Well Rounded Birth Prep

Well Rounded Birth Prep

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Sunday, June 12, 2011

12 week belly pic & stuff I'm doing to try to stay healthy

Hello all,

Thanks for your patience. I haven't written much lately--sorry about that. I have a stack of Post-it notes literally an inch tall with blog ideas that I need to get around to writing "when I have time." I do mean to...

Here's what I've been up to thus far with this pregnancy. (Please consult your care provider regarding the best supplements, exercises, etc. for your situation. I'm not diagnosing, prescribing, or recommending anything at all, just sharing my experience.)

I'm on Rainbow Light One-a-day Prenatal Vitamins. I'm also on 5000 IU of Vitamin D3 and refrigerated Now brand acidophilus. I plan on adding garlic tablets for immune boosting after the nausea is gone altogether, and possibly Floradix Iron + Herbs as I approach mid-pregnancy to reduce risk of anemia.

I have been taking a Pilates class 3 days a week (30 minute class) on and off for 4 years now. After finding out I'm pregnant, I've been far more diligent to attend whenever possible. My 6 year old and 8 year old daughters attend and take the class with me while the 2 year old and 5 year old are in babysitting at the gym. Considering that this is my 6th pregnancy in 9 years (5th live baby), I can't afford not to have good abdominal tone. When a mom's abs and uterus have been stretched from this many pregnancies, it can tend to make the abdomen hang and stretch even further late in pregnancy. This is a less favorable position for pre-labor and labor. I'd like to do what I can to keep strong abdominal tone for optimal positioning.

I'm also taking water aerobics 3 days a week (1 hour class), back-to-back after Pilates. That sounds really intense until you find out that I'm one of 2 non-senior-citizens in the water aerobics class. I would like to try to find a way to continue taking water aerobics throughout this pregnancy, if possible. I also keep thinking that I need to add in 2 days a week on the treadmill in between the water aerobics days. The reason I'm so focused on this is that my pregnancy where I took the best care of myself with diet and exercise was my easiest labor, delivery, and recovery of all of them. I realize there are many factors, but that's the point. There are things I can control, and things that are out of my hands. I may as well stack the deck to my favor with the factors I *can* control.

I'm not strictly following the Brewer diet, but I am shooting to eat a minimum of 80-100 g of protein daily as outlined by Brewer's recommendations to help prevent pre-eclampsia, PIH, IUGR, and other problems. As with the other things, there are more factors than just diet, but I'd like to do the best I can proactively. I use the meal tracker on free site babyfit.com to track my protein intake. (Let me know if anyone knows of a more user-friendly free online diet tracker and food database than that one.)

I'm finally starting to get my appetite back and I'm hungry frequently. I graze all day long, nibbling on little portions, rather than eating large meals at any point. This helps stabilize my blood sugar which is very sensitive during pregnancy (I'm not diabetic though). I carry food with me everywhere I go. Usually in my purse or diaper bag is a string cheese, whole wheat crackers, a Luna bar, a Kashi granola bar, a Larabar, a pear or apple and a small Tupperware of dry roasted almonds. I carry 32 oz of water with me everywhere I go. I never drink soda. I drink 100% juice (no sugar added) a few times per week.

I'm trying to be mindful of posture to promote optimal fetal positioning and encourage baby's anterior positioning for the future. My posture *now* does matter. I'm trying to sit up straight more, slouch less, sit on the exercise ball more, engage my abs more, and avoid slumping on the couch. I'm also trying to train myself to stop crossing my legs (really hard to stop!) since the pelvis narrows in the front when momma frequently crosses her legs, which can contribute to posterior positioning (and a longer, more difficult labor).

I got established with a chiropractor who specializes in pregnancy chiropractic and the Webster technique, for preventative care during this pregnancy, starting at 7 weeks gestation. I had moderate SPD with my 3rd pregnancy in 2006 and severe SPD with my most recent baby in 2008, so I want to do what I can to prevent it from becoming debilitating this time. Some SPD is hormonal and chemical in nature (relaxin and other pregnancy hormones) and there's little that can be done beyond management of SPD symptoms, but some SPD is positional. It's then that chiropractic can help prevent and/or treat SPD.

I would feel better telling you all this if I hadn't had a donut for breakfast and an ice cream sundae after dinner today. I guess it's all about balance. No ice cream tomorrow. Pilates, water aerobics, and real food instead.

Here I am at 12 weeks along. And yes, there's only one baby in there.


  1. Cute! Cute! :) I didn't figure out until the end of my pregnancy that you could store in babyfit the things you eat regularly and group them under a whole "meal" to not have to enter every little detail every single time...it was much nicer after that. ;)

  2. Love your honesty (about the donut and sundae!) and your discipline for everything else. My ab muscles are seriously lacking and therefore I am seriously in pain. With summer vacation, I promised myself I would work out more, and that's tomorrow. I wasn't even going to kid myself that I would get up before 5am to work out before going to work. But, over the summer, and with a 2 hr later start time next year, I plan to get into the habit of working out and doing Bible study every morning. You are an inspiration! Good job, mama! (and LOL at "only one in there!"

  3. Hey don't feel bad. I've been using Babyfit on & off over 6 years now (through 4 pregnancies) and I didn't know that until you just told me! :-P

    A reader recommended myfitnesspal.com for a free meal tracker. I signed up to check it out. The food database seems easier to use than Babyfit's from what I can tell, but I have to keep in mind that my goal is 80-100 g of protein (minimum) per day, not the 47 they tell me, since they're a weight loss site. They do have a free iPhone app that synchs to the online site for meal tracking. That would be really handy for a lot of people.

  4. K, with a schedule like that, I don't blame you! How about this trick for using a ring sling or rebozo as a pregnancy support for the belly & back? I've heard it really helps w/ grand multiparas such as ourselves.

  5. It would help if I posted the link to which I'm referring, wouldn't it? I can blame pregnancy brain.

  6. I saw that and thought about using it further into pregnancy. I've lent my ring sling to a friend who just started unexpectedly fostering a newborn. I'm hoping to get it back in the next few weeks. I have one of those belt things, but idk if it's helping or hurting.

  7. Hey, as your (sorta) midwife, I'm proud of how well you're taking care of yourself! It's good to let you and the new baby be a priority!

    I L.O.V.E www.sparkpeople.com - yes, it is a "weight loss" site, but it's biggest focuse is on having a healthy life. I like the food trackers, you can set your goal weight (would be fun to enter +40 pounds, and list the date as your due date and see what it tells you), it has a way to track fitness/water/spiritual goals, and has a downloadable app that I use regularly. So there's my official recommendation. :)

  8. Hey Jen, (and yes you ARE my MW even if you can't make it to THIS birth--midwifing me through the last 3 births does count for SOMETHING!)--sparkpeople.com wouldn't let me in b/c I accidentally clicked the box for "I'm pregnant or nursing" and it said "we're sorry but you can't join sparkpeople, you need our affiliate company babyfit.com instead" which I already had an account with. Babyfit.com must not be as good w/ their food database. As far as I know, they don't have a downloadable app for meal tracking either. (My poor lil Blackberry can't handle much in terms of apps anyway--it sits and tries to load pages until I give up.) I've used the one a reader suggested for 2 days now (myfitnesspal.com) and I don't know about the rest of the site, but their meal tracker is way easier to use than babyfit's. I've used babyfit's on and off through 6 years and 4 pregnancies and I *still* didn't manage to figure out the "easiest" way to use their meal tracker.

    Lesson to those of you out there: if you're using a non-pregnancy-based website for meal tracking, and if they ask you if you are pregnant or nursing, lie and say no or else they won't let you join b/c of their limitations for info and/or liability. Also keep in mind that your caloric intake, fat g, & protein intake recommendations will vary wildly from their "goals." This could potentially be an issue for mommas who have struggled with eating disorders in the past. I have not, fortunately, and even *I* feel a little sheepish when they tell me I'm 40 g of protein over their recommendations and 1000 calories over the recommendation for the day.

  9. Thank you for all this information! I've been trying to track in a journal what I eat but this is a much easier/ more motivating option. I'll try the www.sparkpeople.com ! I think sometimes in my pregnancies (3 in two years-1 living and 28 weeks prego), I see sweets as comfort when my emotions go nuts!

  10. I just tried to set my goal at 40 lbs more than I weighed when I first got pregnant on www.sparkpeople.com and it won't let me... Just fyi in case you wondering what would happen. Lol.

  11. Better kinds of abdominal exercises that provide high intensity and high metabolism boosting workouts that generally work with the entire body, especially the abdominal region, thereby reducing tummy fats.


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