The thought of ‘getting bigger’ would have made my former self FREAK. I’ve sat at a comfortable size 8-10 since I can remember, I’ve always had an athletic build from many years dancing, and over the past 6 years, health and fitness as you know has been a big part of my life – so the thought of having no control of what is happening to my body made me a little anxious to say the least. Pre-pregnancy, I worried about how I would deal with all the uncontrollable physical changes mentally, how will my body look? Will I still love it? I know to some this may sound pretty superficial, but I’m just being honest with you, these were all genuine thoughts that crossed my mind.
I battled with body image a lot during my dancing years, always trying to conform to a certain ‘size’ to fit the job. Health and fitness helped me out of this negative cycle massively, the more empowered I felt by what my body could do, the more body confident I became, and I’m grateful enough to now be able to call this my career and help other women discover their own self worth through exercise and nutrition. But it was only natural when deciding to try for a baby that these old thoughts reared their ugly head…
I just want to make it clear that pregnancy weight gain is 100% normal and neccessary, and I for one having trained in pre and post natal exercise know that the overall weight gain is distributed across the body: the placenta, increased fluid and blood volume, breast tissue, amniotic fluid, the uterus and maternal fat stores all contribute towards pregnancy weight gain, and that’s before we include the baby! But even being armed with this knowledge, still left me nervous about the land of the unknown.
It’s funny because you can arm yourself with all the knowledge in the world, but until it happens to you – and in this case you get pregnant, you never know how you’ll respond. Being such a planner, the thought of the unknown scared me. So I made a conscious decision to weigh myself throughout my pregnancy, something I haven’t done for years – not to be obsessive about it, but because I wanted to keep tabs, ensuring I gained weight at a healthy rate for both myself and baby, and so far I’ve gained 7lbs – the leggings are officially on roll down!!!
When this goes out, I’ll be coming up 22 weeks, and honestly, it’s been the most amazing 22 weeks of my life so far! My fearful thoughts were simply that… just thoughts. I can’t tell you how utterly in awe I am of my own body right now and all that it can do. Sure, my strength has decreased – that’s natural, but I don’t care, I am just loving the fact that I’m ‘training for two’ 4-5 x a week to help keep my body strong to support my growing baba! I feel stronger than I ever have before, in a way I have never experienced… and this is only just over half way! The fact I am carrying and growing our baby inside me just blows my mind!
So to any of you reading this right now who have perhaps had similar thoughts, worries or concerns about pregnancy weight gain as I did, know that these thoughts are normal and that you are not alone. We are all human, but what we are not, are our thoughts. Embrace your beautiful body, for it is growing a miracle!
Did you experience anything like this during your own pregnancy? or maybe these kind of thoughts have crossed your mind for future planning? I’d love to hear how you managed it? Embraced it? Fought through it? Leave me a comment below…