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Third pregnancy easier for Omaha mom who stuck with CrossFit workouts

Third pregnancy easier for Omaha mom who stuck with CrossFit workouts


Jessica Hawley’s third pregnancy felt different.

So she was sure this time a girl would join her two sons already at home.

She had more energy and found it was easier to move around despite her growing baby bump. But baby number three was another boy.

The reason the pregnancy felt so different, said Hawley, 34, was she just more fit this time around.

The Omaha woman has stuck with her three-times-a-week CrossFit workouts during her third pregnancy.

At 35 weeks pregnant — and with doctor approval — Hawley was tackling box jumps, burpees and pullups on the TRX straps. She’s had to modify some exercises, cut the amount of weight she lifts and do fewer reps.

Hawley plans to work out as long as she can during this pregnancy, and she’s hoping the regular workouts help in the delivery room, too.

“I feel night-and-day different,” she said.

Q: When did you start working out and why?

A: I’ve been working out for a long time. In high school, I played basketball, and in college, I played intramurals. My husband, Ben, really likes CrossFit. So in January 2017, I started (at Iron Hero CrossFit). Working out has always been part of my life, but it’s something I did on my own.

Q: Describe your workouts. How many days per week do you exercise?

A: There’s a lot of variety, which is why I like it. We do strength training and cardio. No matter the workout, (gym owner) Chris Suiter can scale it to what I need. I work out three to four days a week.

Q: What is your current fitness goal?

A: My goal is to work out as far as I can during my pregnancy. I’ve joked that my water’s going to break here.

Q: What has been your biggest accomplishment?

A: My mindset has changed a lot. I never thought I could life heavy weight or work out in a class regularly. I’m proud that I’m here, and I’m doing it. I’m investing in myself. I have kids and work, and I could easily have an excuse not to do it.

Q: What has been the toughest hurdle and how did you overcome it?

A: Probably second-guessing myself. In the beginning, I could have been like, “I’m pregnant,” and stopped. My body’s capable. I’m capable. I’ve surrounded myself with a community that believes in me.

Q: What helps you stay on track?

A: Seeing results, having a community that’s super encouraging. No one’s treated me differently because I’m pregnant. I’ve had the encouragement of other people and support from my husband.

Q: What is your gym pet peeve?

A: Someone who’s not friendly at the gym.

Q: What do you do when you aren’t in the gym?

A: I’m a big Creighton basketball fan. I like spending time with my kids, Gavin, 4, and Derek, 2. I also do a lot with my church.

Q: What is the piece of equipment, supplement, clothing, etc. that you can’t live without?

A: I love rowing. It’s my favorite piece of workout equipment.

Q: What advice would you give to someone who is just starting their fitness journey?

A: I’d say, if it’s something you want to do, take a chance and do it. When you do something for yourself, you’re not going to regret it. Invest in yourself.

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