Having a Healthy Pregnancy

When I say a "healthy" pregnancy, I am not talking about the baby. For the purposes of this blog post, we will assume that the baby's health is great and that he or she is growing away and getting ready for his or her big debut. For me, having a healthy pregnancy is, well, about ME! It's no secret that a lot of women use their pregnancies as an excuse to pig out and over indulge.

I want to be clear: I am not knocking these women. Maybe they have a really good reason for doing that. Maybe they are celebrities who have been dieting their whole lives. Maybe they have completely uncontrollable cravings. Maybe they have decided that they can afford a fancy trainer afterward, or just a whole new wardrobe. I don't know. To each her own. 

What I do know for sure is that I am not one of those women. One of my big concerns with getting pregnant was staying healthy and staying active. I want to be able to bounce back sooner after the baby is born because there is a life to be lived and I intend on doing just that! So here are some things that have worked for me, and maybe they will work for you too. 

Keep on Dancing! 

I have been keeping up with my Zumba routine as much as possible. Are there times when I am too tired? Of course. But for the most part, I make it into class once or twice a week. When I am not at Zumba, I try to do squats (100 per day), or take a walk (1-2 miles) or at least sneak in some leg lifts. The goal is to keep moving and stretching and keeping my body fit. Let's face it, childbirth is going to be an Olympic sport...you wouldn't run a marathon without any training would you?! 

Don't Go Calorie Crazy 

I hate this expression "eating for two." Maybe some people think it sounds cute, but I don't. I am NOT eating for two. I am adding about 300 calories (give or take because I really don't count calories) to my diet. Really though, I haven't changed all that much about my diet. I had a healthy diet before I got pregnant and I pretty much stick to that. This means, salad, soups, lots of water, a little bit of juice, and veggies whenever possible. Lots of home cooked EVERYTHING and venison in place of red meat. 

It's kind of like that saying, "if it's not broke, don't fix it." My diet worked well for me before, so I am sticking with it. Though I have added yogurt (surprise, I like yogurt now!), as well as more fiber whenever I can. 

Get Your Prenatal Vitamin (with DHA) and some extra Vitamin C 

I feel like doctors want to tell you that the prenatal vitamin is for the baby because it makes you think about it differently. No, it's not really for your baby, it's for you. That baby is sucking down all your iron and nutrients whether you are taking extra or not. And you don't want to end up anemic, or just plain depleted when this thing is all over. So take those prenatals, with DHA if possible because that stuff is good for your mood. 

Also, I take extra vitamin C, which stops my gums from bleeding (thanks pro estrogen) and gives my immune system a boost. Not to mention, it gives me an extra glass of water for the day, which is really important. 

Connecting With Your Partner 

Sometimes I feel like my husband gets left out of this pregnancy because people are always asking me, things like, "How are you feeling?" I love being asked, don't get me wrong, but shouldn't someone be asking him how he's feeling, too?! I try and make sure I ask him from time to time how he is feeling about all the change that is slowly happening. Staying connected takes work, and I will also put in this category that sex is important as well (for me). Enjoying a close relationship is even more important now that we are bringing someone else into the world, and I don't know how women go through a pregnancy with an excess of relationship stress. 

If you find you have stress in your relationship that is bogging you both down, please consider seeing a therapist. Your baby will thank you later.

Get Rest & Relaxation 

During the first trimester, I had some guilt about taking such good of myself. While this may astound some people, others I know can relate. For me, I am used to being so "Type A" that slowing down seemed out of the question, but you have to listen to your body, and I eventually got the hang of it. Laying down when you need to, meditating, and just kicking back and taking time to do nothing are important...and the way I see it, it's your last chance!!!!

So what have I left out? Have you got any tips to having a healthy pregnancy? Please share them in the comments section below!!! 

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