Things that surprised me about pregnancy.

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My third son Tommy is going to be 10 months old in a few days, I can’t believe how fast the time has flown and that I was pregnant with that little nugget not even a year ago.

I’ve been reflecting on pregnancy lately and what an extraordinary experience it is. I’ve also been thinking about all the things I didn’t know about being pregnant until I actually went through it. I didn’t know much, and anything I thought I knew about came from movies and television shows which pretty much get it all wrong. If this is your first go round with this crazy, exhausting and incredibly special experience, here are a few things that may surprise you.

  1. Morning sickness, or for many women all day sickness, usually lasts only the first trimester and many women don’t get sick at all.
  2. Fatigue is many women’s worst complaint. I was so tired during my first pregnancy I would go into the bathroom at my job, lay my head on the toilet paper roll and sleep during my lunch breaks.
  3. Your baby bump won’t come in until about 5 months so don’t rush out to buy maternity clothes.
  4. Everyone wants to tell you their horror story about pregnancy and delivery. Don’t listen to them, everyone’s experience is different and you need to ignore the negative talk. Going into delivery with a good attitude is so important and you’ll get through it with the help of some great doctors, nurses and family members at your side.
  5. Watch what you eat. I thought pregnancy was a license to eat whatever I wanted. Turns out our bodies need to make 2 to 3 times the amount of insulin it takes to properly digest sugar than when we’re not pregnant making you susceptible to gestational diabetes. This goes away after pregnancy but come with many risks such as a very large newborn.
  6. Contractions feel like menstrual cramps and don’t start off that painful.
  7. Labor pains can start weeks in advance to actual labor and delivery. These can get quite annoying and even keep you up at night.
  8. It’s very unlikely that your water will break in public. I thought it was like the movies, a women screams that her water has broken and they rush her to the hospital. Not so much. You will likely be in labor for some time and be at the hospital before your water breaks.
  9. Core muscles push the baby out so do your planks!
  10. Recovering after delivery. No one tells you that you can’t do much walking and have to wear maxi pads the size of Texas for weeks after giving birth. I guess it should be sort of obvious that pushing a small human out of that tiny orifice would cause some bleeding but I didn’t know this until it happened. You can’t do much for two weeks in order for the wounds to heal and even then you need to be careful or they could open again. So take your time, I know it’s hard if you’re normally very active. By six weeks you should get the go ahead by your doctor to workout like normal again.
  11. The duration of pregnancy is 10 months not 9.
  12. Last but not least, I didn’t expect to feel as beautiful as I did and my husband  ensured that I felt beautiful by telling me that every day.

What about pregnancy surprised you most (bad or good)?

Thanks for stopping by!

xo,

Hilary

Pregnancy is a lesson in letting go.

pregnant-stress-stockI just came to the end of my third pregnancy and it was a long ride! I was tired, irritable, sick, frustrated and elated all at the same time. At the beginning of the nine month journey I felt great, working out almost everyday, cardio, barre, yoga you name it. Making myself healthy smoothies in the morning and overall eating well. I thought “this is gonna be my best pregnancy yet!” Then BAM! About 2 months in, I was sick, tired and had no motivation what so ever. I wasn’t exercising and I was eating whatever I could stomach, mostly crackers and lots of high carb meals like pasta, as they seemed easier on my stomach than anything else. Things got a little better month 4 and 5, then I pretty much went back to being extremely tired, irritable and overall not feeling good.

My point in telling you this is not to get sympathy, as I know many women have much harder pregnancies than I’ve had.  I simply want to express how when it comes to being pregnant, and honestly in most areas of life, we have very little control. Our bodies are in charge. I would love to be the woman running 3-5 miles a day up to when I give birth but that’s just not in the cards for me. I realize part of getting yourself to do things like exercise and eat right has to do with motivation, no matter how you feel, but much of the time how you feel takes away that motivation. Especially when your energy levels are very low. It becomes very depressing actually. You just want to feel “normal” again.

At some point you just need to let go and ride it out. Realize that the way you feel won’t last forever and take advantage of others willingness to help you. Part of what made me sad during my pregnancy was my inability to do all the things I was doing before, not just for myself but for my family and friends. I’m terrible at asking for help, I feel guilty that someone else is doing what I think I should be and have to learn to let go of that. People want to help, as long as you’re not taking advantage of it of course.

Now that I’m three weeks post-partum I feel like a new person. It sounds strange but even though I have a new- born at home I’m getting better sleep then I was the last few months of being pregnant! I’ve started walking again and ready to get back to working out as soon as my body is ready. Now that I’m feeling better my instinct is to workout like I was before my pregnancy. But, my best advice is no matter how good you feel post baby, wait until your doctor gives you the go ahead to do high impact exercises again before you attempt anything to strenuous or you’ll just slow down the recovery process. For example, I took a longer walk last week than I should have and it set me back a few days in my recovery.

I’m back to walking only a few miles every other day at this point. Next week I’ll do a little more and soon enough I’ll be back to exercising the way I want to.

Stay tuned for more on how I get back in shape after baby and tell me how you do it. What do you do to look and more importantly, feel good while juggling mommyhood?

 

 

 

Exercising while pregnant.

The last thing I’ve wanted to do since the first few months into this pregnancy is workout. I have been so tired, uncomfortable and overall not feeling well this entire pregnancy. I’m not expecting sympathy by telling you this, I simply want to give you my experience in case you may be feeling the same way. It’s hard to feel this way when you are used to being pretty active and fit.

I’m nearing the end, about a month to go. I’ve gotten a little of my energy and motivation back and trying to take advantage of that and get some exercise in. I know whatever I can do will help me feel better right not, make it easier to get back into shape post partum and give me a little more strength in the delivery room.

When it comes to working out during pregnancy, simply try your best and do what you can. Don’t feel bad if you need some time off from the gym. The baby is taking a lot of energy out of you at this time so if you’re body is telling you to take it easy, pay attention to it and don’t force it.

Here are some safe exercises you can do while your pregnant. I suggest walking or doing the elliptical machine for cardio. Low impact comfortable workouts are effective and feel the best on your joints. Plus they cause less cramping than high impact cardio.

Abdominals and core.

1)Planks are a great way to tone your entire body. Plus they are a great exercise in preparation for labor. They are the best at strengthening your abdominal floor and you may notice force you into a kegel.

Regular plank:

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Legs and butt.

1) Squats.

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2) Lunges.

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Arms. One thing you can really work while your pregnancy are your arms. We often talk about toning our abs and legs but our arms are just as, if not more, important. Having sleek, toned arms makes you look and feel fit. Plus they are one of the most exposed parts of our bodies! I don’t know about you but I’m not wearing any midriff baring shirts these days.

Here are two of the best exercises you can do for your arms.

1) Bicep curls.

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2)Triceps extensions.

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What exercised can you add to this list?

Thanks for reading.

xoxo,

Hil

 

 

 

 

Pregnancy and exercise.

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Getting in some last minute exercise before this baby arrives. Check back tomorrow for some tips on exercises you can do while your pregnant, even when you get as big as I am right now!

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Show off your baby bump! I’d love to see your beautiful bumps so please post them in the comments section of this post. Congrats and goodluck to all you expectant moms!! ❤️

The “What’s your excuse?” girl debate…

How do you feel about this post from a fit mom trying to motivate people to get in shape? It’s stirred up quite a controversy with some who think she is being a bully toward women trying to get back into shape after having kids.

Personally: I am all for trying to motivate people but this isn’t the way to do it. Everyone has different body types, metabolisms, life situations etc… that determine how quickly they get back into shape. Sure, many are just lazy or need to try harder. But that’s their own choice. This woman, whoever she is, obviously centers her life around being physically fit and that’s her choice and she seems to be fortunate that she is able to devote so much time and money to her fitness passion. I find it both obnoxious, irresponsible and dumb to post a picture of yourself with your children and flaunt it in the faces of women that may be struggling with both the weight gain of having a child and the deeply emotional and sleepless time of postpartum.

On the flip side, I do find it quite irritating when folks complain about trying to lose weight and aren’t willing to do the work.

Send in your thoughts on the subject. Do you think this woman is justified?