Taking Control

I’ve mentioned a couple of times before that I really want to avoid the 55lb weight gain I experienced during my first pregnancy. During that pregnancy I gained those 55lbs in about 5 months – that is more than a 10lb a month weight gain. That whole time I was taking Zo.loft for anxiety and I was sure the SSRI was the cause of my increased poundage.

This pregnancy is testing that hypothesis, because I seem to be gaining almost as quickly as I did last time, and this time I don’t have an SSRIs to blame for putting on the pounds.

On Friday I stepped on my mother’s scale at the end of the day and was mortified to see 166 lbs. That is a SIX POUND gain in TWO WEEKS! I had a complete panic attack. Right then and there I vowed to take control of this run-away weight gain. I bought myself a FitBit–something I’ve wanted since before I was pregnant but kept not getting for myself because of the price–and signed up on MyFitnessPal. I spent the weekend tracking my calories (Oh Lawdy do I LOATHE tracking calories!!) and after two days I was SHOCKED by how much I was eating. No wonder I’m gaining so much weight!

So now I am taking control. I am making better choices about what I eat and I’m not letting myself snack so much. I’m making conscious decisions about what I put in my body and I hope that with closer vigilance I can keep my weight gain in check.

At this point I’m just trying to maintain my current weight, since I shouldn’t be at 166 for another month. MyFitnessPal doesn’t have an option for pregnancy so I described my day as “somewhat active” instead of “sedentary,” which I assume will allow for the 100-300 calories I’m supposed to be adding to my daily calorie intake. MyFitnessPal gave me a 2030/day calorie goal which seems completely reasonable. Of course I haven’t manage to hit that goal yet, but I’m getting closer every day.

{When I want to start gaining a pound a week I will set my daily activity at the highest level, to account for the extra calories needed.}

I’m really looking forward to my FitBit arriving (today!) so I can start seeing how much I’m moving and taking walks after Isa goes to bed on the days when I don’t take enough steps on my own. Right now I’m exercising three times a week, burning about 300 calories each time. It’s not much but I’m doing it to stay strong and cardiovascular-ly in shape, not to burn calories. I hope the FitBit can help me to keep my activity level up on the days I’m not exercising so that at the end of this pregnancy I still feel comfortable and capable in my body.

I will admit to being nervous about late pregnancy with a toddler and I’m especially nervous about the weeks after the baby is (fingers-crossed) born, when Mi.Vida can’t take time off work and I’ll be home alone with an energetic toddler and a newborn. (Even if I take Isa to school, I’ll still need to get her ready and drop her off, all with a newborn.)  Those first weeks with my daughter were positively idyllic, but I also had my partner home for the first week and I didn’t have to do anything besides care for my child that entire time. I barely left my house, let alone my living room. When I think of adding the demands of a toddler to that I KNOW that I need to be in much better physical shape or I simply won’t be able to keep up.

I want to make clear that I am not trying to avoid the weight gain of pregnancy. I’ve already gained 20 lbs in the 15 weeks I’ve known I was pregnant. I am hoping to gain the desired one pound per week for the rest of my pregnancy to put me at a 35-40 lb total weight gain. I absolutely know that weight gain is necessary for ME for a healthy pregnancy and I’m not trying to fight that. I’m just trying to keep from gaining an EXTRA 10-20 lbs IN ADDITION to the 35 lbs I know I’ll gain. I’m just trying to stay physically strong so I can effectively parent my energetic toddler throughout this pregnancy and (hopefully) into the newborn months. I’m just trying to stay healthy, and eating and moving consciously are acceptable ways to do that.

5 responses

  1. Good for you for taking control! It can be so hard to control weight gain during pregnancy. I’m having a much harder time this time around, but started out 25 pounds less than when I got pregnant with Matthew. But still… I’m having a hard time with it mentally. So, so hard!

    Enjoy your fitbit! ________________________________

  2. Yes, it’s amazing how many calories you can consume without being mindful of it, isn’t it? Scares me sometimes, how often I eat without being aware.

    The one thing that helped my best friend with her runaway weight loss during her second pregnancy was following a gestational diabetes diet. (She never HAD GD, but with her weight gain, her OB suggested she follow it. Said that it helped women gain more reasonably for whatever reason.)

    So when she was pregnant, she always paired a carb with protein. I’m sure she watched portion sizes too, but I remember the carb/protein thing more. It worked for her – overall she gained 40lbs, but most of that gain came in the first 25 weeks or so. Her gain really slowed down once she started following, and her son was born a healthy 7lbs5oz.

    Also: I’ve been an awful commenter of late. Congratulations on the baby BOY! Boys are awesome (not that I’m biased or anything! ):) and I’m thrilled for you.


  3. Because I started out SO much bigger than I was when I got pregnant with Raegan, I’ve been extremely mindful from the beginning. Now with a good old fashioned GD diagnosis, I have to be even more mindful. I have to log every thing I put in my mouth and every step I take. (I should get a fit bit LOL) Plus monitor my blood sugars 4-6 times a day. I was disappointed with my weight gain, until I talked to my OB and realized I actually haven’t gained a pound since my 9 week check. Our goal was for a maximum weight gain of 15 pounds but we 10 pound weight gain would be ideal. At 19 weeks, I’m hanging tight around those initial numbers so we’re very happy with this. I’ve also been told by going on the diabetic diet, I might actually lose weight because my body is processing food more efficiently. Good for you for taking control and good luck!

  4. Yay for a FitBit! I’ve barely moved lately b/c of the puking, but usually I’m totally addicted. You can sync it to MFP as well, which is really nice. FB allows you to mark pregnant – on MFP I’d just set to whatever your actual activity level is but set your goal to “+.5/week.” (which is an extra 250 cals/day). That way the FB will auto adjust your caloric needs based on your movement that day, and MFP will already have built in that extra 250 cals/day that you need for the pregnancy.

  5. Bloggers all over the blogosphere are crazy about their fitbits! Hope you like yours! I’m considering jumping on the bandwagon too. It’s tough to be pregnant and maintain a healthy weight…especially when our other children are leaving half-eaten pb+j sandwiches and bowls of mac and cheese at the table. It’s easy to feel like those calories don’t count, but I’ve learned that they do. (-:

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