Week 27: Farewell Second Trimester, Hello Home Stretch
When you’re pregnant, there is nothing like bringing the words “third trimester” into your vocabulary.
It’s the home stretch – the final few months of enduring pregnancy aches and pains, depriving yourself of alcohol, caffeine and other vices, popping pre-natal vitamins, pulling yourself off the couch to exercise and all those other wonderful things moms-to-be do to give their baby the best, healthiest start in life.
So as this final week of my second trimester closes and I start to anticipate all the things I’ll be able to do again after the third, I thought I’d give myself a reality check and tabulate all the healthy habits I’ll want to keep even when I’m not pregnant anymore:
This one is going to be even more important than ever for moms who want to shed baby weight. As a pretty solid exerciser in the past, I kind of look forward to getting back to some of the activities I used to do – a vigorous game of tennis, short jogs (I’m still a beginner in the whole running thing) and even stomach crunches.
Don’t worry, no false delusions here about how easy it will be to go back to my former gym-rat status. A new baby will definitely put a wrinkle in that plan. But with a supportive husband and motivating friends, I’m sure I’ll be able to find ways to make exercise a regular habit.
There’s nothing like a pregnancy to completely blow your eating habits out of the water. Portion control was a big thing for me before I got pregnant, but since baby came on board, it feels like I’m eating by the plateful 24/7. Of course I try to keep my food choices healthy as much as possible, but once the baby’s born, I’ll have to give myself a stern reminder that, aside from veggies (which I could always use in higher volumes), I’m no longer eating for two.
The name “prenatal vitamin” is pretty misleading, I’m learning. Health care providers often advise you take these vitamins before you get pregnant, and now, I’ve been reading that you should continue to take them after the baby is born if you plan to breastfeed.
While you may be able to get everything you need from a healthy diet to make your breast milk nutrient-rich, a needy new baby will often take priority over counting your vitamins and minerals. Taking the vitamin could offer a little insurance, so I intend to bring this one up at my next midwife appointment to see if it’s a smart choice for me.
Those are just the top three healthy habits (note how I wasn’t crazy enough to add “getting enough sleep” to the list!) that I focused on while pregnant; I’m sure there are many others. Please keep in mind that none of this is offered as medical advice or best practice, it’s just what I’ve worked out as best for me with the help of medical professionals.
And as for those unhealthy habits that I’m dying to go back to once the baby’s born? Well, while a cold, refreshing beer on the patio is something I certainly look forward to, that’s another thing I’ll be bringing up with my midwife. Breastfeeding and alcohol consumption (even in small doses) is a fine art, according to medical professionals, so I want to make sure that if I do have a drink, I do it in a way that’s safe for both me and my baby.
Hey, I’ve come this far, right? No falling off the wagon now.
Moms out there, how did you transition from pregnancy to baby? What were you most looking forward to in those final months? Share your stories with me in the SureBaby comments!