We bet you've got a babymoon on your pregnancy checklist. A super-dreamy one filled with lazy days, colorful mocktails and a few dozen New York Times bestsellers downloaded on your Kindle. But the best laid plans often go awry when you're pregnant -- maybe your partner (or your sister!) can't get time off from work to join you, or getting your nursery in shape trumps a weekend of travel. And that dreamy babymoon becomes, well, a dream.
Which is why we're calling a new trend: The Mama Moon. Yup, just one delicious day that's all about you. Maybe even one that's manageable enough to make it a reality every single week before baby arrives. Especially when our friends at Equinox have 25 NYC clubs (and 5 more opening this year) that offer class categories like yoga, barre, pilates, and amenities like full services spas, sundecks, an outdoor pool, a rooftop track (yes!) and plenty of spots to eat, shop and relax. And since select Equinox locations have Kids Clubs, this Mama Moon is something you can even continue after baby arrives.
So what would the perfect Mama Moon entail? How about working up a sweat, getting your yoga zen on, fueling up with a healthy meal, luxuriating at the spa and maybe even fitting in some shopping (for you, not baby!). All in one day.
We recently treated Nicole Silber, Registered Dietician at Middleberg Nutrition and pregnant New Yorker, to a Mama Moon at Equinox's luxe East 74th Street location on the Upper East Side and got a lesson in how to keep your pregnant body -- and mind -- healthy with a Mama Moon at the gym.
Why is taking time for own health and fitness so important to you during pregnancy?
Once you become pregnant, you're no longer just thinking about yourself anymore. As a Registered Dietitian specializing in pediatric and prenatal nutrition, I want to stay healthy and active during pregnancy because it will not only help me reduce unwanted pregnancy symptoms like achiness and swelling, prepare for birth and speed up postpartum recovery, but it also has many health benefits for my baby-to-be. Putting looks aside, not treating your body well and gaining too much weight during pregnancy can lead to some unwanted complications for mom and baby. If you make wellness and health a priority during pregnancy, you are more likely to continue that mindset after the baby.
What are some of your favorite things to do at the gym?
I am someone who likes to mix it up. I get bored of the same routine if I do it too much. Depending on my mood, I do a combo of cardio, stretching, classes (barre is a personal favorite) and strength training. I love classes (and Equinox offers more than 2,000 of them each week!) because they give you some extra accountability.
Why is it so important to take time for yourself before baby arrives?
Rumor has it you have very little “me" time after the baby, so it's important to get in your time while you have it. Taking time to yourself can also help relax you, which has its perks for the baby too. I am a big believer that if you are stressed, the baby can get stressed. Sometimes it can feel self-indulgent to treat yourself, but you have to remind yourself that you are growing a human being inside of you and you deserve that extra splurge, whether be on a manicure, an indulgent massage at an Equinox spa post workout, a cab ride home, or even just a quiet walk by yourself.
Tell us about your perfect day to yourself during pregnancy.
My dream day to myself during pregnancy would definitely be screen-free since I've been really valuing shutting off. It would include some sort mix of exercise and stretching, getting some sun while sipping on a yummy cold drink – I've been majorly craving smoothies in my last trimester, and window shopping (for as long as my feet can handle). Oh, and I'd finish the day off with a prenatal massage – can't forget about that!
A lot of women get nervous about hitting the gym during pregnancy - what advice would you give women to help them keep working out?
Listen to your body. What may have worked for your friends, or your personal trainer's wife may not work for you. Every pregnancy is different, and every day may feel different. What worked last week may be too strenuous this week. Pregnancy is not a time to push your body, but to strengthen and prepare it for carrying and delivering a baby. So, it may be tempting to do that those extra 5 minutes or stay on the plank for the full 60 seconds, but it may actually cause more harm than good. Exercising is perfectly safe and recommended during pregnancy.
In general, some tips:
1). Do not increase the frequency or intensity of your pre-pregnancy exercise routine.
2). Drink lots of water before, during and after. Your body has a more difficult time regulating temperature during pregnancy, so hydrate and don't overheat!
3). Eat before you exercise! For those used to hitting the gym on an empty stomach pre-pregnancy should now grab something small like a fruit or handful of nuts before working out because your body isn't able to regulate blood sugar as easily.
But, always ask your OB for specific guidelines, and if you are working with fitness professional find ones that specialize in prenatal fitness.
What makes a good location for a healthy Mama Moon?
What I love about Equinox is the space. It is very appealing to be able to get in a good work out where there is also tons of room to get in a good stretch afterwards and you don't feel rushed. It's a nice perk that after the workout you can hydrate at the smoothie bar and get a massage all without leaving the building!
*We are so grateful when brands support our content and community. This post was sponsored by Equinox. Join Equinox for an exclusive offer now!