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Staying healthy and having fun in pregnancy…

4th October 2013

Birthfit 1Part of my job is to ring people who’ve taken part in our service and find out what they thought to it.  As you can imagine some people are happy to chat and others less so.  So it’s always nice to speak to someone who’s  keen to answer my questions.  This was definitely the case with Sharon.  In fact she wasn’t just happy to chat she was really enthusiastic about the support she’d been offered and wanted to tell me all about it.

I work as part of the Lighten Up team and together me and my colleagues operate the Call Centre that delivers the service.  Our job is to take referrals and then contact the person wanting help with losing weight. We then help them choose a suitable provider, make sure they know when and where the meeting is and send them all the info they need.  After the first week we ring them to make sure all’s ok and then we carry on phoning them at regular intervals to check on their progress. I particularly work on the Maternal service so the focus for the women I support is a bit different.  It’s not about them losing weight, as this isn’t advisable during pregnancy.  It’s about helping them maintain a healthy weight which limits the chance of them experiencing other complications.

Our support is all via the telephone so it’s rare we get to meet the people we support.  However as Sharon had given us such great feedback and as I felt I’d got to know her a bit  I decided to go and meet the lady herself .  At the same time I thought I could observe the Birthfit class she was attending which would give me a bit more insight into what happens after our referral.

Upon arrival I was struck by a friendly and fun atmosphere.  There were about 6 women taking part, all at different stages of pregnancy. One of them was Sharon (pictured wearing the starry top).

Sharon was referred as her BMI was over 30 which is the criteria for automatic referral to Maternal Lighten Up.  She was referred by her midwife back in April and she’s been attending the weekly sessions ever since.  She’s now very close to her due date.

Sharon said: “the class has really helped me.  I don’t think it matters if it’s your first pregnancy or not as there’s always new stuff to learn.”

The class kicked off with a weigh in followed by diet advice, then there was light aerobic exercise.  Each week they discuss a different health topic and there’s always lots of opportunity for questions, one of the group said: “During pregnancy you have lots of questions,  no matter how embarrassing you don’t mind asking Jayne (Pregnancy Fitness Instructor)”.  Jayne Hume who runs the Birthfit Group in Stirchley used to be a Midwife so has lots of valuable experience.

All the women were keen to give their views so I took a short video.

And what about Sharon’s weight?  Well she delighted to say it’s remained very stable throughout her time engaging with the service.  She’s gained a very healthy 3 kg’s.  So it feels like the service has done exactly what it sets out to do and in Sharon’s case that little bit more as she’s made some good friends in the process.

If you’d like to find out more about Maternal or Regular Lighten Up please give us a call: 0800 599 9880 or to find out more about Birthfit visit:

And the story doesn’t end there…… we heard yesterday that Sharon had gone into labour!  So we wish her all the best and look forward to hearing of her new arrival.



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