Saturday, 20 October 2012

Pump with a bump...

I am totally supposed to be doing school work right now but thought I would much rather talk to you about this morning's pump class instead... Yay!

It is finally starting to actually feel like Spring now which is one of my most favourite seasons... That and summer of course. Watch out for the pregnant bikini babe this summer... haha! This morning I woke up nice and early to head off to pump class at the gym... Such a great morning for a work out!

Last month I won a free 10 concession card to the gym but hadn't used it yet. I'm not really that much of a gym-er anymore as I really prefer to get outside. However, I am stoked to have won this pass so will make the most of it. One thing I had been missing, too, was pump class. So this morning I met my lovely friend, who is also the world's most awesome personal trainer, and we got our body pump on!! She is also preggers so it was like bump pump. Fun times!

Before I left home this morning I was looking through my pack that I had won and inside it was this brochure...

How appropriate!
Although I have been doing weight work all the way through, as this was my first pump with a bump class I had been thinking of what sort of modifications I may need to make, if any. So when I saw this it was totally perfect!

Here are some wee gems I got out of the brochure...

"Body Pump is a great way to maintain a healthy, strong, toned body during and after your pregnancy." YAY!!

"During the class focus on yourself and your baby and work at an intensity that is comfortable for you. Choose sensible weights and move seamlessly, i.e. no jarring or jerky movements. Don't over exert and be mindful of your Range of Movements (ROM) in all exercises."

Pregnancy is NOT a time to increase your weights!!

So, here's how to modify the class for pregnancy...

For your warmup and anything that involves squats, such as the back and legs tracks, make sure your base is a little wider than it would normally be. E.g. feet slightly wider than the hips, instead of in line with them. This helps to give you more stability and makes the exercises a bit more comfortable, especially as your belly gets bigger.

Any track/exercise that involves lying down on your bench, make sure your bench is at an incline, instead of flat. This will relieve abdominal pressure, help circulation and feel more comfortable - which it totally did!

For the back track you might like to use free weights instead of a bar. This gives you a better ROM, as you wouldn't be able to move the bar straight up and down because of a certain bumpety bump (my words, not the brochure's). If at any stage you feel your back hyperextending, focus on drawing your abdominal muscles in.

Remember to breathe steadily all the way through, and if with any exercises that require above the head lifting, you feel dizzy or faint, just opt for an exercise that keeps your arms below your neck.

If lying down for any exercises is uncomfortable, use a seated position with a similar exercise, if not the same. Your instructor will be able to help you with this.

Abs... "As your baby grows, change the focus to deep and lower abdominal work using Leg Drops or Pelvic Tilts. Shift to kneeling ab work if it's difficult to lie on your back."

That's about the brochure summed up. I found it really helpful and so great to know that I can keep doing it all the way through. Things like Pump and weight classes are great, low impact exercises to do all the way through and help you feel like you still have some control over your own body... Well I think anyway.

Make sure you always check before doing it though with a doctor or midwife, and also let the instructor know you are pregnant and they can offer you great options to do during the class. 

I hope you all have a lovely weekend. we have a long weekend so there will be a nice balance of work and play... Yay!

What exercises have you found great all through pregnancy?

What are your plans for the weekend? 

What is your favourite weekend workout?

Monday, 15 October 2012

The T-Rex Workout...

For Tim's birthday last month he wanted this 'thing' called TRX... I thought it was like a BMX or something like that, which I then thought was totally weird because he HAS NEVER been into any such thing...

Anyway, turns out it is a workout thingee jig which is actually totally awesome! And totally makes sense because working out is one of the things he IS into. You can read more about TRX training here, but this post will be all about it. Woohoo!!

"At TRX we believe in training movements, not muscle. We produce best-in-class training equipment, workout programs, and education courses to help you achieve peak performance, reach your goals and get the results you want."

So Tim got his TRX suspension training kit (I call it the T-Rex) and has just started to teach me some awesome workouts you can do on it.

TRX Pro Kit
This is the suspension training kit that you buy and set up somewhere in your house. It is all you need and you really can get any sort of workout possible from it. I kinda thought it was just another lame home gym style thing, until I had a go and realised how great it was.

"The TRX Pro Kit has all the equipment, workouts and education you need to perform hundreds of exercises that build strength, flexibility, core stability and power, anywhere, anytime. The TRX Suspension Trainer provides fast and effective workouts, scalable to all levels of fitness and intensity. This revolutionary system leverages your own bodyweight as resistance, putting you in control."  (

We have ours set up in our garage and because it's basically just some well designed and thought out straps, you can take it with you on holiday, or wherever you want (yes, Tim did take it with him on our last holiday *cough TRX nerd cough*). And because I love my husband so much, or should I say because he loves me so much, he even agreed to be my model for some pics to put in this post. Most awesome husband ever - sorry ladies, he's all mine!

He's totally sold it to me, I mean just look how hot he is working out on the T-Rex...

T-Rex training is serious business... Doing a standing row - works lats and traps

Single leg squat with lat row at the top - feel the burn!

Double leg squat with lat row at the top - great whole body workout to warm up with.

Sprinters stance - as named by TRX themselves and as you can imagine, a great workout for runners' legs in every way possible.

Tricep extensions

Bicep curls

This one's called the booty shaker... Not actually but it's what the picture looks like. It's called a knee tuck and you can do a press up at the end. Awesome core/shoulder/chest/arms workout!
These are just a very small sample of the workouts that can be done, and as you can see, all the workouts are just done using your own body weight which can be modified for extra resistance and trickiness. For example, the squat exercises can be made harder by moving your feet further forward - that gives extra resistance and extra booty burn... YEOW! Also, the knee tuck and press up workout can be made harder by moving your arms further forward, or easier (in my case) by moving your hands back.

This is such a great piece of equipment to own, especially if you are a runner as it provides tonnes of great workouts you can do to help with strengthening your legs, your IT bands, your core, your glutes, and pretty much actually just all the muscles in your whole body. It's also great for stretching - what all good runners should do but most probably don't do anywhere near as much as they should (*cough me cough*).

Well, after my first ever T-Rex workout and doing some awesome killer workouts, we just had to have a super healthy dinner to top off the night... Delicioso Garlic and spiced chicken and veges on top of tumeric quinoa with a side of avo and beetroot... Bit of a random combo, I know, but it was just everything I felt like.

Have you ever tried a T-Rex? 

What are your favourite workouts for runners? 

What meal makes you feel uber healthy and good after a workout?


Thanks to Tim for being my wonderful model and for giving me all the technical names for the workouts. Otherwise, they'd all have names like the 'booty shaker'. Eek!

Friday, 12 October 2012

Half way and wearing a smiley...

So this week we are officially half way! Yip, 20 weeks into this whole pregnancy thing and I've got to say, although there are some undesirables that come with pregnancy, there are a lot more things that are enjoyable and I am enjoying it! For now... hehe.

I think my stomach has just exploded though and one undesirable = clothes I could fit last week, I can no longer fit. One enjoyable = I get to buy new clothes, so it's not all that bad. Running, however, has become a little more uncomfortable now as I am just a tad bit bigger, even with my smiley belt on.

Because I just know how much you all LOVE seeing what I look like first thing in the morning!
 A few weeks ago I bought a tummy support belt to wear whilst running. When I mentioned it in a previous post a friend asked me if it was only for pregnancy - No, it's not. You could wear one if you needed to support your back or something like that, but I think they are most commonly worn during pregnancy, and it's great that they support your belly and your back at the same time!

The one I am wearing in the picture above is called a 'smiley' belt, which comes from this website here. It is neoprene, aka wetsuit, material so is a little bulky under my shirt and quite thick which makes you sweat like crazy underneath it. It does help with support though.

"Wear a Smiley Belt during pregnancy to support painful back and pelvic joints or use as a belly band to reduce abdominal heaviness and relieve low back strain."

I got it to help with the 'abdominal heaviness' but found it was quite good for supporting my back too, even though I didn't even realise it needed support. I think it was definitely worth the buy and is even good to wear on long walks, etc. Because I am going to be at my biggest through the hottest months, I am a little unsure of how I am going to go with running and wearing the belt all that time. I guess we will just have to wait and see how that one turns out :)
After my run, without the belt on.
I know I had said I would post posts like this one under the CRG Baby tab above, but I am having some issues with figuring out a few things to do with it. So until I can sort it out you will just have to excuxe the occassional baby posts popping up on my main blog page.

Oh, I also just have to tell you, we had the half way scan this week and in it we saw this...

I know these scans are so hard to tell what is going on in them at the best of times, but cock your head to the left and you will see that our baby is giving us a thumbs up... The coolest thing ever we think! As for the sex - we did not find out, although it was rather tempting once we were in there.

Do you have any helpful hints for running/exercising during pregnancy?

What were your favourite and least favourite parts of pregnancy? 

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

We went on a holiday...

That's right, Tim and I went on a holiday - and not a work related one. Treats! He had a lot of leave owing so thought he'd take a few days during school holidays to pop down and visit his brother and sister-in-law in the beautiful Coromandel.

We were gone 5 WHOLE DAYS which was sooo wonderful!

We relaxed, fished, hiked, beached, went on lots of walks and did some more relaxing and WE LOVED IT! Classic Kiwi beach holiday!

The first day we headed over to Whitianga to check out Cathedral Cove, and on our way we came across this guy and his strange but cute pets...

OK, this pig is not so cute but he has a 4 day old piglet under his jumper which was SUPER cute!

 Got to admit, it was a little bit strange and I'm not sure if this guy has (or would ever have) a girlfriend, but he was friendly enough. The pigs and chickens, and there were peacocks too, just roamed around and lay all over the road and side of the road... Never seen anything like it before! They were all very friendly animals though, never harm anyone.

 After the pigs we moved on to this lovely spot...

Can you guess why it's called Cathedral Cove??
 For all you non-Kiwi readers and Narnia fans, this is the beach where the beach scenes from The Lion, Witch and The Wardrobe and Prince Caspian was filmed. It's our claim to fame and what put NZ on the map I think... After Lord of The Rings.

We hiked up and over to get there first... We were happier than we looked!

Inside Cathedral Cove looking out... Gorgeous Beach!
 Tim and I had some cuddle time and I forgot to suck in my tummy... Or turns out you can't actually do that when you're preggers?!?

This is part of the land that split off from the mainland after many years of weathering... Sooo cool!

Awww so cute!

The In-laws... Lucky no rocks fell on them. I'm NOT being sarcastic, promise, love these peeps!
 The next day we headed up the coast a bit and did a spot of fishing. Matt took the long line out in the Kayak and it was a team effort getting it all back in... Apart from me, I took the photos.

Tim looking super proud with some of the day's catch.
 A hard earned lunch... Chip and Dip sandwiches... YUM! By the way, you have to wear blue clothes to fit into this family... It's kind of regulation. Since you're just new Kirsty, we'll let you off. But at least your beanie is blue!

And this was our lovely room at Matt and Kirsty's bach-house which was stunningly decorated all beach themed. It was pretty cool!

All and all it was a great holiday, we had an awesome time with family and got in some much needed relaxing before coming back to set up my class room and for Tim to get stuck into some more house reno work... Fun times!

Thursday, 4 October 2012

A tribute to a beautiful life...

This week is a sad week. Yesterday a wonderful lady passed away after fighting a very brave fight against breast cancer.

Last year I ran the Auckland Marathon as a fundraiser for this wonderful woman...

Her name is Nadia and, although I only knew her for a short time, I am, and always will be, inspired by her passionate, kind heart, her amazingly positive attitude and outlook on life. She leaves behind her husband and her two small children, 4 and 2 years old, and she leaves a very large legacy for them.

The Bible says that the heritage you leave for your family is one of the most important things and I believe that Nadia has blessed her family with a wonderful heritage.

This is her in May this year with her husband just after completing the Baylys to Dargaville 6 and 12km run. She always had a smile on just like this and this is how she will be remembered always, I am sure.

My thoughts and prayers and love are with the family at this sad time.

Thank you for your inspiration Nadia, it was a pleasure to know you, even for such a short time. You will be greatly missed but your legacy and your heritage will always live on.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

The perks of a teacher and a banker...

At the moment it is school holidays which, you guessed it, means two weeks off!! Well, sort of anyway, maybe it's more like 2 weeks to get the teacher's work done without any students around...

I was supposed to be at school most of this week planning for the term to come, however I couldn't resist tagging along on Tim's work trip to the 'big smoke', a.k.a Auckland. I am from a reasonably small city so it's always exciting getting to go with Tim and stay in some swanky digs and pretend like I am posh.

We arrived late Monday night to this delightful little apartment which is right in the Viaduct...

My little setup in the corner to do school work (or stalk some blogs, whatever)
On Tuesday morning I thought I'd get up and go for a wee run, reliving some of the glory from the Auckland marathon course, since I won't be running it this year.

I thought you'd like to see what I looked like first thing in the morning with a 19 week bump and wearing my ugliest race tee shirt, so I took this photo for you. And because I thought you'd like to see the most unflattering photo of me that I think has ever been taken... Ha!

I ran about 4km but didn't wear my belly belt, so then walked the other 4 kms. Now when I run I just look a bit like a fat kid trying to catch up to all the other kids miles ahead in the cross country... Yikes! I can't really go too far without the lovely ol' belly belt on as it starts to get a bit uncomfortable/sore. On my walk I enjoyed sites like these:

The Viaduct where all the fancy peoples' boats are parked

A lovely shot of the Sky Tower in behind all the swanky boats
After I got back I did some school work in the apartment and then got dolled up to do some window shopping and have lunch with my sister in law... Coz that's how I roll when I am a lady of leisure...

Just threw this one in so you know that I didn't look as horrid as that first pic ALL day!
 This morning I got up nice and early to head home so I could hit my fave mall on the way, then get some hours in at school. Yip, posh time was over! But before all of that I parked up at a sweet little cafe and had this delicious and nutricious breakie...

You just can't beat good muesli, fresh fruit and natural yoghurt to start the day!
Now I am home and Tim won't get back til tomorrow so I'll probably just eat ice cream for dinner... Oops!

Oh, and I just HAVE to tell you about the BEST yoghurt I have just discovered! I saw it advertised in a magazine a few weeks ago and hadn't managed to find it in the two supermarkets I usually go to, but then tried another one and found it. I was delighted! Here it is... If you want to find it in Whangarei you can only find it at Countdown at the moment. Hopefully everyone else gets it soon because I normally nevs evs shop there.

Collective Skinny Greek Yoghurt... YUM!!
 They had about 6 or so different flavours to choose from, like tart cherry, passionfruit, and more, but I wasn't going to buy all of them so just chose berry flavour. It was sooo good. It's got no added sugar OR sweeteners, it's low in fat and high in protein and it's just so good! Goes really well with some fresh fruit and probs is super delish on muesli in the morning. The only problem is that the tub isn't big enough and it's more in the price range of the gourmet yoghurts... Will have to be my sneaky indulgence.

This was the wee treat I got when I took off the lid. So true!
So that's the start of my school holidays in a nutshell. Not too exciting, I know, but on Friday we are heading off on our real holiday for 5 days to relax and catch up with some of Tim's family down in the Coromandel... Bliss! Can't wait.

If you're on holiday right now, what are your plans? Doing anything exciting?

What's your favourite yoghurt or your sneakiest indulgence?

Monday, 1 October 2012

Running with a bun...

And by this I don't mean running while eating some bread, which I know some of you are dreaming of, but running with a bun in the oven!! Yup.

I know some of you out there might be thinking 'how risky' or 'is it worth it' or 'why do that to yourself and your baby???' I know those are all valid things to be thinking or asking and trust me, I have done my research. In my research I couldn't even find any negative effects of running during pregnancy even when that's all I tried to look for. As long as it is something you have done before you are pregnant... That is the only thing you need to remember. DO NOT DECIDE TO START RUNNING FOR THE FIRST TIME AFTER FINDING OUT YOU ARE PREGNANT! Otherwise, go for it!

Here's a tiny snippet of what I did manage to find out in my research...

The Complete Book of Running for Women, written by Claire kowalchik, has a really big section on running and pregnancy. It has awesome info.

My favourite quote from the book: "Not only is running during pregnancy safe for you and your baby, but it can also offer several health benefits..." Claire also goes on to talk about how "...many women are discovering that running during pregnancy is a positive and healthful experience for themselves and their babies. Experts now agree not only that running during pregnancy is safe for mom and baby but that it can actually enhance your well-being and and maybe even that of your child."

How awesome is that!?! Claire also talks all about the physical rewards, oxygen, aerobic advantages, well-being, running programmes, cross-training for pregnancy, stretches and exercises, and SOOOO much more! It is great, if you are wanting to know all about it I suggest you read this book, or one similar that has lots of info in it.

In short, if you are a runner, running during pregnancy is just fine or both of you, unless you have been told otherwise from a doctor.

There are also some amazing women whose blogs I follow who have ran or been very physical throughout their pregnancies. If you are a pregnant runner then you should totally follow them. You can find them all here...

Janae at this wonderful blog here, is an amazing runner who ran the whole way through her pregnancy and now has a gorgeous 6 wk old baby girl. She is a huge inspiration!

Hanna, who you can check out at her blog here, is just a week behind me in her 3rd pregnancy and has an amazing and inspirational story to share about her running and weight loss journey.

Katy, who has this fab blog, has a whole bunch of awesome workouts that can be done at home or the gym, all through pregnancy. She also has a whole bunch of great workouts for non-preggers chicks too.

There are sooo many other great blogs where you can get great inspiration, advice and workouts for pregnancy but I definitely recommend you check out these ones. I follow them daily and they are some of my faves. Thanks wonderful girls! x

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