05/12/2017

Food, Body Image & Exercise During Pregnancy No. 2

Hello, hello! I’ve been a little MIA this week as one of my many part-time jobs – I not only write this blog, do freelance writing work, and am a Beautycounter consultant, but I also work in PR for a large school district – has needed my extra attention as we wrap up the end of another school year. The next few weeks should be busy, but if I can make it to June everything should be a bit smoother sailing!

Next week I’ll be sharing a pregnancy update post for weeks 19-23, but today I thought I would talk about a topic that’s been on my mind since finding out I was expecting again: Food, Body Image & Exercise During Pregnancy No. 2.

Pregnancy 101: Baby #2

Does this topic make me feel a little shallow and uneasy to discuss? Absolutely. However, I think if I didn’t mention it I would be avoiding a discussion that so many women can relate to and worry about. I honestly cringe writing about this because I don’t want it to take away from my blessing of expecting again. I think it’s fair though to be both over-the-moon thankful to be pregnant, while still having moments when watching your body change is a struggle, yes?

To begin, I do have to admit that gaining weight has been a little easier the second time around. When I was pregnant with Jack, I felt nervous in the beginning that I wouldn’t be able to get the extra weight off. I also second-guessed myself about whether I was gaining too much or gaining too little. Was I eating too much, or not enough? However, as the weeks went on, I started to embrace my pregnancy body and let go of so many body insecurities that I had before.

Pregnancy Posts: 34 Weeks

34 Weeks Pregnant with Jack at the Beach!

After I had my perfectly healthy 7 lb. 14 oz. baby boy though, the weight started to quickly fall off and I realized that my body knew what to do if I let it. So many of those pounds I worried about were bloating and essential fluids, and of course that eight pound baby. I learned a very valuable lesson that is I eat when I’m hungry, stop when I’m full, indulge on occasion, stay moving, and get enough sleep, my body knows exactly what to do… Go figure!

And you know what else? Besides  having a modest weight gain, the biggest takeaway was how good I felt even at the end of pregnancy. I was still walking every day, had very little body aches and pains, slept well, and truly felt better at 40+ weeks than I had at 20.

Pregnancy Posts: Week 40

40 Weeks Pregnant with Jack!

Read more about my Post-Baby Body here.

When I found out I was pregnant this time around, I felt confident that if I followed a similar routine to before then I could once again have a healthy pregnancy. However, no two pregnancies are the same, and no two experiences (even with the same mama!) rae the same. I was much more nauseous during the first trimester and also had to deal with vomiting. I also had a busy toddler who didn’t allow for me to nap whenever I wanted like I did while pregnant with him. I also wasn’t guaranteed a full night’s sleep without interruptions, or the ability to kick my feet up after a long day.

Although I didn’t exercise a ton during the first trimester while pregnant with Jack either, I picked it up as the second trimester began. During this time with pregnancy number two though we were in the midst of a move and I didn’t carve out the time to fit in those extra sweat sessions. We also moved away from our home gym where I felt comfortable taking Jack to the daycare, and I didn’t transition to morning or night workouts when Tim would be home and I could go. Oh, and all of those treats I had during those early weeks were just so yummy and easy, that it became a routine that carried over even once the nausea was at bay.

Coldstone Ice Cream - Cake Batter + Oreos

Even with all the adjustments to my routine, I’ve gained about the same amount of weight so far as I had with the first. Although I definitely showed quicker this time – and people were very quick to point this out to me, which didn’t help with my already mounting insecurities – my body still knew what to do.

Pregnancy #2 Posts: Weeks 13-18

Week 17 Pregnancy with Baby #2!
Pregnancy: Weeks 17, 18 & 19

Week 17 Pregnancy with Jack!

However, I’ve definitely felt a little more sluggish during pregnancy number two, and I think a combination of a little more exercise and a lot more rest would really do my mind and body good. It turns out that you can be lying down, but if you’re on your phone or your mind’s going a mile a minute thinking about a to-do list, it’s not really rest.

I can choose to look at my current circumstance in two ways:

a) Either I only have fifteen weeks left of pregnancy so I could keep doing what I’m doing and just get through it…

b) Or, I still have fifteen weeks left of pregnancy and I want to spend those days being the healthiest that I can.

I definitely think ‘a’ would be the easiest option, but I realize that fifteen weeks is a long time and can make a world of difference if I use it in the right way. Plus, it’s  much easier to bounce back after baby if you stay healthy during pregnancy. I figure that with all my mastitis issues the first time around, I will most likely need every bit of a healthy immune system + strong body to fuel myself and my little one.

I do best when I set goals for myself out loud, so I thought I would share mine with all of you to hold myself accountable:

Exercise

  • Three Days of Walking Each Week (Currently I am doing about two days of 1 to 1 1/2 hour walks)
  • Two Days of modified 21 Day Fix strength workouts (Currently I am doing no strength training)
  • One Day of 30 minutes to 1 hour of Yoga (Currently I am doing no yoga or stretching… !)

Food

  • Focus on having a fruit and / or vegetable with every meal
  • Watch portion sizes

Self-Care

  • 8-9 hours of sleep each night (on average)
  • Read for 15 minutes to 30 minutes before bed
  • Less mindless screen time (Focus on getting work done while logged in, not mindlessly scrolling)
  • Take more time to pamper myself, even if that’s just taking a warm bath, painting my nails, using my heated neck wrap, or doing a facial mask

Family

  • Work on being truly present with my little family!

Most of all I just want to be the healthiest version of myself and for my baby girl. Pregnancy can wreak havoc on both our bodies physically and our minds emotionally, and I think it’s so important to recognize when you’re traveling down a slippery slope, and to make any needed adjustments as quickly as possible. For me, being honest with myself and sharing my current state with all of you allows me the opportunity to learn from mistakes and to hopefully let anyone who has felt this way (pregnant or not) know they are not alone! And the best thing about pregnancy? The end result that will melt your heart!

Jack Newborn Pictures

Conversation time.

  • If you’ve been pregnant before, do you remember having any fears or doubts when it came to weight gain or body image? What were the healthiest habits you took with you into pregnancy, or which were the ones most difficult to keep with?
  • If you haven’t ever been pregnant, what are your biggest fears with expecting someday?

Comments

  1. Love this post! So real. My first pregnancy I was petrified to gain. I didn’t restrict myself too much but I didn’t enjoy my pregnancy like I could’ve because I was so stressed about staying healthy and active and never letting myself relax. Now having a 1.5 year old and hoping to get pregnant soon I do worry about the weight gain all over again. Like you said there isn’t that same ability to rest and relax after a long day and squeezing in a workout is hard now, I can’t imagine with two kids!
    Annie recently posted…Things I Love About Being A Mom: Friday Favorites 15!My Profile

    • HappyWifeHealthyLife says:

      Although my pregnancies have felt similar so far, this second one has definitely been more strenuous and exhausting. I am sure it has to do with not being able to fully rest when I need to since I am chasing after my toddler. By the time he is ready for bed in the evening – I am too! That may mean no new blog post, or skipping some laundry, but I fully understand that I need to take advantage of those moments! 😉

  2. I think I’ve gained about the same amount of weight this time with baby #2. I honestly don’t really worry about it too much and just go with it. I ran up until about 26 weeks, and now I’ve just been trying to stretch and walk some every day. You look great!
    Amanda Bumgarner recently posted…for jordan.My Profile

    • HappyWifeHealthyLife says:

      Thank you! And that is so great that you ran until 26 weeks. I LOVE walking while pregnant. It is seriously the best thing I can do right now for my physical and mental health. 🙂

  3. Aw girl right there with you! You’ve had so much thrown on your plate during this pregnancy! I remember the first I was so afraid to indulge in anything, and was pretty rough on myself. I definitely indulged too much this time but hey, sometimes it was needed 😉 It’s so much harder being pregnant with a toddler! I would love to get home from work and relax, ha. Instead it’s boom boom boom with A. I wouldn’t trade it and I love your new goals for yourself! You got this!!
    Heather @Lunging Through Life recently posted…It Takes A VillageMy Profile

    • HappyWifeHealthyLife says:

      Thank you friend! I agree – being pregnant with a toddler is so hard! I can’t wait to see our firstborns with the babies though. 🙂 Your due date is getting so close!

  4. I can tell you put a lot of heart and thought into this post 🙂 I loved reading your thoughts 🙂 Isn’t it amazing what our bodies can do??
    Sarah @ Sweet Miles recently posted…We’re Moving!My Profile

  5. Those goals are perfect- realistic and focused on things that matter!
    Katie @ Live Half Full recently posted…The Best and Worst Traits I Got From My MomMy Profile

    • HappyWifeHealthyLife says:

      Thank you friend! And yes, I tried to keep them realistic and rational lol! Pregnancy hormones and emotions can do a number on your decision making ha ha!

  6. Whitney says:

    As someone pregnant with their first baby, I appreciate your sharing your thoughts and feelings so honestly through both of your pregnancies. It is hard not to fear the weight gain and changes in your body as they happen so rapidly and feel so out of your control at times! Hearing an experienced mama say that your body really does know what to do and that the weight will come off is so reassuring! Thanks for being so transparent with us!

    • HappyWifeHealthyLife says:

      You are welcome Whitney! We have all been there at one moment or another. Plus some days I feel awesome and energized, and the next I can forget all the good. I think it’s important to remember that pregnancy is a roller coaster and you’ll have both great days and hard days. If you keep that in mind, it makes the tough ones feel not so tough. 🙂

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