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.
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Pregnancy fitness: 3rd trimester cardio

Even though you probably felt a bit like superwomen in your second trimester, you now may find yourself waking up slightly tried and losing energy as the day goes on. I know I certainly did. You’re also find that moving around isn’t as easy as it was and everything takes that little bit longer. The reason for this is that you’re baby is probably around 14 inches now (in your seventh month) and weighing around two to four pounds. Your breasts will also be around two pounds heavier and your uterus will be putting pressure on all your internal organs, including your diaphragm and lungs, causing shortness of breath. My bump really popped out at this stage and I felt HUGE! Staying active is vital though. I really noticed the difference at pregnancy groups – some of my in-active friends had constant back pains, found it difficult to walk for too long and even sit of too long. I didn’t really have any of this – and I certainly put it down to staying active as much as possible! 

Things to remember
During your third trimester your mobility may be limited, thanks to your growing bump and possibly water retention, and there’s no doubt that you will fatigue more easily. With that in mind, you can still safely participate in a 30-minute workout at least four days a week in order to maintain a good base of fitness and mental sanity.

One thing I would highly recommend in your third trimester is regular swimming sessions. The hardest part is probably putting on your swimsuit – but once it’s on and you’re in the water, you’re forget that you’re pregnant as the water supports your joints, provides buoyancy to your bump and supports your bodyweight. It will also keep your core temperature cool as you exercise, and work your heart as well as your arm and leg muscles.

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What stroke?
While the front crawl is still fine in your third trimester, the breaststroke will probably be most comfortable because your tummy will hang below you and the arm and leg movements are great for strengthening your back, chest, hips and bottom. It’s great for helping pregnancy posture too (you may have noticed your shoulders rounding and you get a slight hunch in your upper back). Breaststroke will stretch your chest muscles out and strengthen and shorten the back muscles that tend to overstretch during pregnancy.

Just be careful that you don’t work your legs too aggressively. Relaxin, the hormone that is will be circulating the body and working on making your joints more flexible, especially the pelvis will now be at its peak in your body, meaning you don’t have to do a lot to overstretch and cause a strain or muscle tear. Forcefully kicking your legs can strain the hip joints and ligaments because the public bone will already be starting to separate in preparation for labor. You don’t want to force the situation, which will lead to lower back, pelvis and hip pain.

How to fuel your swim
Complex carbs like wholegrains, oats, fruits and vegetables are ideal for getting your energy levels stable before and after your swim. At this stage you’ll also want to be getting sufficient calcium from calcium-rich foods like dark leafy greens, almonds and sardines – yes these are all just as good as milk!

Your pregnant body will also be leaching calcium from your bones to support the growth of your baby, so make sure you’re getting around three servings of quality calcium foods every day. Also make sure you stay well hydrated. It’s easy to forget to drink when in the pool but you can still get dehydrated, which is dangerous for you and your baby and will only add to your fatigue. Always leave a bottle of cool water at the side of the pool that you can sip from regularly, and make sure you drink a small glass before and after your session too.

Don’t forget!
As always, make sure you get the go-ahead from your doctor before you start exercising and listen to your body. If it doesn’t feel right then stop.

Pregnancy countdown – 40 days to go and I’m loving my…

NordicTrack E11.6 elliptical.

I’m now 34 1/2 weeks pregnant and seem to have popped somewhat! My belly feels bloody huge and it makes me a little self-conscious in the gym. I know to shouldn’t be you do get some funny looks! Like ‘what are you doing here?”

This is where my little beauty, my NordicTrack E11.6 elliptical comes in. I had it delivered last week and it’s in my cabin out in the back garden, which I have made into a gym. It’s really cool in there and perfect for days when me and bump just want to hide away yet still get some exercise in.

This morning I was on it for about 40 minutes and did a little routine, which looked like this.

I warmed up for 5 minutes, then did 4 minutes on level 3 going forwards. I then had a 30 second rest and repeated the 4 minute interval but with my legs going backwards.
* 60 seconds rest
I then did 3 minutes in level 5  forwards. I then had a 30 second rest and repeated the 3 minute interval but with my legs going backwards.
* 60 seconds rest
I then did 2 minutes in level 7  forwards. I then had a 30 second rest and repeated the 2 minute interval but with my legs going backwards.
* 60 seconds rest
I then did 1 minutes in level 9  forwards. I then had a 30 second rest and repeated the 1 minute interval but with my legs going backwards.
* 60 seconds rest
I then did 30 seconds in level 11  forwards. I then had a 30 second rest and repeated the 30 second interval but with my legs going backwards.
* 60 seconds rest
To finish off I just carried on at level 5 at one speed until I had completed my 40 minute stint.

To finish the session I did a 30 second plank with a knee dip (static holds tend to push my blood pressure up), then 30 seconds side plank with my arm going from my hip to over my head – again just to keep something moving so I wasn’t in a static position.
I did this three times through.

Although I do love the gym environment, I really enjoyed my session today and will defiantly be doing this once bubba is born and I’ve had my six-week check up. It’s going to be great to dive down into the gym when I can, knowing that she will be safely in the house with my husband whilst I work towards shifting some of my baby weight!

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Pregnancy countdown – 42 days to go and I get….

…….Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD)

Ever heard of it? I hadn’t either until I did my pre-natal and post natal fitness course with Premier Training International – and it happened to me early this week.

It’s basically one of the most common causes of pain in pregnancy and caused when the ligaments and joints of the pelvis become relaxed due to the hormones of pregnancy (relaxin) and become inflamed by certain movements – in my case like lunges, one-legged exercises, until walking etc.

I feel the pain mainly when walking (particularly after I’ve been sitting down for ages), getting out of the car and standing for long periods and if I stand up for too long, so to help it, I’ve totally stopped any lunges or one-legged exercises in the gym, not taking long strides when walking to and from places until I’ve warmed up a bit, and wearing my supportive Gowri Wrap, which gentle supports my baby girl while supporting my lower back.

A few other things to avoid are:

  • Pulling yourself up when lying on your back. Instead you need to roll to your side and use your hands to push yourself up.
  • Getting up and down from a char with your knees together. When you get up, keep your knees together and use your hands to push yourself up.
  • Avoid soft chairs like sofas, as you won’t get adequate support and they are hard to get out of!
  • Avoid squatting, or sitting cross-legged and sit symmetrically in the chair.
  • Avoid balancing on one leg when putting on clothes, especially underwear and trousers and instead sit down to do this
  • Lean on one hip/leg when standing. Instead try putting your weight on both legs rather than on one.
  •  Twisting your body.
  • Lifting anything heavy.
  • Lots of walking or stair climbing. Take the stairs one step at a time.

Apparently the pain will eventually subside once the baby is delivered, but to make sure it doesn’t get worse I am going to have acupuncture now every week until I give birth. I swear by it and have missed my weekly sessions during my pregnancy.

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Three ways to stay stretch mark free during pregnancy

Research suggests that stretch marks, those small, depressed streaks in the skin that appear mainly around the stomach in the later stages of pregnancy have a lot to do with genetics: If your mother or sister got stretch marks during pregnancy, you’re more likely to get them, too. Other studies show that younger moms, particularly teens, are more prone to getting stretch marks.

The key to keeping them at bay is to make sure you don’t pile on the weight too quickly. The recommended amount of weight during pregnancy in most cases, is 25 to 35 pounds. Gaining it slowly may help reduce your chances of getting stretch marks, as will drinking lots of water, which helps keep your skin cells plump and supple.

Foods rich in Vitamin E (seeds and spinach), zinc (beef and lamb) and silica (celery), will also help to form collagen, while Vitamin C (oranges, peppers) in particular is an important antioxidant that helps protect tissue from damage, while helping it to form collagen.

There are also lots of fantastic creams on the market that are designed to be used day and night to keep the skin hydrated and smooth and help build tensile strength.

Here are three of my favourite that I have used everyday of my pregnancy. At 34 weeks, I can safely say that I’ve not got an inkling of a stretch mark – I must be doing something right…

1) Zita West Beautiful Belly Balm
This restorative moisturiser from fertility and pregnancy guru Zita West contains all natural plant extracts, designed to help keep the skin of your stomach in good condition throughout pregnancy.
It’s really rich, smells gorgeous – and is not greasy making it perfect to put on in the morning before you get dressed.
£18.95; www.zitawest.com

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 2) Mama Mio Tummy Rub Stretch Mark Butter
This is great for all over protection from stretch marks as a little goes a long way. It’s made with super-elasticising Omega 3, 6 and 9’s oils to help build your skin’s strength and has a rehydrating shea butter base, making it super thick, and really smooth to apply.
£23; www.mamamio.com

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3) Fushi Really Good Stretch Mark oil
Rubbing anything unnatural on my tummy is a no-no for me, which is why I love this stretch mark oil. It contains Holy Basil, known for its superb skin healing powers and renowned benefits for stretch marks, African Baobab oil, which holds the properties of omega 3, vitamin E and D, and is ideal for scars, blemishes and stretch marks. The oil is a little greasy but keeps my  skin hydrated for hours, which is why I like to put it on last thing at night.
£14.45; www.fushi.co.uk 

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32 weeks pregnant and counting…

I thought I would give you a quick update as to how I’m feeling.

I’m now 32 weeks and yes still working out five to six days a week but starting to wake up more tired and also feel the effects of working out with a little person inside of me. It’s not a case of sitting down on the mat for tricep dips and then just getting back up again. Everything is taking that little bit longer. I feel like a granny 🙂

Saying that – my energy during the day is still good and I’m setting my alarm on my phone to remind me to eat every three hours. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not having a slap up meal every time my alarm sounds but I will head to the kitchen and have a big glass of water and a healthy snack like some avocado on rye bread or hummus or veggie sticks.

Sleep – it’s ok. I have one of these amazing pregnancy pillows from Mothercare – which I recommend to EVERYONE! (I even got my husband one because it kept stealing mine!) Sleep is so important for recovery an growth and there is tons of research out there also that says it can help stablise your blood sugar levels and stop you reaching for sugary snacks. There is alot to be said for 8 hours a night – if you can get it!

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My pregnancy pillow from Mothercare is definitely my new best friend! http://www.mothercare.com