Why did you want to write The Mommy Diet?
Alison: There is this camaraderie you develop [with other mothers]. It brings you into this cult, this group of women who all have that one thing in common. No matter whether you know each other well or not, women always have great advice for other women about their pregnancies, about raising children. I love that. I've received so much great advice from people and I've used so much of it from my own mom and from other women who I really respect. When I thought more about it and about all of the amazing opportunities I have to meet experts in different fields, I realized the different tools I have. So much of the information that helps me get through the day is stuff that I have access to because of these amazing, talented people I get to meet. I wanted to share that information, too. It's funny because when I pitched the idea I made it clear that I am not the expert here, I'm just the gatherer of good information.
When did you decide to make exercising and nutrition such a high priority in your life?
Alison: It's funny, because of my career it's sort of always been a priority and I just feel like my education has made all the difference. It's not that it wasn't important to me before, it's just that I didn't know how to go about it. Now the choices I'm making are so much more educated so I'm doing a much better job of maintaining my health. I lost weight in my early 20s just by cleaning up my act a little bit and since then I've been honing those skills and finding the right balance that works best for me. It incorporates a lot of fitness, and finding the right exercises that I enjoy doing and that I can commit to doing. All of that stuff has been very helpful to me in maintaining my health—and after having kids it's even more important.
Did you set any goals for yourself before you got pregnant for the second time?
Alison: I wanted to get in shape and then I would think about how I wanted to have a second kid, so I wouldn't pay that much attention to [exercising]. But basically you're just putting your fitness on hold—for who knows how long—until you do it again, which is so weird and unhealthy because now you're in a holding pattern. I think everyone agrees that pregnancy is so much easier when you're fit. I really struggled during my second pregnancy with morning sickness and if I had not worked out, and if I hadn't been fit enough to work out the way that I did, it would have been 10 times worse. I would have been miserable. I think that it's so important to be as fit as you possibly can, and as active as you can be when you get pregnant, because it really carries you through the pregnancy on such a healthier level and then you bounce back a lot easier afterwards.