Welcome to StorkNet's Interactive Guest Event! Today's guest is
Lisa Stone ACE, certified fitness instructor. Lisa is the founder
and president of Fit For 2,
an original pre- and post-natal fitness program which she developed.
She is also the co-host of the Easy Spirit National Fitness Forum.
Lisa moderates our Ask a Certified Fitness Instructor forum on
message boards and is here today to chat with us about staying
fit during pregnancy and after. Welcome, Lisa!
Hello, everyone. I'm excited to be here.
Shelby: I have about 40 pounds that I want to lose. I have
just joined a wellness center and they want me to use the exercise
machines most of the time when I prefer water aerobics. Can I
Yes, absolutely. A well balanced fitness program consists of strength
training which you'll get through the machines, aerobic exercise
which you'll get from the water aerobics, and flexibility or stretching.
The aerobic exercise will help you burn fat and calories, the
strength training will tone your muscles and help increase your
metabolism. And the flexibility will help you avoid injury.
I'm not a dietitian, but I do know that you do need to couple
your new exercise program with a healthy diet consisting of fresh
fruits and veggies, lowfat dairy products, lowfat proteins, whole
grains and . . . LOTS of water!
Does that help?
Shelby: Yes! Thank you Lisa!
Why would it be that on the days I exercise, I seem to gain weight
than when I don't? I use an elliptical cross trainer for 30 minutes
and take one hour walks almost every day.
Trixi, first of all, please avoid weighing yourself on a daily
basis. If you HAVE to step on a scale, please do it no more than
once a week, and the best time to weigh is first thing in the
All of the exercise that you are doing is aerobic, so you also
need to start including some strength training and stretching.
Warning, muscle weighs more than fat so gauge your weight gain
or loss by how your clothes fit vs. a number on the scale. You
may also want to enlist the help of a partner to take your measurements
and retake them every month to track your progress.
Okay - thank you - will give it a try!
Good luck. Visit us on the message board too, Trixi.
I have had 3 c-sections and doing regular sit-ups just doesn't
feel right. Is there a better way to tone up the stomach area?
Lisa Stone: Marina, are you pregnant now? And if not, how
old is your youngest?
I'm not pregnant, and my youngest is a year old.
The first thing you need to do is check for separation of your
abdominal muscles. Do you know how to do that?
Okay . . . Abdominal crunches are the most effective way to retone
the belly after pregnancy. But you can't spot reduce.
I have a separation of about an inch. Is that bad?
Oh . . . you'll need to do some modified exercises then, Marina,
in order to help the separation heal, and to see a difference
in the flatness of your belly.
We could post them all here, but it would be best if you visited
our message board (do you know where it is?) and I could post
them all there for you. It is long.
Thank you - I'll do that.
Here is an example:
Instead of doing a full crunch, just lift your head and tighten
the muscles of your belly while using your hands to gently push
the two sides of the muscle toward the center.
(we're all doing them here . . . <grin> does this make sense to you,
You also need to do aerobic exercise such as walking, swimming,
biking or running, etc, in order to burn the excess fat covering
your flat belly.
Yes - how long does it usually take for the separation to go back
It can take several month. If you don't see progress of any sort
within four to six weeks you may want to consult your health care
provider for a referral for a physical therapist specializing
in postpartum issues.
Does this help, Marina?
Yes - thank you so much for all your time! You've been very helpful.
You are very welcome.
Kat, you're up!
Kat: Hi, Lisa! I'm a runner and thinking about having kids.
Once I am pregnant, for how long a period of time can I continue
running? What exercises can I do in lieu of running to keep me
in shape when I'm too far along to do high impact aerobic exercise?
Hi Kat! Great that you are thinking about fitness now!
In most cases, women can continue running at least through the
middle of their second trimester, sometimes longer.
But you'll need to discuss your running plans with your health
care provider once you are pregnant, to make sure you are not
at risk for preterm labor.
Once running is no longer feasible, you can switch to race walking,
power walking, swimming, indoor aerobic machines such as a stationery
bike, elliptical trainer, stairmaster or treadmill. You can join
a prenatal fitness class or use a pregnancy workout video.
Wow, that's a lot of choices! Terrific!
(like Fit For 2) Visit my page: http://www.fitfor2.com
:) Does this help, Kat?
Yes! Thank you. I'll be sure to visit your site, too!
This is great fun, everyone!
Alllison, do you have a question?
I walked a half hour everyday half way through my first pregnancy
because of water retention. I had a miscarriage. Is it still safe
to walk when I get pregnant again?
Allison, I'm not a medical professional and you definitely need
to consult your health care provider when you get pregnant again.
But most likely, the walking had nothing to do with the miscarriage
(so very sorry to hear about it).
I can tell you from my personal experience of miscarrying right
after an aerobics class that you might be a little hesitant to
exercise during your first trimester . . . and that is okay! Once
you know that the pregnancy is viable, at that point, you can
start a moderate walking program again. And still get the benefits
of being active throughout the remainder of your pregnancy.
I'm sorry for your loss, Allison.
I was an infrequent jogger prior to becoming pregnant. I am now
12 weeks along, and too tired to even THINK about getting on my
treadmill!! Any suggestions? I feel awful that I'm not doing much.
Jenn, congratulations on your pregnancy. Be assured that your
energy will pick up eventually. In the meantime, so that you don't
completely lose your fitness level, could you go for a walk or
use the treadmill to walk at an incline so that it is a little
more challenging than walking outdoors on flat terrain?
I should, I know! I'll try to get my lazy self more active!
Water aerobics might be a nice alternative during the summer . . . exercise will help with the energy level.
My husband says that, too!
Jenn: Thanks for the advice.
Start slow, Jenn. Do what you can. Ten minutes is better than
nothing. Work up from there.
Lisa Stone: If you need some daily motivation, email me
at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll send you a daily motivational message!
B: Which do you think is better/ healthier, to be a couple
pounds over weight vs. under weight? I seem to be fixed on a number
and I'm not sure that's right.
Are you pregnant?
B: No, I just gave birth. I have a two month old son and I am
breastfeeding. All my clothes fit but that darn scale has different
numbers on it than pre-pregnancy.
You will most likely hang onto a few extra pounds while breastfeeding.
This is your body's way of making sure your baby has enough to
should continue to eat a healthy diet and exercise three to five
times a week.
That will ensure that you won't put on additional weight and that
you stay strong so you can care for your baby.
B: Can you overdue the exercise while breastfeeding?
In my experience, those extra couple of pounds will fall right
off when you are done breastfeeding. But don't let weight loss
be a reason to wean early. Keep giving your baby this healthiest
of foods as long as it works for both of you. Does this help?
B: Alright! I'll hold you to that weight falling off after
breastfeeding! :-) Yes, thank you!
You asked about overdoing . . . if you notice that your milk supply
is reduced and you should be able to tell based on the number
of wet diapers your baby has, then you are either overdoing it,
not eating enough calories, or not drinking enough fluids.
Staying well hydrated by drinking lots of water before, during
and after exercise is extremely important, especially while breastfeeding.
B: We have plenty of wet/poopy diapers!! LOL!! I just tend
towards being overzealous, and didn't want to worry.
Hi! I am trying to lose the last 15 lbs and reduce the size of
my rear (it is huge!). This is my fourth baby (she is 6 weeks now)
and I don't remember it being this hard before. The only difference
is that I was on steroids at the end of the pregnancy but thought
that by now the side effects would be gone. Now that I've gotten
the ok from my doctor, what would be best to tone my rear and lose
Hi Kim. It does get harder with each baby, not only has your body
stretched a fourth time, but you are older with each one too.
<g> As I've been saying, you need to do aerobic exercise to burn
the fat and calories as well as strength training to tone the
muscles. The best exercises for your rear view are squats and
Could it just be my hips spreading again?
Kim, your hips do tend to widen with each pregnancy, but with
proper diet and exercise, you should be able to get pretty close
to the shape you were in prior to pregnancy.
Kim: Thanks I will start the squats and lunges tonight!
Hi Lisa. I had abdominal surgery last September, then a cesarean
with a vertical incision four months ago, and then abdominal surgery
following the same incision line about 2 months ago. I'd like
to start doing sit-ups, but I have noticed that my tummy muscles
are sore even from just a long walk. Is it too soon to start working
out with crunches? What can I do to strengthen those muscles?
Jennifer, maybe you could start with modified crunches and isometric
abdominal exercises. The first step should be making sure you
hold in your tummy from the time you get out of bed in the morning
until you get back into bed at night. Just think about pulling
your belly button in toward your backbone. Combine that with modified
crunches where you lift just your head off the floor. As you feel
stronger, add lifting your shoulder blades as well, making sure
you pull your bellybutton in toward the floor and exhale as you
lift your head and shoulders.
Does this make sense?
Yes, it does . . . any other suggestions? This sounds doable. :)
Why don't you start with that, and email me for more exercises
as you get stronger?
Super - thanks!
Thank you so much for joining us today Lisa, and for all of the
Thanks everyone for being here. I'm always available on the message
board or via email at email@example.com and there are also specific
exercise ideas on the fitfor2 website, if you'd like to drop by.
Thanks for having me today! Bye, everyone.
Thank you for joining us everyone.