As a TRX employee, Claire McGowan, 29, knew the benefits of regular exercise and could frequently be seen attending class in the TRX Training Center. But it wasn’t until after she became pregnant that she realized the value of her workout routine, specifically her TRX Training.
“Exercising kept me sane throughout my pregnancy,” says Claire. “Through my first and second trimesters, my workouts consisted of running and strength training, with TONS of TRX action.”
Claire especially enjoyed performing TRX Low Rows and TRX Push-ups during pregnancy because she “was able to use the extra weight of pregnancy for a bit of an added challenge!” Also beneficial during her prenatal training was flexibility training on the TRX, primarily movements like the TRX Lower Back Stretch (with Rotation), which Claire performed up to three times a day during her third trimester.
By the third trimester, running was replaced by the elliptical, but despite this one adjustment, Claire stuck to her pre-pregnancy routine as much as possible, albeit at a much lower intensity. “I set a goal for myself to average one workout per day for my entire pregnancy, and I think I made it,” says Claire. “I continued to take regular TRX Suspension Training classes through my ninth month and was even at the gym the morning I went into labor!”
Claire’s advice to pregnant women is try to keep active, whatever that means for you personally. “Every single session is worth it when you are in labor. I honestly have no idea how non-fit women survive labor and child birth. It is a lot of work!”
While Claire was in labor, her son’s heart rate remained strong throughout, despite a slight complication. The doctors were shocked the baby never showed any signs of distress, but not Claire—her little guy was strong after training along with her for 40 weeks.
A few hours after delivering her seven pound, 11 ounce bundle of joy, Claire was up and walking around. When it was time to leave the hospital, she put Declan in a sling and walked home. “Granted, it was only about a quarter of a mile,” she says, “but it felt like a victory!”
Any new mom can attest to the emotional challenges of having a new baby. Claire found the best cure for the “baby blues” was a short run or strength session. And while exercising as a new mom is much harder than exercising as a pregnant mom-to-be, there are still ways to make time for fitness. “A great running stroller was actually the first item my husband and I bought when we knew we were expecting, and it’s been worth every penny,” says Claire. “I generally get up in the morning to feed Declan at 6:30am. He goes back to sleep for an hour or two, and I get in about 30 minutes of strength training (thank God for TRX training at home!). During the afternoon, I put Declan in the stroller, and we go for a run.”
During pregnancy and after, it’s important to listen to your body and respect the changes, but don’t use pregnancy or a new baby as an excuse to give up on your fitness regime. Exercise can be a great constant in your day. Claire found that many of the pre and post natal symptoms she’d read about did not materialize, and she credits her exercise routine, especially those daily sessions on the TRX.
This article is not intended as a substitute for medical advice. Women who are pregnant should check with their medical practitioners before beginning this or any exercise program.