While I enjoyed a wide range of activity during the second trimester, including BJJ training, the final stage of my pregnancy presented greater challenges to staying active; by the start of the third trimester the bump was becoming extremely unwieldy. During the final phases of the pregnancy I found my mobility went way down as I lost more and more core control. The last 9 weeks also saw me short of breath and by week 31 my exertion levels had to be reduced further from an already modest point. I did hit twice weekly gym sessions and short daily walks pretty consistently during the last weeks. This included weekly personal training which focussed on conditioning. We used bodyweight exercises, work on the suspension trainer and with cable machines; cable machines are great as they require more core activation than conventional weight machines but less than free weights, so a safer alternative in my distended state. We worked upper and lower body which benefited my overall fitness, my preparation for the birth as well as my knee recovery.
While I’d been swimming a lot through pregnancy I stopped this at 30 weeks. Up until this point I’d been able to whack out 30-50 laps of front crawl (with flip turn, cuz I’m bad like that) at a decent clip without feeling run down or out of breath. Suddenly, at 30 weeks, I felt really out of breath during my swim and reduced the intensity and the number of laps. Nevertheless, when I got out of the pool and the warm air hit me I felt very dizzy and nearly fainted. I recovered quickly and felt fine after some cold water, but felt uncomfortable getting back in the pool after this incident so I restricted myself to weights and walking from then on. While my weights sessions alone and with my trainer were at a good level of intensity, my walks were very slow and short as by this stage walking could cause a reasonable amount of pain and discomfort.
My last weights session was on Thursday 16 August as my little boy was delivered safely into the world on Friday 17 August after 37 weeks + 2 days of pregnancy, but more about that in my forthcoming posts on birth and post-partum rehab.
11 Sep 2012 @ 12:52 pm
Many, MANY congratulations, Meg!
Bea and I are just into the second trimester. She’s had to take it easy during the first, because we had to take the IVF route because her chemo affected her fertility. 11-14 week scan shows all limbs in the right places, and apparently normal skull and spine. Here’s looking at an interesting spring!
All the very best!
12 Sep 2012 @ 2:26 pm
Stunning news, Steve, huge congrats to you both! Glad to learn the scan looks well and all is going according to plan. I had to take it easy during the first trimester cuz I felt like sh1t – HAHA! My ‘workouts’ were barely deserving of the name during those weeks, but the 2nd trimester was much better as I was no longer ill from 16 weeks and not so massive that I couldn’t move about (this seems to be a familiar experience for other women exercising during pregnancy). It really isn’t straightforward to stay active while pregnant; big props for any effort imo! Here’s to a smooth pregnancy and positive birthing experience for both of you 🙂
14 Sep 2012 @ 4:51 pm
Meg, thanks for the insights through your experiences 🙂 Mitch and I try IVF a second time next month, and if it works, my immunologist tells me I have to avoid exertion because of my immune issues (excessive inflammation, essentially an immune system that works too well and attacks placenta as well as germs.) So I am looking forward to the challenge of finding physical movement that keeps me fit and healthy and happy, without bumping up immune response.
Love that photo of you in black against the hot pink chairs! At first I was wondering why all the flamingos 😉
19 Sep 2012 @ 12:29 pm
Everything crossed for you and Mitch next month, Georgette. We’re so thankful that we didn’t run into fertility problems as it isn’t uncommon and something we were concerned about when we set out on this journey. You guys are healthy and happy in every other way, so surely you guys are great candidates for success.
It will be a big challenge for you. I found my recovery time was ridiculous when preggers, especially from the latter part of the 2nd trimester. The day after a pretty humble weights session and I would be ravenous and very tired, almost liked I trained really hard, but the feeling when pregnant was just drained rather than tired but invigorated – if that makes sense. It is hard work making a person! i found the ‘pregnancy fitness’ classes at my gym to be very low level, great for mobility and working the pelvic floor but not too vigourous. Perhaps something similar or work with a trainer with ante-natal expertise could help; my trainer made a huge difference to my sense of well being and would recommend to anyone, especially if you’ve got doctor’s orders to consider.
Beaming positive vibes to your womb in prep for next month <3
PS That was a mad interactive art installation at London Live which was an Olympic venue at a local park (bands, big screens food, games and sports for kids). It was made of these pink pieces which could interlock to make and re-make a sculpture.
Pregnancy and BJJ: The Birth | MegJitsu
29 Sep 2012 @ 11:17 am
[…] keeping the mind strong so the body can work the technique. On the other hand, as reported in my third trimester round-up, I was working out and ‘pumping iron’ until the day before the birth. Labour is a […]