Happy Friday! I hope you're staying warm in this frigid cold weather we are having. We had a snow day yesterday and it was so much fun! We stayed in prepped stuff for baby, watched movies and stayed in PJ's all day. I have been meaning to do a bump update post for a while now. I wanted to share all my favorite pregnancy products, how things are going and surprises I had throughout this adventure. As a first time mom I am definitely not a pro and am learning the ropes as I go, so bare with me! If you're newly pregnant or have any questions or just want to chat feel free to shoot me an email, I'd love to chat (firstname.lastname@example.org). Like I said I am not a pro, but here is what I learned from my experience.
1.) Favorite pregnancy products I swear by:
- My number 1 best and most used purchase is this pregnancy pillow. During my 2nd trimester I started to get super uncomfortable when I was trying to fall asleep and wake up in the middle of the night with a sore belly. Jon bought this pillow for me and it was a game changer! It helps support your growing belly and sore back and also keeps you in place (I am a big mover!). I can't say enough good things about this pillow!
- I started wearing this belly band at the end of my first trimester and ended up wearing it the entire time! It's great to wear when your newly pregnant and your jeans/pants still fit but are just a little too snug. You just put them on and leave them unbuttoned and wear the band over it to keep them in place. I never ended up finding a pair of maternity pants that I liked so I bought a size up in jeans and wore it with those too. Trust me, this makes your life so much easier and comfy!
- These maternity leggings you've seen me wear 1,000 times on the blog and with good reason! They are super comfortable, stay in place and still look stylish! I have worn these leggings to death! The best part? They're under $40 and run TTS.
- Cocoa butter...this is must! You skin is stretching as your baby grows and using cocoa butter helps promote healthy skin and prevent pesky stretch marks. My friend Jessie recommended I start using them even before I had a bump and I loved both of these these (use lotion for all over body and the butter just for your belly).
- My favorite maternity books have been this one for me and this one for Jon. Both books were super insightful and we both enjoyed learning from each other when we read them.
2.) Surprises during my pregnancy:
- I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes in my second trimester and that was probably the biggest shock/stress of all! Everyone gets tested for gestational diabetes around 28 week mark (as it is actually pretty common to have). I eat pretty healthy and work out about 5-6 days a week and when I headed in to my test I thought there is NO way I have this! I was so upset and confused when my doctor called me to let me know that I failed my test. She insured me though that it wasn't anything I did as a mom, but it is hard not to blame yourself and worry about your baby. She explained that Gestational Diabetes is not caused by eating too many sweets or gaining too much weight or not exercising enough but that your body isn't able to process sugar properly. Basically, the placenta makes hormones that can lead to a buildup of glucose in your blood. Usually, your pancreas can make enough insulin to handle that. If not, your blood sugar levels will rise and can cause gestational diabetes. So my pancreas was not able to keep up with all the extra glucose that my placenta was making. This can be totally manageable by diet and exercise! I went to a nutritionist and learned a ton! Gestational Diabetes goes away as soon as you give birth I found out how many carbs to eat at each meal and snack and how to track my blood sugar. I discovered that I was eating too many carbs in the morning (hello OJ and fruit) and not enough at dinner (which is just as bad). Though I was very frustrated and nervous at first, I ended up learning a lot about how your body processes sugar and the sneaky sugars in the foods we eat. It made me a lot more grateful for my body and the huge job it was doing, growing a baby.
- How accurate the app I was using was. I know there are a ton of pregnancy apps out there but I really enjoyed using this Ovia app (they also have a fertility tracking app as well that I've heard is good). It gives you little daily updates on what is happening with your baby and a weekly overview of what is happening to your body and baby. It helped me to have less surprises and to also know what to expect (hello heartburn and leg cramps in the 2nd trimester). It also has a place to track your medications, doctor appointments, weight gain and more.
- How different every pregnancy is. It was so fun to share my pregnancy with a few of my friends who were either pregnant at the same time or had just had their first baby recently. I learned that every pregnancy is so different! Some easier, some harder but all with the same goal of having a healthy baby. This has been my favorite life stage yet!
3.) Things I learned while being pregnant:
- Listen to your body. This might seem like a "no duh" piece of advice but I needed the reminder often throughout my pregnancy. Your body is changing daily and everything that felt "normal" before is different. If something feels off listen to your instincts and don't hesitate to call your doctor or head in to get checked out if something doesn't feel right! I am the worst at going to the doctor but you have to remember it's not just your health your taking care of anymore it's your baby too! My friend gave me a piece of advice that stuck with me "when in doubt, get it checked out." Simple and to the point!
- It's ok to rest/take a day off of working out. I am the WORST when it comes to rest/relaxing and taking a break. I always think I can push myself harder and squeeze in one more thing and usually end up totally crashing and burning. I had to really take a step back during pregnancy and allow myself to rest and take a day off of working out here and there. It's not just about you now, you're doing this for your baby too! I had to push myself to take a nap here and there and they really do wonders for you (who would of thought haha). If you're feeling worn out, sit down and take a break, your body and baby will thank you.
- With that being said, it is definitely important to keep up a workout routine as well. It helps you to be stronger for your delivery, helps with a speedier recovery, gives you more energy, helps you sleep better and makes you overall stronger. The first trimester you feel like you have the worst case of mono EVER! 2nd trimester you get your wind back and feel great and 3rd trimester you feel a whole new level of fatigue (at least from my experience). I have tried to maintain workouts throughout pregnancy but definitely made some modifications and substitutions. I ran up until I was 6 months along and then it started to become painful (this is different for everyone of course!). My doctor told me to stop running which I was bummed about as I have always been a runner. I found some great YouTube maternity workout videos and started going for long walks instead and it was amazing how much better I felt that I wasn't running myself thin! Just remember that one day your limit is going to be higher/lower than the next so listen to your body. Keeping your baby and yourself safe and healthy is the most important thing of all! Here are a few workouts I loved!
What products or advice did you love as a first time mom? I'd love to know!
Thanks so much for stopping by!