I haven’t weighed myself in the last eight of nine months that I’ve been pregnant and I have loved every second of my ignorant bliss!
As someone dedicated to numbers, data, and anything and everything measurable, it has surprisingly been such a relief to throw out the scale.
At the start of my pregnancy, I used this weight gain calculator to figure out how many lbs I was ‘expected’ to gain. I started at a BMI of 20.5 (5’2″ and 112 lbs), so I knew that I was aiming to put on around 25 to 35 lbs. After my first doctor’s appointment I made the switch to a midwife for my pregnancy. One of the many things I love about having a midwife is that the pee here…get weighed here…wait here for 20 minutes until you see the doctor type of appointment is nonexistent. Instead, my midwife measures my blood pressure and pulse, monitors baby’s heart rate, and does blood work/urine tests/swabs when needed (plus a couple of additions as I approach my due date, like measuring my fundal height).
Before I learned that almost 50% of women gain more than the recommended amount of weight during their pregnancies, I knew that the ‘eating for two = eating twice as much’ motto was a lie that I’d choose not to follow. In fact, pregnant women only need about 300 extra calories per day.
Generally, I keep to my pre-pregnancy diet (a super healthy smoothie and tea for breakfast, salad/leftovers for lunch and a generally carb-free dinner) and added in an afternoon snack. I definitely did NOT stick to this diet each and every day during my pregnancy! During the first trimester I needed to eat some bread or crackers first thing in the morning, otherwise my nausea would be overwhelming.
I still enjoy ice cream regularly…which I blame on being pregnant in the summer…and eat a dessert or some sort of pastry (massive weaknesses of mine) pretty much whenever I want, but no more than once every day or two. I also offset a less-than-healthy lunch by filling up on a massive amount of veggies at dinner. The Pizza Hut delivery guy has made an appearance at my door more times than I’d like to admit.
But instead of ‘eating for two’, I follow this motto:
I know when I’m eating well and I have self-control.
This isn’t some huge revelation or even difficult to follow. I let myself eat the ice cream often: full-fat, in a cone, usually chocolate with huge gobs of peanut butter, and oh god it is good. I also make sure to walk for at least 30 minutes daily and work in some light weight/body weight exercises 2-3 times per week.
If I were to weigh myself every day then my pregnancy would revolve around my weight gain. I did not want this to be the case! My pregnancy is about mine and baby’s health, first and foremost.
At 38 weeks pregnant, I’d guess that I have gained around 30-35 lbs, but I really have no idea. I’ve regularly been told that I’m having a ‘belly only’ pregnancy and don’t look like I gained much weight at all. This is for sure a lie, since I can feel the extra cushion of fat around my hips and my bras have 0 ability to contain me.
But here’s the secret: I don’t care about the weight gain!
Yes, there have been multiple times when I’ve felt massive. Poor lighting in a photo can always make me think that I look fat, pregnant or not. But I don’t obsess over it. My midwife says I’m healthy and I believe her.
I look in the mirror and don’t see a body all that different from the one I had a nearly year ago. I feel energetic and healthy. But most importantly, I feel happy.