A Woe of Pregnancy

Today I had my 16 week (I’m actually 17 weeks) doctor’s appointment. Part of every appointment is weighing in, which I think is a sensitive subject for a lot of women.

In 17 weeks, I have gained 8-9lbs which I didn’t think was terrible. I brought it up to my doctor because it’s something I wanted to be conscious of. I don’t want to gain a lot of weight during this pregnancy and having had previous weight problems, I feel even more pressure to not gain too much. Not only for me, but because I don’t want to have  a difficult time later in pregnancy and I certainly don’t want to hurt our baby boy. My doctor hit me with the fact that she normally doesn’t like to see her patients gain more than 5lbs before 20 weeks, she said because at the end of the second and into the third trimester, women tend to gain more.

I am very aware of what is healthy and what is not–I have a strong background in weight loss and my degree is in public health for goodness sakes! My doctor told me to eat my veggies etc etc which annoyed me a little because I know this, duh. However unfortunately, I haven’t been wanting to touch a vegetable with a 10-foot pole since becoming pregnant. One of my proud moments this week was the fact that I have eaten three salads by CHOICE. Before I got pregnant I was a vegetable eating machine. After talking with my doctor today I have to put on my big girl panties and eat some freaking vegetables.

I left my doctors office feeling super defeated. I vented to my SILs and a close friend. Wah wah wah. I felt like a failure because I have gained too much according to my doctor. A TOTAL FAILURE. I should have done better, I shouldn’t have given into pizza, I shouldn’t eat so much fruit. Despite staying within my daily calorie intake I need to make a change for me and for this baby.

My husband was in the appointment with me and is taking it upon himself to keep me accountable.

Like the person I am, I have made a list of goals and a meal plan to follow that will be on my refrigerator until at least December. I am posting it here so I can be accountable to the general public if that even means anything.

My goals include–
-eat 4-6 small meals per day
-limit to 2-3 fruit servings per day
-eat at least 3 different vegetables per day
-allow myself one cheat/meal out per week

Example Meal Plan–
Breakfast– one piece of whole grain toast with peanut butter or almond butter and one serving of fruit
Morning snack– sliced cucumbers, peppers, baby carrots, or a salad
Lunch– protein plus fruit, or large serving of veggies (roasted, steamed, etc)
Afternoon snack– more sliced veggies, steamed veggies, air popped popcorn or fruit
Dinner– protein serving and lots of veggies

Obviously this isn’t a diet because I am not counting calories but rather just eating clean, which I need to do a better job at.

Some positives that I CAN be happy about–
My soda intake is now little to zero. I have fallen in love with sparkling water like La Croix or just club soda with fruit in it. I can’t handle the artificial sweet taste of soda and I know sparkling water is a much healthier alternative to soda.

I am still exercising 3-4 days per week by doing strength training and LOTS of walking. I’m thankful I’m not totally sucking in the exercise department.

I know pregnancy will have its ups and downs, especially with the ups and downs of my hormones.

I am thankful that tomorrow is a new day and I’m looking forward to having my vegetable intake out of control awesome.

Week 14

As promised, another (albeit random) pregnancy update. I didn’t write about week 13 because nothing really fun happened!

The main highlight of week 13 was my husband telling me that I had the ‘pregnancy glow,’ which was pretty exciting to hear.

As I am writing this, I just wrapped up week 14 and am a few days into week 15.

Thanks to advances in science, we were given the opportunity by my doctor to be tested for genetic disorders which include but are not limited to, Down Syndrome, Fetal X Syndrome, Tay-Sach’s and so forth. This type of testing would also tell us the sex of the baby, five weeks before the typical gender reveal at the 20 week scan. Most importantly, I am not a carrier for any genetic disorder that they tested for (thank goodness!) and my husband and I found out that we are having a baby boy!

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I cried when I got off the phone with the nurse–a happy cry! My husband and I had a feeling it was a boy, but to have it confirmed was so thrilling. It made this pregnancy more real, especially now we can refer to our baby as ‘he’ instead of ‘it’. My side of the family has had long run of girls (no boys) and my husband is one of three boys, with an adopted sister. I knew I would be happy with whichever sex our baby was, but I have always felt like I would be a better ‘boy mom,’ even though I know in the future we will have at least one girl, whether naturally or adopted. Years ago before I ever was dating my husband, I had prayed for cute little kids with blonde hair and blue eyes, and I always felt like I wanted a boy first. Funny how those prayers work, because we are getting a little boy and between my husband and I, our kid is more than likely to be a little blondie, blue-eyed boy.

As for pregnancy, I am feeling pretty good! It has been a humbling experience so far, like when I have to take 3-4 breaks while mowing the lawn for water and to cool down. I’m used to going a million miles an hour, so to have to stop myself and ‘go easy’ has been a piece of humble pie.

I still walk and get some form of exercise at least 4x per week. Yesterday I committed a good thirty minutes to deep stretching and some body-weight exercises which really helped my stiffness. This is something I am going to continue to help my body not become a ball of knots!

I also think I may have the beginnings of a ‘bump,’ and I can’t believe I’m sharing this picture with you guys!!

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It’s not a great picture thanks to my selfie inability, but it gets the point across.

Little victory for this week is that I am no longer disgusted by eggs! I had them twice this week which made me happy because they have vitamins and minerals that are really good for me and the babe. Another change–I am craving club soda more than actual diet soda. I used to love diet soda but have really cut back because I know it is not the best choice for me or for our baby. Lately, if I can get my hands on club soda with lemons & limes I am sooo happy. I could literally drink it all day.

Here’s my week 14 round up–

Cravings- pizza (still), grapes, mashed potatoes, club soda with lemons & limes

Feels- still having the headaches, am still feeling generally tired and my sinuses are way backed up. I read that pregnant women are more prone to this due to increased blood volume and everything is swelling, including my sinuses. This is probably my least favorite thing so far. Congestion, dry coughing and sneezing need to go.

Body- finally kind of showing, my back hurts if I slouch and I get tired sooner than I used to after doing various activities, especially outside (exercise, going to the pool, mowing, gardening, etc.)

Overall I am still very happy with how this pregnancy is progressing, I probably couldn’t ask for a better journey!

Weeks 1-12

If we are friends on Facebook or Instagram, you probably know by now that my husband and I are expecting a baby!

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I hadn’t even thought about blogging about this experience until a few weeks ago, so it is likely I won’t post a weekly update, but (as I usually am), updates will be sporadic :)

We found out that I was pregnant on April 15th (Tax Day!) and both of our families knew by the following weekend. This pregnancy was not planned, but I strongly believe that everything happens for a reason and I know that this baby is a huge blessing from the Lord! This may sound silly, but I had this irrational fear growing up that I would have trouble conceiving. Totally silly and completely out there for me to even consider, but it was always back in the mind. My thoughts could not have been further from the truth! More proof to me in the reality that God is in control and knows what He’s doing.

We had outed to news to pretty much everyone when I was about 9 weeks, I am terrible at keeping secrets! Of course the worry of miscarriage was there, but I knew that even if the unspeakable happened, I still wanted to celebrate this baby for however long we were blessed with it.

So far, we have seen the baby twice on sonogram and it has a very healthy heart rate of 167 as of today and I am 13 weeks pregnant!

Here’s to share some of the fun (and not fun) things of pregnancy so far!

Weeks 1-8–

This may sound silly, but I had quite a feeling that I was pregnant almost as immediately as it happened. About a week and a half before my missed period, I felt something going on in my lower abdomen that was not like regular time of the month cramps and I was also feeling terribly nauseous which was very abnormal. The feeling in my abdomen was like a balloon was being blown up inside of me (weird to explain, weirder to experience).

I had my pregnancy confirmed by a doctor when I was at 5 weeks (I didn’t actually believe it was for real real!) and she answered my questions and told me I should have a very healthy pregnancy.

Pretty much all I craved the first two months were pizza, broccoli and pickles.

Weeks 9-13–

I have had two doctor’s appointments and for the most part feel really good! I have had to give in to naps a few times a week and am gladly getting 8-10 hours of sleep per night. My blood pressure was great today at 112/72 at my appointment and we got to see baby’s little face! We are opting to do some genetic testing done to see if I am a carrier for any genetic disorders and the testing will also tell us what sex the baby is, so within two weeks we will know if we have a little boy or girl!

One thing I am trying to do is not think about being pregnant too much. I still strive to maintain my normal day-to-day activities, which include exercising 3-5 times per week (mostly cardio, my doctor wants me to stay away from weight lifting and it kind of makes me pass out anyways), eating a balanced diet and doing things I enjoy.

I feel as though this mindset has helped the pregnancy be smooth thus far. I feel very lucky that I haven’t experienced the terrible morning sickness so many women are plagued with and other unpleasant side effects that pregnancy causes. I actually can’t even believe that I am 13 weeks! The first three months may have been worse than I remember, but I can’t remember too incredibly well thanks to baby brain. That’s one of the worst things. Like last week I went to get in my car and sat in the backseat, then eventually it hit me that I couldn’t drive from the backseat. Ooops!

Here’s a little round up–

Cravings– Rice Krispie’s cereal, watermelon, grapefruits, steak, almond butter, water

Aversions– coffee (gasp! I know! I haven’t had it in over 6 weeks, the thought of it makes me want to gag), eggs, most vegetables (slowly being able to tolerate them again). Basically thinking about food is really unpleasant until I get really hungry

Feels– tired, major headaches hitting with the start of the 2nd trimester, urge to begin nesting, am not enjoying cooking

Body– ‘the girls’ have grown two cup sizes (I didn’t have much to start with), have gained a healthy 2.5lbs in the first 13 weeks (yay for that one!), my feet hurt if I stand up for too long

Due Date- December 20th!

A Bit About Our Pit

I know this blog is ‘Run, Sweat, Sparkle,’ but it’s also room for me to talk about different things going on in my life that I may or may not feel compelled to share.

This post goes out to my big pit bull baby, Bella. If we are friends on Facebook or Instagram, no doubt you have seen many photos of her!

Growing up, we always had a dog, one, two or three at a time. My whole entire life. When my husband and I got married last July, we were dogless. My husband had a couple of dogs in his adult life, but my dogs growing up we had from the time they were pups to when they went to doggy heaven. I didn’t realize this until we got married, that I had never not had a dog. Less than a month after we got married, we found ourselves at the shelters looking for a new little friend–I couldn’t live without one!

As a kid we had retrievers, setters, and mutts, the typical ‘family’ dog. At one point (I think I had been watching Pit Boss on Animal Planet) I piqued an interest in pit bulls, or American Staffordshire Terriers to be proper. There was just something about them–their strength, appearance, or from what I could tell, they seemed like good dogs to have, that made me want one.

We looked at an overcrowded shelter and since we live in a city that permits bully breeds, we did not have another dog, and we have a privacy fence, they tried to sell us on just about every dog they had. Most of them were males, one even stood as tall as my waist and they seemed like more dog than we could handle. We didn’t really have that ‘connection’ with any of these dogs. I suggested we head over to our local SPCA which was just a couple of blocks away, as my family has adopted several pups from them and we always had a good experience.

It was our lucky day! We found Bella (formerly Momma), who was like a diamond in the rough. She was a sweetly mannered, tan, 5-year old staffie. We hung out with her and the adoption counselor in a meet and greet room and my husband fell in LOVE. He was so happy, like a little kid on Christmas morning. We were both in and that afternoon we had our new family member!

Bella on the day we adopted her!

Bella on the day we adopted her!

Being first-time bully breed owners, my husband and I wanted to educate ourselves as much as possible to the best owners we could for Bella. I cannot tell you how many weeks we spent every night watching Cesar Milan videos and reading up on how to be the owners of a pit bull.

Thankfully for us, Bella is a really great and pretty easy dog. When we adopted her, she was already housebroken and we only crated her for the first couple of months while we were gone because we were still getting to know her.

No matter how sweet our girl is, there are still people that don’t like her simply because of her breed. I can’t tell you how many dirty looks we have gotten, but there are also lots of people who love her too.

One thing we have learned about Bella is that she is very selective with her doggy friends. We adopted a male Lab/Pit mix a while back and couldn’t keep him after a few weeks–he was too high energy for Bella and she began to get aggressive with him. On the other hand, Bella loves going to my parents’ house to see her doggy cousins, a Golden Retriever and a Golden Chow. I don’t know if Bella knows that they are family or what, but those three do great together! After a little while though, Bella is ready to go home.

A couple of months ago we tried to get Bella another friend with no success. We found a puppy that we wanted her to meet, since she is the dominant dog, we figured there would be no competition for pack order. However, Bella got annoyed by the pup’s energy and wanted nothing to do with her. We also tried to introduce her to another female pit bull around her age, but that absolutely did not go well. We are thinking that it is going to be best to let Bella be our only pup.

Bella does love little kids, way more than dogs! Tonight on our walk a couple of kids just came up and started petting her and she loved it. Our baby niece was over last night and Bella only seemed a little concerned when she started crying. I do wonder if dogs can be introverted–the last time we had a party at our house, Bella came down to say hi to everyone but quickly retreated back to our bedroom to hang out by herself.

Just like people, no two dogs are the same!

Some of Bella’s favorite things– playing fetch with a tennis ball, going on walks, rolling in the grass, being LAZY, getting treats, when momma feeds her eggs and peanut butter, sleeping in on the weekends.

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Since adopting a pit bull, my heart has grown so much for them. They are typically the highest population of dogs that need to find forever families and are so often overlooked. I want to encourage anyone who is looking for a dog, that pitties make amazing companions! They have the biggest hearts and are sure to give you lots of laughs and love.