I am currently 32 weeks along in my third pregnancy. I knew my belly would eventually force me to re-evaluate my workout routine but I wasn’t sure how drastically. I came down with a cold about 2 weeks ago. It settled in my lungs forcing me to take a week off from working out; between the cold and Little Dude pressing on me lunges I knew I needed the rest. I also noticed strong cramps after a handful of cardo based WODs. My midwife knew about my workout routine and felt I was healthy enough to continue but emphasized the importance of listening to my body.
The cold forced me to rethink the plan for my last 10 weeks and my postpardum WODs programming. I knew I wanted to maintain my strength. I knew my belly limited cardo. I knew I had 10 more weeks of belly growth, 10 more weeks of back pain from the belly growth, and potentially 10 more weeks of round ligament pain. After talking with the Hubs and researching I concluded my routine would shift from performance/tradition “crossfit WODs” to a more competition/weigh training style.
My new plan follows a simple rep set pattern of 5/10 reps per motion 5/4 times followed by a core session.
Example Gym Session:
Lower Body 5-5-5-5-5
Box Step Ups with 10 lb plates in each hand (5 each leg)
Upper Body 5-5-5-5
Push Press @ 45 lb
I see this as a more “traditional” gym experience but I do throw “crossfit” movement into the mix. I found my back pain is less sever with this format. There are also benefits to changing up your workout pattern. I am seeing more overall strength and more muscle development. I can manage my blood pressure and heart rate easier and stay hydrated without suffering side stitches.
Lower Body Goals
When choosing my 2 or 3 motions I avoid repetition, ei you don’t want to program 3 sets of squats. I perform one style of squat every session; Front, Back, Overhead, or Body weight. Squats are quintessential for any fitness routine; they work your core, arms, gluts, caves, and tights. I then choose a full body or cardio based lower body movement: walking/jumping lounges, thrusters, wall balls, slam balls, box jumps, ect. You need to use your whole body even when you are focusing on one body part. Lastly I choose a legs only movement: deadlift, pistols, goodmorning, ect. Who doesn’t want a nice tight butt!?
Upper Body Goals
My goals for choosing any arm movement is two fold a) create muscle tone and b) maintain existing strength. I choose weights that challenge but do not strain.
This graph gives you an idea of movements you can use. Of course you can preform at any weight, even body weight.
At this point my core is day to day. I try to keep in mind how I am feeling. Planks are easier then any other movements now. Baby boy is lower than every which makes my back hurt pretty much all day. I can’t lay on my back for very long so most core movements are off limits at this point.
Choose a well rounded core set, you cannot spot treat! Take the time to create movements that work center core, back, side and lower core.