Try Something New for a Month

I am utterly addicted to TED videos. They are inspirational, informational and usually has everything my brain wants. Around New Year’s  Eve I was watching: Try Something New For 30 DaysThe title describes it well, and I encourage everyone to go watch it and get inspired. It is all too easy to get stuck in a daily routine.

The video sure inspired me and I decided to try something for the 31 days of January. In January I cut out dairy and ate a vegan diet for 31 days. I also decided to de-clutter my life a little and got rid of one thing every day. 31 things later I cannot notice any difference, so we will most likely keep up with it and slowly de-clutter. Our goal is to one day live in a small house with only the things that we actually use.

For February I have two goals. My first is to read at least 5 pages every day. I used to read a lot, but haven’t in later years and want to get back to it. So at least a little bit every day to stimulate my mind and set a good example for bean. I also decided to do at least 5 minutes of meditation every day. When we lived closer to monasteries we went at least once a week for long meditations and practiced shorter at home. Now all monasteries are so far away we just don’t go and I can feel the difference in my mind. So here’s hopefully the new beginning to a continued mindful life.

And, because I like to overdo things, I decided to join  Fitness, Finance and Fun on a journey through Fab Ab February. I am not sure if this is the blog it originates from because there are so many out there, but it’s the one I got the info from. I will add this to my regular (although more sporadic and spur-of-the-moment) workouts to really stabilize my core and keep  my back healthy and strong. Anyone with me??

Fab Ab February

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AMRAP High Intensity Workout

Baby bean had me up early this morning. First I had to stay awake during the early morning nursing session (5 a.m.) to put our load of cloth diaper laundry in when bean had fallen back asleep. Bean then woke up at 7.30 when hubby was leaving for work, and bean did not fall back asleep! He usually takes another nap and gets up at 10… but no instead he stayed up cooing and being adorably cute, so even though mommy didn’t get a nap I was excited to spend some cooing time with him. Then up we went for a productive morning. Hung the diapers outside to dry. And I had time to do a morning workout while bean was in his swing, where he is now sleeping while I am wide awake. Go figure.

Today’s conditioning was an AMRAP (As Many Reps As Possible) high intensity workout based on crossfit exercises. I love these workouts because I love high reps and I love burpees (although I hate both at the same time…) AND the best part is I know it is going to take 20 minutes, because it’s as many reps as possible in 20 minutes. Great when you know about how long your baby will stay asleep or can occupy him/herself without needing you. Got through 3 rounds with a couple of minutes to spare.

This workout was another Pinterest find (how I love Pinterest… great for browsing while breastfeeding a sleepy baby) originating from the Cardio and Cocktails blog. And again, no equipment needed just your body and an inspired mind!

Crossfit AMRAP High Intensity Workout

One Room Interval Training

I know feel fully recovered and have finally started to slowly introduce some hammer throwing and some conditioning back into my life. So far I am having a blast!

The workout I did today I found on Pinterest (come join me: http://pinterest.com/micklon/) and it originates from the Back on Pointe blog. As soon as baby bean closed his eyes for a morning nap. I blasted International Love on Spotify and got to work. 22 minutes later I was happy, sweaty and well out of breath. Just what i want my conditioning to be like 🙂

Here it is if anyone wants to try it out. It is a high intensity interval workout. Go through the list twice, with a two minute rest in between sets. And the great thing is you don’t need anything but your body and maybe something to time it with. That’s it. No excuses!

The One Room Interval Workout

Pregnancy and the Bicycle

Many people (especially random strangers) have strong opinions about bicycling and pregnant women. A lot of them would advice any pregnant woman to put the bike in storage and let it collect dust until after the baby is born. But no, not this girl!

As I am nearing the end (very soon I hope) of this pregnancy I must say I feel fantastic. Despite the 31+ pounds gained so far, I feel physically in really good shape. I am attributing that to my workout routine throughout the second and third trimesters.

The routine might not have been very rigorous or tough, but it has been consistent and adapted to my needs. So I am happy and pleased to say that even though I am 40 weeks tomorrow I can still take long walks, bike around and get in to most yoga poses. [I do have trouble with anything that is bending over toward my toes since my belly is stopping me.]

However, a  lot of strangers that I meet are very concerned about my preferred method of transportation, the bicycle. I get a LOT of comments and frowns when I run my daily errands.

You know that is dangerous for both  you and the baby!
You probably shouldn’t bike anymore because you are getting quite big.
It is much easier to fall when you are pregnant.
Are you seriously biking? What kind of mother are you?

Etc. Etc. Etc.

People need to mind their own business. I think it’s funny how random people think they have a right to voice their opinion about my body and what I am doing. What the heck do they know?

From what I have been reading online (a lot) I didn’t think I would be able to bike beginning third trimester, mostly because the changes in balance that happens during pregnancy. As my third trimester started and has passed by I realized I was wrong. I can still bike, without a problem. Either my balance hasn’t changed much, or my body has just adjusted well to the balance change. And wow, am I glad I was wrong. It would kill me [figuratively writing] to take the car everywhere, because I just love moving by bike so much more!

3rd Trimester Workouts

This is what I do to keep in shape throughout the third trimester. The first trimester I was not allowed to do anything! It was really really hard and I was miserable. Like close to depression. I finally got to get started around week 16 and even though I have slowed down a bit toward the end I am still going strong and keeping sane!

First of all I try not to use the car short distances (up to 5 miles). Many reasons behind that choice but mostly because I don’t want to waste gas, better for the environment and because I can. So why not?

Mondays:  1 mile walk (usually some before workout the rest after on treadmill). Upper body strength (a couple of exercises/machines each for back, shoulders, chest, biceps and triceps). Always end with 25 pelvic tilt (in dog position) [LOVE this exercise, so good for lower back and abs]. Tried to find a youtube video of it, but couldn’t find one. Basically it’s like the cat stretch in yoga, except isolating the lower back and not rounding the upper. Great exercise, try it out!

Tuesdays: Water Aerobics or Swimming

Wednesdays: 1 mile walk. Leg Day! Usually start off with 3*10 pile squat with a 10 lb weight. Then 3*10 lunges. Then 2*10 each machine (hamstrings, quads, leg press, calf extension, inner and outer thigh). End the session with 25 pelvic tilts. And if I have enough energy some deep birthing squats. I stay in the position for as long as I can without straining too much. [It’s getting easier and easier, hopefully I can use this position in labor].

Thursdays: Water Aerobics or Swimming

Fridays: Off Day- Light light weights (full body)- or yoga. Depending on what my body feels like and my mood. The light light weights is usually one circuit of whatever machines they have set up at the gym. Some upper body, some lower body. Just 2*10 on the lightest possible weight. Or a prenatal yoga video. Or simply a day of rest. I usually have doctor’s appointment and class on Fridays, so I tend to take it off.

Saturdays: Water Aeroics. The instructor is just great and I LOVE this workout. It is hard, tires me out and gives me energy. Nothing will make me miss it.

Sundays: Off day or Yoga. Depending on mood.

I love being in the water. I become light and the belly is never in my way! Just a wonderful feeling. The water aerobics is great. Low impact, good workout, and it is perfect for an achy/tired back. Water gives both support and resistance. It’s just genius, really.