Pregnant Peloton instructor Robin Arzon defends teaching, says she’s still an athlete

Robin Arzon is the head Peloton instructor, I’ve written about her before and do her classes about once a week. I usually pick instructors based on how hard I want to work out. Her spin and arm classes are moderate and I like them because I don’t get super sore afterwards. (Last night I did my first “bike bootcamp” class with Jess Sims. I know I’m going to be feeling that.)

A couple of weeks ago, I did Robin’s live DJ class with DJ John Michaels. I noticed she’d gained a little weight, which made me feel better about my pandemic weight gain honestly. I looked her up and realized that she’s pregnant! She’s now in her third trimester and announced it in September. Like a lot of athletic women, she’s barely showing. Of course people are criticizing Robin for working out while pregnant, because public women always get nitpicked, especially around pregnancy and motherhood. Robin isn’t here for that. She told Today that she’s an athlete and that hasn’t changed because she’s expecting.

Occasionally, mom-to-be [Robin Arzon] will read a comment that makes her head spin.

“It’s usually about how I shouldn’t be working out so hard,” Arzón, 39, told TODAY Health. “Any time I receive something like that, it lights a fire in me to stand in my power and to show the strength of a pregnant body. I didn’t relinquish being an athlete when I became pregnant…”

She’s sticking to her usual schedule of six workouts a week, two hours at a time, as she heads towards her third trimester.

“Vigorous exercise is actually beneficial for both mother and baby,” she said. “I was never going to kick back.”

When Arzón was struggling with fatigue during her first trimester, she drew on her experiences training for 100-mile races.

“I’d tell myself, ‘Just do 10 minutes and you can always hit the eject button if it’s not working,'” Arzón explained. “But often times, once you get moving without any preconceived notions as to how far, how fast or heavy — you might do more than you anticipated initially.”

[From Today via People]

She went on to say “I have blinders on and I don’t receive the fear. I don’t engage with it. I’m gonna rock this.” That’s how Robin and all of the Peloton instructors talk. They give little motivational speeches and for the most part they sound genuine. Robin seems like the kind of person who talks like that normally and I bet she sets the standard for the other instructors. While I sometimes find it cheesy there are often sayings I find helpful. Last night Jess said that she tells her anxieties “thank you for protecting me, I don’t need you right now.” I was blown away by that because I never thought of anxiety like that. It’s there to help us except when it controls us.

Getting back to Robin, I’m glad she’s still teaching while pregnant. Two hours a day six days a week sounds like a lot to me, but I don’t even work out that much now. She’s way fitter than me and that’s between her and her doctor. Doctors say exercising while pregnant is safe as long as you listen to your body. My Zumba instructor continued to teach into her third trimester. She was still working out harder than I was and I found it motivating. Pregnant athletic women should do what’s comfortable for them.

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32 Responses to “Pregnant Peloton instructor Robin Arzon defends teaching, says she’s still an athlete”

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  1. dogmom says:

    I work in the fitness industry and plenty of instructors continue to teach while pregnant. I had a Zumba teacher once who also taught into her third trimester like CB’s did. Most instructors and trainers know how to modify to stay safe, and they’ll stop or not do something if they need to. People just love to judge. 🙄🙄🙄

    • Agirlandherdog says:

      I was a spinning instructor for 6 years. I had many pregnant woman attend my classes. I had a woman who attended my classes religiously, including the day before she gave birth. On the day she gave birth, she went home from a kickboxing class, took a shower and went to the hospital. Both she and baby were completely healthy. As a general rule, most ob’s will tell you if you’re active before pregnancy, you can remain active during pregnancy. You just don’t want to jump into something your body isn’t used to. So if you’re not a runner, you don’t want to start training for a marathon.

      People need to worry about their own health and wellness instead of concern trolling others.

      • liz says:

        This is a decision that is between a patient and their doctor.

        OBs generally tell expecting mothers that they can continue with whatever level of exercise they were doing before they became pregnant until it becomes uncomfortable for them. I ran 3-5 miles a day, 4 or 5 days a week until I was about 7 months pregnant, then the pressure on my bladder & pregnancy-related sciatica made it too miserable for me to run. I could still walk the dog until the day before I delivered.

        They will also tell patients to stop some very specific high risk activities like scuba diving.

  2. megs283 says:

    It’s between her and her doctor and people need to butt out.

  3. cleak says:

    They say that you should keep your same activity level that you had prior to pregnancy ( doctor allowing.) I see no reason why she shouldn’t do what she’s always done for exercise. More power to her!

  4. Teresa says:

    I’m pregnant and still running everyday. During the 1st trimester I took about two months off because I was so sick, but when I felt better I ran again. All doctors say you can keep doing what you were doing but if your body says to take a break and rest then listen. I’m sure this woman is doing just that and if she didn’t feel too sick to go on then all the power to her. She’s lucky and an athlete.

  5. kgeo says:

    I had a doctor tell me not to do squats when I was pregnant. He had no reason specific to me or my health. I got rid of him and kept right on doing my squats.

  6. lucy2 says:

    Geez, she’s not out there playing in the NFL, she’s leading exercise classes which (I assume) are mostly on a spin bike? Why would anyone think she needs to stop doing that? Isn’t the common advice to keep doing what you’ve always done until it’s uncomfortable or the doctor says to stop?

    • Taylor says:

      Outdated advice to not let your heart rate go over 140 while pregnant. Just like how you aren’t supposed to reach your arms over your head while pregnant, otherwise you could… cause the umbilical cord to get wrapped around baby’s neck… lol.

  7. Esmom says:

    She is fine doing what she’s doing, good for her for speaking up about the criticism. It is beneficial to her and the baby and it will make bouncing back easier. I ran when I was pregnant but only until about 5 months because then my hips refused to cooperate. But I lifted weights up until the end. Listening to your own body is key. The only modification I remember is my doctor saying not to let my heart rate go above 140 so I wore a heart rate monitor when I ran to keep an eye on it.

    CB, I’m so gad you posted about Peloton because thanks to you I signed up for the app and started with my own bike last week! I’ve done a couple cycling classes and some strength workouts. I love it…it’s so nice not to have to try to slog though a workout in my basement completely on my own. I haven’t run into Robin’s classes yet so I am excited to check them out!

  8. B says:

    I just did Robin’s EDM workout (first ever Peleton attempt) she has such good energy and kept me going, she is in tune w/ her bod ;).

  9. L84Tea says:

    If her doctor says she’s okay to do it, then I don’t see how it’s anyone else’s business.

  10. Sadiebelle says:

    I have her book (Shut Up and Run) which is very inspiring. I love her, thanks for posting about her!

  11. Izzy says:

    It’s amazing how many people on the internet suddenly become OB-GYNs when a celebrity woman is pregnant and not conforming to their expectations.

  12. Mindy_Dopple says:

    Wow. People really feel they have control over women’s bodies don’t they? I’m not a medical doctor but I’ve heard that if you were doing it regularly before you were pregnant it’s safe to continue doing it as your pregnancy develops as long as you listen to your body. Besides she’s consulting her doctor. End of story. I’m currently in week 12/13 – I have my first ultrasound today and it’s been rough. I have ADHD and have been off my adderall for a little more than 2 months now. It’s definitely affected my life and job. I’ve also been so low on energy that I hadn’t worked out in the last 2 months – I’m trying to give myself a break but it’s been tough. I go to therapy – I’m going to talk to my doctors today about alternatives or options. I have to balance what’s good for me and also what’s good for my baby.

  13. Pixelated says:

    Everyone is different. Every pregnancy is different. You shouldn’t feel pressured to do or be anything if you don’t feel good. Run a marathon, sit on the couch, whatever. Just take care of yourself in your own personal way. Talk to your doctor. End of story.

  14. Ariel says:

    I have never been pregnant and my exercise is walking- so i have never given this much thought.
    But i am appalled that people feel so free to tell her what to do.

    Now, i will make several common sense assumptions: that she has an obstetrician she sees on whatever schedule is appropriate per said obstetrician, that she wants to deliver a healthy baby.

    After that- i’m out.
    No part of me thinks she would endanger her baby.

    Her getting criticism blows my mind.

  15. Lunasf says:

    Good for her! I hiked and did challenging yoga while pregnant and it definitely helped me have an easier labor and recovery for sure. I feel like a lot of woman have harder times getting back their strength after pregnancy because they are scared to keep up their fitness (well and it’s harder!) while pregnant but it’s usually may more beneficial to you both. Congrats to her!

  16. Jaded says:

    I’ve never had children but most of the women I know who exercised regularly during their pregnancies had quicker deliveries and speedier recoveries than those who didn’t. It’s up to the woman and her doctor. Period. I can’t stand shamers of any type.

    • Epica says:

      This. It’s often the women who don’t exercise that have consequence – and they’re likely the same whiners criticizing the women.

      It’s a hybrid of concern trolling/jealousy with some internalized misogyny for good measure 😂

  17. SarahCS says:

    I do Les Mills Body Pump and my old (amazing) instructor Sarah carried on teaching while she was pregnant, she just adapted. There’s no motivation like seeing a very pregnant woman lifting way more than you to help you push yourself that little bit further! I loved her pump classes and she was a huge part of that.

  18. Sofia says:

    I am a part time mountain guide and avalanche safety instructor. I climbed and skied easy mountains of 3000-4000 feet until a few weeks before birth. I took it really easy, choose easy terrain and did not ski with speed. I only stopped because of poor snow conditions and went for a mountain hike 5 days before I gave birth. Climbing and skiing is second nature to me and my body is so well adapted to it, I did not feel uncomfortable at all doing while pregnant. Keep doing what you love and adapt your activity to what is comfortable for you!

  19. Jane Doe says:

    This. Pregnancy is not an illness! Some individuals have high risk pregnancies, but fortunately most do not. The activity is beneficial physically and mentally.

  20. Epica says:

    People are delusional if they think womankind haven’t been birthing children & being physically active in a big way since the beginning of f-ing time. People criticizing her are likely the Mommy Police, and those women’s kids & husbands grow to actively loathe them *inserts Kim K ‘it’s what she deserves’ gif* lmao

  21. Jumpingthesnark says:

    I ran, swam, walked and yogaed my way through 2 pregnancies as an advanced maternal age lady. It felt great and really helped me feel strong and confident throughout.
    But TONS of people commented and told me I shouldn’t be doing it, aren’t you worried about hurting the baby etc etc. I tried not to focus on the shiftiness of the comments and just trotted out my speech that my OBGYN, herself a marathon runner, was fine with it. And she was!

  22. Winterberry says:

    If you are fit going into pregnancy there is no reason you can’t keep it up unless it is skiing or something. I have a friend who ran five miles a day when she was nine months pregnant.

  23. Grant says:

    Six workouts per week at 2 hours each? That’s incredibly impressive. I do NOT have that kind of energy and I’m not even pregnant.

  24. Rise_Above says:

    I’ve seen overdue mother’s to be go into labor during squats. After the first one where I had to quickly catch a baby I politely asked the overdue or close to their due date one’s to put a towel on the floor and I kept cushions close by just in case. They’re happy to comply since I have a do what you feel comfortable with or whatever your doctor advises policy but I’m not picking up 106 pound rubber mats to sop up your fluids and pressure washing the floor with medi clean more than I need to.

  25. Emily says:

    I don’t understand this attitude that pregnant women should lay down all day. It’s actually healthy to workout and will make delivery easier. When I was pregnant I did spin until my knees started hitting my belly. I was just careful to keep my heart rate below 150 (I wore a Fitbit to make sure I wasn’t over-exercising) and stopped when my doctor suggested I stop because my baby was measuring small (not that the exercise caused it). Listen to your doctor not the internet trolls.

  26. Le4Frimaire says:

    If she’s healthy with no complications, good for her. This is her job snd she seems good at it. I need to work out 2 hours a day, 6 days a week, and give up cookies 🙂