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What’s My Workout: Jessica Latshaw

Jessica Latshaw doesn’t sit still often. The Boston resident, due to have her first child on December 15, teaches indoor cycling at Flywheel and a variety of barre classes at Boston Body Pilates. Before moving to Bean Town, she was a professional dancer touring with Broadway companies—and has the energy and ultra-positive attitude to prove it. We spoke with her about not treating pregnancy like an illness, focusing on the positive and how sleeping on one’s stomach should never be taken for granted.

Q: What were your go-to workouts before you got pregnant?

A: The classes I get to teach come to mind first. They are highly physical, give me a creative outlet and I really enjoy the mix of intense cardio at Flywheel and the anaerobic, concentrating-on-specific-muscle-groups aspect of barre and toning and sculpting classes at Boston Body Pilates. I would also practice yoga every week, go on the occasional run with my husband, dance and enjoy solo sessions at the gym with some free weights and my iPod.

Q: How has your routine changed?

A: The one thing that has really changed is running. It’s just not as enjoyable anymore. Everything else has stayed the same, with the exception of lower resistance on the bike to not let my heart rate accelerate too high and no more lying prone for back exercises, which happens in mat class and during vinyasa yoga.

Q: Describe your pregnancy fitness philosophy in three words.

A: Live your best life. Well, that’s four. But if I brought it down to three it’d just be “live your life,” and Rihanna already said that.

Q: Four it is! What has surprised you the most about working out while pregnant?

A: What surprises me the most is how much I am still capable of. With the exception of some occasional twinges of achiness in my back, I have no complaints. I think we can make the mistake of treating pregnancy like an illness—or as an excuse to no longer live your best life. But treating your body like the amazing, capable, resilient and strong machine that it is—especially while going through the changes of pregnancy—is not only important, it’s a beautiful gift you give yourself.

Q: Have you made any notable tweaks?

A: Maintain: You won’t be working out as hard as your pre-pregnant self but try and maintain, with the exceptions you need to make as your tummy grows. I've purchased some more supportive sports bras and let myself rest when needed—two words: child’s pose—but still kept my goals, especially for the parts of me that are not necessarily as effected by my pregnancy like arms, back, shoulders, glutes and hamstrings. I did modify abdominal work, but didn’t get rid of it altogether, still doing planks and push-ups.

Q: What have you learned during this experience?

A: Sometimes it takes embracing some pain in order to actually meet our goals. This thought is something that I hope will help me through labor and delivery. When we challenge ourselves physically we have to embrace some pain in order to actually become stronger. If we always did what was comfortable, we wouldn’t grow and we wouldn’t meet our goals. And we sure wouldn’t give birth.

Q: And once your little one arrives, what do you look forward to doing the most?

A: It’s a toss-up between wearing crop tops and sleeping on my belly. Heck, maybe I will just combine the two and wear a crop top while sleeping on my belly.

Photograph by Kate Dudley
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