Now that I'm nearly two weeks into my third trimester of pregnancy, it's high time I updated this sphere of my life with some musings on how growing a baby has been going for me so far. If you aren't interested, that's totally fine - feel free to skip this post!
Morning sickness: I feel very fortunate to have avoided some symptoms that plague a lot of pregnant women, namely morning sickness. I'm not sure if I'm more sensitively attuned to what's going on in my body and what triggered my nausea (I normally have an extremely strong stomach and rarely throw up anyway), but I figured out very early on what made me feel sick. Just avoiding those triggers was enough to bypass nausea for the most part. One of my triggers was getting too hot, and behaviors like drying my hair on high heat, using the car seat-warmers on max heat, using my space heater at work, and even holding warm objects on my lap like a plateful of hot cookies or a dog had to be avoided for a few weeks. I LOVE being warm (especially in January and February!) but a happy stomach was worth making sure I didn't come close to overheating. Another trigger was any semblance of an empty stomach so I kept snacks around at all times, which was enough to hold the nausea at bay. Everyone has a different experience and I know I'm one of the lucky ones to have avoided spending any time bowing to the "porcelain throne."
Fatigue: Honestly, not too bad. I may have been more tired than usual but it was never enough to keep me from doing whatever I wanted to do. A typical afternoon usually looked like this:
Mark: "How are you feeling?"
Me: "I'm tired... So, when do you want to go to the gym?"
I did however take full advantage of my hour-long lunch break and nap in my car. I do this even when I'm not pregnant though, so I can't really say it was truly necessary!
Workouts: I think keeping to a fairly regular exercise schedule helped fight the fatigue. I didn't change much about my routine initially though I did taper my running (first-time pregnancy jitters) until I went to my first doctor's appointment at around eight weeks. I kept up jogging (which eventually turned into walk/jogs) until about April, and then stopped. It got too uncomfortable once I could sense a baby in there. I really wanted to be that woman who ran up until delivery but I don't know how people do it! Maybe you just get used to the feeling of the baby jiggling around inside you? It just proves that everyone's experience is different! I also kept up my weightlifting, but noticed that I couldn't go as long as I could before, especially in the first trimester. My energy did start to return in the second trimester, though.
One new workout I tried was a prenatal Pilates DVD called 10-Minute Solutions. I LOVED THIS. I had to return it to the library and am waiting for it again, but the short routines have done wonders for my round ligament pain (the stretching of the tendons around your uterus) and flexibility in general. There are five 10-minute routines on the DVD and you can pick and choose which workouts to do or combine them for a full workout. I never did the full workout; I usually combined two or three of them to personalize it a bit. The movements feel amazing to this pregnant body and I love the focus on flexibility, strength and breathing. I recommend it to everyone and wish I'd found it earlier in pregnancy!
Cravings: The only true craving I can really call a craving was back in the first trimester and beginning of the second trimester when ALL I wanted was frozen fruit. I'd snack on it and eat it after dinner. Looking back, I wonder if my mouth was just dry or something? I didn't need much of it -- a ramekin -- but it was honestly what I looked forward to all day. I haven't experienced any weird cravings for certain foods, though. I'm sure they exist for other people and just not me.
Aversions: None! People have stories of how they couldn't tolerate this and couldn't stand that during pregnancy but that hasn't held true for me.
What I didn't think was true until I became pregnant: Bladder issues are real! My coworker always told me stories about having accidents during and after pregnancy but I always thought (naively) that wouldn't happen to me. For the most part I have been spared but I totally get where's she's coming from now. If I have anything in my bladder, I better have my legs crossed when I sneeze or THERE WILL BE TROUBLE. It's humbling, to say the least. Ladies, do those kegels (hey I warned you -- if you wanted to skip this post, you should have skipped it!) Another issue was mood swings. I consider myself a pretty even-keel gal in general. Perhaps Mark could object to that, but I think I normally do a pretty good job of keeping emotions in check. There were a couple of instances though in the first trimester where I was irrationally sad and emotional -- and for someone who doesn't normally experience that, it was WEIRD. I've never quite understood people who get weepy. But then I became the person on the treadmill in the cardio cinema room trying to hold back sobs (the loud racking sobs) while watching the latest Superman movie. It was a bit pathetic. Ok, very pathetic. Fortunately, my stoic side returned in the second trimester and I no longer had to worry about ebbing and flowing tides of emotion. Hormones: so weird.