Ha! So I wanted to catch many of you up to date who have been asking me how my workouts have been going throughout this pregnancy and maybe help give you some perspective as you set your own goals!
I am 37 weeks pregnant today and while I look to many like I haven’t gained any weight I have gained 30+ pounds so far. (I weighed 186 this morning.)
Overall Thoughts Looking Back:
My first thought is that I am SO happy that I was as fit as I was before I got pregnant. I have not had as many aches and pains as I did with my second boy. In the moment I think it’s hard to sometimes see your progress, but to feel the difference in how strong I am this time around has been really encouraging. My second thought is this, pregnancy is a season and I need to embrace it for all that it is. And rather than being discouraged when I can’t exercise, or feeling like I need to be an example that you can still workout while pregnant, I was able to finally let myself live each day how I wanted/needed to and quit thinking about what I ‘should’ be doing. Now, I get that it can be healthy to have people inspire you to keep working on yourself, but at the same time that has to be in line with our personal/family goals as well. And sometimes circumstances are out of our control, I mean for those of you who have been put on bed rest, no need to feel guilty- you just have to do what you have to do.
It’s hard to really know what to say/expect during pregnancy. Aches, pains, fatigue, nausea, etc. And from a health coach perspective I think it was hard for me to know what I thought about everything or what I wanted to share with others. Some days I was like seriously what is the big deal about taking 30 minutes to do some weights, or walk, or go to yoga? And then other days I was like who on earth cares- I’m pregnant and just want to sit for an hour and feel this little man moving around in my belly! For me, exercise is more about how it makes me feel at this point than it is how I look. Sure, I like to feel confident in how I look but I really need the endorphins. So I would struggle, wanting to inspire women that you can keep working out (which I had spurts of doing), but then also wanting to be real that many days I was just too tired (which I had spurts of doing), and then sometimes it really was that I was just being lazy (which I had spurts of doing).
So with all of that said, I think you can come to the conclusion that I don’t have a strong opinion on how/what you do during your pregnancy. (In the final tip below you can see that I do think gaining an excessive amount of weight isn’t the best idea, but this is as far as your exercising goes.) Being pregnant is something that you may only experience once, or a few times in your life, so I say enjoy every moment of it. It’s a season, and a season will come again where you can focus more on your body, but fully embrace the fact that a human life is developing inside of you- what an honor to give our bodies up in order to do.
I was so scared of having a miscarriage that I really didn’t do anything strenuous, even though for many people they can keep doing what they have been doing. This is not the time to start a new program, but your body can keep doing what you have been doing really easily. Though I knew me working out has had nothing to do with our 5 miscarriages it was more a mental game for me. So I went for walks, and would do my Les Mills Pump program and home and modified where I needed to. For those of you who are sick as a dog, have some GRACE ON YOURSELF! Seriously, every woman has a different pregnancy experience and if you just need to sleep when you can then do it!
I started feeling less nauseous and also after the initial fear of losing the baby had subsided I started working out more. And by ‘more’ I should clarify that I meant actually working out! LOL! But even then, I wasn’t doing Turbo or Combat or my favorite workouts (plyometrics were out for me for sure). I was taking lots of walks, playing volleyball on Sundays with my girls, and then doing the weights with Les Mills Pump. But even then, I think I was exercising just 3 times a week or so. (By exercising I mean an ‘official’ workout, of course I was active getting my boys out of the house and such!)
This is where I just didn’t care anymore. Sounds so bad- but my energy was going to growing this baby, keeping up with my 2 older boys, and then maintaining all of the other responsibilities I have and I felt like everyday was full without even getting my exercise in! Over Christmas we were at my in-laws cabin in Idaho and I can’t tell you how fun it was to just completely chill out! I had my moments where I would think about how I’m losing my muscles, or that I needed the endorphins that come from working out, but at the same time I was like when will I have this time ever again to just completely chill out in this way. (I was 32-34 weeks while we were there.) I should say that though I haven’t ‘officially’ exercised I have been busy. I think for this next season of life right after the baby comes I may look at steps taken each day as my goal even more than how many calories burned.
Final tip: I think the one thing that has been REALLY good for me, aside from the exercising, has been tracking my weight gain. This helped me keep myself on track, or get back on track when my eating was starting to get out of control. If I ever saw the scale doing massive jumps I knew I needed to exert some self control, and that helped me from just spiraling out of control. I know this post is more about exercising, but with not exercising as much as normal I had to be wiser with my food intake. I did gain 50+ with my last son and I did not want to repeat that again. I am proud that I haven’t done the same this time around, and I know that will help me get back to where I want to be post baby.
Are you pregnant? How has it been for you so far? Are you able to exercise or are you just trying to make it through each day?