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Mind, Body, Bump: The complete plan for an active pregnancy - Includes Recipes by Mindful Chef Paperback – May 2, 2019
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Keeping active throughout pregnancy is incredibly beneficial for both you and your baby, helping to alleviate less glowing symptoms, aid labour and postnatal recovery, as well as contribute to healthy fetal development.
Fitness guru Brit Williams has developed month-by-month workouts to support your body and bump at every stage of your pregnancy. Adaptable for all fitness levels, these exercises can be practised at home, outside in the park or in the gym with a few items of equipment or just your own bodyweight.
With lifestyle advice including tips on mental wellbeing, sleep and nutrition, reading this book is like having a personal trainer and cheerleader by your side on every step of this rewarding journey.
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From the Publisher
Mind, Body, Bump
Your Unique Journey
There are highlights and challenges of pregnancy that everyone is likely to encounter at some point. The excitement, maternal glow and baby kicks on one hand; the nausea, fatigue and physical aches on the other. The frequency and intensity of these highs and lows varies significantly from person to person, and indeed from pregnancy to pregnancy. Whatever your ambitions for keeping active during pregnancy, please avoid comparing yourself to anyone else – or even to yourself, if you’ve been here before.
The workouts in this book act as a guide to make you feel safe and strong when you train, but it is impossible to account for every sensation you may feel throughout your pregnancy. During personal training sessions, I use the warm-up to get a sense of how my clients are feeling and moving.
There are a myriad of changes that will, and should, influence your training. For that reason, I ask you to never skip your warm-up. This is the most important time to internalise your awareness and make important decisions about what you need from your training from one day to the next. Your best coach along the way will invariably be your own body. Learn to listen to it.
Perhaps the best thing you can do to support your pregnancy is to celebrate your body for what it has achieved. Mind, Body, Bump does just that.
It also incorporates mindfulness techniques, encouraging you to feel specific muscles awaken and to use the breath as you move. As you become more aware of your body, you can also be more mentally present in your workout. You’ll learn transferable skills that support you long after your cool-down, helping you to live positively in the moment rather than anxiously in a world of ‘what ifs’.
If you are diagnosed with any of the following conditions during your pregnancy, they could mean that you should avoid particular exercises.
- Low-lying placenta
- Chronic bronchitis
- Gestational diabetes
- Fetal growth restriction
- Weak cervix
GET MORE FROM YOUR PELVIC FLOOR TRAINING
Daily squeezing will strengthen the pelvic floor, but you can get even more from proper activation of this muscle group by training it in a way that’s relevant to everyday movements. Here’s how:
- REPOSITION REGULARLY Start practising your pelvic floor squeezes by lying down, as it’s easier to detect if you’re squeezing the bigger surrounding muscles instead.
- BLOW BEFORE YOU GO Pair your squeezes with your breath.
- BUCKLE UP Use your pelvic floor to trigger subtle engagement of your transverse abdominis muscle.
- MOVE MINDFULLY Once you’ve mastered the above training methods, use your breath and pelvic floor engagement while you move.
Staying active during pregnancy doesn’t require an expensive gym membership or endless free time.
All the workouts are designed to take less than an hour and to use your own body weight or versatile resistance equipment that you can store at home.
For the resistance workouts, you will require the following:
- One medium kettlebell between 6–10kg (13–22lb), or one light (4–8kg/9–18lb) and one heavy (8–12kg/18–26lb) at either end of the spectrum
- One pair of light to medium dumbbells between 3–6kg (7–13lb), two pairs at either end of the spectrum or a set of adaptable dumbbell bars and weight plates
- One light to medium resistance band, ideally with handles
- One medium to strong resistance loop
- One set of gliders, ideally double-sided for suitability on hard and carpeted floors
- One high-quality exercise mat (non-essential but useful for all exercises)
- One Swiss ball
- One aerobic step (third trimester only)
How to Use This Book
The Mind, Body, Bump workouts suggest ways in which you can stay challenged and excited about exercise while protecting your prenatal body (and its precious cargo).
You can follow them to the letter, or you can adapt them to suit your body, resources and lifestyle. Each month includes two new workouts – one bodyweight session and one resistance-based session – designed to complement that specific stage of pregnancy. Month one introduces some foundational movements that you will come back to and modify throughout your pregnancy. That’s why, even if you’re beginning the workouts after your first month of pregnancy, I suggest working through these early routines at least a couple times before moving onto subsequent months.
Each workout provides recommendations to suit two levels of fitness– Mindful Mamas and Tandem Athletes. Use your pre-pregnancy fitness level to decide which recommendations to follow. If you regularly participated in weight training before pregnancy and you’re familiar with the movements in the workout, you will probably excel with the Tandem Athlete instructions.
If you’re new to weight-based training or building your confidence in compound movements such as squats and deadlifts, start with the Mindful Mama suggestions and consider progressing to Tandem Athlete if you require a greater challenge. If you have no equipment but still want to try the workouts, you also have the option to follow only the bodyweight sessions.
Most importantly, enjoy and celebrate your body!
About the Author
Brit Williams is one of London’s most sought-after personal trainers and feels passionately about motivating people to use exercise as a resource for an empowered life.
While pregnant with her first child, Brit encountered endless conflicting advice about prenatal exercise. This experience struck Brit as confusing for women, particularly when hard scientific evidence has repeatedly confirmed that an active pregnancy results in a healthier mum and healthier baby both before and after childbirth. Having trained throughout her pregnancy and enjoyed movement as a means of physical and mental preparation for labour and motherhood, Brit is determined to share her pregnancy-positive message and unique strength training programme with expectant mothers.
Prior to setting up Fit Brit Collective in 2016, Brit was a fitness journalist writing for some of the leading wellness and lifestyle publications in the UK and US. A bubbly Canadian, Brit now lives in South West London with her husband and daughter.
- Publisher : White Lion Publishing (May 2, 2019)
- Language : English
- Paperback : 192 pages
- ISBN-10 : 1781318581
- ISBN-13 : 978-1781318584
- Item Weight : 1.45 pounds
- Dimensions : 8.38 x 0.75 x 9.5 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #3,705,218 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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It is broken down into easy to follow sections so it is quick to navigate to exactly what you want to do that day (be it try a new recipe or do some exercise). Juggling a toddler and job, I found the book to be really accessible - it had the right balance of information about your body and pregnancy and also how to perform exercises safely. As someone who is not always familiar with the correct way to perform an exercise, the real highlight for me was the dynamic illustrations so you could easily and safely work out what you needed to do. With other pregnancy books I found myself bogged down in lots of text or searching online for the correct way to do a move, but that is not necessary in this book - the illustrations are easy to follow and clearly show what you need to do. There is also a great variety of exercises to choose from so if you have particular areas to target or niggles to address, there are moves for everything.
Unlike my first pregnancy where the books I found made me feel that I had to heavily restrict the exercise I did, this book helped me to realise what I was capable of throughout my second pregnancy and also empowered my to keep going as bump got bigger. Hoping lots of other mums-to-be discover this book too for a positive and active pregnancy.