Expecting and Empowered: What YOU Need to Know to START!
We're SO excited for you and your growing babe. We are also endlessly thankful that you are trusting us with your bump.
We made this blog post to help you get off to the BEST start with E and E. You'll find a lot of this information in the introduction or instruction page, but we decided to make a one stop blog post for common questions! Special thanks to our Expecting and Empowered mamas Abby and Lisa for giving us ideas of what came up for them.
1. What will my Expecting and Empowered week look like?
Included in the guide are 3 days of flexibility, pelvic floor, and strength training. There is a lower body day, an upper body day, and a full body day for every week of your pregnancy! You can do E and E on back to back days because they focus on different muscle groups. Aside from your 3 guided days, we recommend adding 2 days of cardiovascular training into your routine. It is up to you to figure out what days will work best for your workouts and what days are best for your 2 rest days.
E and E tip: We both find it easier to use Saturday and Sunday as workout days since we have toddlers. This way our significant others can be on toddler (for Krystle infant and toddler) duty and we can fit our workouts in easier than on weekdays! -Amy and Krystle
2. I'm half way through a trimester, where do I start?
Go to the week you CURRENTLY are in pregnancy and start there! We would LOVE if everyone started right from the beginning, but know there are plenty of mamas that have been baking a baby for a while by the time they find us.
This is BEST practice because pregnancy modifications are SPECIFIC to where you are in your pregnancy, so it is important to go to where you are in pregnancy rather than playing catchup.
E and E tip: At the time of this blog post, I'm 34 weeks pregnant. I head to the 3rd trimester guide and start in week 34. I have that pregnancy week to complete my 3 E and E workouts and my 2 recommend cardiovascular days. For me, the next week always begins on a Thursday. I just plan what works best for me that week in terms of E and E days, cardio days, and 2 off days. -Amy, Co-founder
3. Am I repeating workouts in this guide?
Yes. You'll do each set of workouts for 2 weeks. You can ALWAYS use the headers at the top of the guide for reference. After 2 weeks, the workouts change to the next set. You'll never have to worry about getting bored and this also gave us the opportunity to make ALL the pregnancy modifications in time.
4. How do I pick my resistance?
We would LOVE if this was an easy answer. But, we made this guide for people that are NEW to strength training and seasoned pros. This means that the weight each person is able to use is going to be VERY different. You should ALWAYS be able to complete the full assigned repetitions (example: bicep curl at 45 degrees x 15...this means you complete that bicep curl 15 times) with the weight you choose. If you cannot, this means you need a lighter weight. That being said, it should NOT feel SUPER EASY to complete your repetitions. This is why a light set and heavy set work of dumbbells and circle bands work best. You might have to play around a little bit to figure out what works best.
Example: Throughout the guide I've used 5 pounds for my light set and 15 pounds for my heavy set. I use my light set for what you would call auxiliary lifts. Auxiliary means you are working on a weaker, smaller muscle group. I would use my 5 pound weights for bent over flys, lateral raises, front raises, external rotations...to name a few! I use 15 pound weights for my core lifts. Core means that you are using multiple joints, thus multiple bigger muscle groups. I would use my heavy set for any variation of lunges, squats, overhead press...to name a few! -Amy, Co-founder
5. What is this community you speak of?
This is one feature we are PUMPED about! You won't just buy the guide and then we're done with you, we want to support you through the whole thing! This Expecting and Empowered Mama Community is for people that have BOUGHT a product. The reason for that is because we'll be answering your questions as they come up! We'll even have video content in there if our answers still aren't making sense. We want people to post pictures of their growing bumps and biceps...while getting to know each other and cheering each other on.
We'll have plenty of FREE for all content on this blog, Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest...but, this group will always stay exclusive to people that have purchased. Once you are in, you are in! Please allow 24 hours for your request to join the group to be approved...because #momlife.
6. How long should it take me to complete an E and E workout?
The Expecting and Empowered workouts have purposeful variation in them. Some WILL be shorter, some longer. We aimed to keep them anywhere from 30-45 minutes. Once way you can save yourself time is looking at your workout ahead of time to make sure you know how to do all the exercises. If not, reference the appendices and learn the exercise before you start. That way once you are ready to go, you can knock it OUT!
E and E tip: 1) You can feel FREE to do your pelvic floor and flexibility at different times then you complete the strength workouts! Pelvic floor should be done early in the day or at least by lunch time. This is because your pelvic floor fatigues throughout the day. Don't skip it or you'll be the lady wearing Poise Pads when your 50. Yes, that was supposed to be a scare tactic. The pelvic floor exercises can be hard to learn at first and will be time consuming in the beginning. But soon you'll be a seasoned pro at activating your pelvic floor! Flexibility could be done right when you wake up in the morning, before your workout, or before you hop in bed!
7. Wait, I'm SO tired that I can't even do life. How do you expect me to get these workouts in?
Great question! Read the guide's introduction to help you understand how AMAZING the benefits of working out during pregnancy is. This might give you a boost of motivation for those days when it does seem pretty impossible. NEXT, please know that research shows that working out gives you a BOOST of ENERGY and MOOD! It might help you out more than a nap! We strongly recommend listening to you body, so if you really feel like it isn't in the cards that day...it's okay! You'll pick right back up and tackle the guide the next day. From our testers, we can tell you: the mamas reported feeling MUCH better on days that they did their E and E! The group included mamas that experienced some pretty serious first trimester fatigue and morning sickness.
8. Can I have a printed version? Plus a PRINTING TIP!
At this time, we are keeping this product ONLINE. Once you purchase, you'll be able to instantly download your PDF to your computer or phone (you have 24 hours to do so!). You can then print your version!
E and E tip: Make sure that you hit the Fit to Page option in the printing screen so that you don't lose your headers (very important to know where you are in the guide). I printed mine through my local print shop and it was only about $10 for a black and white copy! If you really want a printed version this might be your best bet!
9. Can I do this when I'm NOT pregnant?
You could certainly do the FIRST trimester workouts when not pregnant! They are GREAT workouts! Second and third trimester get too pregnancy specific for us to recommend them to a person seeking general workouts. First trimester would be REALLY great for someone that experiences back pain. We have several friends that are purchasing the guide and not pregnant because they are seeking back pain relief OR home workouts!
Please let us know if you have any questions that come up! Thank you for purchasing and we hope that you enjoy Expecting and Empowered as much as we think you will.
-Amy Kiefer and Krystle Howald, Co-founders of Expecting and Empowered