Pregnancy yoga workouts – REVIEW

Pregnancy yoga workouts – REVIEW

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I really really like to throw in a yoga session or a few into my training week. I have trialed a few yoga pregnancy workouts available on DVDs (or sometimes YouTube – make sure you check it out before buying) available out there and here what I think about them:

Element: Prenatal & Postnatal Yoga

Loved it: beautiful setting, very good technique tips (some of them I’ve never heard before and I’ve done a few yoga classes), HURRAY a challenging class, you feel like you work out! Cant wait to try the Postnatal part once I have my baby.

5stars

BuddhaBellies – Yoga for Pregnancy

Good thing is that it has three different practices: short (for those busy days when you just want to throw in minimum exercise to feel excused for a burger later), medium and long (when it happens to rain all Sunday) ranging in time from 20 to 40 minutes. The main drawback form me was the robot-like voice and the overall presentation. I really like a little bit more of a human touch to my exercise (even if that human touch is screaming at the top of trainer’s lungs to make you work harder) but this monotonous soulless voice just didn’t do it for me personally. A little too slow and not challenging enough to my taste (and I have strange one – still want a challenging workout at 6 months pregnant).

3stars

Lindsay Brin’s yoga workout

A good basic 25-minute yoga workout with two women demonstrating a more challenging option and one an easier one. Did make me feel like I was working my body out, good tempo, not too slow not too fast.

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Lesley Fightmaster pregnancy yoga (Available on YouTube for free!).

 

5stars

Hope this post might be useful to those of you looking for that perfect yoga pregnancy workout. Please, let me know if you’ve come across a really good yoga session yourself!

Namaste everyone

xx

Anastasia

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Chest and biceps/triceps light weights and TRX pregnancy workout

Chest and biceps/triceps light weights and TRX pregnancy workout

To finish off sharing my light weights and TRX pregnancy workouts, here is my chest and biceps/triceps one. Again, remember to always start with a warm up and finish with a cool down/stretch.

Set one – chest (repeated three times):

  • TRX chest press x 15

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  • TRX row x 15. In this workout the palms face in.

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  • push ups from knees x 15

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Set two – biceps/triceps (repeated three times):

  • TRX triceps overhead press x 15

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  • bicep curls x 15. I use 5kg dumbbells.

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  • tricep dips x 15

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As this workout will not take you long (20-30 minutes), remember if you want, you can always add a little walk on the treadmill (as an option with an incline to make the legs work more) or a jog on the cross-trainer (what I usually do for 20 minutes).

I am also planning to do a series on the workouts with NO EQUIPMENT needed as I do realize not everyone goes to the gym or owns a TRX. So that you don’t have that excuse not to train, I am going to plan three workouts like that where all you’ll need is your body.

Dip it down and stay fit

xx

Anastasia

Back and shoulders light weights and TRX pregnancy workout

Back and shoulders light weights and TRX pregnancy workout

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To continue my series  on the pregnancy workouts I do, here is my back and shoulders light weights and TRX pregnancy workout. Again, remember to always start with a warm up, finish with a cool down and listen to your body (which turns into more fun in pregnancy as there is a tiny human being kicking and turning inside of you). One more time: always check with your doctor if these are right for you.

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Set one – back (repeated three times):

  • TRX high row x 15. TRX is so great in pregnancy as it just makes you use your bodyweight but can bring so much variety into your training. In this exercise pals are facing down (makes you work your upper back) and you row to your chest squeezing your shoulder blades together. Remember: it’s a back exercise so unless you feel it in your back you are doing it wrong. Squeeze your shoulder blades together on each row!

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  • push ups from knees x 15. I stopped doing the normal toe push ups at around week 18 and swapped them for push ups from the knees which work just as fine as remember you also carry extra weight on you.

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  • standing bar (10kg) row x 15. Again squeeze your shoulder blades together on each row, feel it in your back.

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Set two – shoulders (repeated three times):

  • sumo squat kettlebell row (8kg) x 15. I’ve added this compound move just to make this workout a little more dynamic.

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  • lateral side raises with dumbbells (4kg) x 15.

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  • military press with a bar (10kg) x 15.

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Press up and stay fit!

xx

Anastasia

Lower-body light weights pregnancy workout

Lower-body light weights pregnancy workout

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Disclaimer: Always ask your doctor if these exercises are right for you. Stop if you are not feeling well. It helps if you trained prior to pregnancy and know your limits very well. This is just my routine I made up for me, it does not mean it will be right for you. Please, be careful and be a happy healthy mum.

My training week looks like this at the moment:

  1. Monday: 30min lower-body light weights session at the gym + 20 minutes on the cross-trainer (resistance level 5 on my machine)
  2. Tuesday: 30min back and shoulders session (light weights and TRX) + 20 minutes on the cross-trainer (resistance level 5 on my machine)
  3. Wednesday: rest day
  4. Thursday: 30min chest, biceps and triceps session (light weights and TRX) + 20 minutes on the cross-trainer (resistance level 5 on my machine)
  5. Friday: Grit strength at Les Mills slightly modified
  6. Saturday: rest day
  7. Sunday: Olya Markes’s workout of choice at home (28-45 minutes) +  a 30min walk

So here is my lower-body light weights workout. Remember to always start with a warm-up!

Set one (repeated three times):

  • sumo squats with a 10kg sandbag on your shoulders x 15. Sumo squats feel much more comfortable in pregnancy than the regular squats (toes look sideways, knees don’t go over toes).

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  • stiff legged deadlift with 6kg dumbbells x 15 (straight legs, should really feel it in the backs of your legs – in your hamstrings)

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  • walking lunges with 3kg dumbbells x 20 (knee never goes beyond the toes)

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Set two:

  • leg raises 1.5min (prepare for the burn!!!)+ inner thigh leg raises 1.5min – all for the same leg then do the other leg

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  • bridge 1.5min (only do this exercise if you feel comfortable lying on your back – I know not all pregnant women do).

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Always remember to finish your workout with a cool down/stretch.

Hey mummies, bridge it up and stay cool!

xx

Anastasia

My pregnancy training routine

My pregnancy training routine

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As some of you would know I am a group fitness instructor and a gym junkie on maternity leave. I exercised vigorously before pregnancy and actually in the first 19 weeks of my pregnancy as well. 19 weeks was a turning (shall I say popping?!) point for me as my belly suddenly (and I mean it, so SUDDENLY that some people went from not knowing I was pregnant at all to thinking I was 7 months) popped out and it became obvious I could not continue teaching my classes anymore but I still desperately wanted to keep exercising all the way to my baby’s birth (which I am quite successfully doing now). In this post I’d really like to share the programmes/places I’ve tried and my star rating for them.

Pros: not expensive, has a routine for each month of pregnancy, good length of workouts (approximately 30-40 minutes), not a lot of equipment needed

Cons: not free, doesn’t work out the entire body (the focus is given to legs and arms – no back/chest exercises), for somebody who trained a lot before birth it isn’t challenging enough,  same routine for the entire month – hmmm yawn, yawn.

My star rating:   3stars

Pros: free!!!, includes 8 shorter videos (28-45 minutes) + 1h18min pregnancy yoga workout, works out your entire body, CHALLENGING!!! (even for my husband who is very fit and just decided to do it with me), not your usual-seen-it-100-times- before old routines, some of these moves I’ve never seen before (and I have seen many moves!), no equipment needed – mostly bodyweight.

Cons: the only con to me is that they are all in Russian but as they are videos you can just repeat after Olya, easy enough (or ask me for translation, will be happy to help).

My star rating:    5stars

Pros: not just your yoga moves but a lot of tips on birthing, breathing at birth etc. Very tailored to VERY pregnant women so even if you never exercised before your entire life you’ll be fine, good for relaxation/meditation as well as keeping active, beautiful studio with a great yoga-feel.

Cons: at $20 per 1h15min session – quite expensive with so many low-cost options available for a fraction of a price or even free on Youtube (there was actually no correction from the trainer at those sessions so there is no difference between them and following somebody in a Youtube video), to me NOT challenging at all – extremely slow, no muscle tension AT ALL, no feeling you are actually working out, just relaxing, and relaxing, and relaxing (maybe I do need to relax more after all??!!)

My star rating:   3stars

Pros: higher intensity than most pregnancy workouts, FAST not SLOW, challenging, other non-pregnant people around (YAY!), bring back the memories of you pre-pregnancy + I love my instructor and come just because of her (hi, Melissa Chalmers:)), free with your Les Mills membership

Cons: need to modify some moves (like all the jumping lunges or jumping squats) but easy enough and instructors help as well, need a gym membership to come (but no need to pay extra)

My star rating5stars

  • My own light weight/TRX routines at the gym – star rating five out five as you can guess of course:) But will do a separate post on those as they are a big part of my routine at the moment

On my list to try: Suzanne Bowen’s Slim & Toned Prenatal Barre Workout (will do a separate post about it as well when give it a good try).

Keep active and give this post a like (for me to see that people can actually see it – I am all new to this hehe)

xx Anastasia