Well. It’s been almost two months since my last post, and almost four since my last body update. In general, the time seems to be slipping by faster than I can process it. I still am struggling to define clear boundaries for my time and efforts, and as a result, things just seem to bleed from one thing into the next, and by the end of the day it is often hard for me to remember what I accomplished.
Most weeks, I am back to training four or five days a week. I am taking a trapeze class on Tuesdays, and either do a fabrics class on Wednesdays or a Pilates class for aerialists on Fridays (depending on the week). Then I either practice for the classes or my own skills on Sunday, Monday, and/or Friday depending on what else has happened that week and the general state of my body. I’m continuing to do the 21 Day Fix Extreme workouts at home, primarily the Plyo, Upper Fix, Lower Fix, Pilates, and Yoga. (I almost never do the Cardio or Dirty 30 workouts). I also try to stretch and foam roll three times a week. Add to that the general realities of chasing around after a 5-year-old, taking care of a baby, a teenager, and a dog, and teaching a kids’ circus class once a week, and I am a busy lady.
At the end of December, I had written down the following bullet points as my “Aerial Accomplishments”:
- Grab robes on trapeze, mermaid, star hang, l-sits, lean backs, gazelles
- Straddle from bottom of lyra and pike over, both with catching legs
- Single knee hangs
- Jumping egg inversion of fabrics
- No clean versions, pull-ups, or tuck ups without momentum
- Can sit up from laying down without arms
A month and a half later, here is my current list:
- Cleanly pike over a lowish (4-5’ high) trapeze bar or lyra
- Straddle from ground without catching legs (still no straddle from air)
- Hip Key from a climb (most of the time)
- Beginning to feel comfortable in pre-baby routines on trapeze and lyra
- Can tuck up cleanly with momentum under the trapeze bar
- Flat left split
- Hip Circle!!!!
I’m still in the stage where I can do many things once or twice in a training session but that is all. Also, I have found that I definitely hit a wall where I have no ab engagement. My control goes to zero without much warning. I feel like that grey area is starting to grow a bit on trapeze, but I am less comfortable on fabric and am still usually caught by surprise when my abs simply refuse to fire.
I have worked very little on lyra since returning, which used to be my primary apparatus. I think it is mostly because I am relying on classes right now to retrain my body and make sure I am relearning things with the right form, and I don’t have access to a lyra teacher.
Body Weight and Numbers
(If reading about numbers squicks you out and makes you think unhealthy things, please don’t read!)
I know numbers are hard for a lot of people, but I also think it’s a factor that a lot of people worry about when returning from pregnancy, so I just wanted to touch on it. People, I gain A LOT of weight when I’m pregnant. Both times, I gained around 50 lbs. and I’m only 5’ nada. Both times I’ve stayed active, tried to eat reasonably healthy etc. and that’s just what my body does. At almost exactly 6 months post-partum, I am still hanging on to about 10 lbs. from where I was when I got pregnant, and about 20 from where I really feel good. (I got pregnant during the holidays so had a little extra padding there to begin with.) My upper body and waist are almost back to where they were, but I’m carrying all my extra weight in my butt and hips. This totally makes sense because gluteal femoral fat is where women’s body hold on to stores, specifically for reproduction/breastfeeding and I am thankful that my body seems to be taking good care of my little dude. It makes inversions hard though, and I probably will not lose the majority of that extra until I stop breastfeeding.
This is just to say, for any of you mamas coming back to aerials, be kind with your bodies. Some people snap back right away, and that is awesome, but many do not. Your body knows what it’s doing, and as long as you are putting the work into it to be a healthy you, relax knowing that your body is doing what it thinks is best.