EMOM for A (pre-)Mom!

Hello! I come to you all with news! Last week I wrote that I had taken my 1-hr glucose test and was waiting for the results. Well a few hours after posting, my OB’s office called to tell me that I had failed my test. This might sound sort of silly, but I had a SLEW of emotions after finding out. As someone that takes my diet very seriously, it was hard not to feel guilty and responsible for failing this test (my glucose level was 142 and the cutoff is 130). I very definitely cried some big ol’ preggo tears. After some serious internet researching and crowd sourcing, I found out that it is VERY common to fail the 1-hr test and pass the follow-up 3-hr test. Additionally, while Gestational Diabetes can be caused by an unhealthy diet and sedentary lifestyle, it is also heavily impacted by genetics. With my father having Type 2 diabetes and my mother having GD with both my brother and me, it was at much higher risk despite by healthy lifestyle.  This gave me some reassurance, but honestly I was still extremely nervous that I would be placed on a restricted Gestational Diabetes diet…which really didn’t sound like a great idea for someone with a history of significant eating disorders. I watched my carbs and sugar from Thursday through the weekend in preparation for the dreaded fasted 3-hr test.

I began fasting around 8 pm on Sunday night, arrived at the lab at 7:30 armed with my iPad, some saved up DVR shows, a new book, and a giant bottle of water. My blood was tested right away, then I drank my delicious (read: disgusting) breakfast and sat in the waiting room until 10:30, having blood drawn every hour on the hour. I bee lined it straight to Starbucks afterward for a breakfast sandwich and a cup of coffee, then to the beach to forget about test results for the rest of the afternoon, not feeling particularly confident.

Beach Belly

When I got home, my land line (I know, we’re primitive) had a message. It was the nurse calling 1 hour after I left the lab…I had passed! What a relief! I had cheese and crackers to celebrate. I share this story with you for a few reasons. In my online scouring, I really didn’t see a lot of personal stories around GD. As a first time mom, any complication (no matter the size) is incredibly scary! I just want other mommies and pre-mommies to know that it’s ok to feel afraid, and that while you’re probably going to feel guilt and mom shame for various reasons throughout pregnancy, childbirth and child raising, do not let the internet get to you. You’re doing a great job, and you’re going to be a great mom! (This is my daily mirror pep talk. Feel free to borrow!).

Anyway, I wanted to share a new workout with you that is great for preggo’s and non-preggo’s alike! EMOM stands for Every Minute On the Minute and found it’s origins in crossfit. Basically, you do each exercise when the clock hits :00 for a designated number of reps. Whatever time you have left after completing all the reps until the next minute is rest. Here’s some more info on EMOM. It sounds easy because you  sometimes end up with a lot of rest, but it moves quickly and some exercises take longer than others. Here is a 20 minute EMOM that I did on Sunday. Let me tell you, I was seriously sweaty after just 20 minutes using modified movements…so listen to your body and pull back when it seems hard!

20 Minute EMOM Workout

20 Min EMOM

You can increase or decrease the difficulty of this workout by adding or subtracting weight (I did body weight squats and push-ups on my knees), or rounds if you’d like to make it longer or shorter.

I finished up this workout with the following “cash out” (which is just another name for ‘finisher’):

That’s it for me! I have this week and next to soak in the end of summer before returning to work for 12 weeks. Have a fab week!

xoR

Smooth Operator: the time I discovered smoothies

Hi Everyone! Hope you’re all having a fab week!

Yesterday Chris and I met with our OB and she reiterated how ridiculous active and uncooperative our baby is…which isn’t all that surprising considering his/her parents…Everything was healthy and perfect, though, so it was a nice meeting! I also had my glucose loading challenge test yesterday. I had to drink a whole bottle of orange stuff (akin to flat orange Fanta on steroids) and then have my glucose level checked 1 hour later. I’ll get the results today. However, it reminded me of a time in grad school when I volunteered for an eating disorder study for individuals who had recovered (I definitely had not recovered at that time). I was made to drink a giant beverage and told it contained 900 calories. They then measured my level of anxiety based on report and took blood. I lied and lied and lied saying I felt fine and had no problem with the calories. I had a relapse that very day. This time was obviously much different: I drank the drink, had my blood drawn, ate lunch, ate dinner, moved on. Ta-Da! It certainly feels a lot better this way.

Anyway, I know I’m late to the game, but as of this week I am WAY into smoothies. I’ve been having a hard time eating vegetables lately with my heartburn and little bouts of nausea, and chicken salad and pasta really isn’t fulfilling my healthy food quota each day (although delicious). I’ve never really liked smoothies. I really prefer to chew my food, but since I’m having a hard time doing that, smoothies seem to be the most logical solution at the moment. Here is my fave recipe that I’m currently loving for it’s nutritional stats, taste, and ease:

Green Protein Smoothie

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • .5 medium banana
  • 1 cup baby spinach
  • 1 Tbsp almond butter
  • 1/4 cup rolled oats
  • 1 scoop vanilla whey protein
  • 1 tsp chia seeds
  • Ice

Add all ingredients to blender, whirl, inhale.

Here are a few more that I’ve tried and really enjoy:

I really prefer smoothies with fruits and veggies, since it gives you more nutritional bang for your buck. Plus they’re green…which really adds to the “Suburban Mom” vibe that I’ve been riding: designer handbag, big sunglasses, SUV, green smoothie, resting bitch face, 7 months pregnant. Try it out ;)

Oh, and this is the little single serving blender that I bought:

Blender

That’s it for me! What kind of smoothies do you like?! Let me know in the comments!

xoR

Hot Child, Summer in the…Suburbs

Hi! It’s been a minute since I last wrote! Hope you’re all doing fabulously! I’ve been super busy with preggo stuff…like sleeping and eating, so I really couldn’t be bothered…

Really it’s been a super quiet summer here, which is so nice. Pregnancy is treating me well, and as of right now I’m just eating, growing, sleeping, and trying to stay as active as possible. I have some new fun symptoms like a super itchy/hairy belly (akin to a Yeti), swelling feet (like little foot shaped balloons), and intermittent narcolepsy (like on Monday when I got dressed to work out, then woke up 2 and a half hours later on the couch). Otherwise, things are going well! Baby has been dancing up a storm and seems to enjoy mommy and daddy’s off key, obnoxious singing, giant cats sleeping and vibrating him or her, and soccer practice with mommy’s bladder!

Since coming home from California, my diet has really been different. I wrote about loosening up while on vacation, and I’ve really been able to keep up with it! Baby seems to want lots of sandwiches, ice cream, and sweet drinks (HELLO Starbucks Very Berry Hibiscus Refreshers). My workouts have been holding steady, but I’ve had to start modifying for my growing belly. For example: my belly nearly reaches the floor during pushups, so I need to use a bench or the wall. I’ve had to stop attending rowing classes because my knees hit my belly, which compress my lungs, which is really not good for anyone. Plus it’s been approximately a trillion degrees with a billion percent humidity every day, so walking outside is really not an option. There are plenty of other options!

Here’s a full body workout that I wrote yesterday! You’ll need a TRX or suspension system, a set of dumbbells and some sort of step (I used an actual stair, but you could use a chair, a bench, whatever). Make sure to rest as much as you need! My rest intervals used to be 30-60 seconds, but now I need a solid 60-90 seconds at minimum to recover after each set. Take your time and remember that form is REALLY important when you’re pregnant. Maintaining core strength and balance should are my current #1 priority while exercising and proper form ensures that!

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And just in case you’re wondering how I’m looking these days (I know you are):

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Here I am in all my fuzzy belly glory! Charlie seems to approve from above in his new cat perch. What a creep. That’s pretty much it for me for now! I hope you all have a fantastic week!

xoR

Crusin’ in Cali: roadtrip roundup

Hi Everyone!

We’re back from our California road trip and feeling awesome! Here’s a little recap of our amazing trip!

We started off in Hermosa Beach, which is in LA county. It was absolutely GORGEOUS there and I wouldn’t mind staying there for the rest of my life. We went to the beach, walked to nearby beaches and neighborhoods, ate phenomenal healthy food, and went to a stunning wedding!

After 3 nights, we went to get our rental car (just a casual BMW 428i Convertible…no biggie), and headed up through Malibu to Santa Barbara. It was a pretty ride along the coast and Santa Barbara is a cute town. We were only there for a night, so we didn’t do a ton of sight seeing, but certainly a nice place to stay!

Bright and early the next morning we hit the road on the Pacific Coast Highway and drove all the way up to Monterey. It  took about 9 hours total with several stops including the Elephant Seals in San Simeon, dolphins in Big Sur, lunch at Nepanthe, and a few stops along the PCH just to take in the scenery. I seriously recommend everyone take this ride once in their lifetime. It was so beautiful. I even drove on the really scary parts because I figured I’d be less likely to barf if I were behind the wheel (I was right!)

We stayed overnight in Monterey with a trip to the aquarium (which is fabulous) and dinner in Carmel (not Caramel, which was disappointing to this preggo).

Finally, we headed up to San Francisco for the day to hang with my cousin Eve, and my brother, Ben, who then took us up to Napa for our final 3 nights. This was a much less eventful trip than my last visit to Napa (you may remember the 6.1 earthquake last time), but still beautiful and less wine-soaked as I hit 21 weeks pregnant.

Overall, it was so nice to get away and refresh for summer. I am finally starting to feel confident with this new body, and even walked around Hermosa in just a sports bra and shorts, which I’ve never done before in my life! It was nice to eat healthy with a few  a lot of delicious treats (like the Chocolate Bomb I didn’t share at Morimoto, the loaf of bread and butter at Bouchon Bakery, and the endless number of macarons I ate at the wedding). We did a fair amount of walking, but we also did a fair amount of driving. My brother and I went to a yoga class in Napa. which was super nice, and we refueled with pizza. So really, I think this pregnancy is teaching me true balance. I am feeling really great at this point and enjoying where I am.

So now we’re back home, I have zero plans until September and I feel fantastic about sitting on the couch with Gloria, watching terrible TV, dragging my tush to the beach, and doing whatever I damn well please!

Hope you all have a fabulous week!

xoR

Katie K Active…why it should be your new favorite company!

Hi Everyone!

I wanted to show off my brand new Katie K apparel and let you all know that I LOVE this line! You might remember my review from last year, and the brand has made some fab improvements that I am so excited about!

First up are the Signature Urban Legging:

Orange Sports Bra

They are flipping amazing. I have been waiting a little while to review these leggings to make sure they still fit my growing midsection. Well guess what, not only do they come up nice and high over my bump (which I prefer), but they stay put. No rolling, sliding, or gapping. They are super soft and have that famous hidden side pocket perfect for your phone!

Next, the Signature Open Back Burnout Tee:

Soft. Light. Open Back. Adorable. This is so lovely to wear while working out.

Finally, The Free Flow Cardigan:

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Excellent for wearing en route to a barre class, throwing over a tank for a walk, or a casual work day! The color is super pretty and the material is a nice weight, not too heavy, not too light!

Please excuse all the selfies, my photographer was at his real job :)

Katie K is such a cool company. They make clothes for every size, shape, and ability level. Their stuff is fashionable, functional and made for a real woman’s body. I 100% endorse this company, and while the clothes were given to me in exchange for this review, I truly love them! Also! If you use code “Rebecca15” you will receive 15% off your next order! Seriously consider Katie K next time you need some new workout duds!

Have a fab week! Chris and I are off to California later this week, so keep an eye out for our adventures on Instagram!

xoR

Summer of the Ever Expanding Belly: Day 1

Hi Everyone! I’m reporting live from my couch on Day 1 of summer vacation! I remember writing this post last year with a tinge of anxiety since I hadn’t found a job yet for the following fall and trying to embrace the joy of the unknown…now that feeling of unknown comes in the form of a little human growing inside me…talk about changes!

Over the course of the past few weeks, my emotions have been all over the place. I know we’ve talked a lot about body image, and I wanted to bring it up again for old times sake. Being pregnant is really wild. Somedays I feel great: strong, maternal, awesome. Somedays I feel terrible: sad, chubby, and terrified. Lately, the latter has been winning, which is a huge bummer for me. Dressing this new body is a daily challenge, and shopping isn’t as much fun as I want it to be. I find myself feeling like things look “just OK” as opposed to “OMG SO ADORABLE”. I’m self conscious about my giant bras and thighs that now rub together a little bit. I’m constantly pulling my tank tops down over my belly and up over my boobs…I’m uncomfortable in my own skin, which is an old and familiar feeling. People are also starting to make stupid comments about my size and my weight (WHICH ARE NEVER OK!).

That being said, I was reminded recently that the reason I am growing is because the baby is growing…and that’s a good thing. I was also reminded that what my body is doing is incredible and seemingly magical, not just getting larger. Then I remembered all the adorable little things I get to buy now, and that it’s not about just me anymore. People are also starting to smile at me on the street. I’m telling you, pregnancy is really wild.

Last week we had an ultrasound, which would have been when we found out the gender, but we are opting for a surprise baby! So far we know that it’s either a boy or a girl, very healthy, extremely active, and particularly uncooperative during ultrasounds, which I guess should not come as a surprise to anybody.

So: Here is an awesome article that you pregnant naysayers should read! 

Here is an amazing lower body workout from Muscle and Strength

Here is my new favorite Boston area fitness studio

And here is a belly selfie (’cause…why not):

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That’s it from me! Have a fab day!

xoR

Fit Bump: A Preggo Guide

Hi! Hope you’re all having a lovely week!

I wanted to start off by thanking everyone for your messages, posts and well wishes following my little announcement last week! Chris and I are so excited, and I am pumped to share this journey with all of you!

With that said, let’s talk about fitness and pregnancy. There is a TON of misinformation out there and I’d like to clear the air a little. Until pretty recently, the idea of exercise during pregnancy was seriously frowned upon. It was believed, by doctors and civilians alike, that working out could cause harm to the fetus and mother. Now, most of those scary myths have been broken including the following:

  • Never let your heart rate raise about 140 bpm
  • Lifting causes miscarriage
  • Abdominal exercises should be avoided at all costs

Here’s the truth. The 140 bpm myth is arbitrary and basically made up. Women that lift weights and stay active throughout pregnancy are more likely to have an easier labor, control weight gain more easily, and bounce back from pregnancy quicker. Abdominal exercises that include being flat on your back during the end of the second to third trimester should be avoided (as with anything flat on your back) due to strain on the vena cava, HOWEVER increasing core strength (including abdominal, back and pelvic floor) increase posture during and after pregnancy, and can make labor and pushing easier. (Source, Source)

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OK, so…now what? The general consensus is that whatever you were doing before becoming pregnant is safe to do once you are pregnant. That includes running, walking, weight training, swimming, pilates, yoga, crossfit, hula hooping, jump roping, and sitting on your butt (with permission from your doctor first, of course!). Pretty much anything that feels good is safe and that’s the big part to remember. It’s probably not a good time to start a new routine or increase the intensity of an old routine, though. For me, I had been doing a lot of HIIT with plyometrics. Now that I’m pregnant, my stamina is definitely decreased and a lot of interval training and explosive movements don’t feel good anymore. Right now, at 16 weeks, long, brisk walks, weight training and my TRX are feeling awesome.

That being said, here’s a great upper body TRX/dumbbell workout I did this week. The huge benefit of the TRX is that core stablization required to execute exercises correctly. For more TRX info, read this post.

Upper Body TRX Super Sets

  • Difficulty: intermediate
  • Print

Complete super set 3x with 15/12/10 reps per exercise. Rest 1 minute between sets.

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That’s pretty much it for me! Hope you all have a fabulous week!

xoR

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Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional, all posts are based on personal opinions and my own research. Please consult your own medical team before performing any exercises described here.