12 Ways to Live BIRTHFIT
Move daily: Movement is life. Find an activity that motivates you. Find your “why” and set your plan and your goals. If you need a coach, get one. If you need a buddy to help you stay accountable, get one of those, too. Thirty minutes of movement a day is minimum.
Make a plan: Setting your weekly fitness schedule will help you to hold yourself accountable for the time you need and will help you to be mentally prepared to make this a priority. You should have some way of tracking your improvements and watching the growth that occurs over time! No, I do not mean growth in size but hey, that would be a bonus because that would mean you are likely getting stronger and even more badass. ;)
Move smart: Train for mobility, strength, flexibility, and endurance. This will help you avoid injury, and if you are training for birth, you WILL need to be proficient in all of these areas to conquer the biggest athletic event of your life.
Nourish: Pay attention to the foods you are putting in your body. This is the fuel you will use to carry you through the day and recover from activity. Choose real, nutrient dense foods with healthy fats, proteins and carbohydrates. Examples include, avocado, nuts, fish, seasonal fruits and veggies, bone broth, and grass fed/local meat. Minimize your sugar intake.
Hydrate: Get a quality stainless steel or glass water bottle and drink half your body weight in oz. daily. Take in quality water throughout the day so you are thoroughly hydrating your body and not just increasing your bathroom trips. Start your day with a full glass of water.
Slow Down: Take time to chew your food and actually enjoy it. Sit down, analyze what you are eating and what you are putting into your body. How does it look, taste, smell, feel? Make it a goal to be present during meals and snacks and you are far more likely to have a better relationship with food!
Schedule an appointment: If you don’t have an appointment on the books, schedule one now. It is important to have proper pelvic motion as you prepare for labor.Additionally, there are a plethora of postural changes that occur during the motherhood transition!
Posture: Speaking of posture: sit on your sit bones; stack your diaphragm over your pelvic floor; and keep your shoulders relaxed, down, and back. Instead of thinking about sticking your chest forward, imagine elongating your spine as if there is a string from the ceiling to the top of your head.
Comply: Your chiropractor is with you for 30 minutes or less; it is up to you to apply the advice s/he gives in the office to the other 23.5 hours of your day!
Meditate: If only for ten minutes a day, take time to meditate and connect to your breath. The Headspace App is a great place to start if you are concerned with your ability to clear your mind for that long. Bonus: it is free!
Set intentions: Start your day with a few things you would like to give attention to. If you take control of your day, your day will not take control of you. Hint: set an intention in each pillar. At the end of the day, if things seem overwhelming you can look back and realize that while things may not have gone (who are we kidding, likely did not go) precisely on schedule, you did give space for what you intended!
Breathe: Use your diaphragm. Breathe into your entire abdomen. Breathe before you react and you will likely have much better insight to what you are actually feeling and needing. Breath connects the physical to the non-physical and is arguably one of the most useful tools to remain present.
Add one or each of these to your day and you will be moving, thinking, and feeling connected to your self while living the #BIRTHFIT lifestyle! You’ve got this momma. You do YOU!
-Erica Boland, DC