Athlete Profile (update): Leslie Spector

Hiking

Hiking with her babies (photo courtesy of Leslie)

A year ago, we featured Phoenix, Ariz., native Leslie Spector, who was pregnant with baby #2, and an advocate for CrossFitting while pregnant. Today, Leslie is rocking a hot bod thanks to hard work and participating in a Back Alley CrossFit paleo challenge. “I had hit a plateau with my weight loss after Sean,” said Leslie. “The paleo challenge was the nudge of motivation I needed.”

Her results speak volumes:

  • 15lbs gone forever
  • 16 inches gone forever
  • Reduced performance times by at least a minute

Leslie advises that it’s more than just the box and paleo (or any diet tweaks) to get that weight off. “If the kiddos are losing their minds and you can’t make it in, you need to have a back-up plan.” She recommends having a list of at-home WODs, DVDs, or getting outside. “Anything is better than nothing!”

Balance is a struggle for this full time working mom of two. Now having two kiddos to manage and a husband with a fire fighter’s schedule, getting into the box can be tricky, but making the commitment is key.

Double unders! (photo courtesy of Back Alley CF)

Double unders! (photo courtesy of Back Alley CF)

“My best advice is to have a solid routine and stick with it,” said Leslie. “On days when your heart is tugging more toward baby than the box, listen! Those feelings happen for a reason. I love Elizabeth Akinwale’s quote about always having inches to lose and gains to make, but our babies are only babies once. That got me through last week having two sick babies and only working out twice. I really try to be in tune with my needs. If it’s respite, I find someone else to love my babies for the hour I’m working out. If I miss my babes, but know for my own well-being my butt needs to be at the gym, they come along and I work out with the annoying interruptions because that’s better than not seeing them.”

Team WOD (photo courtesy of Back Alley CF)

Team WOD (photo courtesy of Back Alley CF)

When her kiddos do join her in the box, she leverages technology and food. For her toddler, some tablet time is key, since WOD time is some of the only time she sees technology. Her baby’s distractions shift from food, to other people, to his big sissy, to the various toys in the box. “To be honest, the awesome community at Back Alley is what gets me through if he is there,” Leslie said.

Leslie’s focus on a paleo lifestyle helped with the weight loss, but she suggests finding something that works for you and your family. “Dial in the diet, but make it realistic so it works for you instead of being destined to fail. If it’s not realistic, you’ll fail. If you fail, it’s an excuse to go off the rails. At least it is for me.” Having the support of a spouse/partner or the entire family definitely helps. For other moms considering paleo, she offers this advice, “It seems more complicated than it is. Once you know the basics, and carve out prep time, it’s easy.” She turns to Paleo Grubs for recipe inspiration. “I make a spicy chicken recipe at least once a week. I also, have bacon and steak wrapped asparagus in the weekly rotation.” YUM!

Leslie didn’t CrossFit during her first pregnancy, but was a huge advocate for it when she became pregnant with her second baby. Leslie isn’t only focused on her physical health through CrossFit; she uses it for full mind, body, and spiritual health.

Endurance training with Coach Melissa (photo courtesy of Leslie)

Endurance training with Coach Melissa (photo courtesy of Leslie)

“CrossFit is my medicine! Literally, I use it to naturally treat my bipolar disorder,” said Leslie. “Chemicals freak me out and Back Alley makes it possible for me to maintain balance without having to pop pills. If I go more than a couple days without my daily dose of BACF, it’s obvious. I love being dependent on exercise and friends…the support and friendships I have built are priceless!”

How’s that for CrossFit and pregnant success?

More on Leslie:

Biggest CrossFit challenge she’s faced: Front rack lifts, due to a nagging wrist injury that won’t go away.

Greatest CrossFit accomplishment: I can see back muscles after a super successful paleo challenge!

Favorite girl WOD: I like Fran for the challenge. My best time 4:47, but that is a light and scaled version. I did it in 5:53 a little heavier, still a bit scaled too.

Biggest value in CrossFitting while pregnant?: My mental well being and there is less work on the back-end. During my first pregnancy, I gained 70# (sans CrossFit). With number two, it was only about 26# – enough said!

Favorite mom resources? (book, blog, website, toy for baby, etc.): Friends are number one. Support group is number two. I joined one specific to Nursing. Google is another favorite. When my babies were tiny, ‘Baby Wise’ was my go to book. Now I frequently delve into ‘Love and Logic.’

How much time did you take off after your pregnancy before you got back to CF?: I took the recommended six weeks and then I went really slow. CrossFitting while pregnant was much easier than after baby.

Athlete Profile: Katie Rounds

image

Katie Rounds and I met at Back Alley CrossFit in Phoenix, Ariz. She’s a smart, successful woman with two beautiful girls and an equally successful husband, Cody. They are expecting baby number three and unlike the first two, the gender is a surprise for this little one.

Katie started CrossFitting in March of 2012, at the persistence of Cody and one of her best friends, Katy. Katy and Cody were working out in Katy’s back alley garage. Subsequently, Katy and Cody now own Back Alley CrossFit with two other partners. A bit serendipitous, wouldn’t you say?

Katie and her family

Katie and her family

Katie is due in June and has consistently CrossFitted during her third pregnancy. Here are her thoughts on the experience:

Why I started CrossFit: While I have always loved working out and have been a member at a gym since I was old enough to join, CrossFit wasn’t an easy sell for me at first. I was very hesitant about the financial commitment, childcare options and convenience of locations and class schedules. My husband, Cody, and friend, Katy, convinced me to work out with them in Katy’s back alley garage to see what it was all about and I obliged (it was really a stall tactic from agreeing to join a CrossFit gym). My “big box” gym membership was cancelled that same month and I can’t imagine my life without CrossFit in it now.

Kettlebell swings - prebump

Kettlebell swings – prebump

Other exercise practices: I grew up through school always participating in athletics (volleyball, swim, track and cheer). I also enjoy hiking during the cool Arizona months, but with two kiddos always in tow, CrossFit has been my primary source of exercise for the last two years.

My goal in CrossFitting while pregnant is: To maintain my pre-pregnancy workout level (with modifications of course….superman core work on the ground just isn’t an option with a belly!). With this being my third pregnancy, I understand how important it is for my body to sustain a strong core to help minimize the third trimester back pain always accompanies my pregnancies. With each of my prior pregnancies, I have gained more than 50 pounds, and this pregnancy is on track to be the same. Being a naturally smaller person in height and weight, this additional pressure on my back and hips has been intense; maintaining that strong core has been my only way to overcome this.

Overhead squats

Overhead squats

What exercise advice did your doctor provide you? Did you follow it? My doctor is very supportive, as this was an exercise practice that I had been doing pre-pregnancy. There was no “limit” set on my heart rate, but was instead told to listen to my body and respond accordingly.

CrossFit and pregnant, where do you find support? The community of the Back Alley CrossFit has been supportive and encouraging. Having several others in our gym that are pregnant and CrossFitting at the same time also helps for modification advice for certain workouts.

Don't drink the water at Back Alley CrossFit!

Don’t drink the water at Back Alley CrossFit!

Since doing CrossFit while pregnant, I’ve learned: I’ve learned that many people who aren’t familiar with CrossFit can be quick to pass judgment that being pregnant and doing CrossFit “isn’t safe” or is “too intense.” Standing in my shoes and knowing what my limits were pre-pregnancy and what my limits are currently, I know that what I am doing is an incredibly healthy thing for my body and my pregnancy.

Handstand push ups

Handstand push ups

Biggest CrossFit and pregnant challenge I’ve faced: I am a very competitive person so it has been hard to force myself to step back, let others pass me and not push as hard as I typically would. Lifting lighter and slowing down has also allowed me to work on correcting form in areas that I may have been sacrificing before. I am hoping that being pregnant is kind of like working out with a weighted vest…once it comes off, everything that felt hard before will be much easier and I can finally beat Katy at something!

Katie and Katy - pre bump

Katie and Katy – pre bump

Do you follow a particular eating lifestyle? We have followed a partial paleo lifestyle through most of our years doing CrossFit. Throughout this pregnancy, we have done less paleo with the introduction more dairy and grains (and coffee almond Haagen dazs ice cream bars!). The kids certainly enjoy this change. Overall, even when we aren’t following a paleo lifestyle, we are still eating healthy and balanced meals.

Best CrossFit and pregnant tip or secret you’ve discovered: Sit ups are still possible! I was doing regular CrossFit sit-ups until about six months pregnant, but when the belly started to get too much in the way, I used bands on the pull-up rig to hold onto and allow assistance up.

What have you found most valuable about CrossFit while pregnant? Besides the satisfaction and energy that comes after a CrossFit workout while pregnant, I know that my recovery post-baby will be so much easier and faster because of CrossFit.

Favorite quote: “There is more to life than increasing its speed.”

Favorite girl WOD: Cindy (20 min AMRAP- 5 pull-ups, 10 push-ups, 15 squats). I like small batches of things that I can do over and over again.

Three words that describe me: Multi-tasker (but really good at delegating; ask my husband!), determined, organized

When I’m not in the box, you can find me: Working full-time as senior development manager for a local real estate company, moonlighting as a wedding and lifestyle photographer for my photography company (Round Lens Photography), chauffeuring my two daughters around town to school, gymnastics, dance, t-ball, swim…you name it, we do it! Free time is a rare thing in the Rounds’ house but when we have it, I enjoy playing in the yard with the kids, taking naps all afternoon, catching up on good Netflix shows and extended shopping trips to Target without the kids!

Doesn't she look amazing?

Doesn’t she look amazing?

Back at it: Week One

Seventeen days post-delivery and I’m working on establishing a routine. We’re starting slow to make sure I don’t injure myself.

My daily routine this week includes walking 1-2 miles with pooch and stroller in tow. Then I’m doing sit-ups and push ups. Both my core and arms feel strong and I’m able to knock out 50 reps of each fairly easily. My stamina is in-tact.

I haven’t made the transition to strict paleo yet, but I’m working on it. Since I’m nursing, I’m trying to stay balanced and clean (yet I have enjoyed some ice cream sandwiches in this heat!). Again, I think taking it slow is the right recipe for me.

The more we’ve learned and heard from other couples about post-partum depression and weepiness, we are both so thankful for the placenta encapsulation. I experienced some weepiness before receiving the pills and I can’t imagine weeks of that. Instead, I’m emotionally even, have energy, and feel like I’m well on my way to full recovery. Highly recommend to anyone considering or who have experienced postpartum depression with previous pregnancies.

In other news … literally news, we’ve had some awesome coverage of the blog. A few we are proud of:

There has been worldwide coverage (a bit bizarre to see my likeness next to all sorts of language) and of course the Jimmy Kimmel spoof (thanks, I guess?!). We also have a few more interviews underway.

Lea Ann Ellison – God bless her. She endured the brunt of the negative commentary with her picture this past Fall. That made our media storm much more bearable and focused on the message Chad and I want to deliver:

Woman can and should maintain their exercise regime while pregnant. It’s not a time to throw all your hard work to the wayside. It’s a chance to embrace your new body, ease your pregnancy and delivery, and set a positive example for your kids.

With this attention, I’m hoping to be able to feature more athletes who are currently CrossFitting and pregnant or who have ventured down the path before. Leave a comment if you’re interested in participating.

Thanks to everyone for your continued support!

Pregnancy: Week 39

Another week under our belts and no signs of Baby L.

Easter1

Team Leatherman. Easter Sunday. 39 weeks.

Team Leatherman. Easter Sunday. 39 weeks.

It was fairly low key in our household. We enjoyed a quiet Easter and a quiet week. I finished work last Thursday, so I’ve been taking care of odds and ends, cooking and prepping paleo food for post-baby arrival, CrossFitting, and enjoying some pampering.

Breakfast bread, paleo style

Breakfast bread, paleo style

Food prep – one of the easiest things I can do, especially for the hubs, is whip up some paleo breakfast breads and freeze them to use once our parents leave. I made the following: carrot, zucchini, cinnamon strudel and lemon poppy seed. YUM! I also made two meatloafs (I seriously make a mean and flavorful meatloaf), three containers of spaghetti sauce, and marinated some pork tenderloin to freeze. Plus, I stocked the freezer with lots of grilling meat so we can easily whip up dinners.

As the temps in Phoenix have increased, sadly, so have my feet. I’m experiencing swelling, bruising and aching in my feet and ankles. No bueno. To help, on Monday, I had an awesome adjustment from the chiropractor. She applied some heat ultrasound therapy to my swollen feet and that helped to reduce the swelling. Tuesday, I treated myself to an amazing massage. He worked me from head-to-toe, but paid extra attention to my feet. I melted on the table it felt so good!

Wednesday was our weekly doctor appointment. While there’s no change in dilation, she said I was “loose” and she could feel the baby’s head. She told me to stay active, hydrated, and pampered. No problem following those instructions! As for my feet, it’s the time of year and point in my pregnancy, so she wasn’t surprised.

Aunties2 (1) Aunties2 (2)

39 weeks with Aunties and Momma

39 weeks with Aunties and Momma

My mom arrived on Tuesday and we hosted my aunts for a yummy dinner. Wednesday, we ventured to their house to enjoy the pool and another family dinner together. So fun having family around. Since babykins is staying put, they ventured north to enjoy Sedona and the Grand Canyon. Love that they are getting a mini-sisters trip out of this visit, too.

Week 39 WODs: It was a freakishly awesome week in the box. I set two impressive PRs – one in push press and one in deadlifts. My mom also joined me for her first CrossFit WOD.

Monday, April 21: warm up – 200m row

110# Push Press

110# Push Press

strength: Push Press 6-6-5-5-4-4 – 110# x3 PR (Last week I got a PR of 95# x1)

metcon: 3 rounds – 14:44

  • 500m row 200m run
  • 15 pull ups ring rows
  • 15 push press – 75#

Plus 2.5 mile walk with Frankie

Tuesday, April 22: warm up

strength: Back Squat 4×6: 125#

Step ups!

Step ups!

metcon:Instead of three rounds each set, I did two rounds. There was a 25 min time cap. I finished in 23:15. This was definitely a heart rate raiser!

  • 3 rounds
  • 25 wall balls (20/14)
  • 1 min max row (totaled 200m)
  • 2 min rest
  • 3 rounds
  • 25 box jumps (24/20) – step ups
  • 1 min max burpees – I did on wall (20 total)
  • 2 min rest
  • 3 rounds
  • Ground to overhead (45/25)
  • 1 min max toes to sky

Plus 2.5 mile walk with Frankie

Wednesday, April 23: Momma joined me!

Momma working on shoulder mobility

Momma working on shoulder mobility

warm up: 300m row

Romanian Deadlift 165#

Romanian Deadlift 165#

strength: Romanian deadlifts from 45# plates 5×6 – 165#

Kettlebell swinging

Kettlebell swinging

metcon: Did a modified WOD from what was programmed because my legs were bothering me.

  • 10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1
  • KB swings (1 pood)
  • Romanian deadlift from 12″ box with 45# bar

Friday, April 25: warm up: 200m walk + 300m row

strength: deadlift 8-8-5-5-3-3: 215# PR (Previous PR was 205# x 1 rep in Sept.)

metcon: 15min amrap – 5 rounds

  • 20 knees to elbow from ground from box
  • 10 medball deadlift shrugs (20/14)
  • 10 medball front squats (20/14)
  • 50m dash

Food: paleo + ice cream (and anything to keep me cool, really). Icees, iced tea and water are favorite choices.

Pregnancy Week 36

Officially the home stretch – four weeks and counting.

36 weeks. Hanging out with Auntie Hadar

36 weeks. Hanging out with Auntie Hadar

We had a great week and continued to get a lot accomplished. Our box, Back Alley CrossFit, hosted an infant through adult CPR class on Sunday. My certification was up in February, so it was perfect timing, especially for the infant refresh!

Chad getting a CPR refresher

Chad getting a CPR refresher

This week was also the hubs birthday. I stretched out the celebrations, cooking us a big breakfast after CrossFit that morning and reserving us a great table at the new hotspot, The Henry. We enjoyed a fabulous meal and quiet night. On Saturday, the celebrations continued with massages at our health club, lunch in the sunshine and manicures.

Thanks for the reminder, Facebook.

Thanks for the reminder, Facebook.

Happy Birthday to Chad!

Happy Birthday to Chad!

Make a wish!

Make a wish!

Saturday also kinda subbed as a babymoon, since we decided not to go anywhere. We definitely took advantage of a nothing-to-do kinda day. After our spa excursions, I read and napped while Chad enjoyed the Final Four games. We both wish we had been able to take a babymoon, but I bet that come baby #2, we’ll be exceptionally ready for a long weekend away together!

We had a doctor’s appointment on Monday and an ultrasound on Friday. During the Monday appointment, we were told I didn’t have any dilation, but since that appointment, I’ve dropped and had quite a bit of tension and increase in Braxton Hicks. The ultrasound confirmed the baby’s position and size (about 6# right now). Will be interested to know what changes have occurred in Week 37.

The only other thing I really can’t get over or through my head is some chapters I’ve read on preparing pets. In one book, it said, “either start distancing yourself now from your pet or get rid of it.” UM, EXCUSE ME?! That was ludicrous and I can’t seem to get past it. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I totally understand that life will change for all three of us, but when a new human child comes into the family, the parents aren’t advised to start distancing or get rid of child one, right?

Frankie has been a guardian angel to Chad and me separately and together. He’s also taught us a lot about life. On our other blog (that I haven’t updated in months), I wrote about some of the life lessons Frankie has shared. I’m going to share here, too. It’s our hope that Frankie will also be able to teach Baby L some of these during their time together.

Some days, when Frankie is playful and sweet, I’m struck by his unconditional love, patience and forgiveness. Those qualities are important reminders of what I need to work toward in life. There are days where I lack all three…But, then Frankie comes trotting in, squeaky toy in mouth to remind me there’s more to life; that it’s important to play, to rest, to seek adventure. To love those who protect and care for me. To never stop learning. Looking into those big brown eyes, I can’t be anything but happy and full of love.

A dog’s love and loyalty come so naturally for them and so much harder for their human counterparts. I’m happy Frankie is in my life to teach me and remind me of life’s simplest pleasures.

Frankie’s rules to life:

  1. Play with enthusiasm.
  2. Enjoy naps.
  3. Dress to impress.
  4. Take leaps in life.
  5. Try something you don’t like; you might just end up surprising yourself.
  6. Family is everything.
  7. Good friends are worth loyalty.
  8. Share your toys.
  9. Soak up the sun.
  10. Eat your veggies.
  11. Seek adventure.
  12. Watch the sunset
  13. Wipe your paws.
  14. Life is short. Enjoy every moment.

Play with enthusiasm.

Naps are essential.

Dress to impress.

Take leaps in life.

Try something you don't like ... you might end up loving it.

Family is everything.

Good friends are worth loyalty.

Share your toys.

Soak up the sun.

Eat your veggies.

Seek adventure.

Watch the sunset.

Wipe your paws.

Life is short. Appreciate every moment.

Week 36 WODs:

March 31. This WOD was for my friend Brienne. Read more about her here.

warm up

strength: Back squat 10-8-6-4-2 Ended on 125#

metcon: 12 min amrap. I got through 4 rounds + 14 reps

  • 12 wall balls (20/14) med ball cleans
  • 12 burpee tuck jumps jumping jacks
  • 12 deadlifts (135/95)

April 1. Happy Birthday, Hubs! xxxooo

warm up: 500m row

strength: push press 20-15-10-5 Ended on 85#

36 weeks push press (3) 36 weeks push press (2)

Push Press 85#

Push Press 85#

metcon: 4 rounds. I completed 2 rounds in 13:41 using 65#.

  • 8 squat clean & jerks (135/95)
  • 8 toes to bar (I do knees to armpits)
  • 6 cleans
  • 6 t2b
  • 4 jerks
  • 4 t2b

April 3

warm up: 250m row

skill: death by box dips (class did bear crawls)

metcon: Finished the following in 16:51. I cut what was programmed in half to be able to maintain a decent heart rate and be able to finish (so double everything for the programmed portion; I’m only listing what I did). Also had to sub in some movements for the sake of my belly. Was the right call; still got the heart rate high, but felt accomplished finishing.

  • 200m run
  • 5 hang cleans 65#
  • 10 jumping jacks + 10 push ups (mod for burpees)
  • 15 bicycles
  • 20 slam balls (25/15)
  • 25 v-ups
  • 20 wall balls (20/14)
  • 15 deadlifts 95#
  • 10 t2b
  • 5 step ups with squats
  • 200m run

Food: pretty clean/paleo. Same beverage cravings apply from previous weeks. Appetite is waning.

Pregnancy: Week 35

35 weeks in the box

35 weeks in the box

Ahhhh…homeward stretch! This week, we made it to 30 days from our anticipated due date. Pretty darn crazy.

We’ve been working on the house; I guess in some circles this is considered nesting. We’ve been eliminating, organizing, consolidating – and it feels damn good. I’m definitely more on the organized minimalist side and a good dose of spring cleaning always puts me in good spirits.

All the elimination has also provided plenty of space to organize Baby L’s collection. Our friends and family have been so generous that there isn’t much left for us to buy. So, a huge public THANK YOU!

We did venture into the overwhelmingly large Buy Buy Baby this week to test “drive” strollers and car seats. Holy moly is that store full floor to ceiling! I am so thankful we didn’t start our registry there; I’m afraid I would have taken one look at all the stuff and turned to run. Registering for the baby was difficult to begin with; I can’t imagine dealing with the over abundance of options in Buy Buy Baby to put an actual registry together. For those curious, we registered on Amazon, which offers a super, user-friendly guide to walk new parents through the basics, and Target for ease in our daily lives.

My husband, being the savvy online shopper that he is, found our stroller (BOB Sport), car seat base and adapter through REI at $100 less than Buy Buy Baby with the same 20% discount + free shipping (score!). I have a feeling it’s going to feel much more real seeing those contraptions put together in our house.

While on the subject of registering, I had a revelation this week. So many people are surprised we haven’t found out Baby L’s sex. Going to baby prep classes, we’ve learned we’re in the minority because everyone wants to be able to “plan” and “have control.” However, what I’ve found is that it’s given us more control – we have received almost 80% of what we registered for in the colors we like (green, yellow, gray). I having a feeling many people who announce gender automatically get all pink or blue, but that’s just not our thing. And I love the way Baby L’s space has come together – focused on our colors and theme (dogs!). So, for those of you out there thinking you lose control and the ability to plan, think again!

The other fun project I tackled this week is a wreath for the front door. I wanted it to be spring-time/Easter focused, but the one I loved on good old Pinterest didn’t come with instructions and I was struggling to find coral colored felt in the local craft stores.

Spring rabbit wreath ... without Pinterest instruction

Spring rabbit wreath … without Pinterest instruction

So, I created one in Baby L’s colors (mustard and gray). The most difficult and time consuming part was wrapping the foam wreath with yarn. I loved making all the felt flowers (based on tips from Paper & Stitch) and took three nights to make them. Three nights because I just kept adding to it. I’d hang it on the door and mull over it; add more. I think it turned out pretty perfect!

Our front door is ready for Baby L!

Our front door is ready for Baby L!

Wreath close-up

Wreath close-up

Leslie was fired up last week about the way my nurse practitioner responded to my breast reduction. She reached out to a Facebook mommy group and was directed to a website dedicated to women who have had reductions – Breastfeeding After Reduction. I haven’t spent a lot of time on there yet, but love Leslie’s passion and appreciate her doing some legwork for me!

The other thing I’m strongly considering to help with milk production and overall postpartum recovery is placenta encapsulation. I’ve had a few friends reap the benefits of this and I figure that it can’t hurt! I’m now seeking someone in the Valley that’s reasonably priced and convenient. Recommendations welcome! And if you’ve had any experience with this, would love your input.

Week 35 WODs:

Wednesday, March 26:

warm up

Strength: Overhead squats 6×3 Sara and I got to 90#

35 weeks overhead (3) 35 weeks overhead (2)

35 weeks, overhead squats, 90#

35 weeks, overhead squats, 90#

Metcon: we did a modified Nancy – 5 rounds for time of

  • 15 over head squats at half of what we lifted in strength portion (45#)
  • 250m row

It was a chest burner! I finished in 18:22.

Saturday, March 29: I dedicated this pregnancy version of the CrossFit Games Open 14.5 to Doyle, who we lost a year ago today. It was a tragic loss for my entire family and a day doesn’t go by where I don’t think of him or one of his funny sayings/words of wisdom. Never in my life have I met someone more selfless or stoic.

With Mimi & Doyle - July 4th - 2012

With Mimi & Doyle – July 4th – 2012

During his funeral, the first reading was from the Book of Micah:

Micah 6:8

Micah 6:8

Since then, that verse has become the Team Leatherman family creed.

Even a modified version of 14.5 was a chest burner and exceptionally grueling. I powered through in honor, ending my rounds at 9:45, with Micah 6:8 on repeat.

CrossFit Open 14.5

CrossFit Open 14.5

I did 21-15-9-3 thrusters at 65# and step-ups instead of burpees (my belly is too big at this point and I tend to slam myself down during burpees anyway). My heart rate almost got to 170, so I had to take a few water breaks to trim it back, but felt good finishing!

35 weeks 14 (2)

Crossfitandpregnant version of 14.5

Crossfitandpregnant version of 14.5

Coach Melissa determined the modifications and got both Sara and me through it.

Meghan and Sara with Coach Melissa!

Meghan and Sara with Coach Melissa!

Food: I’m craving iced tea, which is unusual for me outside pregnancy. I’m still drinking coffee and I love a nightly ginger ale. Ice is also a weird craving. I love all my drinks to be overflowing with ice. Totally random. Food has been fairly paleo. We’ve been starting our day with a fruit & greens smoothie, ever since our San Diego trip. I’m at the point now that if I don’t have one, it effects the rest of my day’s energy and focus. I do eat Greek yogurt and still love ice cream (but that’s definitely always a craving, pregnancy or not!). I’m not trying to be strict paleo or beat myself up over anything. Just focused on 7-8 servings of fruits and veggies with good doses of protein.

Feeling: My hips are definitely expanding and are tight. The extra weight can be felt if I have to stand for any length of time. The weekly visits to the chiropractor is definitely relieving a lot of my discomfort. It gets to a point where I can tell I haven’t been in a week to see her. The heat ultrasound she gives me on my shoulder blades reduces a lot of inflammation and pain. Don’t know what I’d do without her!

 

Pregnancy: Week 34

34 weeks with my fellas. Camelback Mountain summit

34 weeks with my fellas. Camelback Mountain summit

We kicked off the week in the most glorious fashion I know – poolside with a (virgin) drink in hand. Sunday was spent pool lounging with our guests. We went to the hotel where we had our wedding reception, knowing it would be quiet and luxurious and that’s exactly what we got. It was a nice, hot Phoenix day, so the pool felt refreshing and time in the shade was even welcomed. Needless to say, the baby belly is nice and brown.

Perfection

Perfection

Monday was my favorite day on the calendar, St. Patrick’s Day (and, yes, also my birthday). It’s been my goal during pregnancy to climb Camelback Mountain. We haven’t done that hike since the first year we dated and I figured it was a great challenge with 30+ pounds on my frame. We convinced our house guests it was worth an early wake-up to beat the crowds and heat.

With lightweight clothing and plenty of water, we were on the trailhead by 7:15 a.m. and began our ascend. Since we had pooch with us, we were forced to take the Cholla Trail, instead of the recently re-opened Echo Canyon Trail. The hubs and Kenny did Cholla Trail last June during our wedding week, but it was new for Jenny and me. This would also be Frankie’s first trek on the infamous Camelback. The summit of Camelback Mountain is 2,704 feet above sea level. The mountain’s two summit trails gain approximately 1,200 feet in elevation. Definitely no small hill!

The trek took us just under three hours and a total of 3.85 miles. The ascend was definitely the toughest – especially with some of the tight crevices and rocks we had to scale. Pooch was a trooper and there was only one real challenge getting him through a tight spot. All in all, it was an awesome feeling to get to the top. On the way down, icing on the cake when a few college girls in their lulu’s and sportsbars with tight tummys said, “check out that bad ass pregnant lady,” as I passed by them. Yep, ladies, that’s right, watch and learn!

Taking in the scenery on the upward climb

Taking in the scenery on the upward climb

Water break for pooch

Water break for pooch

34 weeks preggers on Cholla Trail

34 weeks preggers on Cholla Trail

Pooch, happy to be hiking

Pooch, happy to be hiking

We made it!

We made it!

Feeling like a champion

Feeling like a champion

Aunt Jenny and Frankie snooze, post hike

Aunt Jenny and Frankie snooze, post hike

Later that day, we had a doctor’s appointment. Unfortunately, all the doctors were booked so we ended up meeting with a nurse practitioner. This woman had terrible bedside manner. After asking a series of strange questions, she asked if I would be breastfeeding. I explained we’d like to, but that I had a reduction 11 years ago and weren’t sure if I would be able. She made a face. And not just any face – an “ooo that’s bad” face, all scrunched up. Instead of leaving it there, her follow-up question was, “Did they have to reconstruct the nipples?” I said, “well, yes, it was an extensive reconstruction.” And again with the face coupled with a “oh that’s not good; it’s going to be really difficult.” Well, no sh*t, Sherlock. I made that decision 11 years ago well aware of the risks and my husband and I have faced the reality of it long before we ever got pregnant. Not helpful.Sometimes, I don’t know why I even bother answering these dumb questions, knowing it should already be documented in my chart.

So, my advice to any women out there facing something similar, do your best. Rely on your husband and communicate through these outside influences. Accept that you can’t change something you did for yourself and your health, knowing good and well that one risk might be the inability to someday breastfeed. If it happens, great; if it can’t or doesn’t work, move on.

DQ cake. It's a family tradition!

DQ cake. It’s a family tradition!

To celebrate the St. Paddy’s birthday, we hosted a friends for dinner and ice cream cake. As a kid, I was always thrilled to have a Dairy Queen ice cream cake; since I was allergic to milk and milk products, it was a special treat that didn’t set off my asthma. It was the perfect end to an awesome day!

This week also included a St. Norbert College alumnus event hosted by the president and featuring the Knights on Broadway. For anyone in the Green Bay, De Pere, Appleton areas, I highly recommend attending a show. It was a great cabaret performance. We also went to the Kings of Leon concert. The hubs scored great seats. While I sat half of the concert (I’m typically on my feet dancing), it was a great show that featured some of our favorite KOL hits.

Knights on Broadway, performing in Arizona

Knights on Broadway, performing in Arizona

Ready for Kings of Leon

Ready for Kings of Leon

We capped off the week at a dinner with some of my cousins who spent their spring break in Scottsdale. It was a great evening catching up. Then the weekend was spent spring cleaning to prepare organizing all of Baby L’s gear! Quite a busy, fun, successful week.

Week 34 WODs:

Monday, March 17: Hike Camelback Mountain. 2:55; 3.85 mi

Wednesday, March 19: Three mile walk with pooch on the canal

Thursday, March 20:

warm up

metcon: 7 rounds, 40 min timecap

  • 7 power cleans (135/95; I did 65#)
  • 6 hand stand push ups (I modified on box)
  • 5 burpees (I modified on wall)
  • 4 front squats (135/95; I did 65#)
  • 3 muscle ups (9 pull ups + 9 ring dips = 3 muscle ups)
  • 200m run (I rowed)
  • 1 handstand walk across gym (I attempted a bear crawl modification, but failed; I dropped this all together after that).

I did 5 rounds in 28:30. My heart rate was really escalating, so I thought I would cap at 5 and focus on cheering on everyone else.

Friday, March 21

warm up CFx3 (10 air squats, 10 sit ups or toes to bar, 10 pull ups, 10 push ups)

strength: Deadlift 10×6. I got to 155

metcon: 10min amrap

  • 20 air squats
  • 20 sit ups (I did on a bench)
  • 20 push ups

I got 3+40. So, I know I shouldn’t compare myself, especially during my pregnancy and I know everyone walks into the box at different places, but I was pretty damn excited that I got the same number of rounds + reps as a guy after lifting 10# more than him in the deadlift/strength portion.

155# x 10 at 34 weeks pregnant

155# x 10 at 34 weeks pregnant

Prescott Hotshot 19 twinsies!

Prescott Hotshot 19 twinsies!

Hitting the Box: Baby Steps

All the research from the day before really did me no good. I was still confused about what I should and shouldn’t be doing when it came to my pregnancy fitness. CrossFitMom is great, but I wasn’t looking for programming; I was looking for answers.

I needed some normalcy, so I hit the box.

Courtesy of reebok.com

Courtesy of reebok.com

August 27 WOD:

Warm up

Strength: Push Press 10-8-6-4-2 I got to 105#, but only one rep.

Metcon: Partner WOD 20 min AMRAP Push Press (95/65), double unders; partners switch every minute. I managed 74 push press and 160 singles for a total of 244 reps. My partner managed 380 reps.

I felt good during the strength portion, but was struggling during the metcon. I was watching women I competed with prior to pregnancy knowledge doing circles around me. I think my fear of doing something wrong was eating at my subconscious. Throughout the metcon, I kept catching my hubs’ eye to let him know I wasn’t feeling right. We were both at a loss.

Two days later, I hit the box again.

August 29 WOD:

Warm up: 500m row, 61 kbs (1 pood), 30 slamballs (15#)

Strength: Max reps in 2 min: box jumps (40 at 20′), push ups (50), situps (60)

Metcon: 20 min AMRAP 50m plate run (45/25), 10 med ball cleans (20/14), 10 pull ups, 20 alternating lunges. I skipped the plate run and added the 25# to my alternating lunges. Managed 6 rounds + 9 reps.

Felt better today and whatever was gnawing at me two days before had subsided. Considering the entire WOD was basically 3-in-1, I was happy about my numbers.

On Friday, August 30, I skipped the box for a lunchtime power yoga session to celebrate a girlfriend’s birthday. I felt empowered on my mat. While the class was tough, crowded, hot and full of advanced yogis, I kept up and challenged myself into some balancing poses I typically struggle with. Little did I know, the hot rooms can cook the baby (not really, but I can’t shake this image from my head) … little did I know, pregnant women shouldn’t let their body temps get too high, but that class I left glowing from sweat and pose success.

I guess I really didn’t take baby steps. More like broad jumps!

Courtesy of: dbstrength.com

Courtesy of: dbstrength.com