SUPPORTING MOMS THROUGH PRENATAL AND POSTNATAL WORKOUTS

As published in the Richmond News

There are many challenges to exercising and eating well during pregnancy, from morning sickness in the first trimester to weight gain in the third. But the biggest challenge is finding the support to stay healthy – that’s where U Rise Personal Training comes in.

Listening to women who are pregnant and accommodating their needs, is the most important part of helping them start or maintain a healthy lifestyle, according to U Rise owner Gary Dhillon.

“You have to build a really strong relationship with your clients,” he says, adding that a woman may see her hairstylist every month or so, but she may see her trainer three times a week. So the connection is even stronger.

A big part of supporting pregnant clients is keeping in mind they may be emotional, Dhillon says, and if they are having an emotional day, they’ll need stronger support.

Many of Dhillon’s clients were working with him before they became pregnant, and he recommends starting a healthy lifestyle before getting pregnant, as it won’t get any easier from that point on.

“Before you even think about getting pregnant, start doing something healthy, even if it's just walking,” he says. “Just get a routine.

“If they haven't been part of a fitness program or had a regimen before the baby, it can be really hard now for them to get into something,” he adds.

If a mother-to-be can create a healthy lifestyle for herself and maintain it through the pregnancy, it will be easier for her to transition to feeling healthier and stronger after the birth, he says.

“The women who come here who keep a healthy weight, they're able to feel like themselves again after,” he says.

And while it is important to eat enough to grow a healthy baby, most women overestimate how much they should eat, he adds.

“This whole eating for two thing is not true,” Dhillon says.

Once they’ve had the baby, new mothers should get active again, once it’s safe for them to do so, he adds.

“It's really important for their sanity to start to move and get some of that weight off,” Dhillon says, “because once that baby starts to get a little older, and the mom is meeting other moms, it can be discouraging for them to see some of those moms looking healthier than them.”

It can also be important for new mothers to get time for themselves, he adds.

“One thing I've learned, sometimes it's really important for these women to get away from their babies for an hour,” Dhillon says.