Read this fit mom ambassador featured post from Whitney and learn about the reality of gaining weight during pregnancy.
Hi, I’m Whitney and you can find me blogging over at Life – Love, Whit. As the title of my blog implies, it’s me, sharing my story and you pretty much get it all – workouts, recipes, trips, concerts, adventures, laughter, friends and love. And as for the rest of the details – I’m 31, I live in Portland, Oregon with my husband Chris and our half lab/half german shepherd Chance. I work full-time and am expecting our 1st baby, arriving February 2014. Here is my story about gaining weight during pregnancy.
To give you a little back-story on me, I love working out. I love running, weight training, Jillian Michael’s DVDs, and my ultimate favorite – pilates on the reformer. You could easily find me doing some sort of workout at least 6 days a week.
All of that changed when we tried to have a baby.
After a year of trying we still weren’t pregnant and I knew something was wrong. Turns out, structurally, I had some issues with my cervix but my doctor also believed I had some hormone imbalance issues, which may or may not have been tied to the amount I worked out. We talked about my cycles and realized that the more I ran, the shorter my cycles became (and I needed longer cycles to become pregnant). So besides starting on Clomid she told me that at least 2 days a week I couldn’t workout.
2 days. Crazy for me. I felt like such a bum.
But I wanted a baby so I took two days off. And I toned down my running. I also started Clomid a few days later and two weeks or so after that had an IUI. And while normally I would have worked out during those two weeks following, we actually had a vacation planned, and aside from walking, I worked out just once in 16 days.
It was on that trip that I found out I was pregnant. I couldn’t believe my 1st round of infertility treatments worked! I was elated.
I also got home from the trip, got on the scale and realized I’d gained a few pounds (we were in the south – fried food is good). No big deal, I can easily work that off.
Except when I went to the doctor for a checkup at 6 weeks, I found out the Clomid had made my ovaries extra swollen and I was at risk for ovarian torsion (basically my ovaries twisting on each other). The cure? No workouts that involved compressing my ovaries – no ab work, no pilates, no squats, no lunges and very, very limited running until the placenta took over at 12 weeks. So what could I do? Walk. Standing arm weights. The stationary bike.
So here I was pregnant (!!), weighing more than normal, barely working out and then morning sickness hits. But I didn’t get the kind of morning sickness where you throw up. No, I got the kind where I was so incredibly nauseous every minute of the day and the only thing that helped it was food. And not just any food – pasta, bread, pad thai, crackers – any white food you could imagine was all I wanted.
Fast forward to my current week 13 when I stepped on the scale to realize I have gained a total of 7 pounds since finding out I was pregnant. This means I am up 10+ pounds to what I normally weigh while all my pregnant friends shower me with stories about how they were so sick they lost 12 pounds.
But guess what? I’m totally ok with gaining weight during pregnancy — which completely surprises me. I’ve always been stressed out if one extra pound crept up on the scale, in fact the tone of my day was set based on the number on that flashed up at me. And I had always envisioned myself as a super fit pregnant lady – the one that everyone at the gym is in awe of because she’s rocking a big ol belly but hasn’t gained weight anywhere else. And I especially assumed I’d be keeping up my hard-core fitness routine through most of the early stages of baby-growing.
But turns out, that’s not me.
Now I walk. For an hour a day (trying to incorporate hills), mostly with Chance. And maybe once a week I do some arm weights or an occasional pregnancy fitness DVD (following the low-impact girl who can’t do lunges).
And guess what? I love my new low-key routine. It’s like my body is thanking me for taking a break after 10+ years of kicking its butt. Granted my shorts are a little tighter (and not just in my belly), my legs don’t look as toned as they normally do and I miss the way my back looks in a tank-top but I’ve decided that’s ok. For these next 6 months my body doesn’t need to be pushed to the max, I can stand a little cellulite, and I’m not going to be wearing tank tops in the winter anyway ☺
I know that I will not go crazy and gain 100 pounds and I am looking forward to the second trimester (especially getting back into pilates) where I can incorporate a little more sweat into my routine, and I’ll still be that lady rocking a bump in her gym clothes. But I don’t need to kill myself. If there are days when I don’t feel like working out, I won’t.
I always knew that having a baby would change my priorities in life but it turns out they’re changing a little earlier than I thought. This baby will still have a mamma who is in love with fitness but they’ll also have a mamma who understands the value of listening to their body and knowing when to slow down and just enjoy the ride.
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Please welcome Alyssa, our latest For Two Fitness Ambassador! Alyssa is the mom of two young girls, and is excited to have number 3 on the way. She keeps fit during pregnancy and postnatal times by walking, practicing yoga, and doing low impact strength training. Alyssa has run a number of half marathons, and is looking forward to participating in one in 2019. Please follow Alyssa on her website.