Thursday, September 12, 2013

Toe touching - an unintentional copycat post

Total steps yesterday:  19,083
Exercise plans for today:  Strength workout

My best friend and I haven't always lead similar lives.  She graduated from an ivy league school, immediately started at a great job, and married a wonderful man.  By 25, she owned a house and had an adorable baby.

I, on the other hand, spent most of my 20s bouncing from job to job and place to place and wondering if I'd taken on too much responsibility when I adopted my cat.

Zebra says, "I've often wondered that too".
Nowadays, not much has changed.  She's on her second house and her second baby, and I'm still wondering if I'm taking on too much responsibility by having a child.

Lil W says, "Yes, you probably are".
We've managed to stay great friends despite having very little in common, and it's been super fun being pregnant at the same time as her this time around.  It was especially fun this morning when I clicked over to her blog and realized that I was about to write up a post on the exact same topic.

Toe touching.  And otherwise bending at the waist.  And sometimes squatting.  While in my mind my bump is huge, I realize it's actually not that gigantic yet.  So I was surprised in my strength training session earlier this week to realize that I could no longer do squats or deadlifts in the proper form because my bump was getting in the way.  I was using the squat rack and with each squat I kept moving my feet further and further out in order to make room for my growing stomach, before finally figuring out that it wasn't worth sacrificing form just to keep up with pre-pregnancy me.  So, I backed off, recouped, and revamped my weights workout.  

Today's gym experience was therefore more of an experiment in what I could comfortably do and what had to change.  I also found that there were certain moves I used to do with free weights that I no longer trust myself to do correctly, so I switched to doing them on machines.  I prefer  free weights and in general think I work harder with them, but it's not worth risking an injury right now.  So, for the next however many months of pregnancy, I plan to stick to the machines.  Today's newly revamped workout:

Two sets of each - I worked all the way through once and then repeated.
Push-ups, 15 reps (at a 60% incline)
Shoulder press, 15 reps
Step up, 15 reps (did just a small knee raise because belly was in the way)
Swiss-ball crunch, 15 reps
Wide-Grip Lat Pulldown, 15 reps
Seated row, 15 reps
Static lunge, 10 reps
Plank, 30 seconds

One quick note on push-ups.  A lot of women aren't able to do a regular push-up.  We tend to default to "girl push-ups" where we rest on our knees.  This is fine for building up arm strength, but you don't engage your core or your legs as much as you should be.  A better way is to follow the steps outlined here.  It should feel hard, but you should be able to complete 15 using one of the variations presented in the link.

With these variations, I didn't have to bend over or otherwise work around my stomach.  The closest thing that came to being uncomfortable was the static lunges - at the lowest point of the lunge, my bump hit my upper thigh and it felt tight and weird, which is why I only did 10 of those.  I imagine that they'll eventually get dropped as my belly continues to grow.  There's a long way to go from where we're at today:

Toes are still visible, even if I can't touch them.
It's not that big of a deal to have to adjust my strength workout.  This is more frustrating in my day to day life - bending over to pick up a ball when playing fetch with Zoe, or trying to tie my shoes, or even pushing myself upright to get out of bed in the mornings.  So many things to look forward to as everything gets more complicated.

On another note, this meme is floating around the internet the last few days, and it is very, very accurate to my life in an almost embarrassing way:
Funny Seasonal Ecard: If you say “Pumpkin Spice Latte” 3 times in front of a mirror a white girl in yoga pants will appear and tell you her favorite things about Fall. 
I think I've had 7 in the 12 days they've been available.  If Lil W doesn't like pumpkin after all this, there's going to be trouble.

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