POSTPARTUM MAMAS

RESOURCES FOR OUR MOMS

MELISSA REESE

Wellness & Nutrition Coach
Certified Pregnancy & Postpartum Athleticism Coach
Founder, Harbor Total Wellness


(425) 218-4090
melissa@harbortotalwellness.com

www.harbortotalwellness.com

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Fitness and nutrition are both my passion and my profession. Part of this passion involves continually educating and challenging myself to obtain new knowledge which I can then integrate into my personal and professional practices. This past year I was thrilled to discover a unique and fulfilling learning opportunity when I became a certified pregnancy and postpartum coach while pregnant with my third child.

 

Pregnancy and postpartum fitness and nutrition are not given enough attention. Most women - whether or not they consider themselves athletes - find themselves with many questions about what diet and activity modifications they should make during and after pregnancy. Sadly, these questions are not often addressed during routine peripartum visits, which can result in stress, excessive weight gain, and negative health effects for the mother. Common “nutrition” advice from medical providers to child-bearing women involves generalities like “aim to gain around 20-25 pounds”, yet education about what caloric intake (and the content of that intake) should really look like from one woman to the next is frequently omitted. As with nutrition, pregnancy and postpartum fitness is not a one-size-fits-all formula. Assuming as much relegates the fitness of the mother to afterthought status and can lead to back pain and/or pelvic floor dysfunction (to
include urinary incontinence, painful intercourse, and even organ prolapse) requiring physical therapy after childbirth. The good news is, safe, preventative fitness techniques are available and should be provided to all pregnant mothers.

 

I have over 10 years of experience in fitness coaching and I am a new mother of three, yet there was still so much I learned while obtaining my Pregnancy and Postpartum Athleticism certification. From adjusting the way some movements are performed to eliminating others altogether, from learning how to keep your core and pelvic floor engaged to knowing your safe exercise heart rate range, there are a multitude of factors and practices that can and should be taken into account to optimize health during pregnancy and beyond. Whether you are a high-level athlete or a busy mom who just wants the ability to carry her toddler around without a backache, rest assured there are programs and techniques that exist to help you remain strong before, during, and after childbirth - they are already helping me!

 

Nutrition also deserves renewed focus during pregnancy. While it’s absolutely healthy to indulge yourself in a mindful manner, you are not “eating for two”. Rather, your body only requires about 100-300 extra calories a day while pregnant, and the content of those calories and how you ingest them matters just as much as - if not more than - how much you are consuming. During pregnancy, the goal is to eat nutritious foods. The following food groups should be consumed every day to maximize prenatal nutrition: vegetables, minimal fruits, lean protein, low glycemic carbohydrates, and healthy fats (such as those found in avocados, fish, and nuts). These foods have not only helped me stay fit and healthy throughout my pregnancies, they have also helped me feel good! Strategically spacing meals out is another beneficial practice during pregnancy. Eating small meals and snacks throughout the day eases digestion, keeps you energized, aids mental clarity, and helps blood sugar remain consistent. One of the biggest mistakes women make - pregnant or not - is not eating enough or waiting too long to eat, which can result in a blood sugar crash, that “hangry” feeling, and a rebound craving for sugar and highly processed foods which do nothing for your or your baby’s health. For me and those I coach, I have found the best way to ensure healthy nutrition over the long term is to establish a routine and be consistent. That might include weekly meal planning and prepping on the weekends, packing snacks before leaving the house, or always having a protein snack before bed. The thing to remember is that what works for one person may not be the winning formula for another. Finding a nutrition routine that works for you and helps you to feel like you are nourishing both yourself and your baby is the key.

 

Women’s food choices, fitness regimens, and bodies are seemingly always under scrutiny, and that becomes even more true when you’re carrying a baby. So much so that going public with your pregnancy can often feel like declaring open season for unsolicited comments about your choices: “You need to eat more!”, “You’re going to eat that?”, “You look so small!”, “How much weight have you gained?”, “I can’t believe you’re still running, is that safe?”, “Should you still be working out?”…The list goes on and on. Educating yourself and being mindful about and confident in your choices can help you tune out all the noise. For me, I gain what my body will gain. I exercise every day pregnant or not. I don’t attach a number to my calorie intake when I am pregnant; I simply choose foods that will keep me feeling good as well as give my baby the nutrients it needs to flourish and grow healthy inside me, and I feel good about my choices. Everyone is different and finding what works best for your mind and body is ultimately up to you. The resources to help you remain healthy, fit, and strong both during and after your pregnancy are out there. Finding and implementing these tools has fed into my general passion for women’s wellness and has also been helpful to me as I journey through my third pregnancy. I am so excited to be able to share them with others as well! For more information or discuss your pregnancy or postpartum wellness routine, visit my webpage www.harbortotalwellness.com or contact me at melissa@harbortotalwellness.com.

BECKY BARD

Certified Birth, Postpartum & Bereavement Doula

Harbor of Hope Birth Services


(253) 389-6052
beckybard.postpartummamas@gmail.

www.hopebirthservices.com

Becky was born and raised in Washington State. She and her husband have two young daughters and a fur baby, Berkley the Beagle. Becky loves overcast days, exploring new parks, and being the oldest sister of three.

 

As a young girl, Becky always gravitated towards community and longed for a large family. Growing up she woke many mornings to the sight of baby foals taking their first steps and found herself in awe of the strength and endurance of the horses during birth.

 

With a husband in the United States Airforce starting a family meant that there was a chance Becky’s husband may not be able to be present for her own children’s births. For this reason, Becky hired a birth doula and when her first daughter was born, she was able to have what she considers one of the most empowering days of her life. A year after her daughter was born, she completed a Birth Doula workshop and started her own Birth Doula business, Harbor of Hope Birth Services, in Kitsap County, Washington.

 

As empowered as Becky felt during her births, she found that as a society we were lacking support in the postpartum period. She found limited support groups and felt a sense of isolation and sadness after both of her daughters’ births. After being introduced to Postpartum Mamas, Becky found the support and community she had been missing.

 

Becky is a DONA International Trained Doula, a Certified Birth, Postpartum, and Bereavement Doula with Still Birthday University, and a trained Hypnobabies Doula. 

TAMMY HUGUENIN

Trained & Certified Postpartum Doula
 
(509) 638-2238
Tammy@tinytoesbirthservices.com

www.tinytoesbirthservices.com

 

I am a mother of 4 and Nana to 14 amazing human beings! I have worked with new moms and families for over 30 years and most of that was 21 years as a Military Wife,  Family Readiness Committee Member and Support Facilitator. I have my CDA(Child Development Accreditation) in birth to 3 years old. I have been a Certified Postpartum Doula for over 5 years and truly love helping families in their journey through the fourth trimester. I am volunteer New Parent Partner for our local CAPA Program and a member of the Spokane Professional Doula Association.

PATRICIA GRENSEMAN

Certified Postpartum Doula and Gentle Baby Sleep Coach
PPDoula Patricia

 

info@patriciagrenseman.com
www.patriciagrenseman.com

Patricia is a virtual postpartum doula, early motherhood and baby sleep coach, and now, a pro sidewalk chalk obstacle course designer. Patricia helps tired and flustered new moms figure out their fussy babies and put together a plan to tackle the #1 source of their mom-guilt so they can feel like the rockstar mom they already are.

 

With 6 years of parenting experience and 4 years of in-home and online doula support under her belt, Patricia brings clarity, warmth, and a wealth of resources to the table for her clients. From her deep empathy for parents with awake, alert babies, to her ability to get a plan onto paper, Patricia offers the personalized support tired new parents need as they see it through.

 

Tired new moms love Patricia because she takes so much time to get to know their families and helps even the most tired parents find solutions they feel totally comfortable with. Through her customised and compassionate postpartum support, Particia is living out her purpose, plus she has an unshakeable commitment to helping overwhelmed new moms find their own way in motherhood and parent just how they have always wanted to.

KARALYNN CONLEY

Certified Birth Doula & DONA
 
ks_conley@yahoo.com
(253) 345-1356
murmuringrockbirthservices.com

Hi! I’m Karalynn. I am married to the love of my life, and we have two beautiful children. I grew up here in Washington and plan to be here forever! We live on a mini farm complete with chickens, kittens, a large garden and of course, lots of projects. In our free time you can find me hiking mountains, drinking too much coffee, or spending time with our friends. I am a certified birth doula through DONA and a full-time student working my way towards a degree in midwifery. After the birth of my children, I have experienced postpartum depression and anxiety. I have CPTSD along with depression and anxiety outside of having children. My husband and I knew the sudden changes in responsibilities would trigger old wounds. We lacked a support village and supportive medical providers after our son’s adoption. This left me feeling alone and overwhelmed with a medically complex newborn who just graduated the NICU. When we learned we were pregnant with our daughter after a long journey with infertility and reoccurring miscarriages, we wanted to make sure we established a support group and had a supportive care provider/therapist to help me navigate the challenges ahead. Thankfully, I found Postpartum Mamas and have been so grateful for the connection and support this group has brought.

LIZ GOMEZ

Mental Health Therapist, LCSW
 
(626) 664-8418
lizgaona2@gmail.com

Liz Gomez lives in Placentia, CA with her husband and 2 boys (5yr old Joshua and 7 months old Jonah).  On her down time, Liz enjoys family time in the backyard, baking, hiking and reading.

Currently, Liz works as a Mental Health Therapist and provides psychotherapy to adults, couples and families in Brea, CA. Liz enjoys working with women who are experiencing emotional distress due to the changes that come from motherhood including “mom-guilt”, poor self-image, identity confusion, personal boundary issues and post-partum depression and anxiety.

Liz has chosen to join the mission of PPM, because there is no other group that allows mothers the sacredness of mothering one another through active listening, a non-judgmental stance and unconditional support. Having traveled through dark seasons where infertility, fear, and anxiety seemed unbearable; Liz is as much a participant, as she is a co-facilitator.