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First Trimester Essentials + Recap

In case you missed it our surprise announcement, we’re having a baby! I am due August 3rd & just hit my second trimester this week. I’ve had so many of you be so kind to check in on how I’m feeling or have been feeling & I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it! There is a lot to touch on over the past three months, so today, I’m sharing a first trimester recap & some first trimester essentials.

Sharing a first trimester recap & some first trimester essentials that have helped me get through these first few months of pregnancy.

First Trimester Recap

We found out we were expecting when I was between 4-5 weeks along. Before that the only real ‘symptom’ I can look back & think of is that I was more sensitive to smells. The first two weeks after finding out I felt great. A little tired, but I could continue working out like I had & was even going on afternoon walks a lot of days, too.

Some of you picked up on me switching my workouts to later in the day, when I used to do them first thing in the mornings. This is because I was sleeping much later & many days I was doing them later when I could force myself into it. I also had tons of days where I didn't share them with you all. The photo below may give you some insight why! My boobs are giant, I look super bloated, & I'm wearing heating pads + 2 bras & motion sickness bands to get me through.

Symptoms I Experienced

Around week 7 the nausea kicked in & I was so exhausted I could barely function. There were several days I was in bed until 10:00 only to get up & make it to the couch. I struggle with needing to feel productive a lot & resting is not my strong suit. I had quite a few darker or down feeling days when I just felt worthless because I barely got anything done. I really had to shift my mindset that rest was not only okay, it was necessary. Charles brought me homemade ginger tea to bed every morning & really is the only reason our house was clean, dogs were fed, & decent meals were made.

I have been on a daily movement streak since April, meaning that every day I intentionally move my body, even just for 10 minutes with a walk or a quick body weight stretch or arm workout. There were many, many days that all I could muster the willpower to do to keep the streak alive was a 10 minute arm video while sitting down. I tried just about every remedy for nausea & feel like I finally got into a groove of what was working. Most of December I was exhausted & nauseous.

My other most prominent symptom has been breast pain. I had read ‘breast tenderness’ was a symptom, but that does not even begin to cover it. Usually around the time I would start I would have some pain, especially when I would be cold, but this has been where I can barely function when it hits. Since it’s winter, it’s been an added struggle. I’ve basically had to stop going on daily walks even when I wasn’t nauseous because if it’s cold out, my boobs hurt so bad. I bought some heating pad things you can warm in the micro & put in your bra that have been game changers. I started sleeping in a bra, which helps. This bra & this bralette have been game changes as they keep growing. Both so comfortable! I also keep the heat up as much as Charles will allow, wearing tons of layers, & cuddle under a blanket as needed.

These last two symptom may be TMI, but hey– you guys want all the info so here we are. Another unpleasant & recurring symptom has been constipation. There are several days in a row where there is nothing moving! Not comfortable. I keep joking that my appearance of a ‘bump’ is consistent with my bathroom schedule. A friend recommended a magnesium supplement (that my doctor said is fine to take) to me that helps with this! I didn’t love the taste of the powder when I was feeling nauseous, so I got the gummies, too. My doctor also said I could keep taking my probiotics which helps! Adding a whole date in my spirulina smoothie or just fiber in general really helps, too. The other TMI symptom is that for the first time in my life, I seem to be dealing with body odor. My deodorant seemed to stop working so I am switching it up to a new one, reapplying throughout the day, using some underarm wipes, & using an armpit detox mask each time I bathe or shower. The heightened sense of smell probably isn’t helping this one.

I must add that with every symptom, I felt a bit of relief because 1) it made pregnancy more real and 2) it’s supposed to be signs of a healthy pregnancy. The mindset of feeling grateful for every symptom really helped! It meant I was still pregnant & my body was doing what it needed to grow a baby.

Some of you picked up on me switching my workouts to later in the day, when I used to do them first thing in the mornings. This is because I was sleeping much later & many days I was doing them later when I could force myself into it. I also had tons of days where I didn't share them with you all. The photo below may give you some insight why! My boobs are giant, I look super bloated, & I'm wearing heating pads + 2 bras & motion sickness bands to get me through.

A Tough Secret to Keep

I’m not the best at hiding how I’m really feeling. If I’m not in the mood for something, it’s apparent both in my every day real life & on social media. I keep it pretty darn real with you guys, so I felt like I just went MIA a lot of days because I couldn’t bring myself to get on & act like all was well when I was so tired. Also, a lot of days I had heating pads in my bra that you could see (plus, my boobs get bigger every day so that felt obvious) or I just looked like I felt, which was rough. I also wish I could have asked some of you what your first trimester essentials were to help get you through as you’ve had some great recs since we announced.

I’ve also been wearing motion sickness wristbands that I feel really have helped, but they were alway showing so I’d either have to take them off to chat on stories or be sure my sleeves were covering them! Just another thing to ‘hide’ that I struggled with.

Truly, in waiting to share I felt like I was keeping a secret from my best friends. It was easier for me to just avoid being on stories a lot rather than feel like I was lying to you all. I always thought I would wait until I was undeniably showing & stock up on content to wait as long as possible to share. However, being in it I felt like it would lift such a weight! This is definitely the biggest thing going on in our lives right now & a lot of my days are centered around it, so I was eager to share as soon as I could. You all have been so supportive, shared so many good tips & tricks, & I’m just really glad to be able to share more of the process with you all!

First Trimester Essentials

I have gotten quite a few things to help me manage all the things that come with the first trimester, so I thought I would share in hopes that they help someone else one day. I’m rounding up all the products I used or am still using in a collage below. You can click on any item to shop it!

One thing I learned is that eating breakfast was essential. I used to not really eat it or would eat it way later & that has certainly changed. I eat breakfast & take my prenatal within an hour or so of getting up & this has been such a game changer. I’ve been taking these prenatal vitamins since I got off birth control before we even started trying & love them. They don’t taste bad & have a no nausea capsule, so you can take them on an empty stomach. Also, eating small meals throughout the day helped when I was most nauseous. Snacking is really helpful for making sure I don’t get too hungry & feel sick!

Ginger tea first thing was also so helpful. Charles would boil water with fresh ginger & lemon. He’d strain it, then add honey! It’s so good & also helped oh so much with nausea.

Since obviously immunity is extra important right now, I’ve continued to take my Elderberry + Zinc vitamins every day. They have Vitamin C, too which is great since my prenatal doesn’t.

What I’ve Stopped

While I am happy to give up anything for the health of our little one, there are a few things that I can’t do or use during pregnancy that I miss! CBD is definitely #1. I’ve shared about it a ton here & here, but there is essentially no research on this & pregnancy, so it’s advised not to take it. I stopped as soon as I found out. My anxiety was noticeably higher & I instantly struggled to sleep. I’ve gotten it a little more under control as time has gone on, but I would take this over wine right now.

Obviously wine/drinking, sushi, & a few skincare products (like botox or my baby facial mask I used to do every Sunday) are not okay during pregnancy. I got melasma when I got off birth control, so I’m dealing with that & the things my derm has had the most success with in treating aren’t safe when TTC, pregnant, or breast feeding. So, I guess I’ll be chilling with my melasma for another year or year-and-a-half.

Also, since I am a pescatarian, I’ve had to watch my fish intake. My doctor recommended that I only eat a certain number of ounces a week so I have to think about what I’m ordering more & ensure I’m getting protein from other sources. It’s usually not an issue, but just something I’ve had to think about a little more.

Sharing a first trimester recap & some first trimester essentials that have helped me get through these first few months of pregnancy.

Workouts 

Some of you picked up on me switching my workouts to later in the day, when I used to do them first thing in the mornings. This is because I was sleeping much later & many days I was doing them later when I could force myself into it. I also had tons of days where I didn’t share them with you all. The photo below may give you some insight why! My boobs are giant, I look super bloated, & I’m wearing heating pads + 2 bras & motion sickness bands to get me through.

I’ve gotten a lot of questions about my workouts & how those have changed or what I am modifying. They’ve changed in that some days throughout the first trimester I was too tired or sick to really get a good workout in. Just the last week or two I’ve felt like I can get some good movement in! Regardless, just moving my body every day– even if it was super gentle & short– was really good for my mindset & always made me feel better.

I’m continuing the workout programs I’ve been doing & have been for the last year+ which include: Melissa Wood Health, The Sculpt Society, & John Benton Model Fitness. I’ve also done some P.Volve here & there. I am modifying any abs on back throughout all of these. Also, if something doesn’t feel good, I’ll modify it!

I’m hoping that it continues to warm up & my breast pain subsides so I can go for daily walks again outside. This is so good for my mental health & such a great break in the day! I’ve heard walking throughout your pregnancy is so helpful. We plan to get a treadmill for when it’s super hot in Dallas over the summer.

I’ve heard that Obe Fitness has a lot of great prenatal workouts & that the Tracy Anderson method has a whole program that I may check out as I have to modify more & to have more variety in my workouts.

I also got asked about weight gain. I actually lost weight in the first trimester. The first few weeks all I could eat was bread & carbs, so I gained then, but then when my diet could return to normal, I lost a few pounds. This was definitely from not drinking, which is sort of a reality check for after baby.

Overall, I’m trying to take it easier as I need to. I’ve been sleeping in a little later than usual til about 7:30-8:00 in the mornings for some extra rest. Extra rest is definitely one of my first trimester essentials! Also, I’m currently writing this from the couch because lounging just feels good when I’m a little tired. I’m proud of myself for learning to slow down & understand I’m already doing so much every day by growing a human!

Sharing a first trimester recap & some first trimester essentials that have helped me get through these first few months of pregnancy.

Let me know if you have any questions that I may have missed. I’m an open book throughout this entire process. It’s been so helpful for me to read others’ experiences or hear what helped them along the way, so I want to be a good resource to as many of you as I can by being open & honest! I hope you all enjoyed reading my first trimester recap & seeing some of my first trimester essentials. XO

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  1. 2.4.21

    Thank you for sharing! Hope everything is fine! 🙂

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

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