Pregnancy Blog: Second trimester – weeks 19-23
The second trimester is the easiest, as the baby bump is not yet large enough to be causing discomfort, and daily life is relatively normal. My eating patterns are close to resembling my pre-pregnancy diet, although around this time the body does need an extra 300 calories a day to fuel baby’s rapid growth.
A typical day’s food intake looks something like this:
Breakfast: Wholemeal toast with grass-fed butter, vegemite and avocado + 1 weak coffee.
Mid-morning snack: Smoothie made with calcium fortified soy milk, banana, berries and protein powder.
Lunch: Tuna and salad wholemeal wrap
Afternoon snack: Raw, unsalted mixed nuts or a wholefoods protein bar (made with dried fruit and nuts). Fruit such as apple, orange or kiwi fruit.
Dinner: Minestrone soup with lots of vegetables and 4-bean mix, or vegetarian bolognaise made with tofu and lentils, or chicken and vegetable risotto, or chicken with steamed vegetables abd mashed potato.
After dinner snack: natural yoghurt and fruit and peppermint tea
Plus lots of water throughout the day!
Now, as I read that back, it looks incredibly healthy… but not everyday is this perfect. I am like every other pregnant lady – I do indulge in ‘fast-food’ occasionally, and I go through periods where I crave sweets and eat a fair amount of chocolate. The main thing is, not to make this kind of thing a habit. It’s fine to indulge every now and then, so long as most days you’re eating a healthy, balanced diet. I also find, it it’s in the pantry, I am more likely to eat it, so I try not to keep junk foods or sweets in the house.
My exercise regime (ideally) looks like this:
Strength based exercise 30-45 minutes 2-3 times per week. For this I’ve been following a pregnancy workout plan to ensure that the exercises I’m doing are safe for pregnancy. Tip: always ensure you eat a protein rich snack, or drink a protein shake within 15 minutes post exercise to repair muscles.
For cardio workouts (1-2 per week), I like to use the elliptical machine at the gym as it takes the pressure off the joints and is less impact than running. During pregnancy the hormone ‘relaxin’ is released which helps relax the ligaments in the pelvis in preparation for childbirth. The effects can soften all joints which can cause discomfort when doing high impact exercise such as running. I generally do about 15-20 minutes of moderate intensity exercise, less than what I would do pre-pregnancy (pre-pregnancy I love to do high intensity work outs and interval training).
Pregnancy yoga videos, 15 minutes most mornings. This really helps to stretch out any aches and pains, especially around the lower back.