The first trimester is an incredibly important time during pregnancy because it is when most of the developing takes place. I think this reality finally sunk in for me when I was reading through my pregnancy books and looking at the pictures of the baby week-by-week. This reality has been my motivation to follow my pregnancy diet and be a good girl. I will be honest, I was worried about giving up the caffeine and alcohol, however this makes me laugh now because they sound disgusting. I think it is amazing how our bodies tell us what we need.
It's funny to listen to everyone's advise going through this new experience... give into cravings, you can eat for two, watch your weight now because it's impossible to get it off later, NO CAFFEINE, some caffeine, NO ALCOHOL, some alcohol... what's a girl to do? I personally love hearing advice because I feel like I can absorb everything and weed out what works for me. I would not say I'm the most strict pregnant women (I know strange since I'm a Dietitian), but I definitely care that I'm trying to be healthy for myself and baby. I thought I would update you on my nutrition and exercise ventures to this point:
Nutrition: Taking a prenatal daily (my prenatal contains DHA, ask your doctor if this is important for you), I stare at that pill every day and tell myself "you can do this". I have a friend who takes shots in her butt everyday and 5 different medications and here I am staring at a simple prenatal and loathing the moment it has to go down. I will recommend taking your vitamin right before bed, I have had no adverse reactions this way.
I've completely eliminated caffeine and soda, purely because it sounds disgusting (you are allowed to have ~250mg of caffeine per day). I've been craving carbohydrates and sucumbing to the cravings of more breads, bagels, and cereals. However, I'm still trying to follow a food schedule of eating every 2-3 hours, so my snacks and meals are planned. The closer I keep my feeding schedule, the better I typically feel throughout the day. I'm struggling with fruits and vegetables and I kept telling myself that I would do better in my second trimester. Well, now that I'm in my second trimester food choices have improved, however it's still a constant struggle to balance my plate at meals. I believe my calories have remained between 1800-2200, this is normally weight maintenance for me and it seems to be working.
Exercise: Ok, call me crazy, but I was training for a half marathon in Seattle. I had planned a trip with 4 other highschool girlfriends prior to finding out that I was pregnant. I asked my doctor how he felt about my training and he encouraged me to listen to my body and take all of the proper precautions (i.e. watch heart rate, breathing, adverse signs or symptoms). I trained up to 7 miles,and felt like 13 might be attainable, however after my long run I experienced some spotting and decided to back down on my mileage. I ended up running 3 miles with my girlfriends and walking the next 10. I'm still excited to say that I completed a half marathon during my pregnancy!
I think exercise has been my savour for a mood enhancer as well as feeling better. Some of my best hours in the day are when I'm active and worst urpy times are on the couch... again, do you think our bodies try to tell us anything??
Walking feels wonderful, however lifting feels like a task. I have still not hired a personal trainer, I might use this as a motivator if my own motivation dwendles at any point. I laugh, but my Wii system has created a lot of movement for me... and no I don't have wii fit. I actually love Dance Dance Revolution and will jump on by myself and bounce around for an hour or so... this can be so much more motivating than going to the gym!
So here we are 16 weeks into prenancy and I'm finally feeling better and truly enjoying the process. The pants definitely don't fit and I'm obessed with the "belly band" (that little piece of stretchy wonder that keeps me in my regular pants). If you are wondering what I'm talking about check out a maternity store, they are a fabulous little creation.
Stay tuned for more advice and motivation and always feel free to ask questions!