If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you may have noticed things have been a wee bit quiet the past four or so months. Well it’s for an exciting reason – over the past few months my body has been busy growing a wee one! And at 19 weeks pregnant, with an expanding belly and pregnancy definitely looking and feeling real, I’ve finally got around to writing about it.
While I was super super excited to find out I was pregnant (I may have cried….) I didn’t realise how much it can take it out of you. If you’re one of those mums who feels completely normal during your first trimester, then make the most of it – you are lucky! And for those that have terrible morning sickness, I feel for you too.
I kind of wondered if I may be pregnant when I tried to go for a 5km run and just simply didn’t have the energy. I had been training for over a month for a half marathon and was clocking up 1okm as a long run in the weekend, so a 5km run should have been easy. That tiredness was absolutely a sign I was pregnant, and that fatigue sure stuck around. Then after a week or two nausea also set in. I was only ever sick once, but I did feel nauseous a lot of the time and constantly had excess saliva like when you are going to be sick. Food wasn’t overly appealing at all, and I totally went off sweet things.
I’d kind of describe my first trimester as feeling hung over the majority of the time. I haven’t had a hangover in many years, but I do remember what one feels like. The nausea and fatigue meant my usual exercise regime went out the window. I didn’t have the energy for running (half marathon plans were most definitely cancelled as soon as I got a positive pregnancy test), and cross fit wasn’t something I could consider at all! I did go for a few walks and light runs. By week 9-10 I started getting a bit of energy back and did a few short jogs. But until then, it was not a lot. Even stuff around the house was tiring. I spent one hour gardening one weekend, helping my husband put tree branches on the trailer and after that I went to bed and slept for a couple of hours! I guess you just have to listen to your body 🙂
My weekends always included a nap – sometimes for an hour, but once I slept for 3 hours! I felt kind of lazy, but I literally couldn’t stay awake. And my midwife said to me that your body will tell you how much you can do. Well I couldn’t do too much those first couple of months that’s for sure!
In the early weeks, everything I had loved before became less appealing. Coffee tasted disgusting. I had zero interest in anything sweet – I even ate less fruit than before. I felt like anything savoury and carbohydrate based. Cheese and marmite on toast was a favourite which is funny since I never usually eat marmite. Pasta dishes were appealing and one thing I really felt like was burgers and fries. We went out for lunch in Wellington with my brother in law and his girlfriend and got burgers and I have to say, it was one of the best tasting things I’d had for ages and really hit that craving spot.
My other cravings have been pumpkin soup (not a bad craving to have!) and I did go through a stage where I was desperate for orange juice. The OJ craving lasted about 3 weeks, and I was starting to think maybe I actually just really liked juice and it was going to be a habit I had to break. I started to feel guilty when I’d be out and grabbing a bottle of OJ when I was telling people to cut down/cut out fruit juice. But juice was all I could think about when I wanted it!! The juice cravings though went away all on their own.
While I did have cravings, I didn’t over indulge. With juice, I made sure I watered it down. I’d make home made fries, and while I’d have the occasional deep fried hashbrown in the weekend, it wasn’t like I was going through drive through to get stacks of them. From what I’ve heard, carbohydrate cravings are very normal during your first trimester, and considering it’s all about cell division at that stage, we are busy using that carbohydrate energy to grow a healthy baby.
I remember waking up on a Sunday morning at 13 weeks pregnant and thinking wow I don’t feel tired today. That was an exciting day. I still had some days where I felt pretty tired, but by week 15 I started to feel much better. Also at the end of my first trimester, my nausea started to fade and my more normal taste buds came back and my diet became more balanced again.
I took iodine and folic acid as recommended, but every second day I’d switch these for an Elevit tablet. Elevit isn’t necessary – you can simply take iodine and folic acid, but I kind of felt because I wasn’t eating as well as I would have liked in those first couple of months, a specially formulated multivitamin might be a good idea. Now I’m past the first trimester I’m taking an iodine tablet each day, but no multivitamin.
Now I’m well into my second trimester, I’m feeling good. I’ve mostly given up running for walking which is a bit of a change for me, and I’m trying to decide on what pram / buggy will be the best for this mama to be so hopefully I can be active when the wee one arrives. If you have any recommendations, let me know!
Over the next few months I’ll share more about my pregnancy journey and nutrition in pregnancy and preconception, but I promise this won’t turn into a baby blog 🙂