Weight in pregnancy (and before)

Managing weight in pregnancy is easy for some women, but difficult for others. I guess it’s easy to rapidly gain weight when you are pregnant without really noticing, especially if you live by the old saying “I’m eating for two!”. The truth is, you really don’t need to eat for two, not until your third trimester, when even then you only really need an extra 200-ish calories. The NHS says most pregnant women gain between 22-28lbs, though of course it varies greatly depending on your weight beforehand. 

Before I fell pregnant I was already managing my weight, so it has been easier for me I guess than if I was still hugely overweight. This is me before I decided to change my life for the better and for the future! I was at least 204lbs (14st 8lbs) here, which at my height of a measly 5’1″ is very obese! 

Wanting to try for a baby is one of the main reasons I decided to lose weight. My health was awful, I used to get out of breath even walking up the stairs, finding clothes that fit and looked nice was a nightmare, I was just purely lazy and greedy. I wanted a better life for me, my husband and future children. Not to be able to not be active with them; not to become ill and they lose me early in life. I know this could happen anyway due to unforeseen circumstances but we all know that extra weight carries a lot of health risks. I knew it would take an age to conceive, I do believe my weight played a huge factor in the reason why it did, but we now know that wasn’t the only reason in the end.

This is the most recent pic of me a month before I got my BFP, I was around 155lbs (11st 1lb) here, though I had lost another 3lbs by the time I had my BFP. I was then in the ‘overweight’ category. Ideally I would have been in the ‘healthy’ category beforehand, in fact I was expecting to be at the rate we were going! (Though the BMI guidelines shouldn’t be taken at face value, everybody is different)

Up to 19 weeks pregnant I have gained 9.6 lbs. 

If you are going to try for a baby and you are obese or overweight, I am sure the majority of people would advise to try and lose weight beforehand. Number 1, it will help in your TTC journey, and number 2, it will stand you in good stead for when you are pregnant and have given birth. Although, I do know of overweight people who have gone on to conceive easily and have a healthy uneventful pregnancy. 

At the time I decided to lose weight, I found this website (MFP). I truly believe I wouldn’t have got where I did without my friends on there and their support and encouragement. Now I am pregnant, I still use it occasionally, although I admit I have not been the best in logging my calories, and exercising…

In my first trimester, I had no sickness but I found it incredibly difficult to eat a lot. I didn’t lose my appetite as such, I just couldn’t fit much in! Obviously this will not happen to everyone, but then again we don’t all end up with morning sickness to make us lose our appetite and weight either! So I gained around 6lbs in my first trimester. Hardly any of this would have been baby, some may have been extra water, but I think the majority is the fact that I carried out hardly any exercise at all (maybe a bit of walking, but that’s it), so what I did eat had nowhere to go. I have not really changed my new eating habits though that I gained from MFP, I still have my 3 meals a day, granted now they are even smaller than my smaller portions from before! When I snack, I snack on fruit and healthy snacks. I drink my water – in fact, I used to be terrible for it before, but now I find it much easier as I’m always thirsty! I have the odd bar of chocolate and my weakness is crisps, but I still only eat one packet a day, if that. My craving though has been peanut butter, I have been eating it by the jar….

Up until recently I have found the weight gain quite difficult to deal with in my head. One of my friends said to me, it’s probably because I lost so much weight before, and now I’m gaining it again, it’s strange. Now I’m starting to deal with the fact it’s for a totally different and much better reason…

My tips

  • If you are overweight or obese before TTC, try to lose some weight beforehand. Also, if you are at an unhealthy weight, try and gain a little
  • Make sure you eat your 3 meals a day, if you can, or more smaller meals if you can’t stomach much
  • Eat healthy snacks and cut down on salt
  • Drink plenty of fluids, this will also help with headaches
  • Exercise. Even walking for 30 minutes a day is a help. Find exercise friendly classes in your area, such as pregnancy yoga and aquanatal
  • Try not to weigh yourself so often! 
(I need to take some of my own advice regarding exercise and weighing myself!)

P.S. Sorry I’ve rambled on, it’s one of the subjects I have a lot to say on! 

For more info on weight in pregnancy, see the section on the NHS website here

One thought on “Weight in pregnancy (and before)

  1. Love this blog post. Tommy's and Bounty are working on this issue, and trying to do some myth busting around eating for two. You are an inspiration and no doubt your weight loss helped in getting up the duff, and a bit of weight gain is normal. You are doing great.

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