Today’s bonus episode guest is Dr. Cecilia Kitic, an exercise physiologist with a Ph.D. in exercise immunology and founder of The IVF Project.
Dr. Kitic and Heather discuss exercise during fertility treatments:
- I’d like to start by hearing a little bit more about you and The IVF Project. Tell us about your professional background and what The IVF Project is.
- I understand you personally experienced infertility. Take us through your journey to motherhood and how it compelled you to found The IVF Project.
- What is an exercise physiologist?
- What is a dietician, and is it different than a nutritionist?
- How can listeners find qualified exercise physiologists and dieticians who special in fertility issues?
- How can exercise impact a woman’s fertility?
- How can exercise impact a man’s fertility?
- For both women and men, how can exercise impact mood and stress levels?
- For both women and men, what BMI do you recommend as the best range for trying to conceive? Why?
- If someone is outside of these ranges, do you recommend holding off on trying to conceive until they lose weight? Why or why not?
- For both women and men, how much and what type of exercise is OK while trying to conceive? Why? And how does this vary depending on the type of cycle (timed intercourse, IUI, IVF)?
- Are there certain types or frequencies of exercise women and men should do — or avoid doing — at certain times during a cycle? Why? And how does this vary depending on the type of cycle (timed intercourse, IUI, IVF)?
- Does your advice change if the woman or man was entering the cycle already at a normal BMI and involved in regular exercise? Why or why not?
- Fact or fiction: Some level of bed rest is recommended after an embryo transfer. Why or why not?
- For both women and men, how much and what type of exercise is OK when they are between cycles?
- I’d like to talk about your exercise recommendations for several specific diagnoses:
- Advanced reproductive age
- Male factor infertility
- Weight gain is common during fertility treatments, and the more you do, the more you tend to gain. How can women combat this?
- Is there anything else you’d like to add?
- Do you have two or three success stories you can share with us?
- What words of hope would you offer to someone battling infertility who has been afraid to exercise, either because she knows she needs to lose weight and thinks she’ll fail or she fears messing up her chances of success with the wrong type of exercise at the wrong time?