The Full-Length Mirror!


I made it…yet again!

The lesson for this week…Even if you don’t eat fried chicken; you still have to flip a 260 pound tractor tire…with one arm!  Just kidding, but not really…

Seriously, I really did learn a lesson this week…I actually learned this lesson many years ago, but it resurfaced in a big way this week.  I’ll tell you the story that lead to the lesson.  Get a tissue…but then, get ready for some inspiration that will make you smile…

So, the other day I was getting dressed; as I finished, I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror.  It was a full-length mirror…pause for gasps, LOL!…I was actually quite pleased with what I saw.  I could tell that my body is starting to take a different shape.  Yay!  I make it a habit not to judge myself harshly when I look in the mirror; especially in those dressing rooms in front of the three-way/full-length mirrors with the cellulighting in the department stores, ROFL!  We ALL feel like beauty queens in there don’t we, LMAO!  I digress…the point is this: when I look in the mirror, I like who’s looking back at me. 

This leads me to my story…

Growing up, my younger sister and I were thick as thieves.  We were so much alike with the only exception being that we were two years apart.  People often mistook us for twins.  Coming into adulthood, things started to change.   My sister began to get abnormally skinny; as this was happening, I would periodically hear her cutting herself down with negative remarks about her appearance.  As time progressed, I did all that I could, as a fitness professional and a concerned sister, to try to “fix” the negative inner dialogue that my sister was experiencing.  A very long story short…I lost my sister suddenly and unexpectedly to an eating disorder.  While sorting out the ‘what went wrongs and what could I have done differents’ of the situation, I began to see that my older sister was beginning to take a similar route by way of yo-yo dieting and dangerous diet pill experimentation.  I refused to let this happen to her too!  For a long time, I secretly blamed myself for not being able to save my little sister’s life.  I tried many things to help my older sister and ensure she wouldn’t meet the same fate as my younger sister, but soon I realized…the struggle with self image is not something you can change for someone; they must see it and feel it for themselves… 

I think to myself at times; how horrible it must’ve been for my younger sister to look in the mirror and be so tormented by what she saw that she was willing to put her own life in jeopardy.  Then, I think of so many others who stand in front of a mirror and point out all the negative things they see instead of appreciating the beauty that’s in front of them.  The most important Lesson I learned from this is that ‘you need to like who you are before you can become who you want to be’.  It’s a lot tougher to reach your fitness goals when you have a bully following you pointing out your flaws.  Guess who that bully is…YOU.  Isn’t it much easier and more enjoyable to work toward a goal when you have someone cheering you on and telling you that YOU ROCK!?  When you look in the mirror; isn’t it better to hear someone say “What’s up hot stuff!” than, “OMG!  You need to lose that gut!”  Wouldn’t you just smack someone if they said that to you!?…SO…Why do we say things like that, internally, to ourselves?  Now, I admit that there are times when I look in the mirror and go “Oh my…”, but then I try also to notice the qualities about me that I’m pleased with.  My challenge to you is this: find three things you like when you look in the mirror; play up those features and attributes, and for all intents and purposes…work it honey!!! (((SNAPS))) 😀

P.S.  My older sister is learning how to work it, as well…slowly, but surely 😉 

There isn’t a happy ending to the story about my little sister, but there is one of hope…I wasn’t able to save her life, instead…she saved mine.  I learned a valuable lesson that taught me to be motivated through adversity, hopeful against doubt, and resilient amidst a challenge! 

Will I get to my goal?…DEFINITELY!!!  Watch me…


To view video (CLICK HERE):  260lbs Tire Flip

David Fielder Inspirational Weight Loss Testimonial

What can I say, I’m the classic yo-yo dieter that loses and gains 20 lbs every two or three years except when I gain it was always 10 lbs more than I had lost.    Over several years I went from 225 to 291lbs.    “You’re Obese” were the exact words the doctor used to give me a reality check.    The other reality checks came when I was at home climbing my stairs and I would lose my breath.   A big one was the day I was trying to teach my oldest son how to ride a bike.   After just 10 minutes of jogging with him I thought I was going to have a heart attack!    I had to do something but it had to be something different than all the other times. Something that would guarantee I would get my health back.


The most powerful forces that ensure your success in anything are ACCOUNTABILITY and BELIEF.     Nothing else matters because if these two critical factors are in place everything else will happen automatically.


Left to my own discipline and accountability I had gained 50lbs so I knew I couldn’t trust “me” anymore.    I needed an external factor that would make sure I did what I needed to do when I needed to do it EVERY time.


Enter the miracle workers – Emerge Fitness Training.     There are so many reasons why I lost weight with their help.    They helped me gain the two forces of ACCOUNTABILITY and BELIEF.


When I train with Angie and Matt I know every workout has a purpose of making me healthier and more fit.    If you KNOW what your doing has been prescribed by an expert you believe in it more and you put more into it.    If a professional trainer puts together a plan to help you achieve a goal you will always believe in it more than any plan you come up with on your own therefore you STICK WITH IT!  For me to lose the weight I wanted to lose I had to BELIEVE in the process I was using  to lose the weight.    That belief was in place the very first workout at Emerge.


The biggest reason why I feel anyone who seriously wants to lose weight should take advantage of Emerge Fitness is ACCOUNTABILITY.    Every diet I have tried in the past I would do well for one or two weeks then fall off the wagon one day or one weekend.   It was these “fall off the wagon” moments that would cause me to quit and binge eat for a month or more.      To me, this was the biggest reason I could not lose this weight by myself.   If you are not naturally disciplined, it is virtually impossible to do it by yourself.


I’ve been with Emerge for 4 months and I’ve had some “fall of the wagon” moments on the weekends.    I get the feeling of guilt and lower self esteem and I start to want to binge and say the hell with it, then I think “I have to see  Angie Monday and I’ve already paid for 10 sessions.”   When you have to answer to someone who is working closely with you to achieve your goal you don’t want to disappoint them.     Add to that the fact that you have spent some money to get their help and it creates the ultimate accountability factor!


As a “former” fat guy I know if you are wanting to lose weight and are reading this you are going to look for every reason not to do it.    I have two children and in the final analysis I made the choice to invest the time and money into training for them.   My current lifestyle was going to rob them of years with their daddy.    When I looked at my situation through that lens I was prepared to walk through fire and pay any price.    


Those moments in the morning when you get out of the shower and you look at yourself with disgust, use that disgust and hate to motivate you to do something different.   Do something drastic and so radically different that you get your dream!


If you needed surgery to prevent you from dying you would go to the best Dr’s in the country if you could right?  No matter the cost, you would do whatever you could to get well.   Essentially, if you are overweight and are not exercising you are slowly dying.   The Dr’s you need are at Emerge waiting to help you save your life today!


Thanks Matt and Angie for giving me my life back.    I no longer view myself as the funny fat guy, but a funny fit guy!

Angie Pirtle


Emerge Fitness Training Saint Charles, MO

Nothing Tastes Better Than Success Feels!

I made it through another week…just barely!  Whew!
The lesson for this week:  Even if you avoid girl scouts and don’t buy their cookies…they’ll find you!  Ever seen Children of the Corn?…Yeah, they’re like that, only cuter.  None the less…they’re evil!  Just kidding lil ladies:) but not really…
I’m doing good so far.  Holdin’ my ground!…except for a tiny indiscretion involving chicken.  Who knew friendly little feathered people could be so delightful when fried?…Surprises me every time!  Matt forgave me…again.  However, he’s creating an alliance at my job…more like a gestapo! LOL!  In other words, I’ll be tackled and handcuffed to a treadmill, at my job’s fitness facility, if I’m caught in the act again!  It’s gonna be weird eating in a bathroom stall…
Seriously though, Matt’s a miracle worker!  I tell him my goal, he puts together the perfect program, and bing bang boom…I’m in a bikini!  The thing I like most is that I can really trust him.  I can be honest with him about my diet and he will find a way to work with me and help me maximize my time outside of training.  He doesn’t make me feel guilty or shame me, instead, he finds a way for me to overcome.  He motivates me and reminds me that Nothing Tastes Better Than Success Feels!…Then he kicks my butt on the workout floor; reminding me why I should fear girl scouts!  Side note: There have been ALOT of girl scout cookies at work!  I haven’t had one…I promise!  However, I am going to need a new keyboard for my computer, as I have drooled excessively on it and damaged the circuit…What!…like you’ve never done that?!…
Still on track…always excited about the road ahead…and thankful for the support along the way:)
A special thanks to Matt for always being my biggest cheerleader!  As he says: It’s All For The Cause!
Video excerpt of session (CLICK):  Emerge (Maria/trained by Matt) 03/12/10

Comfortable, Healthy, and Pregnant

Today is day 161 of my pregnancy and I am exactly 23 weeks with 17 weeks to go and a total weight gain of 10lbs.  At our 19-week doctor visit we got to have our first real ultrasound where we got to see a “real” looking baby and not just a dot on the screen.  It was very exciting seeing our little one and most importantly the baby is healthy and has all its fingers and toes.  My doctor was very pleased with my 8 lb weight gain at 19 weeks.  She gave me the clearance to keep doing everything that I have been doing up to this point.  So as of today I am still getting about 5 days of week of 30 min. cardio and about 3 days a week of resistance training.  My cardio still consists of a combination of running and walking at a heart rate of 145-150. 

The topic of interest that I would like to write about is the protein intake for women during pregnancy. Having a diet for yourself full of protein is very important for you health, but while you are pregnant a diet with adequate protein is a must.  The amino acids that make up protein are the building blocks of you and your baby’s cells.  Protein is essential for your baby’s brain growth and especially important during the second and third trimester when your baby is growing the fastest.  The RDA of protein for pregnant women is 75 grams but 100 grams is often recommended. 

Three macronutrients that make up calories are carbohydrates, proteins, and fats.  With my experience working with women protein is normally the one that gets neglected.  Women seem to be less carnivorous than men and don’t tend to gravitate to foods high in protein such as lean meats.  The idea is to find other sources of protein than just meat.  I challenge you to record your eating for an average day and see what percentage of your calories are coming from protein. I’ll bet its lower than the recommended amount.  The problem with this is if your calories are not coming from protein then they are coming from either fats or carbs.  Like I mentioned in my last blog, carbohydrates will make blood sugars fluctuate which can lead to nautiousness, fatigue, and hunger.  Unlike carbs, proteins do not have that effect.  Protein is slower digesting and will not give you a blood sugar spike with a following crash.  Some of the morning sickness and nautiousness can be avoided by eating a protein source (food) with a carbohydrate source (food).  A balanced diet including carbohydrates, fats, and proteins are important for normal human health and function.


1/2 cup 1% cottage cheese: 14 g
8 ounce container low-fat yogurt: 9 to 12 g
1 cup skim milk: 8 g
1 ounce part-skim mozzarella cheese: 7 g
1 ounce cheddar cheese: 7 g
1 large fresh egg: 6 g

Beans, nuts, legumes 

1/2 cup raw tofu (firm): 20 g
1 cup cooked lentils: 18 g
1 cup canned black beans: 15 g
1 cup canned kidney beans: 13 g
1 cup canned garbanzos: 12 g
1 cup canned pinto beans: 12 g
2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter: 8 g
1 ounce dry roasted peanuts: 7 g
1 cup light plain soymilk: 6 g

Meat and poultry

1/2 roasted chicken breast (no skin): 27 g
3 ounce lean beef hamburger patty, broiled: 21g

Protein supplements such as a whey protein powder is a great way to add protein to your diet with out having to rely on preparing food.  I try to get at least 2 protein shakes a day.  I mix a whey protein isolate powder with frozen berries.  I use Isopure protein shake that has 25grams of protein, .5 grams of fat, 0 grams of carbohydrate and 105 calories.

Angie Pirtle



Emerge Fitness Saint Charles, MO

Confessions of a Chocoholic!


Week 2…and already I have confessions and lessons learned!

Let’s start with the confessions first because that will lead to the lessons learned!

So…I was working out with Matt the other day and I felt compelled to confess something…

We always sit and discuss my diet and workouts, since the previous training session, before training.  This is what it sounded like:  “So Maria, tell me what you’ve been doing in the past couple of days; how do you feel?”  “Well Matt, I’ve been doing great!  I’ve done two spinning classes and two weight lifting classes!”  “That’s awesome Maria!  You’re really steppin’ it up!  How has your diet been?”  “It’s been pretty good, Matt.  I’ve been eating a balanced breakfast, keeping my snacks healthy, and taking my vitamins daily…AND…Well……I ate some little chocolate Easter eggs at work!” (I said it very fast hoping he wouldn’t hear it!)  His reply; “What!?  Who would bring those in to work and temp you like that?  My reply; ”Um…Me?”  I was shocked he didn’t know the culprit was me in the first place!  LOL!!!  Then, in a lighter confession, I also revealed that I would’ve eaten fried chicken too if they hadn’t already run out of it in the cafeteria!  I still daydreamed about how wonderful it would’ve tasted…and apparently, that’s enough to get you a few extra reps during a training session!  LOL!  Just kidding…but not really… 

Matt said something really powerful to me when I was working out.  As I worked hard to finish the last few reps, I said; “I wish I hadn’t sabotaged myself like that. I could be that many calories lighter.”  He said; “You’re absolutely right! Think of it this way…you can never get that time back…” (LIGHTBULB!!!)  I always thought of that statement in ways that pertained to life in general…not in fitness and calorie terms, but he’s right! I have the choice to A) Do something that makes a difference, or B) Do something I’ll regret and can never take back…at least not without 30 minutes of cardio! LOL!  Lesson learned!  I’m going to do something to make a difference!  On a side note:  Another lesson learned…don’t sass your trainer or you’ll get ten extra reps!

Another week down!  Three pounds gone!  I feel great AND people are already starting to notice a change and cheer me on!  WooHoo!!!  I’m sooo excited!

So here’s the BIG GOAL!  You ready?…I’m GOING to do a body building competition!  It’s time to push it to the limit!  READY…SET…GO!!!…


Emerge Fitness Training

St. Charles, Missouri

EMERGE working with St. Louis Rams organization this off-season

Emerge will be designing and implementing a functional, sports specific training program for the St. Louis Rams this off-season.  Starting March 17th, Emerge will be out at the Russell Athletic training facility in Earth City instructing the off-season functional training program for the team.  Focal points with be functional strength and power, core specific exercises, and multi-planar movement specific exercises.  Emerge is excited for the challenge and opportunity to work with the team in 2010!

Matt Pirtle


Emerge Fitness Training Saint Charles, MO

Two weeks… Going sugar free for 14 days

     I have a weakness, and it’s sugar.   I’m sure you have heard the saying “A key to a man’s heart is thru his stomach”.  Well, it’s not just men.  I’m a sucker for cookies and ice cream primarily, but I rarely pass up anything sweet.  The irony is that five years ago I couldn’t stand the sight or smell of chocolate or anything relatively “sweet.”  Oh how the times have changed. 

     I can go thru the typical work week without consuming much sugar.  In fact, I didn’t really have it except for a piece or two of dark chocolate every other day.  Bring on Friday afternoon, and it was a whole different ball game.  Like I said, cookies, I’d go thru a package of Chips A Hoy’s in a weekend and I don’t even like the things, but some chemical in them makes you want them like it’s crack or something.  Ice cream too…  Even though I’ll go with the no sugar added, low fat, Edy’s; it doesn’t really help when I eat the whole carton in 48 hours.  My justification: “It’s still less calories than a DQ Blizzard!” (don’t get me started on those).  My plan B to any type of hunger on the weekends has always been sugar.  I’ve been so lucky that I workout and eat so well during that week that it offsets any damage, however it also keeps me from moving forward. 

The last straw was Valentines Day weekend.  I hadn’t been sleeping well, and I had been eating M&M’s (and I don’t like M&M’s!) and chocolate chip cookies and then my mom brought down a dozen of her homemade sugar cookies with frosting on them.  My mom is like Paula Deen of the baking world.  She makes immaculate pies, cakes, cookies, but she uses all the “real” ingredients.  She laughs when I ask if she used Splenda. Anyways, she brought down a dozen cookies Saturday and by Sunday night, 10 of them were gone.  I had the worst stomach ache that felt sugar coated and I knew right then and there that the sugar had to go.  I froze the other two cookies and began to plan a challenge for myself.  14 days with no sugar….

     Ok, when I say no sugar there are a few guidelines.  I still get to eat fresh fruit, honey, stevia, and I allowed myself Splenda.  I wanted to get rid of anything with the word “high fructose syrup,” “corn syrup,” and for the most part white sugar in general.  The only time I could have sugar was in my post workout chocolate milk, and that was only 1-2x a week.  Otherwise, nada, zero.  14 days, no problem, right?

Well, today is day 14 and I have accomplished my mission.  I have come to realize that anything processed more than likely has sugar in it, and I’m sure that I ate something accidently with sugar in it, but from what I know, I did very well.  And with the temptations of pictures of candy bars and doughnuts, sent by my sister, I still veered away from it.  And it was a lot harder than I ever thought it would be. 

1. Around 3-4pm, I started to get sluggish and I needed a “sugar fix”.  This would lead to mild crankiness.  Thankfully, apples helped tremendously. 

2.  I started sleeping sounder throughout the night.  I generally fell right to sleep and I didn’t move all night.  I woke up earlier and more refreshed than I had been.

3. Clothes.  Even though the scale didn’t move all too much, my clothes felt much looser on me, especially in my midsection. 

4. Discipline. I purposely left individual packages of Chips a Hoy cookies and candy in my pantry and freezer at home just to teach me that just because it’s there doesn’t mean I need to eat it.  They have been there for 2 weeks, untouched.  That’s some kind of record for me. 

When this past Saturday arrived, I was out running errands and a sugar craving hit BIG time.  I was about to go pick up my lunch when I was in the store and saw “Sugar free Vanilla wafer cookies”, made with Splenda.  No Sugar=Kim friendly!!!!  So I bought a package… And I immediately found out that just because it isn’t sugar, but if it tastes like sugar, it’s going to make you want to eat sugar.  I ate the whole package, 900 calories in 2 days.  And it left me wanting more.  They were sooooo good, but it let me know that once I have a taste of “sugar”  that it makes me only crave more.  Same way when I had a diet soda on Sunday.  First off, it tasted horrible, but one drink of it triggered something in me to eat something sweet. 

I learned first hand what sugar can do to me, both physically and mentally.  Sugar has been my crutch for a while and now I’m learning that it’s empty carbs and I need to choose better foods.  (Yes, I have known this for years, but sometimes it’s hard to practice what you preach).  I also learned that sugar isn’t a bad thing in moderation and occasionally, however, if you can’t do it in moderation, then it’s just best to stay away from it all.  And finally, even though something may be “sugar free”, doesn’t mean that it won’t make you crave sugar, or even food in general, for the rest of the day. 

I challenge every reader to try this test for yourself.  Do you own analysis and see if it helps your sleeping patterns, energy, whatever it may be.  My two weeks ends at midnight, but I’m hoping to continue to keep sugar to a very minimum in my lifestyle.  I start a new diet on Wednesday with MP, so who knows, at this point, this no sugar thing could have been a cakewalk compared to what I’m about to take on.


Kimberly Renoud


Emerge Fitness

 Saint Charles, Missouri

Suck it in…or Suck it up!

Hello to all!

I am Maria and I train with Matt  at Emerge.  I have had such a long fitness journey (Don’t worry, I’m gonna make a long story short!)

Ten years ago, I was fat…really fat…the “Oh you have such a pretty face; if you just lost some weight…” kind of fat.  I started at a size 18/20 and weighed about 230.  I got tired of people asking when my baby was due, so I began to workout.  Nine months later I lost about 90lbs and was comfortably wearing a size 6/7.  Fast forward a bit…I became a trainer and aerobics instructor for about 3 years…took an eight month hiatus for school; gained 40lbs…came back to aerobics; lost 30lbs…started training full-time for another 3 to 4 years…fell into a fitness routine and gained about 10lbs.  For the most part, I was in good shape.  

I always thought of myself as a fit fat girl.  Yeah, I was in decent shape, but I felt I could do so much better.  I didn’t want to be average anymore.  I wanted to look like one of those fitness models!…or at least shut up that fat girl inside me that wanted go for a burger and fries after a workout!

I started working with Matt about three years ago.  I got in the best shape of my life!!!  I was doing more than I ever thought I could!  I lost well over 20 lbs and really toned up!…Then…I switched careers and began to sit most of the day.  It was fine, at first, until the lbs slowly started to creep up on me.  Suddenly, the fat girl inside me, that Matt helped me silence to a whisper, started getting a little louder.  Especially around the snack table at work!…No big deal though!  I just stepped up the cardio and kept the extra weight at bay…Then…I decided to get liposuction.  It was something that I always wanted to do and being so close to my goal weight I figured it would be an enhancement.

…Fast forward about five months to a conversation between myself and a co-worker…”Girl!  How does a person workout 4 days a week, eat…hmmm…some what sensibly, AND has had liposuction GAIN 25 lbs!”  She said it in the most humorous and loving way…really.  It got me thinking…

So here’s the thing…I got comfortable, I decreased my workout intensity,  I let my inner fat girl have her way at the snack table at work a bit too often…but most importantly I lost sight of my goal.  As 5lbs turned to 10, then to 15, and quietly crept to 20; I thought “mmm, it’s not that bad.  I’ll just camouflage with clothes and Suck it in!” 

Yeah, I thought that too…YIKES!  I realized “What am I saying?  This isn’t me!  This isn’t what I want to see when I look in the mirror!  I’ve come too far to let another pound creep by!”  Instead, I’m gonna Suck it up!  Stop making excuses and exceptions and just friggin do it! 

I know the journey…VERY WELL…I know it has ups and downs, but here’s what…I’d rather enjoy the ups than settle in the downs!  I know what I need to do…I’ve been there…I’ve done that…I’ve climbed that mountain before…and so I’m just gonna do what I know!  I know that it will take dedication, I know it will take patience, I know that it will take everything out of me at the end of a workout…but I ALWAYS know this…I KNOW how good it feels in that moment when you know you’ve accomplished something great!…The moment you put on those skinny jeans that you haven’t worn in YEARS and they’re LOOSE!…The moment when someone stops you to tell you how great you look and how inspired they are by your success…and my personal favorite!…The moment you put on a bikini and you don’t want to slink behind something and hide!

I’m gonna get back there folks…and then some!!!  I’ve decided to go public with my journey for many reasons.  One, is because I want to stay accountable to my goal.  Secondly, it’s great to have the support of others on a similar path to motivate you.  Also, because I hope to inspire someone else to become greater than they thought they could be.

I will post a weekly updated picture along with a blog about my journey throughout the week.  I may blog a time or two throughout the week as well, as there is always something entertaining and interesting, about life and fitness, on my mind. 

So!  Here we go!  Week one…   

Emerge Fitness Training

St. Charles Missouri

Achieving a goal. Be Process Oriented.

After setting realistic fitness goals, both long and short term, it is important to keep yourself accountable along the way with control over those things you CAN control.

No matter what you set out to achieve, your focus should not be laser focused only on attaining your ultimate goal (i.e. losing 30 lbs.)  This is called a goal focused outlook.  Although aspiration to achieve an ultimate goal is the catalyst for beginning a program in the first place, a focus on the process is a far more rewarding path.  

You can CONTROL the process.  Everything that, in combination, actually produces the desired outcome can be programmed and manipulated (a sound nutritional plan, a cardiovascular program, resistance training, etc).  The outcome is the sum of all of these controlled behaviors.

Setting short term goals on the way to an ultimate goal is a great way to stay process focused while having the satisfaction of achieving several “wins” on the way to an ultimate goal (i.e. losing 3 lbs. every 2 weeks).

It’s the day to day process that will eventually lead to where you want to be.  Control those variables, set and achieve several smaller goals along the way, and enjoy the process of reaching your goal.

Matt Pirtle

Emerge Fitness Training

St. Charles, Missouri

Comfortable, Healthy and Pregnant

This is day 140 of my pregnancy and day 1 of my pregnancy journal.  I am currently 19 weeks pregnant and estimated due date July 4, 2010.  This is my first pregnancy and up until the moment I got that positive test I was always scared of the horror pregnancy symptoms I have always heard and wondering if that was really going be me.  I found out I was pregnant at 5 weeks right in the middle of watching Marley and Me.  The movie made me sad of the trials of life and it hit me at that moment that I was a little late for my monthly visitor.  That afternoon it all began.

A little history about myself I am 30 years old and been married to my best friend for three years this June.  Matt  and I opened our business the following week of our wedding and starting a family at that time was not a possibility.  With running a business and me being a full time personal trainer the thought of being pregnant has always been a fear.  I went into this pregnancy with the plan to be as healthy and comfortable as possible so I could maintain all current responsibilities as a trainer and business owner.  Sometimes having comfortable pregnancies are out of women’s control but the things that we can control are diet and exercise.    I have been preaching this for 8 years now to my pregnant clients and still to this day believe diet is number 1.  I have always had the theory of high carbohydrate and low protein intake during pregnancy can cause a lot of morning sickness and nausea.  High carbohydrate and low protein will cause blood sugar drops, which in return will cause nausea.  I was so excited to put this to test for myself.  It was always hard telling a pregnant client about pregnancy and diet and the bad effects of certain foods without ever being pregnant myself.  The first few weeks of my pregnancy were interesting trying to understand my body and what exactly was happening.  I never experienced the morning sickness or extreme nausea but the one thing I did experience was the lack of an appetite.  I never thought food would sound gross to me because I love to eat and look forward to every meal and that was changing.  I did realize that overeating really made me feel sick to my stomach so I quickly controlled the amount of food I was eating at one given time.  My portions became very small for my big appetite.  I found myself eating chicken noodle soup for lunch and dinner.  I don’t eat much can food or suggest it for clients so I would make my own low sodium soup or for convenience I would eat organic low sodium soup from a can.  This lasted for 9 weeks but with the control of my diet I never felt sick.  My diet was pretty simple and I kept it the same everyday.

6am-Isopure Protein shake + half banana

9am- Cascade Fresh yogurt

11am-Trader Joe berry almond mix or green apple

12pm (lunch)- Can of organic low sodium soup

3pm- Isopure protein shake or banana + Peanut butter

5pm- Kashi bar or Zone protein bar

7pm- (dinner) more soup or if it sounded good Lean meat, vegetable, and a salad

 Don’t think I am a 7-day a week perfect eater because I am not.  Monday-Friday at noon (my work week) is my routine and that is when I eat as healthy as possible and the weekends is when I give myself more freedom while still making sure that I get enough protein and not go a long time without eating.  My goal was not to loose weight while pregnant but again I ate the foods that I found to not make me feel sick.  I recall when I was about 7 weeks pregnant Matt and I had a long workday and went out after work to one of our favorite places and split a big plate of nachos.  I paid for it with heartburn the next morning and felt miserable at work all morning.  Needless to say that put an end to that kind of eating.  I learned quickly and controlled my diet every chance I got.  Luckily I was not one of those that gained more than 10lbs in my first trimester.  At our 15-week appointment I had gained 4lbs. 

 I have trained many women through their entire pregnancy’s up until the day of delivery so I have had a lot of experience in designing exercise programs for women and now its my turn.  My doctor told me “there is nothing you can do to hurt the baby unless you get in a fight and get beat up.”  I now think about this every time I exercise.  The first 12 weeks is when you want to be the most careful with exercise.  This is when your body is doing a lot of changing and manufacturing a human life.  I did take it easy the first 12 weeks.  I love to run and I decided for the first 12 weeks to do a run/walk program and the days I was not feeling it I would do the elliptical.  I have two running partners and they did not like this news but I made sure that we still got out and did fast brisk walking with a little running.  They still got to sniff mailboxes and light post and spot the occasional bunny so they were happy.  I find it crucial pregnant or not to always use a heart rate monitor while doing cardiovascular training.  Caridovascular training while pregnant is great for the mom and baby but very important that your heart rate is lower than what you would typically train at non-pregnant.  I keep my heart rate between 145-150 bpm.  Once I got passed those first 12 weeks I went back to my running program.  I want to continue to run while I can because I know at some point in the 3rd trimester I will have to go back to lower impact cardio.  I have been running for years and know that running would not cause any harm to my baby.  I try to get in 4-5 days a week of cardio for 30 min in my heart rate zone.  I also still continue my resistance training and stretching program about 3 times a week.  That includes a  core boot camp  class on Friday mornings at 8am.  It’s a great class taught by Matt and we focus on all core training. 

Along with my diet and exercise I also see my chiropractor  Dr, Marcy Cooper  once a week for an adjustment and acupuncture.  I truly feel this has helped me.  The acupuncture that we focus on is for women and pregnancies.  There are days that my energy is greater than before being pregnant.  Fatigue is a very common symptom of pregnancy and that is one thing that I can say being pregnant has not slowed me down or made working miserable. This could de due to the fact that I am eating very good and frequent exercise but I know a big part of it is the adjustments and acupuncture. 

I want to share all of my wonderful experiences for the next 20 weeks and talk about all the great things about being pregnant and the things that we can control, diet and exercise.  I never thought I would love being pregnant.  It has been a wonderful experience so far and can’t wait for the next 4-½ months.  Thanks to my wonderful husband who is always encouraging me and making it a great experience together.

Angie Pirtle


Emerge Fitness Training