Every pregnant woman’s biggest fear is never getting her prenatal shape back - or worse, still looking pregnant even after having given birth months (or years!) after. Make this year the year you stop worrying about strangers asking you how far along you are!
January: Own the decision… Andrea Mercado Miguel, New York-certified Romana’s Pilates instructor and certified TRX instructor, and Jon Garcia, personal trainer, agree that the first step to getting in shape is to decide you really want to do it. “You have to be mentally prepared and physically determined,” says Garcia. Miguel adds that you have to commit to yourself. “You have to find that motivation within. For some, it’s plain vanity and that can be a huge motivator.”
...and get clearance from your OB. When women who have just given birth approach Miguel for a consultation, she always asks them to get clearance first from their obstetrician-gynecologist. “Especially if they delivered via CS,” she adds. “If they want to start six months after giving birth, that’s usually okay, but two to three months after birth requires clearance.”
February: Do research. If you’re determined to stick to a fitness program, Miguel suggests finding something you really enjoy. That way, it won’t be as much of a struggle. “If you can’t decide between yoga and pilates, for example, take a trial class and decide which one you prefer,” she suggests. It doesn’t matter what kind of exercise you choose. “You just have to move. Find something you really like that works for you, so you keep doing it.” Make a list of the different fitness programs that interest you, and try them all this month!
March: Sign up... Miguel says it’s important to check your trainer’s credentials. “Ask for their qualifications because they’re dealing with your body and your well-being.” And make sure you’re comfortable with your teacher. If you aren’t, it can sabotage your best efforts.
...and start! “Take that first step,” Miguel encourages. “That’s usually the hardest step.” Even after you’ve motivated yourself, bought all the gym outfits, and signed up for the classes, none of that would matter if you don’t show up on your first day.
Although there are many different ways of working out, Garcia advises, “Start with cardio training combined with weight-training or lifting, much like a circuit workout.” Your program will depend on your body and your trainer. On the other hand, Miguel says, “You don’t need to use weights. Your body resistance alone is weight, and your body is weight, too.”