Angie Stewart kept flying, leading exercise classes

by Courtney Price

DENVER – Angie Stewart might have stopped flying planes a couple of weeks ago because of her pregnancy, but she’s still teaching classes at the LKN Athletic Club – even though her baby could come in just two weeks.

Angie and her husband, Chip, live in Cornelius and own the athletic club, and Angie’s been teaching body pump, cycling, turbo kick and cardio classes for a while. They also own two gyms in Lincolnton, one in Shelby and one in Statesville.

“Because I’ve been so active, I thought if I did stop what I was doing, the weight gain and wear and tear on my body would have been worse,” Angie said.

But she has been cutting back, demonstrating a motion once or twice for the class and then doing a less vigorous motion throughout.

In her “real day job,” Angie pilots small business jets for executives of Lowe’s Home Improvement. When she was 18, she took a part-time fueling job in North Myrtle Beach, and she was hooked.

She’s temporarily stopped flying and said she’ll take 10 to 12 weeks after she delivers before going back in the air. But she didn’t want to stop exercising.

For the Stewarts, the classes are as much about energy as they are about the exercises. “She wanted to continue to be in shape and keep herself and the baby as healthy as she could,” Chip Stewart said. “It’ll also help her bounce back after the baby comes.”

Angie is due to give birth to her second daughter Monday, Aug. 8. Her first daughter, Paige, is 5 years old and picked out her sister’s name.

“Paige wants to name her Rose,” Angie said. “She knew it was a girl before we did. When I asked her if she wanted to know what the baby was, she said, ‘Mommy, it’s a girl. God told me.’”

Paige was born just before the couple built the Denver gym, and Angie remembers walking around the construction site with Paige in her arms. Now Rose is becoming a part of the gym’s family – and she’s trying to get Angie to exercise a little less.

“I’ve gotten to the point where I can feel myself wanting to slow down,” Angie said. “I haven’t been doing anything full-on for a couple of months. Between the heat and the pregnancy, it’s really getting to the slow-it-down point.”

Chip’s encouraged Angie to do what feels right. “I told her to listen to her body, and if she feels fine, then go ahead with whatever she feels comfortable doing.”

And while she feels comfortable with her workout routine, Angie would hesitate to encourage other pregnant women to follow her lead.

“Consult your physician,” she said. Beginning to exercise or adding more during pregnancy could have negative effects.

But for people who already have a routine, Angie said, “As long as you feel comfortable, you can probably keep doing anything light.”