When it comes to fitness, I’ve always been of the mindset that more is better. Run farther, do more sit-ups. I’d be fitter, thinner and healthier, right? Not so much. In fact, this line of thinking got me into some serious trouble with an eating disorder known as anorexia nervosa in high school (eating too little and overexercising). Even after I got my eating habits back under control, it took years to break free from the more is better philosophy. And, to a degree, it’s something I still struggle with a bit.
My arrival at J&M was a very gradual process. I started out doing P90X at home, but doing the same workouts over and over (and long ones at that!) got to be too boring. So I tried CrossFit. I liked that the workouts were always different and didn’t last nearly as long as a P90X session. But I felt like I could never improve and that I was always running myself into the ground. And what do they both share? Yup. That more is better mindset. But even though I grew to strongly dislike both of the programs, I thought they were right. I figured that the longer and harder I worked out, the more results I’d see. While I did see some, it wasn’t what I’d hoped for.
Once I started at J&M, it took me a long time to be able to tell myself, “I’ve had enough for today.” And, of course, just as I was able to do that, I got pregnant. Now I struggle with worrying about doing too much, while also feeling weak and that I’m losing all the strength I built up. I don’t have the power, the oomph, I had before I got pregnant. I need to take longer breaks and can’t go all out in my efforts. Many days I have to fight a lack of motivation to even go to the gym. A lot of times I end up feeling better after. Other times I don’t. But I can’t beat myself up. I just remind myself that I’m making a baby! All of my body’s energy and resources are going to the little one right now.
It’s really all about maintenance: keeping my current level of fitness up and staying as healthy and as strong as I’m able to for the baby. And I know now that more isn’t always better. I’ve seen better, faster results working out three times a week at J&M than I saw when working out five or six days a week with P90X or CrossFit. And I actually enjoy it and look forward to it (when I’m not pregnant)! And the strength I gained beforehand will surely make it easier on my body during and after the pregnancy. So regardless of whether you’re pregnant or not, I just want you to realize that more isn’t better when it comes to your fitness. I may not be lifting at the numbers I was before I got pregnant, but I’m doing what I can, and that’s what’s best for me and the baby right now. And it’s better than doing nothing.
How about you? Have you reached the realization that more isn’t better? When did the lightbulb go on for you? And if there are any other pregnant lady lifters out there (or past ones), I’d love to hear how you are doing (or did). It helps sometimes to know that we’re not alone in the journey! As always, thanks so much for reading!