The single biggest difference between my first pregnancy and this one is that I have another baby to take care of all day long. But, other than that (and realistically, because of it) has been exercise. With the exception of going out of town for a few weeks and a week or two of Lincoln being sick, I’ve missed less than 5 gym days (M-F) since I got pregnant in September. First trimester it was a lot of stretching, snacks in the locker room, and long, leisurely showers but but since its been weights + classes + cardio.
I’ve read and heard SO many contradictory things about working out while pregnant. There’s the “don’t lift more than 20 pounds or you’ll harm your baby” (um, sorry, my child weights more than 20 pounds and he isn’t going to carry himself for the next nine months) while at the same time there the “I didn’t change weight lifting regimen until far into my third trimester.” After talking to my doctor though, I just followed the “listen to your body” and in some ways feel more fit than I did this time last year.
By exercising throughout this pregnancy (aka: logging more fitness hours than I’m pretty sure I ever have in a given 8 month period in my life), I have a whole new appreciation for my body. First time around I was so scared any exertion was going to hurt little Lincoln or send my body into labor and yesterday I walked/jogged intervals for half an hour before a leg workout!
Ben keeps commenting that this pregnancy seems much easier on me, which is interesting because part of it feels SO MUCH HARDER. There’s another tiny human to tend to, all the aches and pains started much earlier, and I’ve felt about 9 months pregnant since halfway through my second trimester. Part of what he sees may be the perspective that ANYTHING (for me) is easier than those first two months with Lincoln (sorry to all those moms who had to hear me complain about being pregnant the first time around – I had no idea how easy I had it, throwing up regularly and all), but I think another big part is the endorphins that come from my daily gym dates.
Another bonus? Its kept the negative body image thoughts at bay quite a bit longer than last time (and I like to pretend that at least part of the 37 pounds I’ve gained so far is muscle ;). Plus, I’m really eager to see how the changes I made this time around effect delivery and recovery.
P.S. Pictures from strolling around Mallorca, Spain in my most lived maternity workout gear at 33 weeks pregnant. The sweatshirt + leggings are both boobdesign and while I loved their shirts and dresses last time around, their fitness line blew me away when I ordered a few pieces back in my second trimester. I love that the tops are all maternity and nursing friendly so I’ll get double use out of them (if all goes well) and the quality and comfort is top notch.