Thursday, August 14, 2014

So Many Objects: Running vs. Babies

Running is a relatively simple thing.  All you really need are some clothes, socks, and shoes (and even all of THOSE are debatable), but then you wind up crossing those finish lines with stuff in your ears, something(s) around your arm, a fanny pack full of stuff, and socks way longer than they need to be.

From my many reviews on this site, a simple thing can have a lot associated with it, for sure!

I'm finding that preparing for a baby is kind of the same thing.  We set up a crib last week and have a car seat, and according to my parents, this is all we really need for now.  Being pretty minimal, I tend to agree, except we had been getting questions about a registry, which we finally opened recently.

We tried to take a minimal approach.  Knowing clothes would be outgrown and will somehow show up no matter what, we barely mention those things on there.  Many of the things are kind of "nice" to have but not necessary, much like, yes, it's nice to have compression socks, but not necessary.  Of course, because of two mobile people, we had to get two car seats.  And yes, the baby needs books!  Also, we're going to need first aid stuff and blankets, right?

One of the "we might need this?" items.

We decided to forego getting a changing table and will be using the top of a dresser with a pad.  We did not register for any swings or high chairs, too many toys, or anything that we don't foresee using within the next six months or things that might be handed down to us.  Still, the "want" list is quite long, though luckily most items are fairly inexpensive.

One thing I'm grappling with is the glider, a big-ticket item  I wanted one similar to the one below, but the reviews are mixed/bad, and it would pretty much be the most expensive thing we've needed so far (besides the stroller + car seat combo we got, but it's a combo...).  There are more ideal gliders, but they are way out of the price range.  Plus, since I haven't been able to try any, I don't want to deal with the hassle of hating it and returning it... if that's even allowed.

We have an office recliner that we barely use (similar to what's below), which might seem strange, but it actually reclines, and I wouldn't have to worry about an extra piece of furniture later on.  I am naively hoping that the baby won't need so much rocking (I have a stability ball for that).

If all else fails, I can make "The Ukrainian" run out and get one in a pinch, right?

The bottom line, though, is that my mother was able to raise all of us without so much stuff, so maybe cutting corners now wouldn't be so bad.  I mean, we all turned out fine. ;)  This baby already has so much more than we did, and it won't affect the type of person he or she will grow up to be.  Just like my running hasn't really gotten any better... though definitely more pleasant with stuff!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Tracy Anderson - Pregnancy Project (Months 4-6)

Continuing from my first review of the first three discs on Tracy Anderson's Pregnancy Project, this brings us to the second trimester, where Tracy states that she wants to "focus on the butt."  I'm not sure why, but I preferred to hear that we were going to work on everything, maybe less on some parts, because I think it does hit most body parts.  I actually did the videos "on time" with these (whereas I was somewhat "catching up" with the first three discs), meaning I was as far along as the video "expected."

Month 4: This one is about 36 minutes long.  She starts off with some commentary about the wonders of entering the second trimester, blah blah, and then there is maybe 8 minutes of stretching, followed by kneeling arm work.  She says the kneeling is so you don't lose your balance while maintaining the speed of the movements, again with 3-lb weights.  The leg series is pretty much all done on all-fours, which is a position I don't like much because I think my wrists are pretty weak.  Still, though, I felt the burn, and the video is the right length.  Again, make sure your mat has good padding.

Month 5: This video rounded out at about 40 minutes.  Again, more commentary about how the baby is doing and how you're becoming all round and beautiful and all that stuff.  This is followed by stretching, weighted arms in kneeling position, and the usual leg/butt section.  I'm not sure why, but doing all the leg moves on all fours is just really tiring.  I actually didn't feel as much burn back there in this video, though of course this could be due to me having trouble keeping the form.  I think being in that position so much actually helps keep my upper body active, too.

Month 6: After a few minutes of notes about your baby's progress, this video is about 40 minutes long.  It starts with stretching, and then the arm segment is done first in standing position and then kneeling position, which is a nice change.  The arm sequence starts pretty easy (again 3-lb weights), but I did feel burn by the end.  The leg/butt section is mostly done on all-fours again, though thankfully, a few of the moves are done kind of propped up on your side.  This was such a nice change!

I'm glad I am not solely depending on these workouts.  While I think they are a nice mix-in, I sort of dread them because I don't like spending a lot of time on my hands and knees.  However, I DO think they are effective in keeping arm and leg tone.  After a while, you get used to Tracy and her weird outfits, and it does become easier to follow along since you are used to the moves.

Also, I started paying more attention to the bonus segments that come with every disc, with celebrities talking about their pregnancy/fitness experiences.  While I was able to grasp a few reassurances from them, of course I kept thinking, "Well, these people are celebrities and have trainers."

FTC Disclaimer: I purchased these discs on my own, and the opinions posted here are my own.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Core Sport Compression Socks

I'm trying to keep up with posting over here, but just when I think I'm on top of it, I notice that a week or more has gone by since my last post.  Weeks, however grueling at times, are definitely going by!

Speaking of weeks going by, I'm pretty much at the 6-month point of this baby business now.  I had wanted to be one of those pregnant runners sooooo badly, but early on I developed a pelvic joint issue that got so severe that it had to get evaluated to rule out something more serious.  I was prescribed some exercises that I've been trying to keep up with, but they require another person, so it doesn't always pan out. 

On the other hand, it has been hot and humid in this neck of the woods, so I guess running is kind of an unpleasant thought, anyway.  A couple of times, I actually woke up in the mood and in the right mechanical mode to run, which was pretty much amazing.

Some weeks ago.  Very much bigger now.
Of course, although I felt like I was running, it most likely did not look that way to others.  I think I went a bit over a mile before I incorporated walking.  I'm not sure how many more attempted runs there will be.  I do miss it, but not as much as I had anticipated yet I still think of it a lot.  Recently, I pulled my calf in bed, something that running used to do to me.

As another reminder, I was sent some Core Sport Compression Socks by Thera-Firm to review.  After looking at the sizing information, I decided that Medium was the right choice for me.  As a word to the wise, definitely measure your calf before buying compression socks of any kind!!

Some of its features (from here):
  • Graduated compression for better circulation and added support and stabilization
  • High-tech fibers that wick moisture away from the skin
  • Comfort top that stays in place without binding
  • Arch compression for added support
  • Anti-microbial to help prevent odor in the sock
  • Cushioned heel and foot to reduce impact

As with all compression gear, it was a bit tricky to put on, though admittedly I'm losing some flexibility, which could be the culprit.  A little bit of this is due to thicker material, but it does have great compression.  I imagine this would be great for post-race, during cooler weather, and just me trying to keep swelling and such under control (they have a maternity line, too).  As a warning, due to the thicker material, if your shoe is a tight squeeze already, a sleeve might be a better option. 

Approximately current image.
Really like this grey color!

I'm sure my return to running will be entertaining (and frustrating), but you'll have to stick around for that...

FTC Disclaimer: I was sent a sample of Core Sport Compression Socks to review and was not otherwise compensated to provide a positive review.