how to train your body to prepare for birth
Have you ever heard that giving birth is like running a marathon? Or in conversations with postnatal mamas, have they referred to it as the most physically challenging experience they have ever faced? While giving birth is different for everyone, I can say that most women would agree that it is an extremely intense experience that invokes high physical, mental, and emotional endurance for a prolonged period of time. However, are we truly prepared for this experience when the big day comes?
Just think about it. When you run a long-distance race or participate in an athletic challenge, there are certain steps you should take to be ready. From daily training to diet and lifestyle changes, there are so many things you can do to set yourself up for success on the day of the race. And get this — the average woman expels 3 times the amount of oxygen during labor as an avid marathon runner expels in one race — so why aren’t we addressing the process of giving birth as a challenge that requires long-term, consistent training?
Mama, it’s time to start looking at the birth marathon as an actual race that must be trained for during our entire pregnancy (and even before pregnancy!). This is vital to set our bodies and minds up for success on “race day” — the day your new baby arrives into the world.
After working with countless prenatal mamas over the years, I always encourage them to take certain steps to make their pregnancy healthier (you can read about some of them in my recent blog). However, in this blog, I really want to focus on the importance of core and pelvic floor strength and mobility because this is often the missing piece in preparing for this marathon. There has been so much focus placed on diet and lifestyle modifications that these factors are often left as an afterthought with Kegals being the buzzword. The ability to properly engage the core and pelvic floor through the implementation of the Bloom Core Foundations — diaphragmatic breathing, belly pumping, deep core holds, and ab wraps — is so vital to reducing push time and preventing injury during birth. It also can reduce your likelihood of developing injury-based diastasis recti, hernias, and other common pregnancy injuries.
Studio Bloom makes it easy for mamas to tap into this part of their birth marathon training because it is a one-stop-shop for education, workouts, and nutrition before and during pregnancy.
Our collection of BirthPREP classes is all about training you for the birth marathon. We designed these classes to strengthen you both physically and mentally by mimicking the way contractions move in and out of the body during labor. Most laboring moms experience the height of a contraction and then the low. The height is all about the intensity while the low can be seen as a rest to prepare for the next contraction.
During BirthPREP classes, you’ll move through four contraction stages built to fatigue specific muscle groups to physically and mentally push you safely to your edge while we cue you to go deep, distract your mind, breathe, and surrender to your experience. These bouts of exercise are your contractions, followed by each contraction stage as a rest period where you get the chance to tap back into that supportive diaphragmatic breath that will guide you through your actual birth, calming your body down and preparing it for the next contraction stage. We recommend women do these classes at all stages of their pregnancy so that you’re trained and ready for your birth marathon.
Once you have finished BirthPREP, our Prenatal section gives you access to a number of prenatal-safe classes that will continue to prepare and tone your body throughout pregnancy. We also have prenatal recipes, meditations, and stretching to keep you and your baby in optimal health.
If you need more guidance on which Prenatal classes to take — don’t worry — we’ve got you covered! Our Prenatal Series is a three-week challenge that will suggest a variety of prenatal-safe classes so that you can get acquainted with Studio Bloom. If you like the organized format, you can move on to our Prenatal Monthly Calendars, which can be done in any order.
However you decide to do Studio Bloom, we have something for all mamas who are ready to truly and holistically prepare for birth — the most challenging but most rewarding race of your life.