I am neither fit nor pregnant. But I am currently in negotiations with Crunch for a gym membership. My requirements: looking toned and sculpted without breaking a sweat. So far, the beefy rep, whose forearm is bigger than my head, is noncommittal. He, like our newly elected president, must manage expectations.

 Pregnant women have expectations, too. Usually, they revolve around future dreams and desires. Yes, it's nice to have a doctor in the family. But it's ideal to have a child who can support you in retirement or buy your foreclosed house before the bank formerly known as solvent takes possession. I don't care where my nephews go to college, though bragging rights are always appreciated. I just want them to be happy, fulfilled and remember to augment my Social Security, should it still be in existence. With the economy in free fall and my broker in witness protection, successful heirs are at a premium.

But first, you have to ensure a healthy baby. And that's where FitPregnancy comes in.

The expecting cover girl is not only fit, she has perfect skin and hair and, if the ringless left hand is anything to go by, unmarried. Not that I'm judging; neither is Susan Sarandon nor Bristol Palin. Of course, for this pub, there is only one choice: a healthy mother/child combo.

To achieve that end, FitPregnancy, which is distributed in doctors' offices nationwide, focuses on nutrition, health, pregnancy, delivery and sex. Articles are varied -- from a discussion of feeding supplements to augment breast milk, to seven soothing labor positions to how childbirth presents fewer complications when a doula (a non-medical assistant) is present. Of special note, there is a step-by-step guide to the first 40 weeks of pregnancy. For first-time parents, this is probably a godsend.

The 15-year-old magazine, which says revs are up, has also created integrated-marketing programs that keep advertisers happy. The articles are deliberately short, given how and where they are read, as well as chockfull of important information, including why women have weird food cravings during pregnancy. Known as pica, they reflect a deficiency in your diet. What explains them postpartum is anyone's guess.

Moreover, FitPregnancy has a very user-friendly Web site that takes full disclosure literally. One contributing editor had her husband photograph her C-section to prepare would-be moms. I'm willing to share my books, provided they are signed out and the borrower agrees to pay a late fee. But shooting close-ups of the twins' birth? This is taking sisterhood to a whole new level. Ken Burns' documentaries are as real as I get -- and a poignant score makes them easier to take.

The magazine's specialty is celebrating pregnancy in an upbeat way. The fashion story -- be dazzling when you're showing -- insists "your gorgeous belly is the best accessory." Certainly, the model in the Maternal America $286 jersey sequin dress looks great. In fact, all the pregnant women who grace FP are amazingly fit and happy. It's like Brad Pitt inseminated America.

If you've got a pregnant friend or relative, this may be the perfect gift. Once the baby arrives, throw in a Gershwin CD. It's never too early to revel in the glories of great music and to remind your progeny, to quote the master: "In time, the Rockies may crumble / Gibraltar may tumble / They're only made of clay / But our love is here to stay."


Published by: American Media, Inc.

Frequency: Bimonthly

Web site 

Next story loading loading..