How I Plan to Lose the Baby Weight

Class Pass Baltimore

When my favorite barre instructor left my gym last year, I admit that it was harder for me to get the motivation to exercise at a gym/studio. (Not to mention that I was pregnant and getting bigger by the day.) I ended up terminating my membership and haven’t been inside a gym since.

Now that JG’s arrived and a new year has begun, I’m ready to get back to my beloved group fitness classes and lose the last bit of baby weight. But with so many awesome boutique fitness studios, I didn’t know where I wanted to start. I was dragging my feet and feeling very conflicted until I received an email from ClassPass asking me if I wanted to try it. No joke, I jumped up and down with joy.

ClassPass is a monthly membership to the best boutique fitness classes in your city. There are thousands of classes available to ClassPass members, including cycling, pilates, yoga, strength training, dance, martial arts, and more. With ClassPass, I won’t have to pick just one studio; I can test a few and find which ones I like best. Awesome, right?!

For $79 – $99 a month (price varies by city), ClassPass members get unlimited classes to studios in the ClassPass network. While members can take as many classes per month as they’d like, they can visit the same studio up to 3 times per monthly membership cycle. For more information on the program, check out the ClassPass FAQs.

In the Baltimore/Annapolis area and want in the fun? Click here to skip the waitlist and sign up today. Let me know what classes you’re attending; I’d love to join you!

Disclaimer: This blog post contains affiliate links. I was offered a one-month ClassPass membership to review at no cost. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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Running While Pregnant: 2nd Trimester

Please note that the following post is my personal experience with running during pregnancy. Every woman and every pregnancy is different. I suggest consulting your doctor before beginning or continuing an exercise routine while pregnant.

My second trimester proved to be the best for me in terms of running. I don’t know if it was the weather, my energy level, or the fact that I cut back on barre and my legs were feeling good, but things just clicked.

If you remember, my first trimester had me completing a half marathon and then taking some time to let my body recover. (To read a full recap of my running routine during that first trimester, click here.) I started jogging with Watson and found that with my slower pace, he had become a great running buddy. We generally completed a 2ish mile route with intervals of running and walking. Some days were better, some were worse, but we stuck to our routine and relished our longer morning workouts.

Then the second trimester began. I/we got quicker. We were back in the 10-minute mile club, and it felt good. The bump continued to grow, and the weather stayed surprisingly cool for a Baltimore summer. The first few times I thought the time was a fluke, but after a some consecutive 10-min/mile runs, I was sold.

10min mile 2nd trimester

The times and the running continued right until the end of my 26th week. While the competitive side of me wished to maintain this great accomplishment and keep running through my third trimester, I also knew that the dark fall mornings were quickly approaching and that running with both an increasingly bigger belly and a sometimes finicky dog may not prove to be the best idea.

running belly and W

Stay tuned for the next update: third trimester!

Pop Physique

If you’ve been reading for a while, you’re well aware that barre is one of my all-time favorite group fitness classes. Being a former dancer, the moves came naturally to me and I reconnected with my inner child. All this without the pain of pointe shoes?! I’m so there.

So when I got the opportunity to attend a free class at Pop Physique Baltimore last week, I jumped at the chance.

pop physique logo

Let me tell you, they don’t call it ‘butt school’ for nothing. Although I’ve been taking barre classes at my gym on a regular basis, this was a bit more intense. This fast-paced, high repetition workout uses small movements to isolate various parts of the body to give you a total body workout within an hour. (Learn more details about the workout here.) Shaky legs are encouraged and the grippy socks are mandatory for a reason. The instructors were knowledgable, encouraging, and succinct – they aren’t there to mess around, they’re there to help you get the most of your workout. However, don’t get the impression that they are extremely disciplined or mean, in fact, just the opposite. They were more than excited to help me modify moves for my pregnancy, but also made sure that my form was on point (no pun intended).

belly at the barre

belly at the barre

While I don’t know if I’ll be back before the end of my pregnancy, the Baltimore shop does have a New Mom’s special so I’m hoping to see the team there in the new year.

TIU group at Pop Physique

Special thanks to Pop Physique Baltimore for opening their doors to the Baltimore Tone It Up crew! I paid a small fee to attend the class, and all thoughts and opinions on the experience are my own.

Spin, Sweat, Sip

I’ve chronicled my journey with running while pregnant, but what about other exercise? I’ve been trying to make the barre class at my local gym on a regular basis, but since I have more time in the summer, I wanted to take the opportunity to test out some of the newer exercise options here in Baltimore.

REV logo

I heard about REV Cycle Studio when they opened, but was a little nervous about attending a class. I haven’t been to cycle in ages, much less with a growing belly. But when I got the invite to #SpinSweatSip, I knew I had to go.

REV studio

The evening began with a preview of REV60Blast, described on the studios website as follows:

“Push through your fitness threshold with our intense, signature 60-minute cycling class. Get inspired by one of REV’s certified indoor cycle instructors, who are trained to help you crush your fitness walls over flats, climbs, and valleys. All fitness levels are welcome.”

Our instructor for the evening was Jami, who led about 20 of us ‘social media influencers’ through 45 minutes of spin combined with strength. It was a great balance and each portion was easily modifiable to fit one’s fitness level. Her music choice was on point, and her teaching style left you invigorated and ready to conquer anything.

SpinSweatSip

Once we finished our workout (which certainly lived up to the promise of making us sweat), we were treated to wine and appetizers from The Wine Market, a local restaurant.

SSS food

All in all, I LOVED this event. Often, a group fitness class can be scary the first time. This way, I was allowed to meet other like-minded people and chat/commiserate about our experience. I also got the chance to speak to REV staff and learn about other classes and specials they currently offer.

SSS group

Special shout outs again to REV for hosting and The Wine Market for feeding us. Can’t wait to return and try out some other classes!

Running While Pregnant: My Story

Please note that the following post is my personal experience with running during pregnancy. Every woman and every pregnancy is different. I suggest consulting your doctor before beginning or continuing an exercise routine while pregnant.

If you did the math from my last post, you’ll realize that I ran my first half marathon while pregnant. We found out a few weeks prior to the race and, by doctor’s estimate, thought I was only 6 weeks pregnant (actually, according to a sonogram a few weeks later, I was almost 9 weeks on race day).

I've got a secret...

I’ve got a secret…

If you remember, I felt like I was burning out on running the weeks prior to the race. I was getting very fatigued while running (makes more sense in hindsight) and wasn’t feeling very motivated. Once the pregnancy was confirmed, I knew I wanted to continue with the race – it was just a matter of strategy.

After receiving the go-ahead from my doctor, I reached out to a friend of mine who ran a full marathon at 5 weeks pregnant. (Yeah, I know, she’s amazing.) She told me that she ran her race in intervals and recommended I carry a water bottle to remain hydrated. Both of these pieces of advice helped me greatly on race day.

SO weird checking that box on the back of my bib pre-race.

SO weird checking that box on the back of my bib pre-race.

I ran the first few miles of the race straight – starting my intervals around mile 5 and switching them up again around mile 8. My knee began bothering me at that point, and I took the majority of May off from running to let it heal (and because I was still in midst of immense fatigue during my first trimester).

As my energy returned, so did the running bug. However, there were factors to consider before pounding the pavement: some areas of my routes are alongside busy streets with no sidewalks, I’m not willing to sacrifice much-needed sleep in the mornings to get up and run, and the Baltimore humidity being a few. Plus, how would my knee react? I tested it out at the end of May and made it 2 miles before pain shot up my knee.

So, what was I to do – give up running altogether? Not a chance. Not for me. Especially not when the JA’s running again. It would break my heart.

That brings us to now – my second trimester and still not running like I used to. I’m doing intervals in the morning with Watson when I’m feeling up to it. It’s been somewhat of a rough road (ok, so I may have had a huge meltdown on Sunday after only interval-ing a mile), but reading this post from Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point helped immensely. I’m slowly learning to temper my expectations, knowing that my body has another purpose now.

All smiles after 2 miles of mostly running yesterday. Victory!

All smiles after 2 miles of mostly running yesterday. Victory!

Have you ever had to take time off from a sport you love? How did you cope?

Finally Free

The weather here in Baltimore was GORGEOUS this weekend. Warm, sunny, breezy, and low humidity – why can’t the entire summer feel like this?

Luckily for us, Watson was cleared for exercise on Friday! If you’ve been reading for a while, you know that with his heart worm treatment, he’s been restricted for multiple months. We’re supposed to ease him back into an exercise routine, but he was having none of it – running laps around the back yard the first chance he got.

puppy selfie

We explored a ‘new to us’ trail on Saturday and Sunday we tested out my knee with 2 miles of run/walk intervals. There wasn’t any pain, so hopefully I’ll be back to running soon!

trolley trail

trolley trail 2

The nice weather is scheduled to continue this week so if you’ll excuse me, I’m unplugging and heading outside!

What’s your favorite outdoor activity?

Linking up with Katie at Healthy Diva Life for Marvelous in My Monday!

Linking up with Katie at Healthy Diva Life for Marvelous in My Monday!

Fueling Better

It’s no secret that my morning workouts have been sparse since finishing my first half marathon earlier this month. Actually, my knee hast quite been the same since and running anything over two miles has brought a searing pain in my knee. No bueno.

So I stopped running for a bit. I miss it terribly and have plans to take it slow, but also test things out after fully resting it for a bit longer. In the meantime, I returned to my first love…the barre. It was a less than triumphant return, and one filled with lots of aches and pains. Yet, I keep going back and will even sub a class next week.

bw barre

With my main source of cardio on hold, I’ve switched up my routine (yet again) to continue being active while strengthening. My morning and afternoon walks with Watson have been reinstated and I’m jumping on the elliptical more. However, one thing that hasn’t changed is my need to refueling a smart and effective manner. Training gave me great insight on how food intake plays a part in performance.

So imagine my delight when I received a package from Vega. If you remember, I received a variety of products from them earlier this year and was eager to see what this package contained.

vega recovery

Peanut Butter Recovery Bars! These Vega Sport Protein Bars contain 15 g of complete, multisource, plant-based protein. Talk about fueling better – these bars are made to held aid in recovery to get you back in action as quickly as possible. A definitely plus for someone as antsy as myself. Not to mention, they are delicious. When I get a hankering for food between meals, I sometimes nosh on them to keep hunger at bay!

pb choc recovery

For more information and to see which Vega recovery product is best suited to your needs. visit http://fuelyourbetter.com/

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Disclaimer: I received a complimentary shipment of Vega bars as a Sweat Pink Ambassador. All thoughts and opinions of the product are my own.