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Gorgeous Glow Prenatal Workout Series: Physique 57

We firmly believe that fitness and pregnancy should go hand-in-hand. But we also know that taking care of your pregnant body includes indulging your (streatching!) skin, so we could not be more excited to continue our Gorgeous Glow Prenatal Workout Series with our friends at Mama Mio. We hope you’ll join us on the next stop of our pregnancy-safe tour of some of NYC’s hottest studios: Physique 57 on April 28 at 12pm.

Renown for its energetic and exhilarating interpretation of the barre method, Physique 57 devotees need not give up their addiction while growing that little baby. The Bump Barre class will stretch, tone and invigorate your body, even when you’re training for two. For those that can’t get to a gym, the company recently launched a Physique prenatal video on demand workout. And if the Bump Barre class isn’t fitting into your schedule, Physique’s Beginner Barre also has a prenatal modifier.

Below Alicia Weihl, Physique 57’s director of training and mom of 2, gives us the lowdown on the fitness brand’s prenatal program. Get a feel for the class, then come feel it yourself on April 28...mini spa treatments and post-workout refreshments included! Register here.

Tell us about the Physique 57 exercise philosophy.

Physique 57 combines strength training, stretching and cardio to create an all-over strong and supple body. The workout is based on the principle of interval overload, working each individual muscle group to the point of fatigue, and then stretching it for relief. Every class combines unique choreography and upbeat music to not only make it an effective but also an invigorating experience.

Why is this type of class so beneficial for a pregnant woman?

The Physique 57 workout is low-impact, focusing on proper form and alignment and controlled movement execution. You use your own bodyweight for resistance and the ballet barre for stability, and our instructors are extremely attentive in providing guidance and corrections to make sure that you maximize the efficiency of your workout. Not only is it safe workout, but it’s extremely helpful in preparing the body and mind for labor and delivery. It also helps ease postnatal recovery.

What are some of the fitness tips you tell your mamas-to-be during class?

While Physique 57 helps women prepare physically for labor and delivery, the mental and emotional benefits of working out are at least as important. The Physique 57 technique is extremely empowering. New clients are always surprised at how challenging some of the smallest, most precise movements can be. Doing just one extra rep, going just one inch deeper in your positions, or taking control and listening to what your body needs, will make you walk out the door a little taller, and ready to take on the world. The resulting mental strength, perseverance, and confidence are exactly what a woman needs during labor.

Most importantly, women need to listen to their bodies and have fun. Our pre/postnatal classes are non-competitive and there is a wonderful sense of community where moms and moms-to-be can connect and share their experiences.

Any wellness benefits besides toning up and staying in shape?

Many pre-natal and postnatal workouts are so modified that they are not even recognizable in comparison to the original version. What’s great about the Physique 57 technique is that it’s as though it was created specifically for pregnancy! We focus not merely on what’s “allowed,” but instead on what’s essential for the body to both look and feel good during this time.

With the extreme postural shifts and hormonal changes during and following pregnancy, women can become very uncomfortable and unstable in their own bodies. Throughout the workout we teach proper posture and body mechanics, and target important muscle groups (the glutes, hamstrings, inner thighs, pelvic floor, abdominals, and upper and lower back) to support an ever-changing body. Our clients experience improved posture, decreased lower-back pain, increased pelvic stability, better circulation, reduced swelling and they sleep better. I’ve been inspired by so many of our clients who go through their pregnancies with strength and grace, and they return after having their babies and very quickly rehabilitate their bodies.

Can you give us one Physique 57-style “do-at-home” exercise that pregnant women can try during pregnancy when they can’t get out to a Physique 57 class?

UPRIGHT V THIGHS:

Targets: thighs, hamstrings, calves, abdominals, pelvic floor, postural muscles

Set-up: Stand facing a countertop or a high-backed chair, where you can lightly rest your hands at waist level, with your elbows softened by your sides.

Action: Step your heels together with your toes only 2 inches apart. Lift your heels 2 inches off the ground so that your weight is over the balls of your feet and bend your knees forward, lowering halfway down. (Your knees should only be 3-4 inches apart and should track directly over your third toes.) You should be able to lift your hands just off your furniture and remain on balance. Keep your head lifted proudly, your shoulders stacked over your hips, and your tailbone directly over your heels. Engage your core for stability by hugging your abs around your baby if pregnant, or by pulling your navel to your spine if postnatal. Always move with control and focus on your form.

Variations: Small, slow pulses down, hip circles, hip tucks forward and back, hip shakes side to side, or lower your seat towards your heels and up halfway, like you’re sliding down a wall.

Benefits: This position works your pelvic floor against gravity, helping to prepare the body for labor and aiding in postnatal recovery. The movements target all of the essential muscle groups for pregnancy and beyond.

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Baby stuff comes in such cute prints these days. Gone are the days when everything was pink and blue and covered in ducks or teddy bears. Today's baby gear features stylish prints that appeal to mom.

That's why it's totally understandable how a mama could mistake a car seat cover for a cute midi skirt. It happened to Lori Farrell, and when she shared her mishap on Facebook she went viral before she was even home from work. Fellow moms can totally see the humor in Farrell's mishap, and thankfully, so can she.

As for how a car seat cover could be mistaken for a skirt—it's pretty simple, Farrell tells Motherly.

"A friend of mine had given me a huge lot of baby stuff, from clothes to baby carriers to a rocker and blankets and when I pulled it out I was not sure what it was," she explains. "I debated it but washed it anyway then decided because of the way it pulled on the side it must be a maternity skirt."

Farrell still wasn't 100% sure if she was right by the time she headed out the door to work, but she rocked the ambiguous attire anyway.

"When I got to work I googled the brand and realized not only do they not sell clothing but it was a car seat cover."

The brand, Itzy Ritzy, finds the whole thing pretty funny too, sharing Farell's viral moment to its official Instagram.

It may be a car seat cover, but that print looks really good on this mama.

And if you want to copy Farell's style, the Itzy Ritzy 4-in-1 Nursing Cover, Car Seat Cover, Shopping Cart Cover and Infinity Scarf (and skirt!) is available on Amazon for $24.94.

Motherly is your daily #momlife manual; we are here to help you easily find the best, most beautiful products for your life that actually work. We share what we love—and we may receive a commission if you choose to buy.You've got this.

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Daycare for infants is expensive across the country, and California has one of the worst states for parents seeking care for a baby. Putting an infant in daycare in California costs $2,914 more than in-state tuition for four years of college, according to the Economic Policy Institute.

Paying north of $1,000 for daycare each month is an incredible burden, especially on single-parent families. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services defines affordable childcare as costing no more than 10% of a family's income—by that definition, less than 29% of families in California can afford infant care. Some single parents spend half their income on day care. It is an incredible burden on working parents.

But that burden may soon get lighter. CBS Sacramento reports California may put between $25 and $35 million into child care programs to make day care more affordable for parents with kids under 3 years old.

Assembly Bill 452, introduced this week, could see $10 million dollars funneled into Early Head Start (which currently gets no money from the state but does get federal funding) and tens of millions more would be spent on childcare for kids under three.

The bill seeks to rectify a broken childcare system. Right now, only about 14% of eligible infants and toddlers are enrolled in subsidized programs in California, and in 2017, only 7% of eligible children younger than three years of age accessed Early Head Start.

An influx of between $25 to $35 million dollars could see more spaces open up for kids under three, as Bill 452, if passed, would see the creation of "grants to develop childcare facilities that serve children from birth to three years of age."

This piece of proposed legislation comes weeks after California's governor announced an ambitious plan for paid parental leave, and as another bill, AB 123, seeks to strengthen the state's pre-kindergarten program.

Right now, it is difficult for some working parents to make a life in California, but by investing in families, the state's lawmakers could change that and change California's future for the better.

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When a mama gets married, in most cases she wants her children to be part of her big day. Photographers are used to hearing bride-to-be moms request lots of pictures of their big day, but when wedding photographer Laura Schaefer of Fire and Gold Photography heard her client Dalton Mort planned to wear her 2-year-old daughter Ellora instead of a veil, she was thrilled.

A fellow mama who understands the benefits of baby-wearing, Schaefer was keen to capture the photos Mort requested. "When I asked Dalton about what some of her 'must get' shots would be for her wedding, she specifically asked for ones of her wearing Ellie, kneeling and praying in the church before the tabernacle," Schaefer tells Motherly.

She got those shots and so many more, and now Mort's toddler-wearing wedding day pics are going viral.

"Dalton wore Ellie down the aisle and nursed her to sleep during the readings," Schaefer wrote on her blog, explaining that Ellie then slept through the whole wedding mass.

"As a fellow mother of an active toddler, this is a HUGE win! Dalton told me after that she was SO grateful that Ellie slept the whole time because she was able to focus and really pray through the Mass," Schaefer explains.

Dalton was able to concentrate on her wedding day because she made her baby girl a part of it (and that obviously tired Ellie right out).

Ellie was part of the commitment and family Dalton if forging with her husband, Jimmy Joe. "There is no better behaved toddler than a sleeping toddler, and she was still involved, even though I ended up unwrapping her to nurse her. I held her in my arms while my husband and I said our vows. It was really special for us," Dalton told POPSUGAR.

This is a wedding trend we are totally here for!

Congrats to Dalton and Jimmy Joe (and to Ellie)! 🎉

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The internet is freaking out about how Peppa Pig is changing the way toddlers speak, but parents don't need to be too worried.

As Romper first reported, plenty of American parents have noticed that preschoolers are picking up a bit of a British accent thanks to Peppa. Romper's Janet Manley calls it "the Peppa effect," noting that her daughter started calling her "Mummy" after an in-flight Peppa marathon.


Plenty of other parents report sharing Manley's experience, but the British accent is not likely to stick, experts say.

Toronto-based speech and language pathologist Melissa James says this isn't a new thing—kids have always been testing out the accents they hear on TV and in the real world, long before Peppa oinked her way into our Netflix queues.

"Kids have this amazing ability to pick up language," James told Global News. "Their brains are ripe for the learning of language and it's a special window of opportunity that adults don't possess."

Global News reports that back in the day there were concerns about Dora The Explorer potentially teaching kids Spanish words before the kids had learned the English counterparts, and over in the U.K., parents have noticed British babies picking up American accents from TV, too.

But it's not a bad thing, James explains. When an American adult hears "Mummy" their brain translates it to "Mommy," but little kids don't yet make as concrete a connection. "When a child, two, three or four, is watching a show with a British accent and hears [words] for the first time, they are mapping out the speech and sound for that word in the British way."

So if your baby is oinking at you, calling you "Mummy" or testing out a new pronunciation of "toh-mah-toe," know that this is totally natural, and they're not going to end up with a life-long British pig accent.

As Dr, Susannah Levi, associate professor of communicative sciences and disorders at New York University, tells The Guardian, "it's really unlikely that they'd be acquiring an entire second dialect from just watching a TV show."

It sure is cute though.

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