Tash King is a CrossFit Level 2, CrossFit Weight Lifting and CrossFit Kids Trainer who coaches at Cape CrossFit. She’s also Cape CrossFit’s Nutrition Advisor who advocates for eating whole, unprocessed foods and having a solid nutrition plan regardless of whether you’re an athlete.
Tash King has completed the CrossFit Regional Games three times, won fittest in Cape Town 3 times, as a member of the CCF Team, and is a member of The Western Province Weightlifting team.
To say she knows a thing or two about fitness and nutrition is an understatement. With credentials like that, you can bet when she fell pregnant, staying fit and healthy was non-negotiable.
Well into her pregnancy she was part of Reebok’s #perfectnever campaign where she once again got to break the mould of what society says a woman should be in this world.
And If you follow Tash on instagram you would’ve seen her March to the Beat of her own drum throughout her pregnancy (and life really).
With just 1 week to go before Tash and her partner Chris welcome their son, she shared how she maintained fitness during her pregnancy, do’s and don’ts for staying fit during pregnancy and her plans for when her son is born.
On how staying active helped her Pregnancy
I have had the most wonderful pregnancy – no back ache, no pelvic pain. I have slept through the night almost every night. I can still tie my shoe laces, sit down on the floor and get up without help, I carry my shopping to my door from the car without getting out of breath. I honestly believe this is because I have kept active.
On Adjusting Training throughout Pregnancy
In the first trimester my training program stayed the same except that I took my intensity down a lot. I no longer raced against the clock or my team mates. I also stopped attempting max lifts and stayed within the 70 – 80% range of what I would usually lift. I also stopped doing any abdominal exercises as I didn’t want to risk exacerbating Diastasis recti.
In the second trimester my weights got lower and I stuck to higher rep ranges to try and maintain whatever muscle mass I could. I made sure I squatted; dead-lifted and bench pressed every week but stopped running, skipping and any sort of jumping motion that put additional pressure on my pelvic floor.
The third trimester was the same as the second but as my due date is 1 week away all I am doing now is walking, yoga and body weight exercises to keep moving.
On facing judgement for training while pregnant
I am so fortunate that the members of our Cape CrossFit community (actually the CrossFit Community as a whole) are so supportive, knowledgeable and aware of how important fitness is in all stages of life, pregnancy included. I did get some judgement when a French fitness page reposted an Instagram video of me working out to their page, but their ignorance is not my problem.
On misconceptions about keeping fit during pregnancy
The biggest misconception about pregnancy in general is that you have suddenly become slightly disabled or sick and should be “taking it easy”. Yes in some cases this is the case but for the majority of healthy, low risk women this is not the case.
On listening to her body
I had no concerns while training, my midwives were happy with my exercise regime and I was happy with the way I was feeling. I have always been hyper aware of my body so anything that may have concerned me was eliminated or changed immediately.
Tash King on her best tip to keeping fit during pregnancy
Move every day. It does not have to be a full out gym session (and don’t beat yourself up if it isn’t). A 5 minute walk down your road, 10 minutes of yoga just sitting down and stretching out will be beneficial to your mind, body and baby.
Tash King’s do’s and don’ts for staying fit during pregnancy
Always listen to your midwives and Gynae.
Do make sure you have a trainer who is 100% aware of how to train you during each stage of pregnancy or make sure you are up to date with the latest research and information.
Do make sure you are always hydrated. Never over heat and never be completely out of breath when training.
Don’t start a fitness regime if you have never exercised before. Now is not the time to start Zumba if you have never done it before. Ease into it.
Don’t be hard on yourself if you are tired, sore or just don’t feel like it.
Don’t assume that if you did it before, it’s fine to continue to do it.
Don’t do any high impact sports or any sports that pose a risk of falling or injury.
On adapting to pregnancy and the biggest surprise
I knew that moment that I fell pregnant that my athletic career was going to change drastically. I went into this with no expectations and I prepared myself to become slower in workouts, lift less weight and lose a lot of cardio and gymnastic capacity. What actually surprised me is that I was able to work out as long as I did and feel so good and energetic!
On her plans post pregnancy
Lots and lots of baby cuddles! All I am planning to do after I give birth is bond with my family.
On why fitness will be a part of her son’s life from day 1
Sport is not only physically beneficial but also so important as a tool to teach a wide variety of lessons: team work, fairness, perseverance – the list is endless. Chris and I run a CrossFit gym which means our kid is probably going to be exposed to a lot of fitness from day 1.
The Reebok #perfectnever campaign ft. Tash King