Monday, May 5, 2014

Gestational Diabetes 101

You probably already know prenatal exercise can boost your energy, beat stress, improve sleep, control excessive weight gain and prepare you for labour, but did you know regular physical activity can help to manage gestational diabetes?

Gestational Diabetes (GD) is a type of diabetes 3-20% of women develop during pregnancy.  With a growing baby and changing hormone levels, a previously not-diabetic woman's body can become resistant to insulin. 

It is important to discuss your risk of developing GD with your health care provider.  He or she may recommend you take a glucose screening test at around 24 weeks.

If GD is left untreated, you will experience high blood sugar levels and are at risk for delivering a large baby along with complications during labour. 

Although gestational diabetes is temporary and goes away after your baby is born,  you are more likely to develop gestational diabetes with each subsequent pregnancy and you and baby are at greater risk of developing adult onset diabetes in the future. To learn more about GD, click here. 

The good news is that unlike diabetes mellitus, insulin is not always required to control gestational diabetes.  GD is commonly managed with diet and regular exercise. 

Be active and have a safe and enjoyable pregnancy.  Contact your local Fit 4 Two Pre and Postnatal Fitness franchisee to find out which prenatal classes are being offered in your community. 

Friday, May 2, 2014

Outdoor Workout Tips!

Tip #1… Pack A Snack
Mamas really value the social element of our classes, and the best way to nurture new relationships is to hang out on a regular basis.  Why not plan to share a snack or lunch on your yoga mats after class?  It’s also a great way to honour your hard-working bodies, and fuel up your muscles for your next workout!  We like healthy snacks that don’t need to stay cold, and can withstand being forgotten in your bag for a few days… check out the recipe for these delicious ‘Bliss Balls’ from Sydney Badger Cuisine!

Tip #2…  Bring a Carrier
For the first few weeks of your Stroller Fitness class, we recommend bringing a carrier with good support (Ergo, Beco, Tula, etc…) along just in case. In fact, some baby-wearing mamas choose to work out stroller-free exclusively.  Sometimes our babies just want to be held, and this is especially true for those babies in the ‘fourth trimester’ that are happiest close to their mama’s warmth and heartbeat. You can actually get a pretty effective workout with your baby in a carrier – your instructor can give you appropriate modifications for exercises with respect to safety and logistics.  I promise, you’ll get a great workout with the extra resistance!  I have actually witnessed more than a few Fit 4 Two® mamas breastfeeding a baby in a carrier while doing squats and lunges – now THAT is multitasking!

Tip #3… Check the Forecast
Be prepared for the weather, from sun hats to rain covers!  We deal with all sorts of conditions in our fair city and being properly kitted up will guarantee you a comfortable and stress-free workout.  In a pinch, a receiving blanket with a few clothespins rigged over your stroller’s sun cover can save the day!

Tip #4… Lighten Your Load
In your stroller storage basket, you’ll already have a water bottle, yoga mat and possibly a carrier.  Having a streamlined diaper bag is a great idea.  MEC has some great tiny backpacks that can be used as diaper bags, or as hiking daypacks when you (gasp!) no longer need a diaper bag.  I personally have this one, and still use it hiking in the woods with my 6 & 8yr old girls – now they’re the ones carrying the gear!

Tip #5… Arrive Early
Getting to class a few minutes early gives you a chance to top up your baby’s tummy or change their diaper before class.  It also allows you a chance to hit the loo!  We love these sports bras for ALL of our clients, but they are especially useful for moms that need to breastfeed on the go.  Ask your instructor where to buy them in your community!