With O2 Aspen founder and buyer Brittany Van Domelen and O2 Aspen COO Julia Whipple both expecting in 2020, we figured it was the perfect time to reflect on maternity wellness. Often, pregnancy is focused around baby, but a mother’s physical and emotional well-being is just as important.
“Maternity wellness is releasing the mindset of doing it all and giving yourself permission to slow down wherever you can,” says O2 yoga instructor and health coach Kerrie Schur. “Nourishing food, appropriate exercise, connection, ample sleep, time outside, yoga, meditation, and simple breathing practices all contribute to nurturing both yourself and your growing baby.”
Brittany is heeding this advice during her second pregnancy. “I am so much kinder to myself and to my body this time around,” says Brittany, a mother of three-year-old twins. “I am resting as much as I can, and I’m working out more gently. I am eating healthier but not shaming myself when I indulge a craving. I am also trying to live in the moment versus visualizing and planning for after the baby is born. I am snuggling my two boys a little longer than normal in the mornings and just kind of hibernating with my family rather than making myself go out. It feels really good.”
Here, some goods and services from O2 to aid expecting moms.
O2 Mama Prenatal Massage
O2’s prenatal massage relaxes tense muscles, eases sore spots, and improves circulation and mobility, while offering mom a chance to rest while strengthening and preparing for baby’s arrival. Trey Barnes, O2 Aspen spa director and a Medical Massage Practitioner, says prenatal massage benefits include reduction of back, joint and sciatic nerve pain, edema, tension, headaches, stress and anxiety, all which affect sleep. And, says Trey, massage increases circulation by working out the tension, knots and abrasions in the muscles, promoting blood flow and mobility.
“Hormone regulation is a less talked about benefit of prenatal massage,” says Trey. “The hormones dopamine and serotonin are increased during massage, which help with depression and low-energy levels.
Beyond Yoga Leggings
While cult-favorite Beyond Yoga offers a specific maternity legging, any of their forgiving leggings will stretch comfortably late into pregnancy. Made from super-soft Spacedye fabric, with an oversized waistband, Beyond Yoga leggings offer the perfect blend of softness, support and style.
Naturally thermoregulating silk enables expecting mamas to feel like goddesses while they sleep. And the fact it’s washable, means these luxurious yet practical sleep sets will be in heavy rotation post-delivery, too.
Completely clean and pregnancy friendly, OSEA draws inspiration from the ocean, sun, earth and atmosphere. Pregnant women will appreciate the certified organic, bioavailable seaweed blended with pure steam-distilled and cold pressed essential oils that work as effective solutions for skincare needs.
In addition to deepening your connection with yourself and your growing baby, prenatal yoga can help increase body awareness, reduce anxiety, improve strength and flexibility, relieve back pain, improve circulation and digestion, and support healthy posture. Kerrie, a new mother herself, suggests expecting yogis listen to their bodies and honor changing needs. “It’s especially important to prioritize moving mindfully, to not overstretch—especially beginning in the second trimester—and to favor gentle and restorative practice. She says general modifications for pregnancy include removing inversions, deep twists, jumps and back bends. As the belly grows, expecting yogis should avoid front-lying postures like cobra and lying flat on the back. “Consider weaving in restorative practices like Yoga Nidra to calm the mind, reset the nervous system, and experience deeper rest,” says Kerrie.