Sunday, June 24, 2012

Pregnancy Nutrition

Obviously this whole pregnancy thing has been one huge learning experience for me.  But one area where I really struggle is nutrition.  My eating habits prior to the BFP (Big Fat Positive) revolved around Ironman training.  I ate A LOT of food.  And while I didn't meet any weight loss goals last year, I really was able to maintain my weight while eating obscene amounts of crap.  So my calibration for "regular person eating" was way off to begin with.

Enter the first 18 weeks of pregnancy where I couldn't even open the refrigerator without puking.  I lost over 10 pounds and struggled to keep anything down.  Carbs were my saving grace.  And the carb binging continued once the appetite came back, and then well into the second trimester.  Thankfully as the pregnancy has progressed I have been craving mostly healthy foods (salads, protein, etc.).  I can't even think about things like fried or fast foods without gagging.  But I know that I'm not eating as balanced as I could/should be.

My eating habits have been skewed for the better part of 2 years.  And I've battled the scale my entire adult life.  So yeah, I'm terrified of gaining too much weight.  I'm keenly aware of the struggle ahead of me to tackle any extra "baby weight" that I pack on over the next 10 weeks.  I'm not interested in dieting, but now that I'm not hugging the toilet several times a day, I want to make sure that I can honestly say that any pounds I put on are legit.  I'm also at a higher risk for pre-eclampsia (both my Mother and Grandmother had it) and I want to do everything possible to change that pattern.  And I'm taking care of another person now, so weight gain aside, I need to make sure that I'm putting the best possible things into my body.

So aside from continuing as much exercise as I can manage, I'm also going to be tracking my food intake through  Have you guys used this?  It's a website, but also available as an app on the iPhone and iPad.  What I love is that it not only tracks calories, but it keeps you informed on your nutrient intake.  I'm going to log my meals for 5 days and see how I'm doing.  Then I'll know where I need to make adjustments to the types and quantity of items in my diet.  And since I'm a total data whore, I'm super excited!

What else have you veteran mamas done to keep the weight gain in check during pregnancy while still getting the full range of needed nutrition?

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Weeks 27 & 28

Week 27
6/4/2012 - 6/10/2012
Half of this week was spent wrapping up our time in Kauai.  What a blessing it was to get that time away together before baby arrives.
Milestones: I felt baby girl's hiccups for the first time this week.  So stinkin cute.
Size of Meatball: Average size for this week is about 2 pounds and 14.5 inches.
Symptoms: You know all of those dramatized tv and movies where the pregnant girl is bloated and waddling and breathing fire and running off to puke?  Pretty much that.  But I guess it really isn't all bad.  This is probably the most comfortable part of the pregnancy and I'm still able to do mostly everything that I was able to do pre-pregnancy.  Except for reach the kitchen faucet or have a visual on my girly bits.
Food cravings: This text to Ken probably sums it up. "Artichokes and raspberries and shrimp for dinner please!"
Food aversions: Somebody (coughJeffMaceycough) mentioned a breakfast place in Portland that serves a brunch dish that contains waffles and chicken topped with whipped cream.  The vomit started creeping up, but we were in public and I was able to contain myself.
Exercise: The last bit of walking/swimming/snorkeling in Hawaii.  And one bike and one strength session.
Weight gain: I'm officially up exactly 15 pounds for the entire pregnancy.  My target is 25 pounds, so I have 13 weeks to limit myself to a 10 pound increase.  Given the amount of ice cream I'm eating these days to quench the heartburn, that sounds really really really difficult.
Other random crap:
- I hit one of the lowest points of pregnancy so far this week.  I was cozied up in the hotel room feather bed, all snuggled in, when suddenly I had to go to the bathroom RIGHT NOW.  Except that I couldn't quite roll over enough to get up.  I had to wake Ken up and have him push me over so that I didn't pee myself.
- During the travel back home, a TSA guy at the airport said "I hope your water doesn't break like any minute now because I can't swim very well."  Jackass.
- Back in April, my Mom bought me a maternity top for my birthday.  It was huge and I figured that no matter how much I gained that it wouldn't fit correctly.  But I kept it because I always hear how girls don't have anything to wear during those last couple of weeks.  Yeah, it's almost too small now.

Week  28
6/11/2012 - 6/17/2012
We had a great prenatal appointment this week.  All of my numbers are good, blood pressure is in check, blood sugar is great (no GD, yay!), and baby girl is measuring on track.  Well, fundal height is 3 weeks ahead, but that's better than the 5 weeks ahead from last time.  We've been able to hear her heartbeat with the fetoscope since the previous appointment, so no more doppler!  We can also tell which body part is trying to escape from my belly.  She LOVES backing her little tushy up towards the side of my rib cage and snuggling on in.
Milestones:   Third trimester!
Size of Meatball: It really depends on which source you read.  Somewhere between 2.25-2.5 pounds and 15-16 inches.
Symptoms:   Lots of Braxton Hicks contractions this week.
Food cravings: Salad.  I seriously can't get enough of them.  But only from the salad bar at Whole Foods or New Seasons.  Not all salads are created equal.  Oh, and ice cream.  But that's a given.
Food aversions: Same story.  Coffee, chicken, fast food.
Exercise:  One strength and one long hike (okay okay it wasn't long at all but it was still sorta hard).  Can I count the hours spent organizing the house?  No?
Weight gain: I'm up 2 pounds this week for a total of 17 pounds gained.
Other random crap:
I got nuthin this week.

Monday, June 11, 2012

10 Pregnancy Running Tips

1) Bring more water than you think you'll need.  I've been drinking about 50% more than I used to.  And since fuel belts probably aren't going to fit you anymore, get used to the hand-held bottles or a hydration pack.  I have the older version of this one by Nathan and love it.

2) Throw on some extra lube.  I'm now experiencing chub rub in some odd places.  Which might have something to do with wearing non-maternity running clothes beyond their stretchability.  But really, extra lube never hurt anyone.

3) Belly support!  I'm still on the hunt for one that works for me.  I didn't like this one very much at all (way too much chaffing and a weird fit) so I'm going to try this one and/or this one next.

4) Buck up the $$ and get yourself a new sports bra that fits.  Not everyone has circus-freak boobs like myself (increased over 4 cup sizes so far!), but there's a good chance your old ones aren't really working for you anymore.  When the girls are comfy, you're comfy.  I use this one by Shock Absorber.  It goes up to at least to a 36H.  Please don't ask me how I know.
Short side story: I stocked up on $500 worth of new sports bras about 2 weeks before getting pregnant.  If you are in need of 34DD, hit me up!

5) Walk on over to a garbage receptacle.  Now, throw out all of your old hangups about speed, distance, and endurance.  Go on, let go.  Good.  Now close the lid and back away.  Giving yourself permission to finally just listen to your body is one of the best gifts you can give yourself if you want to continue enjoying running while pregnant.  This is actually good advice for non-pregnancy running.

6) And while you're at it, chuck your dignity in there too.  Running while pregnant probably won't do much to boost your self-esteem.  This was confirmed during a run when a car of teenage girls yelled "keep running fat ass" at me.  Lovely.  Because I didn't already feel fat and gross and bouncy.

7) Indulge in some maternity-specific workout clothes.  I didn't run much in the first trimester because I was too sick.  By the time I got into running again (close to 20 weeks) my belly had popped, but I was still trying to squeeze into my usual ensembles.  Those first few runs were spent pulling my shirt down over and over again as it tried to repeatedly creep up over my belly.  And my running shorts, although pushed below the bump, were still tight enough to give me a constant wedgie.  It was miserable.  Although they aren't maternity-specific, I'm loving the running skirts by Lululemon and their regular running/yoga tops but in a longer length.  I have one from Nike that I'm obsessed with, so I'm on the hunt for the same style.  I'll post it here if I find it. But the Lulu ones are pretty awesome and have a nice selection in long lengths.
Another side note: For maternity cycling clothes, check out the line by Sheila Moon.  I purchased two sleeveless jerseys and the Aphrodite shorts and LOVE them!

8) Treat your feet.  I'm not talking about changing up your running shoes (don't!), but the swelling is quite painful.  And nobody looks good rocking the hobbit-feet.  I guess this happens whether you're running or not, but now is the time to spoil yourself.  Kick them up post-run and let the hubby give you a good massage.  Or be good about scheduling regular pedicures.  Yes, it's safe.  No, it won't make you go into pre-term labor.

9) Mind the heat.  You're going to get hot fast.  Like, nuclear hot.  And now that we're heading into summer, try and get out the door early in the morning or later after the sun is going down.  Bring extra water (see tip 1), wear clothes that breathe (preferably not in all-black, even though it is slimming), and don't push the pace too much if the mercury is on the rise.  Remember that first trimester nausea that made you want to slit your wrists and question the sanity of anyone with more than one child?  That's what you'll feel like if you get overheated.  Don't go there.

10) I should probably put in here somewhere to check with your physician about running while pregnant. While a minority of women have issues that prevent them from running safely, it really is okay to do for most of us. Luckily I have kick-ass midwives who are up-to-date in their field and forward thinking. No heart rate limit (totally bogus and outdated advice), no time limit, no distance limit. Just instructions to listen to my body and don't do anything stupid. Common sense stuff.

Happy running!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Weeks 25 & 26

Week 25
5/21/2012 - 5/27/2012
Most of this week was spent tying up loose ends at work and prepping for our annual pilgrimage to the Lochsa River in Idaho.  We make the trek out there each Memorial Day weekend for camping, reconnecting with friends, natural hot springs, and big whitewater.  Hauling a big belly around made things a bit different this year, but it was still awesome.  Sleeping on the ground was slightly challenging (my hips ache just thinking about it!), but all of the fresh air more than made up for it.
Some photos these days leave me totally shocked with my jaw on the ground, while others make me think "okay, I'm looking about where I should be".  This week's photo is more of the jaw dropping variety.  But here's one below that I think is more representative.  If I'm completely delusional, just don't mention it, mmkay?  Sorry Facebook friends, as these are repeats of what you have already seen.
Milestones: Nothing monumental this week.  I have started monitoring my blood glucose levels.  This is an option for me through my midwives instead of taking the glucose tolerance test (GTT).  So for 2-3 weeks I get to prick my finger 4 times a day and see how sweet my blood is.  Since I'm a total data-whore, I don't mind this too much.  I have an awesome spreadsheet going already.  And so far, things are looking pretty good!
Size of Meatball: About a pound and a half, I suppose.
Symptoms:  Swelling and the general feeling that someone inflated me with saltwater.  And injected my legs with lead.
Food cravings: Mostly sweet foods and cheese.
Food aversions: Nothing new here.
Exercise: 1 run and a bunch of walking and activity around camp.
Weight gain: I was up a total of 9 pounds (compared to pre-pregnancy) at the beginning of this week, but am pretty sure I gained another few pounds while traveling.  I spared myself the misery of getting on the scale once returning home.
Other random crap:
- Sleeping on the ground at almost 6 months pregnant isn't too fun.  But with 4 pillows and a 4" paco pad, it's very manageable.  However, 9+ hours of driving each way?  No amount of pillows can make that tolerable.
- I was comparing recent pictures to belly photos from about a month ago and had my warped reality come crashing in around me.  I thought I was "sooooo huge" at the time.  Hahaha.  Makes me wonder what I'll be thinking in 2-3 months from now.

Week 26
5/28/2012 -  6/3/2012
We're on a vacation binge right now.  Two days after returning from Idaho, we were re-packing and boarding the plane to Kauai for a babymoon.  (Does anyone else hate that term?)  We came back to the the south shore of the island to Poipu, at the exact same hotel (and almost exact same room) as our honeymoon.  Ken has his preggo-dar on full alert and has spotted at least 6 other soon-to-be mommas lounging around the property.  Considering there are only like 120 rooms, and the hotel isn't booked solid, that's a pretty high ratio.  I think it's great seeing all of the growing and changing bellies waddling about in bikinis!  And speaking of baby belly in a bikini...
And even though I swore I would only share this next photo with my closest friends and family, I decided that I should just embrace it.  It was Ken's idea, obviously.
I'm working on a belly montage that I'll share when we return from vacation.  There are some hilarious ones, and also disturbing ones, in there.
Milestones:  I read somewhere that baby girl has started opening her eyes and can tell light from dark.  But I'm not buying it, because she doesn't stop rockin' & rollin' after the sun goes down at all.  Or when the sun comes up for that matter.
Size of Meatball: According to, she's about 1 1/3 pound and 14 inches.
Symptoms:  Swelling/bloat and heartburn.
Food cravings: I was finally able to satisfy my craving for eggs benedict from the Koa Kea.  Just as good as I remember!
Food aversions: Same things, but now french fries are also completely revolting.  I've only had them once this entire pregnancy, but now I can't hardly stand to watch other people eat them either.
Exercise: Nothing structured, but lots of walking, swimming, and snorkeling.
Weight gain: No clue.  I have defriended the scale for awhile until we're done traveling. If I had to guess, I would say around 15 pounds total.  Maybe 20, depending on how badly the travel bloat really is.
Other random crap:
- The car rental lady in Kauai had some nice things to say.  It went something like this (in her Hawaiian accent and big toothy grin): "Whoa Momma! You gonna have a big one just like us on da island.  A 12 pounder, mmhmm."  Awesome.
- It's true that you become clumsy and sort of lose your sense of balance later in pregnancy.  Foggy goggles, flippers, and crashing waves don't help the situation at all.  Come on down to Poipu Beach for the comedy show this week!