My Pregnancy Diary; 30 weeks!

How the hell did that happen? I literally have 9-10 weeks left, depending on when I have my C-section – and wow, look at the bump!

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This week, I’ve had a massive hormone surge! Sunday, I felt awful. Light-headed, sick and I had a horrible metallic taste in my mouth, which apparently is down to a surge in the hormone Oestrogen. Thankfully it has passed now, but for a few days I really didn’t fancy any food, so I’m so grateful for my frozen Ooosh juices, which I keep in the freezer and can defrost as and when I need them. They are cold-pressed, which prevents the loss of nutrients and separation of the ingredients and have such a high-level of fruit and veg in them, I’m confident that on days I don’t feel like eating much, I’m giving bubba plenty of nutrients, especially greens!

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These are also a must for new, busy mums, so check out Scott’s website and drop him a line to see how he can help you. The beauty is that you can mix and match your favorite flavours in your delivery, and it’s as simple as storing them in the freezer and taking one out to defrost for the next day – or for in my case for later on if I’m having one for dinner!  I’m certainly going to make sure I’m stocked up for those early days when you need food – but have very little time or inclination to cook, especially breakfast!

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Back to training; I’m still going. I’m training 6ish times a week, which includes two power walks/slow runs at the weekend. The TRX is helping me greatly when it comes to exercises such as one-legged squats and press ups, and it means I can work with my body weight, which, because it’s so much heavier than I’m used to means I’m not really using any free-weights. I’m determined to train right until the end.

To help me with my training, I’ve also been lucky enough to give the FitBump Box a try, which is a lovely box especially for pregnant women and new mums.IMG_2296 The box comes nicely wrapped and inside features a resistance band, a Pilates cushion and a mini Pilates ball.

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It also gives you access to a private membership area where you’ll get;
* Week by week pregnancy & new mum Pilates workouts (I’m looking forward to doing these after my C-section, where I’m going to have to really ease myself back into training!).
* Weekly food planning, recipes, tension relieving exercises, back pain workouts, postnatal “mummy tummy” cardio and strengthening workouts
and
* a private forum where they cover everything from back pain, pregnancy worries and topics like postnatal ‘mummy tummy’ troubles! Again, it’s going to be great to talk to other mums, and possibly Joanna, the pregnancy & postnatal fitness expert behind the workouts when I’m ready to ease myself back into training and looking to knit my abs back together before I get back to anything hardcore! A bit or reassurance and training advice without having to leave the house!

I’m really looking forward to doing some of the Pilates workouts, as it’s easy to forget your core when pregnant. My core and abs are usually my favourite area to train, but I don’t want to overdo it in pregnancy and risk getting Diastasis Reci – aka my abs splitting into two! It makes it harder to recover and if I rush into working out too quickly I could end up with a permanent pooch!

If you are worried too, then I would certainly recommend doing your research and maybe investing in a box like the FitBump Box, which is expert lead and tried and tested. These tips should help you too;

  • Always focus on the TA or Transverse Abdominus during pregnancy.
  • Avoid exercises laying on your back during pregnancy.
  • Avoid moves such as crunches, planks, and sit ups as these are the prime culprits to Diastasis Recti.
  • Perform each move slowly and controlled to prevent injury or mishaps.
  • ….and, as always talk to your doctor before attempting ANY ab moves during pregnancy.

Keep an eye out for more on how I’m getting on with the workouts and how they are helping me through these final months!

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My Pregnancy Diet; 28 weeks pregnant

Help, I feel sick! First trimester type sickness but mainly at night and in the morning. What is that? I don’t remember having it with Lacie!? Tiredness perhaps? Low blood sugar? Hormones? I just don’t know but it’s really annoying. I just sat in the bathroom on Saturday morning not sure what to do with myself. It did pass but I literally had to force myself to just get out the house and get some fresh air. I hope it passes soon!

So what else has been going on? Well I’m 28 weeks now and feel very bumpy. Another half an inch around the waist this week (standard!) but no-where else which is good, although I do feel like I’m carrying water.

Here’s a pic of me this morning in the gym. Another workout in the bag. Yay! As you can see I’m rocking a bump – I feel heavy!

 

So what have I been doing in the gym?

  • Core Well there have been no more ab exercises! I was never really big into doing isolated ab work anyway, as the big moves I tend to do like squats, deadlifts, clean and press etc tend to work my core anyway BUT since about 12 weeks I have stopped any twisting movements and any crunch type moves, and instead doing things like bird dog and side planks.
  • HIIT Although I was mega careful in the first 12 weeks and kept my heart rate right down and the intensity low, I’m now back to my beloved HIIT routines and usually following the 50 seconds hard, 10 seconds rest protocol. Since my body is used to this type of training, I was more than happy to introduce this again. Please take note though you need to know your body before doing this sort of training and it’s advised that you check with your GP and midwife before undertaking any sort of training. My midwife knows how I like to train and is happy for me to continue as long as I listen to my body.
  • Running I’m still going – JUST ABOUT! I can manage about 15 minutes before I get stitch like pains and then I just walk until any pain has subsided. I then do 60 second run and 2 minute walk intervals for around 30 minutes or until I reach home. I’m usually out for round 60 minutes and do this on a Saturday and Sunday morning.

Todays workout.
Today I did an hour in the gym first thing and started with my usual 5 minutes on the bike before some sun salutations and side to side tube walking.

I then did a HIIT circuit; 50 seconds work/10 seconds rest
* Deadlifts x 4, star jumps x 4
* press ups x 2, burpees x 2
* Lunge kick through into lunge glute lift, and jump and change
* Side lunge, side lunge, jump forward, jump back (stay low the whole time).

I did this for three rounds and then did finished with some bird dogs, side planks, raised planks and a slow spin on the bike.
I kept my weights low in the deadlifts and did my press ups on my knees to help prevent splitting my abs (Diastasis recti).

How have your workouts change throughout your pregnancy?

 

 

 

 

My Pregnancy Diet; 26 weeks pregnant

Wow, another week passes, and another inch on the waist. I’ve certainly got a little bump now – and brought my first pair of maternity jeans and maternity tops. Why I didn’t do that sooner, I will never know. They are soooooo comfy! I brought a lovely collection of bits from Next and couldn’t recommend it enough. I feel like I’m embracing the bump now rather than trying to dress it in baggy clothes!!

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I’m still following the Gluten Free diet and loving the benefits. I feel more energised and less bloated. Two common complaints in pregnancy, so how fab is that!?

Here is what I have been eating over the last few days. BFree foods, you have been a life saver!

Breakfast:
Banana & Peanut Butter Smoothie
1 banana
2 teaspoons of peanut or almond butter
Handful of spinach
Tbsp of flaxseed
300ml of water or almond milk
Snack: Chopped apple with peanut butter
Lunch: Roasted Red Pepper and Hummus Pitta
Snack: Sugar snap peas with GF Hummus
Dinner: Chicken & Broccoli Bake (serves 4)
4 Chicken Breasts
Head of Broccoli
Tin of coconut milk
Chicken stock: ENSURE STOCK IS GF
2 slices of BFree brown loaf (for bread crumbs – blitz in blender)
Chop up chicken fillets and fry in pan with a teaspoon of coconut oil until
white. Add in Broccoli for 3-4 minutes. Add in tin of coconut milk and chicken
stock (use 100 ml to mix stock). Place the mixture in an oven proof dish and
sprinkle breadcrumbs on top. Bake for 40 minutes. Sprinkle with a handful of
mozzarella cheese after 30 minutes for the final 10 minutes of baking.
Breakfast:
½ a soft avocado
2 eggs
Sprinkle of Himalayan sea salt
DIRECTIONS
Pouch 2 eggs. Slice the black pudding into thin pieces and cook on the grill,
mash when cooked. Mash the avocado. Toast the BFree loaf, top with the
mashed black pudding, then the avocado and top the mixture with a soft
poached egg and a sprinkle of salt. Serve with rocket.
Lunch:
Chicken Salad
Snack: 4 squares of dark chocolate
Dinner
BFree Pizza
Tomato puree
Hard Goats cheese
tomato,
roasted red peppers,
prosciutto ham.
Spread 1-2 teaspoons of tomato puree on a BFree wrap and add toppings of
choice. Bake in the oven for 10-15 minutes. Serve with Side Salad.
Snack: Bag of popcorn
Breakfast: (MY FAV!!!!) 
Simple delicious Paleo Pancakes
1 Medium sized Banana
2 Eggs
1 tsp of baking soda (ensure GF)
Mix 2 eggs, baking powder and chop one banana and blitz in food processor
until smooth. Fry on pan like you would any pancakes – keep them small as
they will be easy to flip. These are delicious served on their own or with a
tablespoon of honey or maple syrup / or a dollop of greek yoghurt and some
berries.
Snack: 4 GF oats cakes topped with almond butter
Lunch: Omelette (2 eggs), with 1/2 pepper,mushrooms, onion, garlic + 2
Snack: Handful of trail mix & a piece of fruit
Dinner: Medium Salmon darne cooked in parchment with a squeeze of lemon
juice + medium sweet potato ,chopped into fries and sprinkled with salt,
pepper & olive oil + cup of broccoli
Dessert: Gluten free cookie. Keep your eyes peeled for the recipe for this 🙂 

My pregnancy diet 

As promised here is yesterday’s and today’s food diaries. I’ve had a great week – and although it’s getting to the point now where I have to eat little & often (I hate feeling too full), I’ve loved all my meals this week – especially the fajitas!

Next week I’ll post some more workouts as they have been going great too. In fact I’m sitting on the bike and writing this as we speak. No rest for the wicked!

Enjoy!

Breakfast:
Berry Breakfast Smoothie
300 ml coconut milk
½ cup of gluten free oats
½ an avocado (for a creamy texture)
1 cup of fresh or frozen berries of your choice (I like blueberries)
½ teaspoon of vanilla extract.
Place in a blender and blend.

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Lunch:
Portion of Chilli from yesterday’s dinner topped with ½ avocado

Snack. Chopped Carrots with Gluten Free Hummus

Dinner: Chicken Fajitas using BFree Fajita Kit
(Depending on how many you are cooking for, for 1 use 1 chicken breast)
Chicken Breast
Peppers
Onion
Squeeze of lime
Slice the chicken, onions and peppers into thin strips. Add 1 teaspoon of coconut or olive oil to the pan and fry of chopped chicken. Add in thinly cut peppers and onions to the pan with the BFree Seasoning. Warm the wraps with a splash of water in the microwave for 20 seconds. Serve with BFree Salsa on top and a squeeze of lime. Wrap and enjoy.

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Breakfast:
1 cup of Gluten Free Oats (standard portion size 40g) made with water or almond milk topped with flaxseed/mixed seeds and a spoon of honey

Snack: Green smoothie: Juice of ½ a lemon, a handful of spinach, 1 pear, ¼ of a cucumber + a few mint leaves, 350 ml of water.

Lunch: Tomato Soup with BFree Super Soft Brown Roll

Snack: 2 x rice cakes with almond butter

Dinner: Sweet Potato Bean Burgers (this makes 4 burgers so could have for lunch or dinner the following day or divide by 4 to make 1 portion)
1 can of beans (I love butter beans)

1 large sweet potato
100 g of ground oats
1 clove of garlic
½ a red onion
1 carrot
½ teaspoon of cumin
1 teaspoon of smoked paprika
Pinch of salt & pepper
50g of breadcrumbs (made with BFree loaves)
BFree Brown Roll

For topping:
Lettuce
Tomato
Tomato relish

DIRECTIONS
Steam the sweet potato until soft. Then add it and all the other vegetables into a food processor and mix until the ingredients are chopped and mixed or just chop them into very small thin pieces and mix. Add the mixture to a bowl and add the beans, breadcrumbs and spices and mash with a potato mashed until everything is mixed. Shape into 4 burgers. Heat some coconut oil on a pan and heat. Then add the burgers and cook until they turn brown.
Serve on a BFree Soft Brown Seeded Roll with your desired toppings and a side salad.

 

25 week pregnancy diet 

Yesterday I shared with a days food diary. I’m (trying) to follow the way I used to eat before I went carb crazy during this pregnancy, and am choosing to eat gluten-free foods to help reduce any bloating, which, let me tell you, is really uncomfortable when you already have a bump!

This is what I’ve eaten today;

Breakfast:
1 BFree Multiseed Bagel with ½ an avocado mashed with salt & pepper

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Snack:
CO YO diary-free Yoghurt with mixed Raspberry & Blueberries

Lunch: Quinoa Tuna spinach Salad
Make one potion of quinoa in chicken or vegetable stock for flavour. Add in spinach, 1 can of tuna, tomatoes, mushroom and peppers for a protein packed lunch.

Snack: 10 Almonds

Dinner: Chilli (left over portion for tomorrow’s lunch)
500 g Lean Mince Beef or Turkey Mince
1 tin of chopped tomatoes
1 tablespoon of tomato puree
1 Carrot
1 red pepper
1 red onion
Chilli powder
Mixed herbs
Cayenne pepper
Garlic
Courgette/Spinach

Fry of the beef or turkey mince in a frying pan with a teaspoon of coconut oil and 2 chopped cloves of garlic. Add in onion, chopped carrot, peppers and any veg of choice. Add in tin of tomatoes and tomato puree along with 2 teaspoons of chilli powder, 1 teaspoon of Cayenne pepper, 1 teaspoon of mixed herbs.

Serve on a bed of Courgetti or spinach or in my case, both!

 

25 weeks pregnant; my exercise & diet diary

This pregnancy is flying. Perhaps it me because I feel so good on it – you’ve got to love the second trimester!

Here’s some pics of me at 25 weeks. My body is changing rapidly and my tummy is definitely feeling heavier & rounder. That’s the plan I guess!

Running hasn’t felt as comfortable this week, so I will try one more time on Saturday and if I’m getting the stitch type pain that I did last weekend, I will swap my running for power-walking. I’m so pleased that I’ve managed to last this long to be honest! I’ve definitely had another growth spurt too; All I’ve wanted to eat are carbs, carbs, carbs! Hard for someone who’s never really been a bit carb eater!

This week I’ve decided to go with it BUT obviously tried to stick to whole grains & gluten free options like B Free Foods, who do the most delicious gluten-free, dairy-free wraps, rolls & bagels.

If you are in the same situation as me and craving carbs but hate the bloat that comes with them, I’ll be posting some food diaries so you can see what sort of foods I eat throughout the day.

Breakfast:
2 Eggs Scrambled with 85g of  Salmon + a handful of spinach (throw
this into the eggs while scrambling with some salt & pepper)
Snack:
A chopped apple with 1-2 tsp of almond butter
Lunch:
Turkey and Relish Sandwich
2 slices BFree Brown seeded long slice bread
1 small cooked turkey breast chopped
1 tbsp tomato relish
Handful rocket + ½ a tomato
Spread the relish on one slice of bread. Layer the turkey and cheese on the
other, add the rocket and serve.
Add a side salad to increase intake of veggies
Snack:
CO YO yogurt with 15 mixed Raspberries & Blueberries
Dinner:
Chicken and Chorizo Stew
1 Chicken Breast
1 serving of chorizo (thumb size)-make sure this is GF
½ tin of chopped tomatoes
1 teaspoon of tomato puree
¼ tin of Chickpeas
1 cloves of garlic
Seasoning (Mixed Herbs, Paprika, cumin, Chilli powder)
Fry of chicken and chorizo with a spoon of coconut oil and 1 cloves of garlic.
Add in your veg of choice. Add in tin of tomatoes and tomato puree and
drained can of chickpeas. Season with a 1/2 teaspoon of chilli powder, mixed
herbs, paprika and cumin.

My pregnancy journey; 23 weeks pregnant 

So I’m 23 weeks now (I think!), I’m seriously losing track. I’m so busy with Lacie & life, that I’m not sitting there counting the days like I did in the first pregnancy. You definitely have less time to rest, appreciate your growing baby and your body second time round.

So here’s my bump. I’m growing nicely, and feeling good. Still gym’ing most mornings, and running an hour on Saturdays & Sundays. These days I’m setting my Gym Boss for 3ish minutes on, and 45 seconds rest, which means I get regular waking intervals to keep my heart rate down and in check.

I hope to run for at least another month or so – so, if you are pregnant and thinking about running, here are my top tips…

* Only run during pregnancy if your body is used to it. I’ve run for years, run marathons, and am generally conditioned to run. Pregnancy is not the time to start anything new.

* listen to your body! A few times I’ve gone out and felt heavy, lethargic and generally not in the mood to run. Instead of pushing it, I’ve either walked or gone back home, and jumped back into bed to watch Peppa Pig with Lacie. I’m not out to break any records, just stay healthy (and sane) during my pregnancy.

* Expect to run slower than you’re used too. This can be hard for some, but not me. I’m just so happy to still be running at this point. I didn’t run when I was carrying Lacie and really missed it!

* Plan your route and know there as toilets you can stop at. I always stop for a quick wee around 20 mins into my run. Most of the time I get there and actually think ‘wow, that was a pathetic wee!’ but with extra pressure on your bladder it feels like I really need to go and then that’s all I can think about for the whole run.

* Don’t get distracted. Gone are the days when I can run and admire people’s houses, gardens, front doors and generally anything other than the path in front of me. Your gait and your balance change when you’re pregnant so it’s easy to fall over or lose your balance. I’ve meant my lesson the hard way – watch where you’re going and be mindful of every step.

* Take your phone. When I fell over I was lucky to be pretty close home (although the ten minute walk home with tears streaming down my face felt for ever!). If I’d had my phone, I could of called Mark, who probably would of come and got me, or just generally reassured me that I’m ok and to help me compose myself.

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I think that’s it! Obviously wearing the right trainers (I love Asics) and sports bra (always Cake Maternity) are a must. I always go and get re-measured when I’m pregnant because your chest changes massively when pregnant and you’re advised not to wear under wired bras and anything too restrictive.

My measurements;
Every week since finding out I was expecting I’ve been measuring myself. Here are my measurements to date. It’s a great way of not stressing about the pounds on the scale & keeping check of how your body is changing.

8 Weeks pregnant
Chest: 32.5 inches
Waist (smallest): 28
Belly Button: 29
Hips: 35.5
Legs: 19.5
Arms: 10.5

23 Weeks
Chest: 32.5 inches
Waist (smallest): 29.5 (+1.5 inches)
Belly Button: 31.5 (+2.5 inches)
Hips: 36.5 ((+1 inche)
Legs: 19.5
Arms: 10.5

 

Getting ready for baby number two 

Just a quick progress photo for week 18. I’ve definitely had a few heavy days this week and training hasn’t been so energetic but nows the time to listen to my body. I must admit, I’ve felt a bit flat training wise this week, so not much to report on it really. I’m still following Gideon’s plan from KX Life but listening to my body more this week; If I need longer rest periods or to lower the weight, so be it. I’m in the gym and to me that’s all that matters and I’m happy to still be training & enjoying it.

In between training, eating, sleeping, working & being mummy, I’ve also been trying to work out in my head how to get organised for bubba number two. I’m definitely not sending Lacie to nursery any earlier than I need too, I simply just love being with her, and this is time I’m never going to get back!

That being said, I will have both of them at home with me for eight or nine months, and I’m fully aware that there’s going to be hard days, especially when I’m tired, bubba is having a clingy day (I remember them well) and Lacie wants to play and have fun.

So what’s my plan?

1st things first is; Breast feeding
I will definitely breast feed bubba all the time mark, my husband, is on Paternity leave. After that, I plan to go to bottles. I just can’t see how I’m going to be able to be at home on my own with both of them and be feeding a baby. LaCie would feed for up to 45 minutes at a time and I’m not sure how this is going to work with Lacie needing my attention as well.

So I’ve got myself organised & got a Tommee Tippee steriliser (in black to match the kitchen) and some of their Closer to Nature Advanced Comfort Bottles. Giving a bottle to a newborn is alien to me (I fed Lacie for 9 months) so I wanted to find some that made it easy to latch on to, were BPA Free and stopped air bubbles during feeding, which may lead to colic and digestion issues. I’m sure they will be absolutely fine with the bottle, millions of babies do it, but I want feeding to be as stress-free as possible so I still have the nice time that I had with Lacie. I also like these bottles because of the soft, natural-feel silicone teat. This should make it easier to switch between the breast and bottle.

Workouts
I’m lucky that Lacie sleeps in until 8ish, which allows me to go down to my home gym & get an hours workout in before she wakes. I hope bubba will do the same, so I’ve got a Tommee Tippee Digital Video monitor, which will allow me to keep a close eye on the baby whilst I workout. The monitor still has great reception in my gym, thanks to the 300m range & it has a two-way talk button option that allows me to talk to the bubba if he/she needs comforting or just needs to hear my voice as I make my way up to their room. I know this all sounds very far fetched as I just don’t know what type of baby and sleeper it’s going to be, but having a plan in my head about how I’m going to get back in shape makes me feel in control just a little. Lacie used to come into the gym with me when she was a baby so if that’s what happens with this one then that’s fine, but I will hopefully get it in to the same routine as I’ve got Lacie into. It took lots of patience, but we got there.

The monitor also comes with a temperature room display, remote nightlight and a detachable sensor pad that fits under your baby’s mattress and sounds an alarm if no movement is detected after 20 seconds.

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Prams? 
So my My next thing to thing about is a pram/buggy board/double buggy, so if anyone has any suggestions of how to get out and about with two, please send your suggestions. Lacie will be two-and-a-half once bubba is here and although she likes walking – she can’t quite manage the walk into town, an hours class, or whatever activity we are doing that day, and then a walk back! Help!!!

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A little workout for you to try
To finish off, here’s a quick 12-minute circuit that I tagged onto the end of my workout today. Was great fun and got my heart-rate up nicely….
* 45 seconds kettlebell swings
* 15 seconds rest
* 45 seconds Squat to front kick
* 15 seconds rest
* 45 seconds side plank – right side
* 15 seconds rest
* 45 seconds side plank – left side
* 15 seconds rest
Repeat three times through as a continuous circuit.

As always don’t forget to check with your mid-wife and GP when exercising when pregnant – and listen to your body!!!!

My 17 week bump and current pregnancy workout 

There’s definitely been a trend with my measurements since finding out I was pregnant, and that’s that I’m putting around 1/2 inch on around my waist EVERY WEEK!

So far the butt has only gained half an inch and my chest the same. Everything else like my arms, calves and legs have stayed the same. Please carry on this way body!

We’ve just got back from a break so I missed one week of progress pics, so this is me at 17 weeks.  My body is definitely changing but not as quickly as it did with Lacie! A boy this time perhaps?

So anyway, despite being away how’s my training gone this week?

Good. I managed to hit my 10,000 Fitbit steps everyday (usually 16-17,000), hit the gym most days and been swimming with Lacie too. Here was my view on my walk up to the gym – and this is the gym I paid £10 a day to use. Shocking! It was however, nice to be in a gym environment rather than working out in my hotel room, which btw is completely possible!

I’m also currently working with my favourite PT from KX Life, Gideon Remfry, who has devised me a plan to help work on some of my weaknesses whilst pregnant, as after all, this is the only time I’m ever going to slow down and take the time to lower the intensity & focus on things like my balance, my deep core muscles, posture & the tiny stabiliser muscles in my ankles, knees & glutes. If I can get all these in tip-top shape before the bubba comes then I’ll be ready to smash it once I’m recovered and ready to exercise again post baby.

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So what am I doing?

  • Tube walking with a band around the arches of my feet rather than my shins. This helps switch on my glutes and works the tiny stabiliser muscles in my ankles, knees and hips, supersetted with a bird dog exercise to switch on my core and glutes.
  • Seated squats with chest band pulls to open up my chest supersetted with TRX one legged squats for balance & stable glutes.
  • Lunge with back dumbbell rows to keep my upper back strong & posture upright, and gym ball flyers whilst squeezing a Pilates ball in between my legs to hit my inner thighs.

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So far I’m loving the plan and reaping in the benefits. It’s making me really focus on my weaknesses, whilst getting my heart rate up to a safe level. I’ve had to lots of foam rolling and stretching on my glutes too, as I’ve had a nasty trapped nerve, which actually left me stuck at the top of the stairs one night….the fun begins!!

Product of the Week; Anita Baby Belt
When I’m pregnant, I like to feel like everything is tucked away neatly and supported, which is why I love this Anita Baby Belt. I may not have a big bump, but my tummy is a lot bigger than I’m used too, and this supportive belly band is adjustible and great for supporting my baby and bump. It also helps remind me that my bump is there, as I’m definitely running around a lot more during this pregnancy. I’m hoping it will help prevent anymore trapped nerves and stop any pelvis pain, which I did get when pregnant first time round. That’s relaxin for you!

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Top Xmas Gifts by Fisher Price

With Xmas just around the corner, buying gifts is on everyones mind. I like to be organised and get my done by mid-December. I love buying for my friends kiddies, my nieces and nephews and of course, Lacie. Going through the Argos catalogue and writing my list (with page numbers and pictures, of course) was just so exciting when I was little – oh, it still is!!

Now Lacie loves playing real life games, she is loving this Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Smart Stages Purse (RRP £19.99). It comes with a mirror, some keys, a phone, a credit card and a bracelet, just like Mummy! 

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It sings too – infact there are over 50 sing-along songs, words and phrases, which Lacie likes to repeat – she really is a little parrot these days, plus interactive shape buttons on the front, which when pressed say the shape names, numbers and colours – in in English and FRENCH!

There are a few little girls that I know will love this this year, so I’ll be stocking up on a few of these.

Me and Lacie tend to play on the level 3 setting at the moment, which is for 18 months and up and encourages fun and early role play. She likes nothing more than putting all the accessories in the bag, popping it on her shoulder and telling me she’s going to work. Not yet baby, please!!

Level 1 Explore is a great setting for 6 months and up, which introduces those first words and level 2 for 12 months and up which asks questions and gives simple directions.

 

She’s  also been enjoying making Mummy tea & cake (I wish!) with her new Fisher Price Laugh and Learn Smart Stages tea set (RRP £19).  The set consists of a jolly tea-pot, two cups, and a three tiered cake on a plate. All the pieces in the set are brightly coloured and durable plastic, perfect for her little hands; not too small or clunky.

Like the purse, the teapot has a front display with three settings, which you set according to your child’s age and ability. Lacie is now 22 months, so again, we are on level 3 and playing real games. I particularly like the game where we use manners – and we say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ as we make and sip our tea. The odd ‘cheers’ creeps in too, which is pretty funny!

I love the catchy little tunes the teapot sings, which is great for repetition and learning – and Lacie loves the pouring noise the teapot makes when she’s serving up. It’s all very realistic, and the kettle lights up too!

You can buy both, the Smart Stages purse– a fab baby learning toy  and the toy tea set online.