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Say 'Aaah' | Media Mix

Warmup for a 9-Month Workout

May 10, 1999|JANE E. ALLEN

BEFORE YOUR PREGNANCY

Prepare Your Body for a Healthy Pregnancy. Expert Advice on Nutrition and Exercise

Workbook with accompanying videotape written, produced and directed by Amy Ogle. Videotape length: 41 minutes; booklet length: 34 pages. $29.95. Available by calling (800) 955-5115 or through http://www.b4yourpregnancy.com.

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Despite shelves of self-help books about infertility and what to expect once you're expecting a baby, Amy Ogle, a registered dietitian and certified personal trainer from San Diego, saw a void when it came to pre-pregnancy counseling on nutrition and exercise. She addresses preconception planning in this video and workbook with ways prospective moms and dads can ready themselves in the three months before trying to conceive a child. Her video is divided into neat categories (heralded by an annoyingly repetitious musical theme) featuring a lead-in question posed by a man, woman or couple. Ogle answers them in a straightforward, unintimidating style. For each topic, there are handy references to relevant material in the accompanying workbook.

Ogle discusses desirable body weights and tips on gaining or losing pounds to get there, reviews basic nutrition, and includes a half-dozen recipes to pack more nutrient-rich fruits, vegetables and calcium into meals.

She recommends multivitamin supplements and diets that include sufficient folic acid, iron and calcium, but warns women not to exceed recommended daily doses of vitamin A, which could harm a developing fetus.

She explores pre-pregnancy and first-trimester fitness with sound exercise tips on strength training and flexibility, and video demonstrations of proper form, along with advice on avoiding dehydration and exhaustion. For the overly scheduled woman, she includes real-life scenarios for overcoming exercise obstacles.

Ogle, who shot much of the video while pregnant with her first child, urges fathers to take steps to optimize their fertility too. Because it takes three months for sperm cells to mature in a man's body, wannabe dads have time to cut back on alcohol, stop smoking, watch what they eat, avoid illegal drugs and keep out of hot tubs that could impair sperm production.

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