanted. In retrospect, life was simple, and I had it made.

Truthfully, though, my life really started changing about 18 months ago – when I found out I was pregnant.

Getting pregnant changed a lot of things. I remember my first workout at the gym after finding out – it was “CrossFit Total” – which, for those unfamiliar with CrossFit involved a maximum lift in strict press, back squat and deadlift. My husband, Dan, was coaching class and watched me like a hawk to ensure I didn’t ACTUALLY try to max out my lifts. I had a difficult time explaining to members why I wasn’t lifting very much, and had to quiet the voice in my head that told me to “just do it!”, “you’ll be fine”, “how big of a deal can it be?”

This was the first time in my life I felt confused about working out. What is safe for me? How hard should I work? What is going to happen to my body? How much weight am I going to gain? The questions started to pile up and turning to google for information was resulting in a lot of conflicting opinions.

Fortunately, my OB was a CrossFitter himself, and informed me that as long as my pregnancy continued to run smoothly, I can “do CrossFit until my water breaks” – his words. While, this is not a recommendation for every pregnant woman to start doing CrossFit, I had been doing it regularly for years, so as long as I was mindful my baby and my pregnancy was normal all would be perfectly fine.

I followed that advice, and modified my workouts to the best of my ability.

If you know me, you know that I love answers. I love data and I love to know. I don’t like being kept out of the loop. I read about things like diastasis recti, and prolapse, leaking – things I surely wanted to avoid or control –   and decided that I needed to learn more.

As a pregnant gym owner and coach with a number of pregnant athletes looking to me for advice, I decided to educate myself. Two prenatal/postnatal fitness certifications later – here we are.

During my pregnancy, I gained 50 pounds. I could blame the first trimester morning sickness that had me only eating bagels and cheerios, or the fact that I could somehow digest dairy during my pregnancy and indulged in my fair share of snack size Scor McFlurry’s, business owner stress, the voice that says “you’re eating for two”, etc. etc.  but there’s not much use listing my excuses.

45 of those 50lbs have gone away, thanks in large part to good nutrition and working out at CrossFit Bradford. It took 9 months however, so all of that “bouncing back” stuff you see on social media is just not real life. At least, not my real life.

I have learned a lot through my postpartum recovery.

In many ways, I am still recovering.

There are still a lot of things I “can’t” do, or movements I need to avoid because they put too much stress on my core, because, I did have diastasis recti, and I did leak when I jumped, and my body is just DIFFERENT. It’s not the same as it was, and that is totally okay.

Finding time to workout is hard. Much harder than I’d like it to be. Hannah never really enjoyed being at the gym, and her needs as a newborn made it pretty difficult to leave her for any time at all.

I haven’t worked out as much as I’d like. Certainly not in the first few months, although it is getting better now. I know how hard it is.

I am fortunate to have a space and the knowledge to help moms get a workout in a safe, supportive environment.

Starting April 11, we will be running 7 weeks of “Diapers and Dumbbells” at CrossFit Bradford. The class will be 45 mins, and friendly to new moms – no matter where you are in your postpartum journey. Bring your baby, make some friends, sweat with us, and don’t worry about whether baby needs to be fed, screams, takes off etc. We’ll get through it together.

I hope you’ll join me.

This class is appropriate for all levels of athleticism and fitness and no prior CrossFit experience is necessary.  12 spaces are available.

Each class begins with a dynamic warm-up and instruction in foundational exercises and movement skills, followed by a combination of cardiovascular and muscular training, core work and stretching all designed for the unique needs of new moms.

Every class will be different, and exercises will be tailored to your needs depending on where you are in your postpartum recovery.

Wednesday at 11:00am – 11:45am
Dates: April 11 – May 23

Non members: $89
Members: $45

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