When you get pregnant, you know you’re body is going to go through a transformation. It’s obviously understood because you are growing a human life inside you. I always wondered what my body was going to look like when my belly got nice, round and full. And I wondered if the cellulite on my legs would increase at an exponential rate. (it didn’t, I thank lunges & squats.)
After finding out I was pregnant, I knew I would be committed to having a healthy pregnancy. For me, that meant I was committed to eating as well as possible and exercising for as long as I felt good.
This *also* meant for me that eating well, would mean I would loosen up a little bit with food and let go of any “food rules” (not that I had super strict ones, but I would pay attention to my meals and make sure they were balanced and that I didn’t overdo it with my carbs/grains).
Additionally, I felt that I wouldn’t count calories (because I never have) but I would just listen to my body and eat when I was hungry. Pregnancy does NOT mean eating for two, so there was no reason to be doubling my calories. Extra calories for me usually comes in the form of an extra snack or extra whole grains. Funny enough, I have only had dessert a handful of times this entire pregnancy. It gives me a stomachache EVERY SINGLE TIME. Sometimes it’s just worth it and I’ll just have a small serving (already planning on it at the wedding I’m going to this weekend!) This baby just doesn’t seem to like sweets…plain chocolate is usually ok though, although it’s been giving me trouble in past 2 weeks.
All of these thoughts really allowed me to have a very healthy pregnancy, physically and emotionally. I just rolled with it. Food wise and weight gain wise.
I really believe that treating your body well and honoring the food/calories you need will help you get in a really good place throughout pregnancy. It’s such a fine line between allowing yourself to eat what you want AND not eating for two. You have to trust your body to regulate that. In my normal life there is no way I would eat pasta multiple times a week, sometimes 2x in one day. But being pregnant, if I want pasta 3-4 times a week, I make sure I am getting the rest of what I need and throw in some veggies or protein.
Moving on from food and moving onto body image.
Like I said, I didn’t know how I would feel about the weight gain and my expanding waistline, but I really think that fact I know I’m doing the best I can fueling myself and exercising has made the process so wonderful. I have really enjoyed watching my belly grow and am still surprised by it when I pass a mirror. It makes me smile.
As far as the numbers on the scale goes, I’m surprised at how much they have NOT affected me or bothered me. Don’t get me wrong, I do have a twinge of nervousness every time I step on to see what it’s going to say, but so far, I have felt like my body is doing exactly what it’s supposed to do and has gained a healthy amount of weight.
What’s my point?
My point is that pregnancy is SO filled with uncertainty. You don’t know how you are going to feel, what you are going to look like or when your baby is going to arrive. BUT the one thing you can *try* to control is how you feel about your body, what you put into it and how you move. (And I say this for those having a healthy pregnancy, I know that not everyone is so lucky!!)
Embrace your body and the changes it’s going through. Let yourself eat what you want within reason. Love your body enough to fuel it as properly as you can. Eat when your hungry, but stop when you’re full. Tell yourself your belly and body is beautiful!
(photo from our maternity pics! more on those soon!)