Mar 10 2015
If you’ve ever been through a childbirth education course that includes hands-on practice of laboring positions, your partner knows how physically challenging the work of supporting you can be. Guess what? Doulas, to the extent that the mother and partner desire, do the same physically challenging work ! This means that I must stay in strong shape. Of course, the mother is the one doing all of the real work. However, taking care of my health and fitness is one of my priorities, so I can better serve you and your partner.
What’s more, as a mom looking after your baby’s best interests, you also are prioritizing your health and fitness. Exercising during pregnancy is associated with appropriate weight gain for mom as well as for baby, more energy, fast recovery from birth, easier, shorter, and less complicated labor, less gestational diabetes, less preeclampsia, and less edema. Plus, let’s not forget endorphins! If you’re interested in learning more about fitness during pregnancy, I’d like to recommend a book out of my library: Exercising Through Your Pregnancy by James F. Clapp III. M.D. This was one of the texts I read when I was working on certifying as a prenatal fitness instructor with International Childbirth Educators Association (my certification was delayed due to my second pregnancy, but l’ll get back to it some day). Anyway, Dr. Clapp’s book is a fantastic resource if you want evidence-based answers to all of your questions about working out while pregnant. It is free to borrow for all of my clients!
So, I need to stay fit. You need to stay fit. Anyone else accompanying you in labor also needs to stay fit. Therefore, here is my proposal: let’s go for a walk or jog together. When you contact me to set up your complimentary visit, to decide if I am the doula you want beside you in birth, mention to me if you’d like to multitask this meeting with a workout of your choice, as long as it is conducive to conversation. I look forward to hearing from you, learning about your idea of birth, and staying in shape at the same time!
Just for fun, and because moms struggle not to boast about their little ones:
At right, you can see my accomplished babies. Sam completed a half iron distance triathlon while in utero, and sister Lulu finished a sprint triathlon with an ocean swim during her fetal days. Their darling Daddy and my midwives supported us along the whole journey. Thanks, darling Daddy for showing everyone the fantastic research-based prenatal exercise book by Dr. Clapp!