Having always been an active bean and lover of exercise, fitness and sport when I found myself struggling for motivation to get out of bed to go for my usual 6.30am swim or only managing 30 minutes once I was there, I was questioning myself – WHY is this? Then the answer soon became apparent; I had a baby developing inside of me which was zapping me of energy left, right and centre!

Finding out we were expecting our child was an extremely exciting and emotional moment for us. When we shared the news with my parents, my Mum told us “Life will never be the same again…” This doesn’t phase us and we had decided that we wanted to make this change.

In my opinion life can become stagnant if you don’t have major changes or challenges in the pipeline – in the past these have mainly been sport focused for us; be it compete at the World Triathlon or Duathlon Championships, running the London Marathon or cycling Lands End to John O’Groats. All of these events take time, preparation and sacrifices – three things which I believe you need to consider to be an effective parent!

So I am in the “preparation phase” at the moment to being a parent, and what BIG changes has that meant for me:

1. I have felt extremely tired – some days having to have a 1-2hr afternoon nap. This is very alien to me but having read numerous books and articles – I know I’m not alone!

2. I have had several days of not “wanting” to exercise – again, this is something very alien to me as I have always LOVED exercise and not struggled with motivation in the past. Physiologically I have had to shift from not feeling guilty when not exercising to actually being at ease that our baby needs me to rest in order to develop and be healthy.

3. I have slowed my pace of life down…prior to finding out I was expecting, my days would generally consist of 2 training sessions, driving from here to there and back for sessions with 1:1 Personal Training clients, Group Exercise, meetings with business connections and responding to emails at 10:30pm… I am now being much stricter with my time and factoring in “Rest Time” and trying not to respond to “work” after 9pm…

Now that we are safely through the First Trimester (12 weeks of pregnancy) my energy levels are increasing and I am finding that I’m wanting to exercise more frequently (YEAH!) – but I still have to be sensible and have reduced the intensity/Heart Rate that I am training at considerably. General recommendations for exercise can be seen here

I have also started attending a weekly Pilates class at 21st Century Clinic which is a great help in understanding the importance of the Pelvic Floor during Pregnancy.

21st_Century_Clinic_Master_NoShadow COMPRESSED

Not long before we found out we were expecting our first child I had started a programme of work with Ashley Lake, a Personal Trainer at Loddon Valley Leisure Centre (where I receive free membership for being a GB Athlete – thanks guys)  to help with building strength over the winter for next year’s Triathlon and Duathlon season… This programme has obviously had to be tailored somewhat and Ash has been great!

Variety is the spice of life!

12 week scan - 11.12.2013


About the author Ellie Barnes

Ellie is widely qualified and experienced within the fitness industry and she also competes at a high level so she knows at first-hand what it’s like to set demanding goals and achieve them.

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