Pressures of being a Pregnant Personal Trainer

15 Nov

Being a personal trainer, I’m constantly trying to better my body through exercise and nutrition.  I’m not afraid of running high intensity intervals or lifting heavy weights.  I know this will eventually help sculpt my body even more and make me fitter than I was.  I’m always striving for optimal health.  I want to be and feel as healthy as I can imagine and I have no limits to what I can and can’t do.  I like pushing myself to see just how far I can get my body to go.  I’m an athlete.

Becoming pregnant has made me shift my mind set a great deal:

  • I no longer workout at high intensities. 
  • I make sure to take weight training slow and steady. 
  • I’ve also decreased my weights for just about everything I lift. 
  • I no longer try to burn a lot of calories in the gym, but now focus on just moving. 
  • I used to judge my workout by how much I had sweat, now most of my workouts I hardly sweat.
  • I wear a heart rate monitor to make sure my heart rate stays low as opposed to using it to make sure my heart rate stays high
  • I workout to decrease lower back pain
  • I still like working out because it makes me feel good and gives me a little energy boost.

________________________________________________________

Being a pregnant personal trainer has its ups and its downs.  The good is that I’ve been trained in prenatal exercise and can use my knowledge to have the healthiest pregnancy I can have.  Plus my knowledge of nutrition can help out greatly in making sure I’m getting in enough calories and nutrients on a day to day basis  and giving the baby everything she needs.  The bad you ask?  People are constantly checking out my stomach, asking about my weight gain, trying to see if I’m sticking with my healthy habits and are already talking with me about how I plan to lose the baby weight.  Heck, I haven’t even put thought into how I’m going to lose the baby weight.  I honestly didn’t think it would be that hard and maybe I’m just being naïve. 

When Keith and I first announced my pregnancy, all we heard was congratulations from everyone we would encounter.  Slowly that changed.  Now I feel like all eyes are on me to show people how easy it is to have a healthy pregnancy, not gain a lot of weight and continue to exercise as much as I can.  After all, that is what I typically did pre-pregnancy.  I practiced what I preached and invited everyone along for the ride.  I know I’m a role model for healthy living in all three of our gyms, but when so many people are watching your body change during pregnancy, the pressure to be the perfect pregnant trainer definitely gets to me.

I’m pretty type A so I put a lot of pressure on myself to be as fit during this pregnancy as I can and be a good role model for others (both pregnant and not pregnant). I do get a little guilt when I can only make it to the gym four days a week and not five for my own workouts.  That’s not counting my prenatal yoga workouts or dog walks.  I do find myself feeling guilty when I’ve had chips as a snack when I know the baby needs protein and I should have picked a whey protein drink instead.  I have to realize if I’m tired and my feet are swollen, I can relax on the couch and not worry about whipping up a fabulous dinner for Keith.  He doesn’t care, so why should I?

At this stage in my pregnancy I’ve learned that no matter how healthy I eat, my body will gain whatever it wants to each week for the baby.  I can eat pizza  all day long or carrots all day and if my body wants to gain 3 pounds in one week, it doesn’t matter what I’m eating (of course I still stick with my balanced healthy diet).  My healthy weight gain is pretty much out of my control, to a certain extent.

I’ve learned that people are going to have their opinions and let me know them no matter what.  I’ve actually had very few people ask about my pregnancy outside of work and it has been pretty nice.  Many people think I workout too hard, haven’t gained enough weight and so on and so forth in the other direction as well.  I like to call this the outside pressures I feel.

Reflecting on all the outside pressure of being a pregnant personal trainer has brought up a new question with me: am I the one putting all the pressure on myself?

The answer to that is, yes.  There has been plenty of inside pressure as well.

Since I’ve acknowledged this, I’ve been cutting myself some slack.  I realized, it was me who wanted to be perfect for our gym members and my clients.  I wanted to workout 5 days a week, eat healthy and still have bounds of energy, which would be nice, but it isn’t always practical.  I’ve had to realize it’s okay to let go of the former me a bit and just step back and enjoy this ride of pregnancy.  I’m still an athlete, but just in another way now.  I’m creating the most amazing miracle of all right inside of me! 

And with this, I have peace and have been letting go of all the inside pressure I’ve been placing on myself.  Here’s to enjoying the final third trimester free of any inside pressures I was placing on myself.  I have a feeling this will be the best trimester yet!  I can still be the best me without trying to be perfect 100% of the time, I have to remember no one is perfect

 

*I just want to say, I’m totally fine with weight gain and a changing body during pregnancy and am so enjoying this journey I’m on.  I wanted get across the point of cutting yourself some slack in new situations you may find yourself in and hope you enjoyed my own experience where I needed to step back, take a deep breath and let go of all expectations.  Remember no on is perfect no matter how hard we try.* 

 

Questions:

  • Do you place pressure on yourself to be as perfect as you can be?
  • Are you type A about certain things?
  • Do you ever feel pressure from outside sources to be better that what you already are?

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16 Responses to “Pressures of being a Pregnant Personal Trainer”

  1. JessSutera November 15, 2011 at 11:57 am #

    I can totally see how hard that would be as a personal trainer. As someone who is also very Type A? Even bigger of a challenge, I’d imagine. I think you’ve done great at keeping it real and honest during this time and are being good to your body in a healthy, fit way.I admire that and hope to follow your lead one day! Great post.

    • Kjirsten- Balanced Healthy Life November 15, 2011 at 1:47 pm #

      Thanks so much for you kind words. I have a feeling you wont have any problems living a healthy lifestyle while pregnant!

  2. Jamie @ FoodinRealLife November 15, 2011 at 12:05 pm #

    Yeah, I would imagine there is a ton of pressure to be the “perfect fit pregnant woman”. I felt a certain level of pressure myself and I don’t work at a gym or anything like that. I realized most of my pressure is internal- I’d be lying if I said I wish I didn’t gain so much weight already and I wish that my body felt good enough to keep working out. The truth is, we’re all different and this is a temporary time. It’s never easy to gain weight and abandon some healthy habits, but it’s pregnancy. I often times think of what I would say to another woman (if she was in my situation). Chances are I’d be a lot nicer to her than I am to myself. Think about it. Are you being nice enough to yourself?

    • Kjirsten- Balanced Healthy Life November 15, 2011 at 1:46 pm #

      I feel alive and my best when working out and eating healthy. I’ve been this way for a while. I like sweating on a daily basis and do so, so I can maintain my health first and foremost (my family has a lot of heart problems and cancer in our family history so working out and eating healthy is a must for me). Once I passed my first trimester and was able to workout again, I somehow got it in my head I had to be constantly projecting the image of the fit perfect pregnant woman and I definitely was being overly critical of myself. I learned with pregnancy you just need to go with the flow and you wont be able to do everything you once did. Don’t get me wrong, I love being pregnant and actually already have baby number two on my brain (I’m insane I know) because I love the feeling of being pregnant and feeling my little girl kicking around inside me safe and sound. I’m not worried about the weight gain (as long as it is healthy) or losing the weight post baby, I was worried about setting the ideal example for a fit pregnant woman. I was striving to achieve something that isn’t a reality (if this makes sense). I really like your idea of thinking about what you would tell another pregnant woman. I know I would be way more relaxed with them and tell them to just back and enjoy the ride! 🙂

  3. Shanna, like Banana November 15, 2011 at 12:29 pm #

    Girl I resonate so much with this post. I personally think you are going above and beyond what 99% of women do out there so I hope you take time to congratulate yourself on being health-focused and also understanding of your body (and your baby’s) needs.

    I feel like because I’ve been fairly “small” throughout my pregnancy people expect that’s the way it will be to the end and if I don’t maintain that, then it’s like I did something wrong. But you are so right when you say you can eat pizza or carrots and your body will gain what it will gain. So much is out of control. So we have to try to do what we can and let the rest of nature take course.

    I also haven’t thought about how to lose the weight. I suppose I’ll just keep up my typical habits. We shall see. My focus will likely be elsewhere 😉

    You’re doing great hon!

    • Kjirsten- Balanced Healthy Life November 15, 2011 at 1:36 pm #

      I don’t know what it is about being pregnant and trying to fill others expectations. I’m so happy I took time to reflect and realized I was being overly critical of myself. It is hard to change your mindset completely when you become pregnant and realize you are not the same person you were before you were pregnant. Giving up the intense crazy exercise for me is the hardest part and I miss it like crazy. Also, since it is my job to motivate people to get into the gym and get their workouts on, I generally call BS on excuses. So when I’m skipping out on my own workouts, I need to remember I’m pregnant and tired and not skipping for no apparant reason, but cutting back because I’m listening to my body.

  4. Allie November 15, 2011 at 1:48 pm #

    WOW!!! This post is amazing. I can relate about the PRESSURE we put on ourselves and I’m glad you addressed it. Very brave of you to be so honest 🙂

    • Kjirsten- Balanced Healthy Life November 16, 2011 at 11:01 am #

      I’m happy you liked the post and could relate. I more than happy to be honest with my life and the situations I encounter. I hope to help others by sharing things I learn along my own journey! 🙂

  5. Shayla @ The Good Life November 15, 2011 at 5:43 pm #

    Girl I just love this post and your honesty so very much – I’m not pregnant (yet!) but I do very much understand where you’re coming from. Because people at the gym know me as an intense exerciser and I used to teach spin, many times people have told me that I’ll be all belly and super tiny when pregnant and that post-baby the weight will just fall off me – well, what if none of that happens?! Heck I’m not even pregnant yet and people are already deciding for me how my body will be. And at Todd’s Urbanathlon this past weekend, people were asking why I wasn’t doing it, and then they remembered why I’m not exercising intensely right now…and to be honest, being the athlete I love to be, it was hard for me to not be a part of it.

    I think we’re our own worst critics and we want to exude this superwoman powers of being able to do it all at every stage of our lives – when really that’s just not the reality. I’ve learned that I just can’t exercise like I want to right now in order to have a miracle like you’re having. I really commend you for giving yourself some slack – I think you’re doing an exceptional job on your workouts – heck I would count prenatal yoga and walking a workout in themselves! But I know where you’re coming from and like you said you’re doing the most amazing athletic activity ever – growing a healthy, beautiful baby girl! 🙂

    • Kjirsten- Balanced Healthy Life November 16, 2011 at 10:59 am #

      We are our own worst critics. I know I want to be able to do everything plus more with a smile on my face and make it look easy, but that will never happen, it’s not realistic. Also, just like you mentioned others have already decided how you will look during your pregnancy and after hearing things like that a few times, you start putting pressure on yourself to be who other’s are telling you to be without any real reason other than you hear something and start believe it, also you don’t want to let anyone down.

  6. Hollie @ Lolzthatswim(andRun) November 15, 2011 at 7:09 pm #

    Wow, although I have never pregnant, I can relate to the pressures we put on ourselves to be perfect. As a community health major wanting to go into something in the health field, I always feel the need to display healthy choices of what I do and eat when on campus. No one forces me too but I just do. Like you, must be the type A personality thing 😉

    • Kjirsten- Balanced Healthy Life November 16, 2011 at 10:54 am #

      I’m glad you could relate to the post. I didn’t want it to only reach out to other pregnant mamas but everyone as we all place pressure on ourselves. Just like you mentioned you eat healthy at school, you feel the need to eat healthy. That is exactly what I was saying in the post.

  7. Healthy Coconut November 15, 2011 at 8:47 pm #

    I’m not pregnant but I do understand what you are talking about. Because I live a healthier lifestyle than my friends and family, people do watch what I do and eat. So when I feel like indulging at parties and satisfy my sweet tooth. I feel the judging eyes on me and there’s always a comment on whether I am still eating healthy or not.

    I saw, just continue on with what you are doing and try to ignore the comments and prying eyes. What’s important is that you and the baby are healthy 🙂

  8. Ester September 7, 2017 at 10:31 pm #

    Everything you talked about helped a lot thank you for that. I have a consern that i would like ypur opinion on I work at a gym as a personal trainer I am 3 months pregnant and I feel I can train for a good part of my pregnancy but my managers just informed me that it’s a liability and that in 4 to 8 weeks they will be transitioning my clients to other trainers is that ok? Can they do that? They say it’s so I can take care of my self but I don’t believe that’s what their focused on.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Another Holiday Recipe(Cinnamon Caramel Rolls) and a quick Wednesday Recap « - November 17, 2011

    […] so happy you guys liked and could relate to my post from Tuesday morning about pressures.  If you haven’t already read it, I suggest checking it […]

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