Monday, April 29, 2013

Pregnancy and the Female Body

Pregnancy and the Female Body:

Since becoming pregnant a big topic I've noticed a lot of women discuss/bring up is weight gain.  You begin to hear a lot of women talk about "prebaby bods", "Pregnancy weight gain", "swelling", "cellulite", "cravings" and "the appetite of a teenage boy", etc when you become pregnant.  Alot of women live in fear of what their bodies will go through during pregnancy.. its the fear of the "unknown".. you really just dont know how your body will respond. Not just with weight gain but overall with all of the symptoms that come along with pregnancy and growing a little person in there.

I know for me, fitness and health have always been something I've valued. I really enjoy exercise, for the physical and mental benefits.  I also love feeding my body healthy food, especially knowing theres a child inside of me benefiting from my nutrients.  That doesn't mean there haven't been so many days where I really dont feel up to working out, when im exhausted or something else sounds like more fun then heading to the gym, especially at being 7 months pregnant... Or that Im always eating healthy food.. Id say I have probably one cheat meal a day and a treat after lunch (sometimes..okay, most days) and always after dinner.  I just try to stay balanced.  This was important to me before pregnancy but even more so during.  I knew that I was going to go through a big transformation mentally, spiritually, emotionally, and physically the moment I found out we were pregnant.  I think I'm doing my best to handle this transformation one day at a time.. i can do that through making sure I stay connected to God, doing my daily devotional, continued bible study with my girls, spiritually growing with my husband and praying daily together, and going to church on sundays.. i have a longing to be the best mom I can be and the best wife and I truly feel like that where I am in my relationship with God is a huge influence on how I am in relationships with others.  I also do this through making sure I am where I need to be in my career, I am working on pushing myself harder to study for my exam to become licensed, its difficult when I really just dont have the energy or motivation during pregnancy to want to sit down and study. I am working on emotionally being in a great place, which I feel that I really am. I am so happy and thankful for the Lord's blessings and all He has gifted my life with. I really dont even have words to describe how filled my heart is with gratitude for all He has showered on to me this past year.  I have the most special and supportive person by my side through all of this and that just makes it so much easier to transition into (my dear and sweet husband).  And lastly I can do this through healthy balanced eating and exercise. Which i have tried my best to maintain at a moderate level during this pregnancy. Exercise is good because it helps prevent high blood pressure, swelling, and diabetes, as well as it prepares you for birth (which my dr describes is like a marathon and one must train for that to do well).

I have been so fortunate to not have any complications during this pregnancy, its been easy and so beautiful and peaceful (aside from being awfully sick in the beginning).  I couldn't be more thankful for that!  Watching my body change hasn't been as hard as I thought it would be...  I wasnt sure what this experience would be like when you are exposed to all of these women out there (blogs, friends, family, etc) who make it seem so dreadful & bombard you by telling you all sorts of horror stories like how most women "pack on some serious pounds".  I really feel beautiful and have been embracing my new curves, I think I see this as a gift that a lot of women long for, a lot of families cannot have children on their own, and I think God has kept how special this is as my true focus.  I look in the mirror and get excited (most days) that my belly is growing AND feeling him move around is the biggest high in the world.  And then watching how other people light up around this belly of mine is so spectacular and incredible to witness!  And to top that all off, my loving husband is so gentle with me and tells me every single day ..multiple times.. how beautiful i am and shares how he loves my body, it has only brought us that much closer.  He makes me feel amazing no matter what kind of day im having.  I know my son will have his wonderful heart.  I've always said my husband is an angel and truly has a heart of gold and I pray that my son learns that and gets that from his daddy.

So here are some beautiful mommies in all shapes and sizes.  From prebaby bodies to during pregnancy and even after, you can see how we are all created differently and each of these women is so beautiful at all phases of life.  I know the media has slandered a lot of these women in different ways, so Im here to embrace them and to simply show other girls out there that our bodies will do what God intended during pregnancy and after... we should embrace, accept, and love our bodies.. which includes treating them right.. our bodies are temples.. we need to feed them well, not too much and not too little, and give them daily movement in whatever exercise, activity, or way you enjoy.

 Kim Kardashian before baby and then during her pregnancy. 
Kim Kardashian Pre baby body

Kate Middleton 28 weeks pregnant
(Kate later shared that she did yoga during her entire pregnancy and post partum to get strength back in her core)

 Kate Middleton Pre baby body

Jessica alba Pregnant                                                  Jenna Dewan Pregnant
Jenna Dewan pre baby body
(Jenna Dewan talked about her pregnancy openly and says she worked out/walked/went to the gym almost every day and ate vegan (shes always been a vegan).  She was committed to staying healthy).

Jessica Alba Post pregnancy body

Jessica Simpson pregnant
(Jessica Simpson openly talked about how she wanted to enjoy pregnancy and eat whatever she wanted. She even made light of her weight gain by talking about eating pop tarts dipped in butter). 

Pregnant and after Pregnancy - Jessica Simpson

                                                   Kim Kardashian pregnant
(Kim Kardashian claimed to have gained around 50lbs during her pregnancy. She shared that she never really craved unhealthy foods and really craved veggies and ranch).

Its so beautiful seeing a woman who is creating a human inside of her tummy. I think it is the most fascinating adventure and we need to do a better job supporting these woman and lifting them up while they are enduring all of these changes that are out of their control.  I hope you enjoyed reading my take and experience on pregnancy and the female body. Im sure I will touch on this again post baby.  (:


  1. I love your blog! I've always been really athletic and health conscious and i've been having a really hard time with not being completely in control of my body being pregnant (I'm 15 weeks).... I know all bodies are beautiful and all that... but I definetely wouldn't mind having a post baby body like Jessica Albas... hopefully being tinier after from breastfeeding sucking all the fat out of me! It happens- so many women I know are tinier after baby because of all the work it is and from breastfeeding burning calories.

  2. Thank you so much! Im glad to have other mommies read long, its nice to know we are not in this alone (:
    I completely understand that feeling of not being in control, i think especially in the beginning you are still getting use to all the BIG changes in your body and the hormones. The beginning was the most difficult for me. As my belly started to pop out more I think my mind shifted from being scared about what my body might look like at the end of this, to being excited each week that my belly(baby) grow. This is such a short amount of time if you really think about it, it seems like a long time when we are in it, but once its over we have the rest of our lives to live with this little person, it makes it all worth it. Our bodies will go back as long as we put in a little (or a lot, depending on your build, how much you gain, how fit you stayed etc) work. I definitely think breast feeding can help, but a lot of women say those last 5 lbs stay on until you finish breast feeding. Who knows? i think everyone is different. We have two options, we can either be terrified and anxious about the change our bodies are undergoing, or we can just enjoy the changes and embrace them knowing something incredible is happening inside of you! Thats how i "TRY" to see it.. but i have my days too when its hard, we just got to stay focused on that this is about life forming, not about the perfect body or looking our best.. this is a selfless period of time, so give in, accept it, and embrace it is my motto!

  3. I love your blog! :)
    I am 8 weeks and 1 day and was wondering what kinds of exercises you did or can recommend throughout pregnancy. I have always been health conscious and athletic, but now that I am pregnant, I am scared that what I am doing now will hurt the baby. Any tips would be much appreciated! :)
    Thanks from Australia! :)

    1. Thanks so much mama! Congratulations!!!! Whenever someone tells me they're pregnant my heart is so happy!! it brings me back to how special it was for me. Enjoy EVERY MOMENT!! As long as your Dr gives you the OKAY and you are not a high risk pregnancy, working out is SOOOOO GOOD for you while pregnant. There are just so many benefits to it for you and the baby. I did light cardio in the first trimester (when i wasnt feeling too sick), i waited to continue weights until the second trimester when i was in the "safe zone". I didnt want to chance miscarrying or anything happening. I think thats a fear most women have, especially with the first pregnancy. For cardio i just used the elyptical. For weights (once in the second trimester) i did classes at 24 hour fitness and adjusted as i was further along in the pregnancy to lighter weights and never did ab work outs. I hope that helps! <3