What to Expect at the CrossFit Open when your Expecting
February 24, 2022
My first follow up visit to the OBGYN when I found out I was pregnant was filled with so much joy. Hearing my baby’s heartbeat and seeing my little peanut on ultrasound was an experience I’ll never forget. It was my first time expecting, so I wasn’t really sure what questions to ask. As an active person, most of my questions were centered around exercise. My doctor knew that I was a physical therapist and exercised regularly, her advice was simple. Keep exercising, listen to your body, and to not to take up anything new—like CrossFit. LOL…good thing I was already doing CrossFit!
This post is not going to provide a scientific approach to conquering the CrossFit open while pregnant. We’ll save that post for later. This post is also not going to provide the current guidelines for exercising while pregnant, again that’s a post for another day. You should also know the guidelines are somewhat vague. It turns out my doctor actually gave great advice!
The purpose of this blog post is to help women who are pregnant and have been doing CrossFit set some expectations for the 2022 CrossFit Open. This is not a scientific report, nor should it be taken as medical advice. Always, always, always…talk your doctor first.
What to Expect at the CrossFit Open when you are Expecting
1) The very first thing you should do before signing up for The Open online or at your local box is to be cleared to exercise by your doctor. ALWAYS.
2) Once you are cleared by your doctor, go ahead and sign-up. You can sign up officially on CrossFit‘s Open website, with your local box if they have an in-house competition, or both!
3) If you sign-up for The Open officially with CrossFit, you‘ll be able to see where you fall internationally with your performance. You’ll also be able to track your progress for years to come. No matter what the results are, you’ll always remember you were competing for two in 2022!
4) Remember that to score big points at the official Open, you have to perform the workout Rx. This is where the gray area lies. Just because you can, doesn’t always mean you should. I know we’ve seen videos of women doing chest to bar pull ups, box jumps, and heavy snatches while 9 months pregnant. Hats off to them, but you should always consider the risk versus reward ratio. Falling off the rig or box could be devastating. Consider talking to your coach about modifying the movement so that you still get a great workout, but lower you risk for injury. Even if you have to modify, you’ll still score points. Maybe ask your coach if you can double them since you have a human inside of you….just kidding!
5) Thinking about joining your Box’s Open. Just because you are pregnant, doesn’t mean you can’t engage in some healthy competition. Many CrossFit Box’s will allow scaled scores to count for big points during the in-house competition. Here’s your chance to go for the gold and build some good team morale inside the Box!
6) Listen to your body. Now is not the time to sacrifice form for, “ONE MORE REP!” Think about using an Rate of a Percieved Exertion (RPE) scale along with monitoring your heart rate. Personally, I found that my cardiovascular endurance was so limited I could’t get that last rep in if I tried. The “Talk Test” worked well for me. If I could still speak to someone while working out, I felt comfortable with my intensity.
7) Have fun. Don’t compare your pregnant self to your not-pregnant self. This is also a topic for another post. Remember, your body is keeping a human alive. I don’t think this requires any more explaining.
8) Reward yourself with a healthy snack and a long nap afterward. Don’t feel guilty, you deserve it Mama.
Visit our YouTube channel for some pregnancy modifications! Don’t forget to talk to your doctor and your CrossFit coach before you start.
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