Written by: Shayna Frasco-Rose
Here’s an eye opener! Yes, you will gain weight while pregnant, BUT.. Here are the FACTS of weight gain: on average, women gain 7.5 pounds for the baby, 1.5 pounds for the placenta, 2 pounds for the amniotic fluid, 2 pounds for uterine enlargement, 2 pounds for breast tissue, 2 pounds for blood volume, 4 pounds of fluid in maternal tissue, and 7 pounds of maternal fat stores. This my ladies, makes for an average total of 30 pounds! Yes, 30 pounds – total. It saddens me to hear past or present clients & friends that have come to me post pregnancy saying they put on around 60-90 lbs. How in the mother of monkeys does that happen!? I mean, I eat A LOT & have only put on 15 pounds. I’m currently in my 6th month of pregnancy. I feel like I would have to sit on my butt and stuff my face with fast food all hours of the day to get to that point. I completely understand pregnancies are different and everyone’s body is different, but there is a line to draw. Yes, I was tired my first trimester, but no, I didn’t start throwing my body away because of it. I continue to not only stay active myself, but work every day and train all my clients, as well as running my boxing bootcamp. I also have not gotten sick once this whole pregnancy. Again, I know some get sick and some don’t & I apologize to those that have had to experience it – however, it is proven that eating healthier and staying active can sometimes help prevent you from getting sick along with a lot of other things. Now, this could or could not be my personal reason, but my energy after the first trimester has been tremendously great. I feel just as good now as I did before I was pregnant. So great that I’m running a 5k in 2 weeks. My eating habits & workouts are responsible for this.
Besides my personal experience as an expectant mother & advice as a personal trainer & nutritionist, ask any doctor for yourself. The majority of women get this negative idea in their head that working out is unsafe for them while pregnant and the baby as well. When in reality, it’s anything but that. I wouldn’t recommend training for a marathon if you’ve never worked out a day in your life, but light workouts are recommended and eating healthy is even more recommended. I’ve altered my cardio to the point where it keeps my heart rate at the recommended level & don’t do any heavy lifting. Low impact exercise vs. my pre-pregnancy high impact exercise.
Because I am taking such good care of my body, my journey through pregnancy has honestly been a breeze. Of course I have my cheat days and snacks like any normal person, but other than the recommended 300-500 calories extra a day, I have not by any means decided this was a time to treat my body like a bag a trash. It blows my mind to have women approach me while expecting, telling me they’ll be ready to train & eat right after their delivery. What the heck are they eating now then!? If there’s anytime to be giving your body the proper nutrients, it’s WHILE you are feeding your unborn child. I have provided a sample meal plan of what a typical day consists of for me in this blog as well as proven reasons to be active while pregnant. If you’d like other ideas in customizing your meal plan, additional recipes and easy to follow workouts you can do right in your home, I do have a book out called, “The Trainer’s Journal – Turn Fat to Fit”.
I’d like to share my knowledge and experience to help pregnant women stay fit and healthy. Both you AND your baby will be better off with the proper eating and exercise. Again, if there’s any time you should approach your body with care, it’s these 9 months of carrying another human being.
Training While Preggers
If you would like to remain or begin working out during pregnancy, let your doctor know what your normal activity was like pre-pregnancy and go from there. Find out what you’re allowed to do. The most common restriction is just keeping your heart rate down.
To stay within that 30lb average weight gain range, you’re going to have to use some will-power. There’s no need to satisfy every craving and go off the edge, because “you’re pregnant”. If that were true, I would spend my entire pregnancy eating pasta, canollis, pizza, ice cream, cheesecake and cookies. I’m sure there’s at least one of those you want now, right? Yeah, me too – but back on track! Pregnancy does crazy things to your blood sugar, and it’s your job to keep it regulated with healthy, clean foods. Although, I can’t currently of course do a detox or cleanse type product, I am still actively using several products from Isagenix. This includes their protein shakes, protein bars, protein cookies, energy electrolyte packets and fiber bars.
Talk to your doctor about your healthy weight gain. Choose a plan that will ensure you’re getting the proper nutrients.
Keep your metabolism going by eating every 2-3 hours. You want to keep a thermogenic effect. This will help your digestive system as well, which can need a boost during pregnancy.
Though people think you can’t have protein powder while pregnant, both my doctor and research shows it has never been studied, tested or proven. If anything, I was recommended to continue taking it. The lean protein has helped my muscles stay on track & fill me up with the right type of calories. The way I make my shakes.. (recipes in my book as well) – Literally taste like ice cream shakes! Ice cream is my favorite cheat snack, so it takes a lot for me to say that! DEEELUMPTIOUSSS! Any of my clients can back up this taste. Let your cravings be healthy cravings!
When it’s recommended to add 300 calories during the last 6 months of pregnancy, keep in mind what that truly is. 300 calories is a protein shake or a serving of oatmeal, not a cheeseburger and fries!
You also want to keep in mind, it’s unhealthy to be calorie deficit. I take in still 1,800 -2,300 calories a day. The key is that they’re proper* calories.
The healthier you are, the healthier your baby will be. Maintaining proper eating will keep your blood sugar from dropping and your waistline from getting bigger than it needs to. You will also be on a good track to get back in shape after the baby arrives.
A day in the life of my Preggers body – Sample Meal Plan:
Meal 1: 7AM ¾ cup of oats cooked in water, flaxseed & cinnamon. PreNatal Vitamins. Calcium Vitamins.
2nd mini breakfast / snack: 8AM 2 eggs w/ seasoning. No salt. 1 water w/ lemon. 1 grapefruit.
Meal 2: 9:30am PreWorkout – Isagenix Peanut Butter Fiber bar. ½ cup of blueberries. 1 water w/ ½ Citrus Isagenix
electrolyte energy packet.
Meal 3: 11am Post Workout – Isagenix Protein Shake. Creamy vanilla IsaLean protein powder. ½ cup of frozen Dole raspberries. Sugar free cranberry juice. Almond milk. ½ banana.
Meal 4: 1PM Spinach greens lettuce with 2 hardboiled eggs, 1 avocado sliced, ½ tomato diced, ½ cup of chickpeas.
Raspberry Vinaigrette dressing. 1 slice of Ezekiel bread with hummus & cucumber. 1 water w/ lemon.
Meal 5: 3PM Home-made kale chips. 1 serving of Fat Free Fiber 1 cottage cheese. 1 water.
Meal 6: 5PM Isagenix Oatmeal Raisin Protein Bar. 1 water.
Meal 7: 7PM Grilled chicken, 1 serving of quinoa w/ black beans & 1 sweet potato. 1 water.
Meal 6: 9PM Night snack if needed, 1 pear & 100 calorie popcorn with Yogi Ginger Tea.
15 FACTS & REASONS TO WORKOUT WHILE PREGNANT :
The benefits of exercising during pregnancy will last your whole life.
1. You’re likely to gain less weight. Research shows you might put on 7-15 pounds less than pregnant women who don’t work out.
2. Labor may be easier Strong abs and a fit cardiovascular system can give you much more stamina during those pushes of delivery.
3. You lower your gestational diabetes risk by as much as 27 percent High blood sugar during pregnancy puts you at extremely high risk for developing type 2 diabetes.
4. You get that “prenatal workout high”. Mothers who workout show they are in better moods much more often than those who don’t work out.
5. You’re less likely to get constipated. Exercise, along with a high fiber diet, keeps your digestive system going.
6. You have more energy On days when lifting yourself out of bed seems like the hardest thing in the world, even a 15 minute walk can give you a boost of energy.
8. You’re more likely to avoid a C-section or other intervention.Regular exercisers are 75% less likely to need a forceps delivery, 55 percent less likely to have an episiotomy and up to four times less likely to have a Cesarean section.
9. During exercise, your body sends signals of calm to your baby, canceling out the stress hormones.
10. Not only does exercise make you feel better emotionally, it also helps reduce common complaints we all read about: backache, water retention, sciatica (pains down the sides of your legs), difficulty sleeping, losing balance, weight gain… the list goes on!
11. You can keep say goodbye to varicose veins and fat ankles.
12. You can feel comfortable at ease knowing that your body isn’t going to give up on you during labor.
13. Can help prevent pregnancy-related high blood pressure and postpartum depression.
14. You can sleep better at night. It can help you fight the fatigue of pregnancy and get the proper amount of rest in a full nights sleep.
15. Your body will bounce back a lot more quickly after all these fun 9 months are over.
If you never exercised before, pregnancy is not the time to become the energizer bunny. However, this doesn’t mean you have to spend nine months sitting on the couch. Of course it’s ok to relax when needed, but don’t go becoming a beached whale – then complain you hate your body after the baby is born. Even if you’ve never exercised, it IS the time to alter your eating habits in a positive manner. For women who say they have no time to work out.. Even a full hour work out is only 4% of your day. A half hr workout is only 2% of your day! A half hr is better than nothing. If you think you have no time now, wait until the baby is born! I’m taking full advantage of my spare time now to eat right & workout while I can, knowing it will save me time getting my body back afterwards. So get off your emotional crying hineys & make your body useful for you and your baby. Prevent the bad stuff & be able to embrace the good stuff. Show everyone how truly strong pregnant women are. You got this. If you don’t care about protecting your own health, protect the health of your child.