My Fitness Routine this Week:
Man it's tough to do bodyweight exercises when you start getting heavier! I can feel my strength growing when I do my strength training with Megan, but I am so grateful for the Pilates reformer when I work out with Gina!
For anyone who is not familiar with the Pilates reformer, it is a special piece of equipment on a gliding base which allows the participant to work on controlled, fluid movements. The benefit for a pregnant woman is that the tension on this equipment can be adjusted so that gravity and extra pounds do not weigh down the joints or cause extreme pulling. This is important as the pregnant body, especially the pelvis, adjusts to prepare for labor and ligaments loosen up. Overexertion of these ligaments can lead to pain, strains, or pulled muscles.
I had the privilege of meeting a new member who is due two days after me this week. As I was touring her around the club we were able to speak very candidly about what she could and could not do in her present state. One thing that I made sure to speak with her about is alerting group fitness instructors to her condition. She is one of the lucky few who holds her pregnancy quite well, and if she were to walk into a yoga class with the lights off a teacher could likely miss her pregnant condition! Please, PLEASE make sure that if you are dealing with any adverse conditions, (pregnancy, recovering from surgery, recent injury, etc.) that you alert the teacher of your group fitness class. This helps them to look out for you and prevent you from doing any movements which are not safe in your condition as well as offer up alternatives.
My Beauty Routine this Week:
I had a rather unique beauty routine this week because I prepped for and took my maternity pictures!
The first thing that I did was to get a microdermabrasion service from our spa. A lovely Torrance Esthetician, Ashley Mueller did the service for me. Because I knew that I would be wearing a full face of makeup for the photos, I wanted to be sure that my skin was as even as possible so that the makeup application will go on smoothly.
I am a frequent exfoliator, so I knew that I would not have a reaction to a microderm treatment. If you have never had one I don't suggest getting your very first treatment so close to a photo shoot as this type of deep exfoliation can loosen up some deep embedded dirt and oil which on occasion can lead to a very minor breakout. Continued treatment of either manual exfoliation (like microdermabrasion) or chemical exfoliation (like a chemical peel) leads to smoother skin and more predictable results. The more often you do the treatment, the better behaved you skin gets!
Our members at Torrance were able to see the results of my next beauty routine- Mehndi application! Mehndi is a henna application on either the hands or the feet with intricate designs. I am Indian, and Mehndi is a tradition when there are large events and parties going on, so I thought it would be appropriate to use this tradition to celebrate our coming baby. The henna was applied to my hands 48 hours before my pictures were to be taken to allow the stain on my skin to be at its darkest. For traditional Indian Mehndi, it is typical to leave the henna on for 6-8 hours. When it is time to remove the henna, it is flaked off the skin rather than rinsed so that the residue can continue to stain the skin. The results is basically a temporary tattoo! I'll be sharing my maternity photos in next week's post!
How I'm Feeling this Week:
I am feeling extremely blessed. My husband and I are the only ones in our families who live in California, and so work is pretty much my entire social life. My sweet, amazing, caring staff threw me a surprise baby shower at work! I was so touched by this sweet gesture as it is likely the only baby shower I will have. Working at Total Woman through my pregnancy has been such a wonderful experience. I am constantly surrounded by surrogate aunties, grandmas, and big sisters to my baby. My staff has experienced all the ups and downs of my pregnancy with me, and I can't wait to introduce my little boy to the incredible group of women who took care of his mommy while he grew!