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Q+A: from daily eats to fitness and pregnancy to motherhood, I’m answering all your questions!

How do I manage to find time to workout with a new baby? Do I count my calories or macros? What’s my favorite nursing bra? What do I typically eat in a day? When did I start working out again post-baby? I’ve been getting a lot of questions about my fitness and nutrition habits so I’m sharing all in one big blog post!

Healthy Living Q + A | www.nourishmovelove.com

I recently did a super fun interview for the Happy Healthy Mom Summit where I shared all my healthy living and fitness tips for new and expecting mamas. This got me thinking, I get asked these questions all the time and I’m always re-typing my answers in emails…so why don’t I do one massive q + a blog post…?!

Here it is. One massive blog post answering all the questions you’ve asked me. 23 questions to be exact.

But before we jump in I want to state that these are my personal responses to the questions I’ve received. Note, every pregnancy, every birth and every postpartum experience is personal and different. This is me sharing my personal journey, but know that you should always do what’s right for you and of course consult your midwife or physician. 

Oh, and if you want more details on The Happy Healthy Mom Summit:

  • It’s an 5-day online conference for moms who want to thrive inside and out — September 25-29th
  • It includes interviews with 27 experts in health, fitness, nutrition and more (my interview goes live on Wednesday 9/27)

Healthy Happy Mom Summit

Now here are all my a’s to your q’s!

Question 1:  How do you balance work/fitness/your health/baby/husband/and your sanity?

Answer 1: Let’s just start with my most frequently asked question…honestly, I don’t have this figured out yet. We are 6 months postpartum and I feel like l’m finally starting to find balance, but if I’m to be 100% honest with you guys the last 6 months of my life have been a complete mess! Let’s get real and personal, I haven’t even told some of my closest friends this, but I really struggled postpartum to the point where I finally sought out professional help in the form of a postpartum anxiety and depression counselor. And I’m so glad I did! So I don’t have a cut and clear answer to this question but here’s my two cents — I realized I needed to ask for help and cut myself some slack:

  • work: I used to do it all myself, now I have an assistant. I used to do 2 blog posts a week, now I done 1. I used to say yes to a lot of opportunities, now I say no to a lot of opportunities {and only yes to the ones I really want to work on}. I used to have a 24 hour response time to emails, now I have a standard auto-responder that says it may be a couple days before you hear back from me.
  • fitness: I used to teach 5-7 classes a week and workout for an hour a day when I wasn’t teaching, now I teach 2-3 classes a week and squeeze in 20-30 minute workout when I can.
  • health/nutrition: I used to make more extravagant meals, now I buy pre-chopped veggies when I can and I taught my husband how to make some of our staple meals {stir fry, tacos, chicken and veggies}.
  • baby: I thought I could manage running my business full-time and being a full-time mom, I went crazy, and now my son goes to daycare 2 days a week and is with his grandparents 2 days a week. This was hard for me, but ultimately I’m happier {and getting way more done} and he gets to interact with other adults and children. Not to mention I can fully devote my time and attention to him when I’m with him and I look forward to our time together like crazy!
  • marriage/husband: we used to get a lot more time together and now we have to be really intentional about putting date nights on the calendar {and actually sticking to them}. Quality time is my love language and physical touch is his and our love tanks {read the 5 love languages if you haven’t} have been pretty empty the last 6 months, so we are trying our best to fix this. And if you need some help on being patient with your husband, I suggest busting out your Bible and reading Song of Songs. And I have to note that I have the most generous, kind, and supportive husband a woman could ask for I’m very blessed to have such a patient man to stand behind me during my most crazy seasons of life.
  • sanity: like I said, I’m still working on this one. The mental load {ready this article and share it with your significant other too} you have to take on when you become a mother is exhausting. I’m still trying to tell my productivity-aholic, control freak, type-a self to chill out and find my ‘nothing box’ every now and then. My house is usual always a mess, but I’m learning life as a new mom is messy, and I’d rather have a messy house than a messy marriage, so it’s time I stop ‘doing’ all the time and start ‘enjoying’ life a bit more.

Ok, I promise my answers will get shorter! And this questions is a good segue into the next question…

Question 2: How do you find time to workout while working and having a baby?

Answer 2: Remember, I get paid to workout sometimes; so it’s much easier for me to find time to workout as a new mom than it is for most. That said, I do my best to squeeze in 30 minute workouts when I can {enter gethealthyutv.com, full-length at home workout videos. Sign up to become a premium member for only $10 for your first year using promo code: LIND10 or sign up to become a gold member and get access to live workouts for only $20 for your first year using promo code: LindseyGold20}. And when all else fails I do my best to be active with my baby boy via stroller workouts, runs or walks.

Fit Mom Q + A Post

Question 3: How do you determine your fitness goals? Are you ever satisfied with your body/strength?

Answer 3: Great question! My fitness goals are constantly changing, but right now I’m focusing on re-building my strength with goals to actually be stronger than I was post-baby {not necessarily leaner especially while nursing, but stronger}. As for being satisfied, I’ve always been a pretty competitive person by nature so I’m usually always striving for more, but I’m a lot more content with my body now than I was before baby. Fitness has really morphed into my happy place; something I get to do for me. To make me happy. It’s become a less about my physical appearance and a lot more about maintaining mental health and happiness. I like moving my body, I love teaching classes, and it’s the one thing that’s been consistent in my life {which ever new mom needs to feel like herself again}.

Question 4: What’s been the biggest change post-baby? How have you grown personally?

Answer 4: I’d reiterate my answers to questions 1, 2, and 3. There’s been a lot of changes, but the biggest change has been finding ‘me-time’. I’ve fully embraced being a new mom and I love it, but I’ve lost myself a bit. Which is why I continue to rely on fitness; it was the one constant in my life before Brody and it’s the one thing that makes me feel happy and like myself. I’ve had to be a lot more intentional about doing/scheduling things into my life that make me happy. I’ve always been a pretty genuinely happy/positive person, but post-baby it’s been something I’ve had to work harder at.

Question 5: Do you worry about losing milk supply while exercising?

Answer 5: Yes, I really did in the first 12 weeks because I saw a direct correlation {at least I thought I did} between working out and my milk supply. I’ve learned that my milk supply is directly affected by my stress and/or exhaustion levels. So I cut back on my workouts or the intensity levels as needed, I go to bed earlier, I eat a lot more, and need to drink a lot of water daily to keep my supply up. I’m still struggling to keep up with Brody {he’s a little milk tank}, but we’ve made it 6 months and I hoping we can make it longer. If I have to supplement it won’t be the end of the world {although I’ve had several meltdowns that would make one think otherwise over this}…but I’m doing the best I can and taking all the suggestions I can get on keeping supply up {supplements, power pumping, you name it}.

Question 6: Do you track your food/calories? If so, how do you track them?

Answer 6: No. I spent way to much time obsessing over this back in my fitness competition days, and now I just try to maintain a balanced diet. I eat a lot of food in a day; a lot of really nutrient-dense wholefoods. Which leads to the next question…

Healthy Living Blogger Daily Eats

Question 7: What does a typical day of eating look like for you?

Answer 7: 

Question 8: What steps did you take to become a group fitness/barre instructor? What advice would you give someone just starting out on their instructor journey?

Answer 8: I got my NASM Personal Training Certification on the side while I was still doing sales. I found out personal training wasn’t for me so I went through the Lifetime Academy Group Fitness Instructor training followed by getting my ACE Group Fitness Certification. I started teaching at a local Anytime Fitness (to an audience of 1-5 people, I started super small). I continued to grow and eventually moved to teaching at a barre studio, Haute Barre. I got ‘barre certified’ directly through Haute Barre; which is often the case you get barre certified at the barre studio you want to teach at. My advice to someone just starting out, get certified and start teaching live classes. Teach to your friends, to an audience of 1. Get comfortable teaching to a smaller audience and you’ll continue to get better and better as you grow to a larger audience. Challenge yourself, take other instructors classes that you admire and learn from them!

Question 9: I know you’ve mentioned struggling with your period before; every time I start exercising regularly my period stops. It seems like you workout consistently…do you still struggle with your cycle?

Answer 9: Yes, I struggled with hypothalamic amenorrhea for years, as well as some thyroid issues (hyperthyroidism). I’m no doctor so I’ll keep this answer short and sweet, but I suggest always doing your research and know that there are other options than just going on the pill to get your period back. I got into teaching barre because I needed to mix up my workout routine with something other than HIIT, I was overdoing the HIIT workouts and putting too much stress on my body. Honestly, my miscarriage was a blessing in disguise as it really helped ‘reset’ my hormones. Other things that worked for me were, increasing my carb intake, taking Femmenessence MacaHarmony and vitex fruit supplements and eating 3 brazil nuts a day for selenium and thyroid health.

Question 10: How do you make your eyelashes look so good?

Answer 10: Well thank you, but they’re fake :). I get eyelash extensions. It’s a guilty pleasure, but I pretty much never wear make up so it makes me feel put together even at 5am.

Question 11: How did you and your husband meet?

Answer 11: At college. We both went to the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire. He played on the Men’s Volleyball Team and I played on the Women’s Volleyball Team so we ended up hanging out a lot. But we never actually dated in college. We were good friends all throughout college and were kind of like Rachel + Ross from Friends, but we got our happily ever after post-college.

Happy Healthy Mom Q + A

Question 12: How do you talk while working out/teaching?

Answer 12: Honestly, I’m not sure it’s just second nature to me now; but it is smoking mirrors, when I’m tired I can usually get up and walk around to instruct :).

Question 13: How do you keep track of reps/time when you film your workout videos? Is there someone holding a big clock for you?

Answer 13: Depending on how big our film crew is sometimes you get the luxury of someone holding a timer, but usually it’s just an ipad set up with the Tabata Pro Timer app on it and we do our best to follow the timer while teaching.

Question 14: Share your birth story. 

Answer 14: Sorry, it’s not a question so I can’t answer :). Kidding, but I’m choosing not to share all the details of my birth story at this time. I will say it was the most challenging, exhausting, exhilarating and rewarding 36 hours of my life {36 hours since my water broke, but more like 12 hours of hard labor}. It was a very intense and personal experience that I enjoy looking back at, and laughing at my ‘crazy moments’ with my husband at over a glass of wine, but that’s where I want it to stay for now. But I do owe a huge thank you to Liz at birthed MN, the fabulous midwives at Willow Midwives, and amazing nurses at The Mother Baby Center + Children’s Special Care Nursery.

Question 15: Did you run while pregnant?

Answer 15: I did occasionally up till 20 weeks; then it not longer felt good for me so I stopped.

Fit Mom Q + A

Question 16: What is it like working out after baby? Did you take a break when Brody was born? When did you start exercising again? And did you feel a lot weaker starting again?

Answer 16: Yes, of course I took a break when Brody was born! I did workout the morning my water broke {at 36 weeks}, but from that point till about 4-5 weeks postpartum I didn’t do much outside of taking some walks when I felt up for it. Honestly, I was really looking forward to taking a break from teaching classes and working out so I didn’t even think about it for the first 3 weeks postpartum. But about 4 weeks PP I started to get the itch to move my body again. I started really slow with my 20 minute at-home barre workouts from my workout videos; I did 3, 20 minute workouts {of course still modifying where needed, especially push-ups} at 4 weeks PP because my body felt ready. That said, I kept it all low impact as the thought of jumping was still terrifying. From there I slowly worked my way up adding more time, more weight, and more intensity to my workouts. I was back to working out 5-6 days a week around the 4 month mark. As for feeling weaker, yes! I’m still doing push-ups on my knees at 6 months PP. It’s a work in progress ladies!

Question 17: What’s your favorite postpartum nursing clothing?

Answer 17:

Favorite Nursing Tops

Question 18: When in your pregnancy did you start modifying your workouts? Were you jumping and doing burpees throughout the 9 months?

Answer 18: I tried to stick to my normal workout routine throughout my first and second trimester, but I modified as needed and took more rest/recovery days when needed. I stopped jumping and really started modifying burpees in my third trimester (28 weeks plus). I moved to low impact workouts and a lot more modifications throughout my third trimester. I’m super grateful I was able to stay active throughout my pregnancy. Again, this is what worked for me, but every pregnancy is different. I also filmed my Baby Bump Fitness system in my third trimester (all low impact workouts).

Question 19: How do you feel a fit pregnancy helped labor and delivery?

Answer 19: When people say, ‘labor is the biggest workout of your life’ they aren’t lying! There’s no way I could have made it through all 36 hours (12 hours of hard labor and an hour of pushing) without being conditioned! I was basically standing and doing squats for 24 hrs. So if you’re in the midst of trying to stay active while pregnant I encourage you to keep moving, it’s worth it!

Question 20: What do you recommend for a pregnancy workout routine?

Answer 20: I suggest sticking to your pre-pregnancy workout routine when you become pregnant as much as you can. Of course you may need to modify, decrease intensity and take more rest/recovery days. If you’re a running/HIIT junkie, consider pregnancy a good time to explore other workouts like barre, pilates, yoga and yoga sculpt.

Fit Pregnancy

Question 21: Best way to strengthen core postpartum? Any tips for Diastasis Recti?

Answer 21: I’m no pelvic floor expert, but when I was ready I added planks back to my workout routine as they are a great total body, core exercise. I started on one or both knees and worked my way back up to my toes; increasing time as the postpartum weeks passed. I really focused on activating my core (transverse abdominals) during other pelvic floor exercises too; like squeezing a ball or throw pillow between my legs. Another great one is to take a ball or throw pillow behind the small of your back and tuck your low back into the pillow pulling your belly button back towards your spine. I personally never dealt with Diastasis Recti, but my blogger friend Physical Kitchness did and she wrote two great posts on healing Diastasis Recti — post one + post two.

Question 22: Did you change your diet at all while you were pregnant?

Answer 22: Yes, it looked a little something like — a lot less veggies, not a whole lot of green smoothies, a lot more carbs (I snuck a lot of roasted veggies into baked quinoa dishes and casseroles, thank you Fit Foodie Finds and The Real Food RD’s for the clean comfort food recipes), hardly any meat, but a lot of eggs (especially avocado toast + eggs). And I gave into my cravings and guilty pleasures (hello chocolate and Dairy Queen trips) a lot easier. Oh and I was a fruit hound in the third trimester, I believe I ate a bag of oranges weekly.

Question 23: What does your average day look like? 

Answer 23: I shed some light on this in questions 1 and 7, but stay tuned I’m actually working on a ‘day in the life of me’ post with video, yay!

Healthy Living Q + A Post | www.nourishmovelove.com

I’m sorry if I missed your question, but that was a lot of questions to round up in one post. That said, if you have more questions, comment on this blog post, email me lindsey@lindsey.madetothrive.com, or send me an Instagram message! If I get enough follow up questions I’ll do another post just like this one.

Healthy Living Q + A Post | www.nourishmovelove.com

this post does include affiliate links. all words and opinions are my own. thank you for supporting the brands that make nourish move love and all the content you see on this blog possible. 

  1. Love this post! Thanks for answering all those questions and being real. So enjoy following your blog!

    • Thanks Megan! It’s always great to get a look into other mamas lives — love your blog by the way! Thanks so much for following along and have a great day! xo-Lindsey

  2. What a great post! I loved how intimate you were with some very personal details, thank you for that! Also, your motherhood journey is just beginning, you’ll totally find your groove with God’s grace and wisdom as each day goes by. And as far as nursing goes, I totally regret not stopping sooner. We went 13 months and for the most part it was great but there totally were times of anxiety and resentment. Don’t beat yourself up about quitting if you need to. Your family needs you to be healthy too. Keep up the great posts! I take my NASM exam in November!

    • Thanks Theresa! So glad you loved the post and thank you for the encouragement. Being a mother is more challenging (and rewarding) than I ever imagined and it’s so good to hear from experienced moms! You’re so right, being happy is a must, whatever that means nursing or not. Thank you so much for the message! And I wish you all the best on your NASM exam, you’ll do great! Thanks again for following along! xo-Lindsey

  3. Love this post Lindsey!
    I’m not a mom yet but you motivate and inspire me daily to be the beat wife, friend and fitness instructor I can be!

    • Esther! So glad you loved the post! Thank you so much for your kind words, it’s always a daily work in progress over here but thank you for the kind feedback! And thanks so much for following along! xo-Lindsey