This morning on the streetcar I ran into Amalia again.
"Guess what," I said as I tapped on my belly.
"Me too," she said, and beamed, and hugged me.
She's about a month behind me. I am thrilled for her.
Today I went to my first FitMom class. I knew my endurance sucked, but boy howdy, it sucks bad. The class is circuit training, with lots of lifting of girly-girl vinyl-covered dumbbells, and doing of lunges (which I loathe), and chatting about pregnancy and labour. My trainer would probably have a fit at the amount of overhead pressing, given that she says it's hard on the shoulder joint, but my shoulders didn't seem to complain about it today.
The instructor is impossibly perky and for a few minutes at the beginning I was having serious "what have I done by signing up for fifteen weeks of this?" doubts (especially when the girly weights came out). Perkiness and I don't get along so well. But said instructor is also immensely knowledgeable. I'd read in a couple of places that it's important not to get one's heart rate over 140bpm during pregnancy, but she stated (without even being asked) that that information is outdated. The real test of whether you're working too hard is trying to talk: if you end up gasping for air and unable to choke out words, ease up. Otherwise, you're fine.
I found this very reassuring, given that my heart rate monitor-slash-wristwatch spiked to 160bpm briefly when I was at the gym yesterday, and was reading about 150 today. It is okay to get my heart rate up, and I need to do it. My cardiovascular health is currently shot to hell and I need to improve it dramatically if I'm going to have a chance at the labour and delivery that I want.
She talked a lot about the amount of misinformation that is floating around out there, and about how some people are so committed to it that they're willing to verbally abuse perfect strangers who aren't behaving in a way they deem appropriate. She mentioned running a 10k when she was seven months pregnant, and said that as she'd trained for it, people driving by had rolled down their windows to yell at her. She also said that people she didn't know would fuss at her at the gym. "Are you sure it's okay to be doing that?" Her response? "Well, I'm a nationally recognized pre- and post-natal fitness expert. What do you think?" Um...
It was also nice to meet the other moms, most of whom are first-timers as well, and some of whom are already past thirty weeks. It seems to be common among this crowd to keep working out right up until bitter end. (Overheard conversation: "What happened to so-and-so?" "Oh, weren't you here when her water broke?")
We worked hard and I'm sure I'll be sore tomorrow. I'm glad I signed up.
Tomorrow is the big eighteen-week ultrasound. Please hold a good thought for us.