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Chelsea at Crunch Gym

Forty Weeks of Fitness!

Chelsea, our pregnancy fitness expert, is a certified personal trainer at Crunch gym in San Francisco, California. She gave birth to her daughter, Madeira Re, in July 2006. Read more

Take Time to Relax (Before and After Your Baby Arrives)

Pregnancy is a time of many changes that affect your emotions, body, and relationships with your partner and other family members and can bring out the best (and the worst) in all of us. Motherhood can, at times, do the same, especially if your hormones haven't quite found their way back to pre-pregnancy levels.

As welcome as all these changes may be, they often add new stresses to the lives of new mothers and their families. The new little person in your family will not only change your life but also the lives of everyone you hold dear to your heart.

With your emotions running on the cutting edge most of the time, it's important to take the time to relax and reflect on the changes taking place in your body, and in your life. Whether you're about to deliver or are holding your new baby as you read this, the following links offer some good advice for helping you relax:

Be kind to yourself and your baby by:

Relaxation time for you and your baby:

  • Pick a time each day when you can spend some alone time with just you and your baby.
  • Find a darkened, quiet room with no distractions from the phone or TV.
  • Get comfortable. Use pillows to support your belly (and baby).
  • If you like, put on your favorite music, playing it at a low volume.
  • Focus on your breathing. Allow yourself to take slow deep breaths from your belly (not your chest). Starting from your toes, and moving up to the top of your head, try to concentrate on each muscle group, as you tighten and release each part of your body. This can also be done while your baby naps to ease postpartum stress.
  • Talk quietly to your baby as you gently rub your hands across your belly, or if you have given birth, softly massage your baby with a light touch, allowing your baby to get to know your voice and touch.

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