The past 13 weeks have been markedly out-of-character for me. I’ve been sleeping a lot and skimping on the running. I’ve been taking long, drawn-out, three-hour naps (whenever I can and wishing I could be whenever I can’t). I’ve eaten more Kentucky Fried Chicken mashed potatoes with extra salt and drank more V-8 juice than I ever thought possible. I haven’t made it through a single night’s sleep without having to get up and pee at least two times. I gag when I brush my teeth, I dry heave at the smell of my hubby’s cologne, and cleaning the bathrooms and kitty litter have become off limits. I’ve been moody and my boobs have grown about 2 cup sizes (you think I’m kidding!?!), making my current stock of sports bras out-of-commission.
We’ve finally made it “Facebook Official” and I thought it was about time to share the news with those out in Salty Land. Baby Ginkgo is due July 9, 2014!
I think I’ve read Salty’s first trimester post about 50 times (our pregnancy and running guru), trying to calm my nerves about continuing running during my pregnancy, namely during the sensitive first trimester. In my research and through personal conversations with my mid-wife, I’ve found that running throughout weeks 4-13, as long as the momma-to-be has the energy and no bleeding, unusual cramping, etc., it’s completely fine and actually encouraged since it may directly benefit the developing babe.
With my past eating disorder (ED) issues, I’ve been viewing this pregnancy as a mega-miracle and have been doing everything in my power to completely kick ED thoughts and habits to the curb to produce the best life for this baby. I don’t want to overdo it with the running and I know the importance of nutrition is magnified everyday.
I think my past has added the extra worries to my first trimester, so I’ve only been comfortable running about 2-3 miles maximum per day, supplemented with walks, yoga, and prenatal pilates. When it comes down to it, each of us is different and it’s important to do what feels right. While one momma-to-be might be able to continue at her 50-mile weeks along with interval track work-outs and some racing without a glitch, that just wasn’t for me, at least not during the first trimester.
They say energy tends to make a reappearance around 13-14 weeks. I just entered the second trimester (hurray!), but I’m still waiting. But, what’s a little fatigue when this means a healthy baby is in our near future? Last week, I was able to see the 3-inch, size of a peach, fetus sucking on it’s newly formed thumb and doing some can-can kicks in an ultrasound. WOW. After 13 weeks, the likelihood of a miscarriage dramatically decreases. I’d like to think my first baby, first trimester butterflies will decrease along with it.
For those of you who might be tentative about running during those first 13 weeks in fear of overdoing it or “causing” a miscarriage, which is highly unlikely as most are due to chromosomal abnormalities, here are some helpful tips to quiet all that extra noise that may be occurring in your newly established pregnancy brain:
1. Talk to your individual doctor or mid-wife. Each scenario is different, so don’t just do what your friend or favorite blogger did.
2. Keep running but don’t feel like you have to keep racing. Racing actually isn’t recommended, nor are intense speed work-outs (for most). If you can’t carry on a conversation during your run, you’re probably pushing too hard. Everyone is different though, so as long as you’re in touch with your practitioner and feeling good without overdoing it, you might be just fine continuing on in this path. Personally, just the thought of a track work-out during my first trimester had me puking.
3. Know when to call it quits. If you’re cramping or having back pain, don’t feel guilty for stopping, now more than ever.
4. Consider your options. If running isn’t agreeing with your body, try a prenatal yoga class, swimming, or walking.
5. Dress comfortably. I’ve put away my spandex shorts and tops that bare my midriff for the time being. After all, I can bust them back out once I’m a hot mom, right?
6. Eat well. If you can’t keep down all the veggies and fruits during the first trimester, just at least eat something that you can keep down. In my case, bland mashed potatoes (particularly of the KFC brand, yuck!). Grilled cheese and saltines have been other staples, with a side of ginger ale.
7. Go easy on yourself. Your hormones are working overtime. Your body is changing every, single day. If that’s not enough, you don’t need to be down on yourself for not being able to achieve your once 7-minute pace.
If you’ve been pregnant did you have first trimester butterflies? How did you cope? Did you continue running?
✰ For more on running during the first trimester, check out What to Expect from Running When You’re Expecting: 1st Trimester.