Ashling Branagan

ash-bran-largeI had been working out in the Edge with my personal trainer Sean for nearly a year before I found out I was expecting. I typically did 2 personal training sessions a week as well as 2/3 group classes per week. The gym has always been an outlet, I find it so good for my mood and overall wellbeing. I was really scared telling Sean I was pregnant, I was so unsure about training when pregnant and thought I would have to give up the gym (I obviously had no clue!). I told Sean pretty early on, he was so supportive and really informative. He explained I could do exactly what I had been doing but that he would make adjustments as the weeks and months progressed. He stressed to me about listening to my body and taking things slowly.

Once I met with Sean I felt great, I was really relieved and happy with his support and knowing I could continue my training.
I am really competitive with myself when it comes to the gym and quickly realised that my ability to lift weights and train was just not the same. I battled for the first few weeks trying to keep up with the old pre-pregnancy me but I just couldn’t. I was so frustrated with myself and expressed my concerns to Sean. He kept telling me to take it easy, not to be hard on myself and to listen to my body. So I changed my mind frame, began listening to my body and doing what felt comfortable for me at that time. I quickly got into the swing of things (my new normal!).

Sean altered my program every couple of weeks depending how far along in my pregnancy I was as different trimesters needed different alterations to my training. Sean was so informative about exercises that were particularly good for pregnancy and always checked in with me about my eating and how I was feeling. I found that when I listened to my body I was more than capable of doing a lot of the same exercises that I did pre-pregnancy.
As well as my PT I kept up classes and found all the trainers were great at altering exercises for my needs. They would always check on me and ask how I was doing during classes. Over the 9 months nothing really changed for me regarding the gym, I still trained 3/4 times a week until the end of my pregnancy. I found training so helpful, I had a lot of strength in my lower back and core, as my belly grew which helped me avoid any back pain. I also found training helped with my sleeping as I slept so well throughout (don’t hate me for that!). I trained up to 38 weeks pregnant, and made a decision with Sean to go for walks and keep up pelvic floor exercises for the last two weeks until the baby was due.

I didn’t fully realise the impact that training had on my body whilst pregnant as my belly was growing by the weeks. But now a few months postpartum I feel my recovery has been amazing because of my training. I have started back at the gym and yes it has been tough getting back into it after a few months off but even after a couple of weeks I feel my strength and fitness is coming back really quickly. Sean and the team at the Edge are great and really informative about training when pregnant as well as post pregnancy training!