The Power Playbook: Prenatal Workouts - Wellbeing - Los Angeles magazine
 
 

The Power Playbook: Prenatal Workouts

Reverse the effects of those late night cravings with a specialized circuit workout from Jay The Trainer

Photograph courtesy blogs.babble.com

In light of this month’s obstetrics-centric Well Being column, resident fitness guru Justin “Jay The Trainer” McLeod has created a custom workout for moms-to-be. Perform one circuit at a time until all four are complete, repeating the whole thing through when you’re finished (for a total of eight circuits).

Circuit #1

45-Degree Angle Bent Over Dumbbell Rows
What it works: Back and Biceps
How many: 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps

1. Start in a standing position holding a dumbbell in both hands with your palms facing each other.
2.Bend slightly at the knees and lean forward from the waist forming a 45-degree angle and keeping your back flat. Your arms should hang in front of you.
3. Pull the dumbbells toward your waist, keeping your elbows tucked in. Fully extend your arms and repeat.

Standing Bicycle Crunches
What it works: Obliques
How many: 2-3 sets of 30-40 reps, alternating sides

1. Start in a standing position, feet hip-width apart. Place your hands behind your head.
2. Bring your left knee up while simultaneously bringing your right elbow to your knee.
3. Switch sides, bringing your left elbow to your right knee. Make sure to twist your torso!

Plie Squats
What it works: Quads, Glutes, Hamstrings and Adductors
How many: 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps, with one minute of rest between sets

1. Stand with your feet a little wider than shoulder-width, toes slightly turned out and weights in hand in front of your pelvis.
2. Keeping your back straight and your head up, bend your knees until your legs are parallel to the ground. Do not bend at the waist.
3. Push through your heels, squeeze your glutes, and extend your legs to return to the start position.

Circuit #2

Bent Knee Push-Ups
What it works: Chest, Shoulders, Triceps
How many: 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps

1. Begin on your hands and knees with your hands slightly wider than shoulder-width apart and your knees touching. Fully extend your arms.
2.Walk your arms forward so your hips drop but don't sag. Your body should taper from your head to your knees.
3. Lower your body to the floor by bending at the elbows. Do not let your belly touch the floor. Complete the push-up by extending your arms to return to the start position.

Bird Dogs
What it works: Abs, Lower Back, Glutes
How many: 2-3 sets of 20-30 reps, alternating sides

1. Begin on your hands and knees with your hands slightly wider then shoulder-width apart and your knees touching. Arms should be fully extended.
2. Squeeze your core while lifting your right arm off the mat so that it is extended in front of you. Slowly lift your opposite leg off the mat until it is extended straight behind you.
3. Hold the position for 2-4 seconds and then switch sides.

Glute Squeezes
What it works: Glutes and Abs
How many: 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps on each leg, with one minute of rest between sets

1. Begin on your elbows and knees with your head lower then your hips.
2. Keeping your leg bent at the knee, bring your foot up towards the ceiling in a curling motion. Squeeze your glutes and exhale at the top of the movement.
3. Return to the start position and repeat.

Circuit #3

Upright Rows
What it works: Shoulders
How many: 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps

1. Stand with your feet hip-width apart and hold your weights in an overhand position. Keep your eyes focused straight ahead. Place your hands in front of your thighs.
2. Inhale while pulling the weights up toward your shoulders. Your elbows should flare out until the dumbbells are in front of your chest.
3. Exhale while slowly lowering the weights back down to the starting position.

Drawn-In Navel Exercises on Swiss Ball
What it works: Abs
How many: 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps

1. Sit on your Swiss ball as if you are sitting in a chair: chest up, arms by your side. 2. Inhale and draw your navel in towards your spine. Slowly exhale and relax your stomach. (Take your time; this exercise is meant to be slow.)

Swiss Ball Leg Squats
What it works: Legs
How many: 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps, with one minute of rest between sets

1. Sit on your Swiss ball with your legs bent in front of you. Walk your feet forward until the mid to upper back is supported on the ball. Sag your hips and bend your knees 90 degrees. Place your hands on your hips.
2. Push through your heels and extend your legs. Lower your body and repeat.

Circuit #4

Swiss Ball Tricep Extension
What it works: Triceps and Abs
How many: 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps

1. Grab a set of dumbbells and sit on your Swiss ball. Hold the weights in a hammer position and extend your arms over your head.
2. Bending at the elbows, slowly lower the weights behind your head. Keep your eyes focused forward.
3. Flex your triceps and extend your arms to return to the starting position.

Crunches On The Swiss Ball
What it works: Abs
How many: 2-3 sets of 15-20 reps

1. Sit on your Swiss ball and walk your feet forward until the mid to upper back is supported on the ball. Curl your hands into fists and bring them to your temples, elbows out.
2. Exhale the air out of your stomach while simultaneously crunching your body forward.
3. Inhale and lower your torso down to the starting position.

Lunges
What it works: Quads, Hamstrings and Glutes
How many: 2-3 sets of 15-20 each leg, with one minute of rest between each set

1. Stand tall with your feet hip-width apart and a weight in both hands. Keep your eyes focused straight ahead.
2.Take a big step forward with your right leg. Lift your back heel up so that your weight is on the ball of your foot, but make sure your knee does not touch the floor. (Focus on bending your back leg; this will cause your front leg to bend with it.)
3. Extend your legs and repeat on the same side.

Jay McLeod has been a personal trainer for seven years. For more of his fitness tips, keep an eye on LAmag.com and follow him on Twitter.

Related: The Power Playbook for Getting Fit in L.A.

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  1. Shani Shockley posted on 02/27/2013 06:00 PM
    This was very helpful, who knew you could do crunches while pregnant!! I will definitely pass this along!
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