As a woman, I have noticed that I am constantly comparing myself to other women out there. As a PREGNANT woman, this hasn't gone away. I'm not proud of it, but it's often true. The world of Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook has created a double edged edged sword. On one hand, it's a great way to gain inspiration and motivation. On the other hand, it can put a lot of pressure on us to look better, work out harder, eat cleaner. Personally, I have caught myself feeling guilty about not doing workouts as hard as someone else says they are doing or not looking as fit as some other pregnant women. I was a super active gal before getting pregnant, and I truly didn't think that would change much during pregnancy. Well...in the last 6 months I've learned a few things about myself and about being pregnant and here are a few (not-so) mind-blowing facts about fit pregnancies.
Guys...you probably won't care much about this unless you have a pregnant wife who spends too much time on social media. If so, read on and see if you can help. If not...go do this ab workout and work on that 6-pack that will never be destroyed by a little human growing inside of you.
Are you ready for this? I mean...it's mind blowing stuff.
Your belly will not be the only body part that gets bigger. Seriously guys. Those pictures of girls with a sweet little bump and string bean arms are NOT NORMAL. Thumbs up if that's you...but let's be real girls, it's not likely. And it's OK! If you start noticing bigger legs, swollen feet, heavy boobs (see below for more on this one) or chubby arms...know you're not alone! Your body was made to increase body fat for the health of your baby!
You don't have to run marathons. I mean, awesome if you are - but DO NOT beat yourself up about it if you're not! I see more and more expectant momma's posting pictures of themselves after their latest 24 hr relay, marathon, or 10th race in 6 months. I don't want to bad mouth these badasses, but you SHOULD NOT feel bad if that's not you. Every body responds differently to pregnancy, and sometimes running and growing babies doesn't work so well together. I mean hey - we should be getting a medal every week or so just for being so awesome at making a human.
Your boobs are going to get huge. If you're planning on exercising (or vacuuming or sleeping) you should probably invest in a new sports bra. If you don't have enough support, that will be one more thing that will make working out tough. Make it one step easier by holding them in high and tight. I got a few with a front zipper to make the getting on and off process NOT a part of my workout.
You don't have to set any records. You're going to get slower. You probably won't be holding 10 minute planks. I have yet to hear of anyone setting any new PR's during pregnancy. Start a new category of personal bests while carrying a small, kicking human inside your uterus. Then celebrate away!
You might pee your pants. Funny how bodily functions like this become mainstream topics (if not outloud, definitely in your head) while pregnant. I have almost peed my pants while running, doing jumping jacks, and sneezing. Ok may the "almost" was a lie. You can decide. There isn't much you can do about it except have a sense of humor, and hopefully have black pants on. I've heard it doesn't get much better after baby, so you may as well get just used to it.
Comfort is the most important thing. Don't try to squeeze yourself into skinny running tights or the dry fit tops you used to always wear. But you also shouldn't sacrifice fashion for comfort! Find some workout gear that you feel good AND look good wearing. I've been able to get by on yoga bottoms with fold-over tops so far. And I LIVE in my For Two Fitness tank. It's the most flattering thing I own and makes me actually want to work out!
You are going to be tired. This is real folks. AND, it can be tough to wrap your head around. If you're like me, you're busy working, running a house, getting ready for baby and maybe even trying to work out. You want to go, go go, but it's exhausting! Some nights you just won't have the juice to get your exercise in. Listen to your body. Sleep is really important for your growing baby, and working out while exhausted isn't a very safe idea anyways. Do remember though, that exercise can help you feel more energized, so if you have chances to get little bits of activity in before you're completely pooped...try to make it a priority!
You're going to be a klutz. Unfortunately for me, I was pretty klutzy BEFOREHAND so I was totally screwed. But one of the big things that happens throughout pregnancy is your balance becomes way worse. Think about it - all of a sudden you have a large amount of weight out in front changing your center of gravity. You also have Relaxin pulsing through your body, making those supporting ligaments less stable. So pay attention ladies, you don't want to be falling over (scary for your safety and your baby's!). Don't be discouraged if your tree pose is more like the leaning tower of pisa, or you start toppling over when you are doing lunges. Be safe and don't beat yourself up about it!
Everyone is going to have their own pregnancy experience, but I hope and pray that you will OWN yours. YOU are growing YOUR baby and you're KICKING BUTT at it. Love yourself and that little one kicking inside, even if you're not running marathons!
It's great to see you! I'm Alyssa and I blog about all the things I've found "essential" in my life as a fit mama and football coach's wife. You'll find all kinds of fun stuff here like workouts, oily info, football stories and more!
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I am not a licensed medical professional. All views expressed on this website are based on my own personal research and experiences. Please consult your doctor with any medical issues before beginning a training program.
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