LTF & The Great Baby-ssage

A little biology lesson…

My. Back. Hurts. Badly.

For those of you following along, you may remember that a few months ago my back was hurting so badly that I bellyflopped into my bed. As an update to that blog, let me just say that 1. The baby is fine despite my lack of common sense, and 2. The pain has only gotten worse.

Since Day One (literally), I’ve had pain in my tailbone. It was confusing at first (since I didn’t realize that can be a symptom of pregnancy), and now it’s become almost debilitating. I’ve been pretty active at the gym, mostly focusing on walking A TON and weightlifting some. (Ryan’s been such a great encouragement, love that guy!)  However, the further along I get, the worse the pain is, and nothing is helping.  (Really all I want to do is bend over to touch my toes, but it’s like a basketball is keeping me from bending over far enough to get a good stretch.) In fact, the pain is so bad that today I decided to sweep the house, and ended up sitting on the couch arm and sweeping everything in my reach before moving to another spot!

A side note, since I love knowledge so much, even despite my lack of proclivity toward science: When you’re pregnant, there are only really three ligaments that attach your uterus (sorry, awkward image) to your body: one on each side in the front and one that attaches to the tailbone. So right now I have a 16-inch person inside of my clinging to my lower back for dear life. Sounds uncomfortable, huh? It is.

It’s gotten so bad that I finally gave in and booked a prenatal massage on Saturday. I’ve been interested in going for a while, but just haven’t gotten around to it thus far. I decided to try out my gym’s massage therapy (more on Life Time Fitness in a bit) because it’s pretty well-priced compared to a real spa, and I viewed this appointment as more functional than fun. I never go to the spa side of LTF (where you can get manicures and haircuts and massages), so I didn’t realize how nice it is! There’s a little door that I always assumed was a door to an individual massage room (like at a nail place), but it opened up into a whole relaxing lobby! Truthfully, the atmosphere was as nice as Spa Sydell.

I had the best time. Because my expectations were so low, I honestly thought I’d be getting a mall-ssage style treatment (in a chair), but I had a spa-style dark room with soothing music and Aveda essential oils.  I didn’t realize that a prenatal massage would simply be done on your side instead of your stomach, which makes sense now. My masseur was very understanding of my wimpy-ness when it comes to massages (Deep tissue? No thank you!), and I came out of it with no back pain for the first time in seven months. For an hour massage, $63 was worth every penny and then some.

(Of course, I worked out on Sunday, and now the pain is back. Dangit. Can I get a massage every day?)

Let me take a moment to talk about Life Time Fitness now. Ryan and I used to belong to L.A. Fitness, and we paid $70 a month. It was fine. I was happy, but Ryan had always heard such great things about LTF that about two years ago I gave in and we took a tour. It’s really not a gym; it’s a pseudo-country club, and has a freakin’ price tag to match. But, as soon as we stepped in, I knew Ryan was a goner. He loved it–a nice cafe with healthy food, an outdoor pool with a slide and food service, an indoor pool with glass saunas overlooking it, TONS of machines so you never have to wait…you name it, they have it. It took A LOT of convincing and cajoling for me to agree to the $115 a month fee (I’d have been happy at a cheap little gym as long as it had an elliptical and a treadmill), and I have to admit that although I can’t imagine going anywhere else (spoiled), I always secretly rolled my eyes every time I paid that monthly fee…until I got pregnant. You see, LTF is really popular here in Alpharetta mostly because of its amazing kids’ programming, so I stopped by the Childcare Center to feel it out–and BINGO, Life Time immediately became the best investment a mom could ask for.

For a kid to join, it’s an additional $6 a month. Yup, just $6. And babies can “join” at three months old. The kicker? That $6 a month pays for 10 hours of childcare A WEEK–that’s a maximum of two hours a day, a maximum of four days a week Monday-Saturday, and an additional two hours on Sunday. So even when you consider that we’re paying $121 total, we can drop this kid off for as much as 40 hours a month! That’s like $3 an hour for babysitting.  And the best part is, I can workout, eat lunch at the cafe with a friend, go to the pool, get a massage, relax in the lobby with a book (i.e. NAP), work on my computer, sit in the sauna…and have a built-in babysitter! Since Ryan travels so much, I know I’ll be utilizing the Childcare Center a ton, if only to have a few hours to escape a week. (Maybe now I know why stay-at-home moms are so fit…it means being kid-free for a few hours!)

So moral of the story? If you can, getting a prenatal “baby-ssage” and joining a gym with great childcare are worthwhile investments for moms–and if you can get both in one place? Even better.

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