Hi, guys! So I’m pregnant, the news is out. And while this is totally not going to turn into a pregnancy blog, I do want to share a few things that I’ve been feeling during my first trimester. And here’s why: Long before I ever even wanted to get pregnant, if one of my favorite bloggers who I read frequently would write about her pregnancy updates, I would quickly click away, not caring at all. But then, after I became pregnant, I found myself going back to the archives of those bloggers to see the updates that they shared just to find out if I felt the same things as they did. So if you want to close this window now because it’s not your thing, I GET it. But maybe one day you’ll be back. And when you’re ready, this will be here waiting for you … and I’ve tried to keep it SUPER real, so beware.
Being pregnant is a bizarre thing. If you’re like me, and it took you a long time to finally get that positive pregnancy test, you’d think that you would spend the next 9 to 10 months completely over the moon, smiling from ear to ear no matter what. But it’s not really like that at first — at least not for me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m so excited to become a parent and welcome our little one into the world, and I’m incredibly grateful, but being pregnant is less than fun at the start, and during the first part, you’re constantly worried about everything that can go wrong. (And listen up: When I was trying to conceive for a VERY long time, and I would have people who were pregnant complain to me about feeling awful, I wanted to smash a pie in their child-bearing faces. So I get it. But then all of a sudden, I found myself feeling … well, crappy, and perhaps not being as positive as always.)
You see, even though you’re happy to be in the situation you’re in, it still feels weird all the time. In fact, I haven’t really felt like myself since before I knew I was pregnant (but am starting to feel a LOT better, now that I’m past the first trimester and my tune has quickly changed). And being someone who works so hard on their fitness and health, I like to be in control of how I feel each day. But I must say: Based on what I hear from other women, I’ve had a SUPER easy time though. I’ve never thrown up, and I’ve not been bed-ridden at all, and I still teach group fitness classes a few times a week. But of course, it’s different for everyone, so let’s look at how it went down for me with a little week-by-week break-down. (And once again, beware, there’s a slight “TMI” alert on some of this.)
How my first trimester of pregnancy felt week by week (weeks 4 through 13)
Found out I was pregnant on Super Bowl Sunday, exactly four weeks after my last cycle. In shock and disbelief (due to the amount of pregnancy tests I had taken over the years that always came up negative — I was just used to being disappointed and carrying on with my day). Also feeling so nervous about the possibility of miscarriage that I could hardly get excited. Felt mostly normal though and told my parents the news instantly. A little upset at the realization that I won’t be drinking wine any more (#truth). Kept my workouts the same, but in the back of my mind while doing them I kept thinking, “I wonder if this is bad for the baby/tiny embryo inside of me …” Downloaded The Bump app and began reading up on all the things I could and couldn’t do. No spray tans, no gel manicures, no wine, no sushi, no kombucha — starting to rethink this pregnancy thing. Already feeling bloated, but no physical signs of a tiny being in my body. (Baby is as big as a poppyseed.)
Went to the doctor to confirm that I was pregnant. Shared the news with my brother, which made me very happy. Began to notice how extra tired I was all the time. No other symptoms though outside of a very sore chest (not fun and lasted many weeks). When the weekend hit … definitely missing wine. In fact, Dave and I went to visit Santa Cruz this weekend and went out to dinner. That was my first time going out to dinner pregnant, and I realized that you really have to study the menu to avoid things you can’t have. We passed on feta cheese at the Mediterranean spot just in case, and we sat at the bar, but I drank water. Boohoo. I was also exhausted. And when Dave went out that night with friends after the Santa Cruz Warriors game, I went back to his sister’s house to “take care of Rudy,” i.e. go to sleep. Feeling bloated, but not really showing any physical signs of the little human being. (Baby is as big as an appleseed.)
So tired. Unbelievably tired. Also, strange waves of nausea and weird tastes in my mouth coming over me, as well as cramping (which is apparently normal during implantation of the embryo). This week, I already felt like I needed to pull back a bit on my workouts. In fact, I had my last training session with a personal trainer, and I was huffing and puffing so badly for each move, I could hardly finish our one hour, I nearly had to tell him the news, but then didn’t. It’s not that I had lost all of my fitness abilities instantly just because I was pregnant, it’s like my heart rate was constantly racing, so I was breathing heavy and was instantly fatigued by all moves. Not all that fun. Also this week, I started feeling very averse to vegetables. We told Dave’s parents this weekend too when they visited, and they were elated! Starting to feel a little puffy, but not really showing anything yet. (Baby is as big as a sweet pea.)
Sleeping about nine hours a night and definitely taking it a bit easier in my workouts, including dropping my weight in BODYPUMP. I taught a class this week and used the most pathetic squat weight. I hope no one noticed. Dave and I also traveled to Chicago this week, and I was SO worried that I would feel nauseous and exhausted. But the change of scenery was good for me, and I felt okay. We were able to tell our best friends, Grant and Bre, the news this week, because they met us in Chicago, and it was awesome. I thought I would be totally upset not to have wine and other adult beverages when the four of us were together, but our group had so much fun, I didn’t really care. I also did TONS of walking on this trip and skipped a lot of workouts, so that’s fine. And the day I came back I laid on the couch ALL DAY. I literally couldn’t. Feeling bloated, but decided this was from donuts, deep dish pizza, numerous desserts and a lot of food that I normally don’t eat. (Baby is as big as a blueberry.)
For about two weeks, I had a runny and stuffy nose and found out that was actually a pregnancy symptom, which continued through week 8 before stopping. My racing heartbeat, shortness of breath, mild nausea and acid reflux (disgusting and unpleasant) were common symptoms too. Outside of taking or teaching one BODYPUMP a week, I kept all of my other workouts on the low-intensity side (and I continued teaching Bootybarre). That helped. Also, I slept nine hours a night. And all I wanted to eat was carbs. Lots and lots of carbs. We had another appointment with the doctor this week and had an ultrasound which showed the baby’s heartbeat. While it was starting to feel real at this point, it still didn’t feel TOTALLY real yet. Oh and my face seemed to begin to look a little blotchy, which is probably pregnancy related. Feeling large as well. Pants are tight. Could be the carbs or could be the hormones. Did I mention I was moody? Moodiness was BEYOND. (Baby is as big as a raspberry.)
Pregnancy dreams are no joke. They started around week 7 and continued to get way more intense. They are realistic and vivid and incredibly strange. Sometimes I find myself dreaming things that are SO true, I can’t believe it — like reuniting with people from college and going on adventures that lead me back to my regular life. When I wake up, I am glad it was all a dream. And going to the bathroom TWICE a night has started. Great. Tiredness? Off the chain. Weird taste in my mouth? All the time. Nausea? Not terrible. Stomach? Not exactly flat any more. Far from it. Also, totally struggling to drink water the past few weeks. Knowing I need to be hydrated, but water sucks. I hate water. This weekend we hosted a dinner party and were able to tell our friends in attendance about the pending little bundle of joy. It was awesome to share that with them and FINALLY talk to someone about how I was feeling, because most of the girls have already had babies. We also told Dave’s siblings and LOVED sharing the excitement with them. Funny thing is, Dave’s older sister is due to have her first baby just two months before me! (Baby is as a big as a cherry.)
Starting to worry about my hydration levels, because I cannot take water. I tried sparking and mineral, and it’s still a struggle (although discovering Perrier’s new watermelon flavor was a definitely a highlight). At this point, I have an official tiny bump, especially in my workout clothes, so I’m sure people in my classes are wondering, although no one said anything — thank goodness. Feeling totally exhausted all the time still. Not really nauseous, but boy that taste in my mouth is weird and unpleasant. Also found out I shouldn’t be eating my egg yolks over easy while pregnant (which I did at least a few times a week). Major fail. So I switched to pasture-raised eggs, which are way safer, and they happen to be extra delicious, so it all worked out. Workout pants are tight. Chest is sore. SO ready to have another doctor appointment so I can know this baby is making it for the long haul. Planned a pregnancy announcement photoshoot and also did a regular photoshoot for the blog, in which some of the pics showed my supposed-to-be-hidden bump. Whoops! Continued to feel large. Perhaps I need new clothes? (Baby is as big as a strawberry.)
Good news, this week, I ordered some larger clothing from Gap, including some white maternity jeans, which I may need in the coming weeks. I also continued to feel tired. And we had another doctor’s appointment and heard the baby’s heartbeat on the doppler, which was amazing. I kept my workouts going and managed to do about 7 this week (with a day off). Water was still a major struggle. Found out I shouldn’t be having fresh unpasteurized juices while pregnant either (like the freshly squeezed carrot juice in my favorite Orange Carrot Karma smoothie from Jamba Juice, which I definitely had a few times). Whoops. Major fail again. I also started to tell more people about the news, and it made me super happy to do so. Oh and the mild nausea started to subside, but I continued to ride the carbohydrate bus. And I sat in the front seat. (Baby is as big as a lime.)
I started to feel a little better this week in the exhaustion department. I also started to tell a few more friends the news, and hearing the excitement (and tears from some) was just amazing — I even received some baby gifts from my dear friends, and that’s so touching! (Little baby things are so cute!) And I would definitely say that a visible (albeit small) baby bump is out all the time. I can hide it in regular clothes, but it’s there. Oh and those Gap pieces I ordered the previous week were no good. I ordered them too big, so after spending time on the phone with customer service, I ended up returning some and exchanging others, and then continued to stuff myself into regular pants (sucking in is not an option with a baby bump, FYI). Found out I probably shouldn’t be eating so much sauerkraut as well (fermented and unpasteurized) while pregnant. Whoops again. Fail again. Threw out my last jar with sadness. During this week, my workouts remained pretty good and my food remained carb-heavy. Bread, pasta, rice cakes, repeat. Overall, feeling slightly more normal, as my appearance becomes slightly less normal. (Baby is as big as a plum.)
Depending on the website you use, the 13th week can be considered part of the first trimester or the second. I’ll say that I had some major improvements this week, so I feel like it was sort of the start of my second trimester. The best part was having more energy. The worst part was having the waist-band of all of my pants getting way too tight. We did a first trimester screen at a specialist, which went well, and we prepped our big announcement. All of a sudden, the nausea and exhaustion turned into major excitement and happiness, and those feelings remain strong. Yay pregnancy! So happy now! (Baby is as big as a lemon.)
My major first trimester aversions:
- Vegetables (although I still forced myself to eat them occasionally)
- Water (NOT a good thing. I literally had to MAKE myself drink water)
- Strong smells, like spraying myself with body-spray would make me want to puke
- Getting off the couch (I didn’t lay on the couch all day, but when I did, so hard to get up)
- Tight pants
- Protein shakes (the thought of them made me want to vomit)
- Hunger (if I let myself get hungry, I would feel nauseous, so I always ate)
My major first trimester likes:
- Pineapple (like really, the best thing I’ve ever tasted and made it into my faves)
- Mango (once again, couldn’t and still can’t get enough of delicious fruit)
- Bananas (everyday!)
- Almond butter
- Toast, bagels (breakfast everyday was and is almond butter on toast with banana)
- Rice cakes
- Coconut water
- Pasta (dinner most nights was and is either lentil or whole wheat pasta with marinara)
- Pizza (homemade and super saucy)
- Moving around (exercise was tiring, but felt good)
- Walks (I tried to do extra Rudy walks, but boy they were slow)
- Sleeping (8.5 to 9.5 hours a night)
- Naps (definitely took some naps for the first few weeks mid-day)
- The Bump app
- Long, hot showers (bad for the environment, but good for my soul)
My first trimester workouts:
- Kept up with 5 to 7 workouts a week, but all with slightly lighter intensity
- Taught 1 to 3 Bootybarre classes a week, done with no modifications and felt fine
- Took 1 BODYPUMP class a week or taught 1 BODYPUMP class a week, brought my squat and back weights down a bit, but kept everything else the same and totally struggled with fatigue
- Did other walking here and there and several leisure bike rides
My first trimester sleeping:
- Awesome! Got around 9 hours a night, in spite of weird/vivid pregnancy dreams
My overall first trimester experience:
Now that my first trimester of pregnancy has come to a close, I look forward to sharing more with you about this little baby inside of me. We have registered with our hospital and scheduled various appointments that make this seem super real. And we will be finding out the gender extra early and should have that news next week! Yay!
I would say that the first trimester seemed like the slowest moving 13 weeks of my life, mostly because I felt a little strange and was keeping my pregnancy a secret. But looking back, I guess I had it pretty good.
On the diet front, I’ve been craving a ton of carbs, for basically every meal, but now that my nausea has been slowing down, I’m getting back to more veggie-based meals. Now let’s hope I regain my love of drinking tons of water — because clearly this is an important time to be hydrated. But we shall see, because I’m not exactly in charge of my cravings any longer. It’s that tiny thing brewing inside me.
I plan to continue working out regularly and teaching group fitness classes for as long as I feel comfortable. I’ve never done this pregnancy thing before, so I’m not going to set any major goals for myself, other than to keep moving.
On the blog, I’m not going to hide the fact that I’m pregnant (it’s hard not to mention it, now that the news it out there), but it’s also not going to be the number-one topic of discussion around here. So don’t worry! Love you, friends! Drink some wine for me! Or kombucha! Get a gel mani. Live your life! And I’ll see you back here soon.
P.S. As I alluded to when announcing, there’s a lot of behind-the-scenes stuff that went on during my journey to pregnancy (it didn’t just happen overnight — AT ALL), and I’m putting it all together and promise to share it with you soon. Boy, did I learn A LOT, and it should be valuable for you whether you plan to have a baby in the future or not. Hormones are EVERYTHING!
Questions of the day
If you’ve ever been pregnant, what’s something you were averse to?
What’s your number-one food craving every day?