Tucking for Two, Bringing Your Bump To The Barre

Posted on July 28, 2019 in REV Community, REV Wellness

Whether you’ve recently welcomed a new baby into the world or you’re tucking for two– congratulations! 

These days, maintaining and even improving fitness levels is encouraged while pregnant and after pregnancy. The benefits of barring boosts mood and energy levels, supports better sleep and helps prevent excess weight gain. It also prepares you for childbirth by strengthening muscles and building endurance, making it much easier to get back in shape after your baby is born. We have even heard from our clients that barring during their pregnancy helped make their labor a little easier by improving endurance, and stamina with learned breathing and focus. Barre is also great to get back in shape after pregnancy and get some quality time for yourself.

We chatted with some REV clients who are bringing their bump to the barre, as well as making time for themselves after pregnancy. 

Meet Alexa Panayi!

Why did you choose to take REV barre during pregnancy?

I was taking barre classes before getting pregnant so just continued to go! It was a manageable workout throughout all stages of pregnancy. Barre was something I could be successful with even as I started to slow down towards the end of pregnancy.  I had to make modifications as time went on, but the instructors were helpful in giving different options so I could still get a good workout while still doing what was best for me and baby! 

What was your favorite healthy post-workout dish during pregnancy? 

Yogurt with strawberries and granola

Has REV helped you get back into shape post-pregnancy?

I have slowly started to get back into shape. I was really excited when I was cleared to work out, but was also recovering from a C-section and caring for a newborn, so I didn’t get back into working out as quickly as I thought I would. I am glad I stayed active through my pregnancy because it has made it a little easier to get back into working out and build that routine back into my life. 

Do you have any advice or tips for expecting moms who want to take barre or new moms who want to get back to barre?

Listen to your body and do what feels right.   

Meet Deanna Corsones!

Why did you choose to take REV barre during pregnancy?

I had been going to REV 5-6 days a week prior to my third pregnancy for about a year (cycle and barre). I had zero intention to quit my exercise routines, at least until my body said no. The instructors were helpful with any modifications and encouraged me every class I took. It was also great to workout with other expectant moms! I think at one point there were at least four of us due sometime in spring consistently going to 6am classes and my favorite 9am Sunday class with Jackie.Taking Barre while pregnant kept me toned and mentally fit. I recommend it to all my friends and anyone looking for a safe exercise routine while pregnant. I especially love the Rev style of Barre. As a former athlete, I like having some cardio mixed in while burning out muscle groups. It’s truly a one-of-a kind workout!!!

What was your favorite healthy post-workout dish during pregnancy?

Smoothies! I made a smoothie every morning after 6am classes (and still do! Anything left over after my fill of two giant glasses I freeze for my kids in popsicle trays. They enjoy them after school! 

Has REV helped you get back into shape post-pregnancy?

I always thought I was ‘in shape’ but after my second child I needed something different…not just physically but also mentally. After going to REV for the first time at the start of the new year. By the end of summer 2018 I felt I had never been in better shape…even when I was playing collegiate softball. Being a part of the REV tribe was everything I needed in my life after having two kids. Feeling and looking amazing at 35 led me to my third pregnancy 😉

Do you have any advice or tips for expecting moms who want to take barre or new moms who want to get back to barre?

Do it! I wish I had started sooner! You don’t need to be an athlete or a dancer or super flexible person to do Barre. It is a perfectly healthy and kick-ass workout for an expectant mom, as well as people of all shapes, sizes, and abilities. Even when I was 40 weeks pregnant I could still do 90% of the moves without modifications! You will leave feeling calm, accomplished, and strong! And Barre will surely help build those muscles needed to push baby out (quickly)!

Meet Kelsey Lucas!

Why did you choose to take REV barre during pregnancy?

Staying super active during my pregnancy has always been a top priority for me — both for the physical benefits (having more energy, staying fit) and the mental health benefits (stress relief and reduced anxiety, which is key for me).

Barre, in my experience, has been particularly great for pregnancy because it’s so easy to customize the class for your body and your needs based on how you’re feeling that particular day. (I have learned over my pregnancy that my body can feel totally different from one day to the next — so some days I feel capable of my pre-pregnancy fitness level, while others are a total struggle.) 

I really love taking Darryll’s class because she is so great about checking in to ask how I’m doing throughout class, and she constantly suggests modifications in case I’m not comfortable with a particular move. (Sometimes she would hand me an extra ball or band for more support, tell me to make a slight tweak during a sequence or she’d give me an entirely different move to do if there was something I should avoid).

What was your favorite healthy post-workout dish during pregnancy? 

Throughout my pregnancy I’ve been focusing on upping my intake of plant-based proteins. So if I’m in the mood for a quick snack, I love either picking something up at Clean Juice (right next door to REV!) for “The Chocolate One,” or if I’m heading home after class, I’ll grab a ready-to-blend Daily Harvest smoothie from my freezer (my favorite is the Cacao + Avocado flavor).

If I want more of a real meal, my favorite is a veggie-packed protein salad recipe that I got from WELLTRIBE — it’s delicious, filling and extremely easy to make. I’ll toss leafy greens (usually spinach) in a bit of olive oil and Himalayan salt, then top it with warm lentils and diced beets (which can both be found in the refrigerated section of Trader Joe’s and are ready to serve, so no prep time!). I’ll also add whatever healthy extras are lying around my kitchen, like roasted sunflower seeds (for more healthy fat) and goat cheese (for some creamy texture). 

Has REV helped you get back into shape post-pregnancy?

I’m still pregnant — currently at 37 weeks (aka T-minus 3 weeks until my due date!). Once I have the baby, I plan on taking it very easy and allowing my body plenty of time to heal and restore itself. But as soon as I feel ready, I definitely plan on returning to REV.

Do you have any advice or tips for expecting moms who want to take barre?

Definitely! Based on my own personal experience and the advice of experts I worked with throughout my pregnancy, these are my top suggestions…

1.) Get the thumbs-up from your doctor before you continue to take (or starting taking) any form of exercise while pregnant. There are loads of health benefits from working out while you’re expecting — so as long as you don’t have any high-risk concerns, your doctor should very likely be supportive.

2.) Stay cool! One of the major exercise recommendations for pregnant women is to keep your body temperature from rising too much. (Ask your doc about this, too.) When I attend a barre or spin class, I’ll soak a towel in cold water and use it to wipe down my face, neck and arms frequently during class — it’s a great way to keep my body from getting overheated.

3.) Listen to your body. If you ever feel any pain or discomfort, stop what you’re doing immediately. Be slow and gentle with yourself; remember that your body is extra bendy and it’s easier to get injured right now.

4.) Embrace all the back exercises! Strengthening my back muscles provides more support for all the extra weight I’m carrying around in my core. 

5.) And speaking of your core…keep it tucked and tightened during class and at *all* times. I ended up having a lot of back pain and saw a physical therapist over my pregnancy, and one of the most helpful things I learned was to basically tighten my core and try to “suck it in” as much as possible — whether I was sitting in a chair, driving a car, walking around, taking a barre class. This will help prevent back strain — and I really wish I had started doing it sooner.

6.) Use class as an opportunity to focus on your pelvic floor muscles. If you’re not doing kegels yet…start now! Strengthening your pelvic floor area is extremely helpful for all stages of pregnancy, labor and recovery — so I’d definitely suggest looking into pelvic floor exercises that you can work into your barre class when you make modifications, or even just making it a point to get a couple rounds of kegels in while you’re doing other moves. 

7.) Take pictures! Even if you are covered in sweat and not feeling it, take a weekly bumpdate. I always snapped a couple selfies in the barre studio after class — and now it’s so special to look back and see how my body has transformed over the past few months.

Meet Jamie Roby

Why are you choosing  to take REV barre during your pregnancy?

Taking Barre during my pregnancy makes me feel like I’m able to continue to build strength and get a full body workout in while feeling very safe since the focus is on small isometric movements.  It also is one of the only exercises I was able to still get some enjoyment out of in the early days of pregnancy because it did not trigger nausea like many other high impact workouts did.  

What is your favorite healthy post-workout dish during pregnancy? 

Anything hydrating like fruit, especially watermelon and smoothie bowls. 

Has REV helped you stay in shape during your pregnancy?

It’s easy to get frustrated that exercise feels different when you are pregnant – things that used to be part of your daily or weekly routine get harder or just feel different, but I try to remind myself that my body is doing amazing things and give myself a little mental pat on the back for maintaining an exercise routine even if it needs to be modified. I never regret showing up at the barre and it helps me feel good physically and mentally.

Meet Julie Markowitz!

Why did you choose to take REV barre during pregnancy?

I wanted to find a way to continue staying active during pregnancy both to be physically strong for labor and delivery and also to have a healthy mental outlet throughout the nine months. Barre ended up being the perfect choice as it was low impact enough to continue up until the very end (when I could no longer see my toes but still plie and tuck with the best of them!). The instructors and fellow class members were so motivating and encouraging. It provided a really great sense of community, support and reinforcement that I was stronger than ever.

What was your favorite healthy post-workout dish during pregnancy? 

Smoothies! In my third trimester I developed a big sweet tooth so blending a frozen banana, almond milk, peanut butter and greek yogurt was a healthier option for satisfying the sugar cravings.

Has REV helped you get back into shape post-pregnancy?

Yes, I’ve been primarily taking cycle classes to refocus on core stabilization and strong breathing but am looking forward to jumping back into abs and lower body work soon! Carrying a baby around is the daily arm workout I get for now 🙂

Do you have any advice or tips for expecting moms who want to take barre or new moms who want to get back to barre?

Meet your body where it is that day and don’t hold yourself to pre-pregnancy expectations. Just showing up to class and giving it your best (all while growing a baby) is something to be proud of!

Meet Marianne Gibson! 

Why did you choose to take REV barre during pregnancy?

I started taking barre classes at Rev about 3 years ago and was instantly hooked. I love that barre is low impact, but super effective and when I found out I was expecting, I knew I could continue taking barre throughout my pregnancy because most of the exercises are modifiable. It was important to me to stay active throughout my pregnancy and I took both spin and barre classes well into my third trimester. 

What was your favorite healthy post-workout dish during pregnancy? 

I was obsessed with green smoothies and anything slathered in peanut or almond butter. 

Has REV helped you get back into shape post-pregnancy?

I started taking barre and spin classes again about 8 weeks after I had my son, Sam. I won’t lie, it has been difficult to get back into a regular workout routine with an infant and working full-time, and this is something I work on every day. I do credit REV with keeping me in shape before the baby, which has helped me bounce back from giving birth relatively easily. 

Do you have any advice or tips for expecting moms who want to take barre or new moms who want to get back to barre?

I really encourage expecting moms to stay active if they are able to throughout their pregnancy. You’ll feel better physically by staying strong and keeping your energy up and mentally by knowing you’re doing everything you can to stay healthy for you and baby. 

To new moms: Give yourself grace. I really wanted to get back into a 4-5 day a week workout routine right away and could not manage to carve out the time, which was extremely disappointing. I had to accept that for a few months I would only be able to squeeze in a class here and there and would have to get my exercise through walking/ carrying a baby up and down stairs. Things do get easier as time goes on, but I’m learning that my new normal workout routine looks different. With that said, it is critical to carve out time for yourself when you can because a healthy and happy mama lead to a healthy and happy baby! 

REV encourages our mommas and moms-to-be to take as much time as they can to focus on adjusting to this new (amazing) life and to take care of their bodies. We know it’s not easy, so we feel honored that they choose to prioritize their time, sweating with us when they can. As you read above, no matter what stage of life you’re in, there are countless benefits to moving your body. So grab your gear and water bottle, and head to one of our studios, you will thank us later!