Sunday, May 31, 2009

High and tight

5 months pregnant and very white

Check out the mother ship. I might be one of those women who gets hugely pregnant, I mean, what is up with that stomach? Nothing I can do about that now except blame Bill and take him down with me. Bill and Sunny unexpectedly ended up at a Hungarian restaurant tonight--hey, you roll with a pregnant woman, your going to have to eat. I can't control my appetite right now, sometimes I can barely eat and other times I can throw down wiener schnitzel. It's cool, I have no doubt the weight will come off after the baby, it may take a while, but I know how to lose weight and I have a lot of confidence in myself in that way.

This weekend was a bit of a yawner, Bill was out of town all last week so we spent time catching up on yard work and shopping. Bill went out for a 60 mile ride with the Iron buddies on Saturday and I got to go buy new curtains for the living room. Surprisingly, this didn't make me crazy. It's true what they say about nesting, if I had some sticks I would literally build a nest. The satisfaction I've been getting from home improvements is borderline psychedelic. Every time I look at the new curtains I get a surge of hormones and feel warm and cozy inside. MMmmmm. Curtains.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Winner of the crazy lady lottery!

Well it's really and truly started. We were at our local triathlon on Monday and I felt like I won the lottery. CONGRATULATIONS! I was hugged and dotted over, questioned and prodded. It was like entering an alternate universe when everyone asks you the same questions...

"When are you due?"
"Do you know if it's a boy or a girl?"
"Have you picked out a name yet?"
and the brave ones, "How far along are you?"

OK, not bad questions, it's just the repetition that gets annoying. I was pretty happy with all the attention I was getting until I came back to work and heard this for the first time...

"Wow! You are getting so BIG!"

I can't believe the "big" comments are starting already. The party was fun while it lasted I guess. Now I can look forward to...

"Are you stealing a watermelon?"
"Hiding a basketball?"

This could get ugly. Who am I kidding, it's on. It's ugly. I tried to ride my bike in the park last night to exercise the dog and the muscle memory in my legs starting moaning, "Oh yes... push, pull, push, pull, this feels nice..." and then the baby in my stomach said, "Hey! Quit squishing me! Squish, squash, squish, squash! Just for that we're going to pee even more often! And get nauseated so you can't eat dessert!"

I won the lottery alright, the crazy lady lottery.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Eat first, call emergency rescue later

We got out of town at a reasonable time on Friday (around 3pm) but traffic was still tight on I-5 for the holiday weekend. We rented a great little house on the Umpqua River for Fri-Sat with our friends Curt and Amanda and their dog Johnny. Amanda and I split cooking duties, so Friday night we had lasagna she had pre-prepared with some sauteed greens. Mmmmm I think this is nicer than camping! Saturday morning she made fancy french toast and I was high on food. Good living!

We got a slow start to the day on Saturday and waited for Sunny to show up from Corvallis. The guys geared up for a mtn bike ride on the Umpqua Trail (epic, scenic, kick butt and amazing trail that is lined with poison oak). We dropped the guys off and agreed to pick them up 2 hours later at a trail head that was ~14 miles away. I drove the ladies to check out some waterfalls and then we figured we better go collect the guys since there was a basketball game on.

After some trouble locating the trail head, we finally found the spot but there were no guys there. Half an hour later, still no guys, so I figured they took off down the road to get back to the house in time for the game. We drove home and still no guys. Uh-oh. I stayed back and made pizza for dinner and Amanda and Sunny went off looking for them again. They found the sorry souls on the side of the road several miles later, looking tired and feeling bad about being late. They were about 1.5 hours past their due time and didn't get back home until 8:30 at night.

I was stressed, but glad they made it back and that I didn't have to call rescue people. I'm too pregnant to go searching on trails for Bill, Sunny has an injury, and Amanda wasn't going by herself. There was a point where I thought, "Can we eat pizza before I call the emergency rescue people to find the guys?"

Can you see Bill checking out his backside in the mirror? Anyway, on Sunday I made a hashbrowns and an egg dish and we packed up our gear to check out of the nice little house on the river. We went for a walk on the trail and tried to watch chinook salmon making their way up the river but they weren't jumping for the tourists.

We hit the road before noon and stopped off for lunch and a trip to the dog park in Roseburg, OR. I love small town Oregon. I love Oregon. We had to get back home to unpack for a triathlon on Monday here in Corvallis and we were home by 3pm, relaxed from the weekend and ready for a nap in the afternoon sun. I miss my active lifestyle?

That's right, my husband wears socks with sandals. And my dog wants to get going ASAP. It's becoming clearer to me why I need naps, even without triathlon training.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

I get up! And nothing gets me down!

I heard on the morning news this morning that every campsite in the Oregon state park system was already reserved. Oops. We didn't plan ahead that well. So it was either scramble for first come first serve spots, back country camp, or break out the wallet. We ended up renting a small house on the Umpqua River for the weekend with a couple that we've known for years but never really spent a lot of time with.

These poor people. All I care about right now is food so I'm good for cooking and napping. They better watch their waistline around me.

Then there's my husband, he can be like an electric guitar plugged into an amplifier from the moment he wakes up until bed time. Or he can be super mellow, not say a word, and barely move an inch off the couch (sports watching usually the culprit). Which husband will it be this weekend?

Side note: I miss the 80s! When rockers had bigger hair and more make-up than women. Now that's entertainment! David Lee Roth strutting around like a peacock on fire. That dude was stunning. I wish I could look like that. I almost had his hair going on today after swimming, I forgot my brush and stood under one of those hand dryers and I had to walk back into my office looking like this...

Except I had on capri pants and a maternity top on! Foxy!

Alirght, I need to scour my CD collection for some Van Halen. Someday I'll get Bill an electric guitar and some spandex pants (I'm sure he has some already) and see what happens. I guess we won't pursue that this weekend, our friends might think we're weird.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The temptation of melted cheese

I had to end my day yesterday with a trip to the dentist which isn't at all interesting except that on the way there I spotted a future Darwin award candidate. Young guy, riding a bicycle in a bike lane but is going the wrong way down one of the busiest streets in Corvallis at 4:40 pm, has a pizza box in one hand and is eating a slice with the other while pedaling. DUDE! No, he did not have a helmet on. He's probably enrolled in college here.

I had to have a filling replaced so the right side of my mouth was still numb at dinner time and to the dog's delight, I kept dropping beans out of the burrito I was trying to eat. I ate less than half of it and then called dinner done. A little ice cream later, which I dribbled down my shirt--mouth is still numb and it was time for bed. Bill kept me awake until 10:30 pm and by then I was starving.

"Baaaaaabbbbe? Can you think of something I can eat? I'm so hungry."
"Well there's a pizza in the freezer, do you want me to make it?"
Thinking... That's too pathetic, I can't eat frozen pizza this late on a Monday night. Where is my dignity? That pizza that kid was eating must have been good...

10 minutes later I enjoyed a grilled cheese sandwich. My husband is a saint. He saved me from shaming myself AND I got to enjoy melted cheese. Crisis averted.

We are re-planning our weekend, I called up to Newberry Crater and it's still covered in snow. They have the roads plowed to the resort that's up there but the trails are still covered and I imagine it gets a bit brisk in the evenings. We're looking at the coast or an area called Grant's Pass that is south of here. Hopefully we'll find something scenic either way.

Monday, May 18, 2009

I've been lap swimming since I was a fetus

It's a lovely day here in Corvallis, sunny skies with temps in the upper 70s so I was excited to take a dip in the pool and enjoy swim class today. Coach called a 12 minute continuous swim as 100 easy 50 moderate (repeat for 12 minutes). I love long warm-ups! The water felt like silk and it cooled my pregnant body. Joy!

I felt great and thought the baby inside of me must be enjoying the swim because I had no nausea! Just think, my kid will be able to say, "Well I've been lap swimming since I was a fetus!" Take that you pot smoking Michael Phelps. (Poor Phelps! I kind of feel sorry for him. Actually, I don't. He's deserves to be made fun of for being so stupid). ANYWAY!

After a few one arm drills coach threw down: 400 IM, 50 recovery, 300 IM, 50 recovery, 200 IM 50 recovery, 100 IM, 50 recovery. I wisely put on some swim fins and thought I would kick the 400 IM at an easy pace. 5 second warning and go!

I do my best impression of a dolphin and within 50 yards my uterus starts singing like Amy Winehouse, "She tried to make me do flyyyy in swim class and I said NO NO NO!" Yep, we're done here. Done with fly, done with fly kicking, done with anything that really engages the deep core muscles in the lower abdomen.

The baby will have to get back into fly postpartum. I still think he is getting a head start on it.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

I picked the philly

Bill performing bicycle maintenance which must mean he's planning to ride his bike. So far this season, he's been acting pregnant like his wife so this is a step in the right direction if he's planning to do Ironman Cozumel in November. I had to take a photo since it's been so long. Actually, it might freak me out if he gets his ripped muscles while I grow increasingly huge. Hmmmm. Where are those tacks? Just kidding honey!

On Saturday we were up early for the Lebanon sprint triathlon. We had great weather and it was only a 20 minute drive from our house so we had a good start to the day. Sales were better than last year at this event, a first for this year. So far, sales have been significantly lower at all the other races we've attended. Go economy!

On Sunday, Bill was up early to go for a bike ride with his Iron buddies. I used my free time to SHOP! Some tank tops and two pairs of Italian shoes later (going out of business sale) and I was home before Bill.
After lunch we took Marshall dog for a walk to the river and Bill iced his legs in the chilly Willamette. Our temps are around 85 right now which feels pretty warm for May.
We are looking at a trip to Bend, Oregon and Newberry Crater next weekend with some friends so I will finally get out of the house and hopefully get over my boredom. I hope I can stay awake for it! We have to get back Sunday night since we have another local triathlon on Monday.

Bubba dog wrestling with a vicious stick. We saw the Dr. on Friday and heard the baby's heart beat again which is always a joy. The Dr. said I should start to feel better and stay that way for while. She said I'm tired because my blood volume has doubled and my heart is trying to pump all that blood around my body. FREAKY! Hiking at 5000+ next weekend should be interesting. Maybe Bill will carry a sleeping bag around for me so I can nap whenever I need to. Do you feel sorry for my husband yet? He's been pretty good to me so far, maybe I won't sabotage his bike.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Fun changes as you age

We managed to accumulate two movies last night so Bill popped some popcorn, "Extra butter for you sweetie!" and brought me some ice water and then put in the documentary "I'm Trying to Break Your Heart" which shows the band Wilco making a record. I like Wilco and was intrigued to see the artist/musician lifestyle. Twenty minutes in, I had eaten massive amounts of popcorn and virtually nothing had happened in the documentary. Bandmates smoked cigarettes, played their intruments, and their creepy manager stood around trying not to drool over them. I tried to stick with it, but dude, BORING!!!!!

I gonged it, Bill wasn't even watching so it, so he put in movie #2, "Snow Angels" which was somehow worse than the first movie and that got the gong too. To cap the evening off, I dropped my entire glass of ice water because my hand was coated in butter and Bill had to soak up water off the table and floor while I lay there, pregnant, helpless, and bored. I did the only thing I could think of doing, I passed out on the couch until Bill was ready for bed.

Being pregnant has been boring for me. I've been thinking a lot about what is fun for me and why I'm not having much of it. Most of my fun involves being active, having drinks with the girls, and taking road trips with my husband. We've been so busy around the house we haven't gotten out of town much so no wonder I'm bored.

I have been battling swim envy lately too. In class on Monday, coach called 5 x 50 on :45, :50, :55, and 1:00. I could see people battling to hold their pace as the intervals increased, which is funny because you have more time to rest but PRIDE will not let you. We did this workout before I was pregnant and I remember battling the old guys in the lane next to me, messing with them by pushing hard off the wall and putting the gas on the last 25. I remember challenging myself to hold the pace and how much fun it was to push hard. I miss that.

I know my perspective on fun will change as I age but I feel so in limbo right now. I need to have some fun in my pregnant body but I haven't figured it out yet.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

You'll get fat if you eat that

I was a skinny person all of my life since about the age of 3. I believe I was overfed as a baby because I was colicky, and my mom thought it was funny to put her fat toddler in a bikini and take photos. Bill laughs every time he thinks about my fat baby photos. Thankfully, I grew out of that stage because that would not have been funny for long!

I can tell you something that I know is true about most skinny people: they watch what they eat and they don't overindulge. If you meet a skinny person for coffee, they will get a non-fat latte and will forgo the pastries. Lunch: salad or other light fare. Dinner: healthy with veggies. This is most skinny people I know. Oftentimes, they are vegetarian which helps them control calories. Skinny people limit drinking juice or full calorie pop because it's empty calories and they drink water or diet drinks instead. This is not rocket science, it's how skinny people do it, but it isn't easy.

My mom is not the typical skinny person, she eats sugar and fat in vast quantities and she fits into my size 4 jeans. She is the person that people with weight issues hate. She actually wore my jeans when she visited here a few weeks ago and I could not believe how skinny she looked. I'm snug in size 8 maternity wear right now. Anyone in a size four should keep a distance from me.

I don't take these type of thoughts to an extreme, I still love myself and would never diet while pregnant. Case in point...

Yesterday for lunch I had left over pizza which left me feeling nauseated and still hungry. I went and got a nice garden salad for an afternoon snack which let me feeling nauseated and still hungry. I had to find something to make me feel better and get me though the last few hours of the work day. So I walked to the food court and my brain was chanting:

Creamy, milky, buttery!
Creamy, milky, buttery!
CREAMY MILKY BUTTERY!

I can't make this up, my brain was having a meltdown. So I went to Carl's Jr and got a milkshake. Sadly, they don't sell organic, shade-tree grown milkshakes on campus. I intended to only drink half but ended up sucking that thing down to the last drop. Then I went to the Carl's Jr web site to look up how many calories and sugar are in a milkshake and saw a number higher than 600 calories. Oops.

I'm going to get fat if I eat like that. I now know what they mean when they warn pregnant women that being pregnant is not a license to eat. But I felt better after the milkshake and my brain was able to focus on work so... I might end up getting fat during this pregnancy. Oh well! At least I finally have some boobs!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy mother's day!

Hi Mom!

I'm talking to my mom on the phone and exposing my pregnant stomach which is as good as it gets when mom lives in another state. I know, it looks like I over indulged on goodies and have a nice chub going. Not the cute little pregnant tummy women hope they will get. You can see the maternity pants don't quite fit, but my regular pants don't either so it's either muffin top or pants falling down. My mom told me she held out as long as she could in normal clothes when she was pregnant with me. I got into the maternity wear early and prefer to wear baggy clothes that don't show the chub.

Enough about me! My mom spent the day taking care of her father and some of her family members that aren't doing well. She took her brother shopping and cooked for them. That's my mom in a nutshell. Instead of taking the day off and enjoying herself, she worked hard and helped others. I have a lot to learn. I hope you appreciated your mom today and had a great Sunday.

Canby Gator Grinder triathlon

Bill and I were up at 5am on Saturday to drive up north for the Gator Grinder triathlon. Canby is southeast of Portland and offers a nice venue for a pool sprint triathlon. We setup tribabe gear in the grass and enjoyed watching the race while waiting for some business to come our way. Every year this triathlon sells out at around 250 people. This is in part because of the great support and effort the race director puts into the race and also the nice location.

They offer a nice spread of food and there is plenty for families to do while waiting for the racers. We've attended this race for the past 3 years and Bill finally decided that was enough, he's racing next year. We will have to figure out a system for racing, vending, and having a child. Yikes! Sales were OK but we are not making as much as we did last year. One of my biggest races (an all women's tri near Seattle) has been cancelled so I'm really glad I didn't invest more this year.

It was a bit cold in the morning, although temps warmed up to the upper 60s by noon. Bill covered sales while I went and laid down on the track and soaked up the sun. I actually fell asleep, on the ground, while people were finishing the race. I have no shame now, I'm pregnant and I need no other excuses for strange behaviour as far as I'm concerned.

We got home around 2pm and I resumed napping while Bill went out to play disc golf with the dog. I woke up long enough to eat some dinner and go back to bed. I was able to work a 40 hour work week last week and I exercised every day so I think I was tired by Saturday.

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Privacy and the workplace

It's official! My stomach has been touched. It was a friend, in the locker room, when I was in a state of undress, but the wait is over. The people have spoken and they are now touching me. Awesome! I will try to get some photos for blog readers (all 8 of you plus MJ, the only brave male willing to comment). Right now, I just look kind of fat, but I'll try to put something together that impresses you.

I kept my pregnancy a secret as long as I could so that I had time to process my emotions in peace. People say the darnedest things to pregnant women and when you've had infertility issues and a miscarriage, it's really hard to listen to people "coo" and "ooo" and talk about names when you're 8 weeks along. Part of me wants to take them by the shoulders and say, "Listen up! This pregnancy probably won't last so quit acting all happy about it!" Now you see why I needed my privacy.

I was in an unsettled mental state from week 4 to week ahhhh now? I'm still not fully recovered from believing that this will end up with a baby but I'm getting a lot closer. I even have a name in mind already which is huge progress for me. The one thing I want you to know about my experience with early pregnancy is that it's not cool to ask a suffering person to act like they feel cute. Because depressed people feel like hell.

Side note: I am craving white Wonderbread and peanut butter right now and I don't have either (stupid whole wheat bread!) so I can hardly think straight but I'll try to get through this coherently.

On to work: a person in my office missed a lot of work recently. I work closely with this person so I knew some of what was going on but not the entire story. People kept inquiring about the person and a few of us decided to protect their privacy. It drove home a lesson to me that is hard for most of us to grasp: it's not up to you to provide support to someone who doesn't want support from you. Sometimes people aren't in a place where they can accept kind words and gracious thoughts.

If you want to be supportive, mind your own business until that person opens up to you and then LISTEN! Listening doesn't mean putting your spin on how that person should feel. Trust me, there's nothing worse than baring your soul about how you are terrified of miscarrying and then have that person chirply say, "You are going to look SO CUTE with a big belly!"

Listening means letting the person talk and then saying supportive things like, "Thanks for sharing that with me, I feel like I understand you better now."

When my co-worker came back to work, I said small supportive things and then went about my business. Eventually the person wanted to share and it was pretty hard to hear all the things they had been through. I think we both realized that the person just wanted to get back to work and act like everything was normal and I totally get that. Sometimes a good dose of boring work makes life better. It's sick but true.

I have lots of other thoughts about what you can do if you know someone who miscarries but it all comes back to one thing... let people be who they are and experience life in their own way. You can be a friend without framing a problem for someone and then expecting them to live up to the way you see things. Just listen, it's the nicest thing you can do. Back rubs also help, but are not always appropriate. Especially in the locker room when in a state of undress.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Exercise and Early Pregnancy

The most important thing for me to state here is that I am not an expert on either pregnancy or exercise. So why bother blogging about it? I want to share my experience as part of the collective consciousness that is this topic since there are few experts that women feel they can trust. Women are looking for guidance on these topics and I don't think doctors are filling the role with enough information. Instead, we can start the "Sisterhood of the Traveling Workout Journal" or in other, less corny words, we have only each other to get through this.

Here is my experience with exercise and early pregnancy with a bit of what I've observed from my friends...

Prior to becoming pregnant, I was exercising 6-8 hours a week and planned to compete in local sprint triathlons. I dropped the competing in triathlons part when I became pregnant but I would not be surprised to hear that women do participate in triathlons while pregnant. I have been active my entire adult life and consider exercise to be an important element to my happiness and general well being and have a desire to continue down that path while pregnant. Sometimes life, or the alien in your uterus, gets in the way of those goals.

Running during pregnancy
One of the first questions people ask me when they find out I'm pregnant is, "Are you still running?" Obviously, the choice to run is still a controversial question in the minds of most women if they are asking about it. The answer for me is no, I am not running, and it is not because I believe it is harmful, it is because I would not enjoy it. I'm warm just sitting here typing and for all of the 1st trimester, I was too nauseated to run. I love running, it is my favorite sport, but I wouldn't enjoy obsessing over my heart rate and feeling my stomach bounce around with every step. I have plenty of friends who run during pregnancy and they enjoy it very much! Personally, I'll save it for after delivery when I want to work off the weight and I can run whatever speed I am inspired to run that day, that just works better for me.

In my opinion, aqua jogging is the ultimate alternative to running, especially during pregnancy. You get a total body workout, your body is cradled by water, and there is no impact on your joints or tummy. The best option is to find other people to aqua jog with and then enjoy the feeling of the water and the good company of friends. There is a very small learning curve but it's quick to get going, and if you are really out of shape, you can take it at a walking pace. Please email me tribabe at gmail dot com if you want advice. I recommend hyrocuffs that go around your feet for buoyancy since a belt may not be comfortable. I aqua jog 1-2 times per week for 30-45 minutes per session and try to drink water and have food immediately afterward. The water lowers your body temperature and makes you hungry so you have to be careful not to overeat after exercising in water.

Walking
Walking is great for getting outdoors and getting your mind off of being pregnant. I enjoy walking after meals to help with digestion, otherwise, I just want to fall asleep after I eat. My plan is to build up to 1 hour long walks while I am pregnant to help me with patience and stamina so that when I want to return to running, being outside and on my feet for an hour isn't exhausting. I have taken extended breaks from running in the past and was able to come back relatively quickly by starting out with alternating running and walking in 1 minute intervals, extending the amount of time I run each session.

Biking during pregnancy
For me, cycling is freedom! Getting out on the open road and away from responsibilities and seeing the countryside is a joyful experience. I decided not to ride a bicycle on the road while pregnant due to the risks of being hit by a car. I miss it, and on sunny days, I long for it to the point that it's painful, but for me, the choice not to ride is the correct one. For me! Some women ride stationary bikes or bike trainers while pregnant and that isn't something I enjoy in the first place and since I'm not in training right now, I'm not going to do it. I have the rest of my life to ride a bike trainer in preparation for triathlon season. Oh look, a new reason to live (sarcasm).

I know a woman who spent her entire pregnancy mountain biking (at an easy pace) on the trails in our area and her one comment after giving birth was, "My delivery was so painful! I think my core muscles were so tight from exercise that there was no stretching!" We don't know if this is medically possible or not and I bet a woman who sits on the couch all of her pregnancy thinks that delivery is pretty painful too. What the story illustrates to me is, you should do what you enjoy and what makes you happy, but don't think 10+ hours a week of exercise is going to guarantee you a quick and easy labor. Well, think whatever you want, if that gets you through delivery then more power to you!

Swimming during pregnancy
Swimming is my favorite exercise while pregnant! BTW, if you search Google for "swimming and early pregnancy" the top hit is my blog post from my 1st pregnancy "Swimming and Early Pregnancy" which is much wittier than this post. I'll keep trying.

If you are an efficient swimmer and you don't fancy yourself to be the next Dara Torres, then swimming is incredibly enjoyable while you are pregnant. If you are new to swimming, you probably won't enjoy it very much. Swimming is a technical sport that requires a lot of practice to become efficient. When I first started swimming, I could only swim one length of the pool and I would have to catch my breath for a minute before heading back down for another length. I don't think women in early pregnancy should learn to swim unless they have a good adviser and don't pressure themselves to build up too quickly. If you know someone who is thinking about getting pregnant, encourage them to take swimming lessons in advance of their pregnancy.

As a slightly more experienced swimmer (it took a long time to be able to say that), I took all of the pressure off of myself to swim fast and just enjoy the experience of being in the water. I still attend master's swimming class 2-3 times per week, but I only swim 30-45 minutes and I modify sets as needed. Today coach called 9 x 200, alternating freestyle with IM. I put fins on and kicked the IM sets and focused on technique while swimming freestyle. It felt amazing! I hope to build up long slow swims while pregnant but any goals I have are secondary to feeling well and not overdoing it.

Exercise with nausea, fatigue, constipation and other joys of pregnancy
I read a pro triathlete's account of pregnancy and was impressed to see NO ZERO DAYS as part of the workout plan. I think that is great, for her, just like it was great for Paula Radcliff to win the New York marathon after giving birth. She's freaking awesome and I am incredibly impressed by her.

Now, for the rest of us... early pregnancy is not the time to be Zena Warrior Princess or whatever the hell her name was. She-ra? GI Jane? There are people who get incredibly sick during the first trimester, they should not feel compelled to follow in the footsteps of a professional athlete and mimic their workout plan.

Unfortunately, I had too many days where I was not well. I went to the pool and swam on some of those days and tried to fight through the nausea like I would fight through training fatigue. It did not work. I would end up sick as a dog later that day. I spent entire days in bed, drilled by nausea or so cramped up from constipation I could barely move. It was not freaking awesome. All I wanted to do was get out of bed and workout. On one of those days, I took the dog for a short 20 minute walk and came home covered in sweat and felt my heart rate racing. I should have stayed in bed as my body was instructing me to do.

You don't have to exercise everyday of your pregnancy unless you are well enough to do so. Professional athletes don't work 8 hours a day and then go workout, they workout for their job. It is exhausting to sit at a desk all day, trying to focus on work, when you are pregnant. A commitment to regular exercise is important but so is rest and well being. Don't push yourself too far and do your best to let others help you and inspire you to live your best life, as you should no matter your gestation status.

Prenatal Yoga
I haven't tried it yet but other women love it! I hear it is a great way to meet other pregnant women and to relax. I plan to attend a class when I get this constipation issue under control but right now, I'm terrified I would toot my way to being booted out of the class! My goal is to learn basic meditation and take yoga once a week and perform yoga at home as needed. Toot toot! Pregnant woman, coming through! Hey, you read this much, you poor person. I had to put the nail in the coffin.

Please let me know if you have any other great workout ideas or tips for pregnant women.

Monday, May 04, 2009

I'm 4 months pregnant

I know! How could I keep this from loyal blog readers? The two of you must be devastated. I wrote extensively about my last pregnancy that ended it miscarriage at 11 weeks and in the end, it made me really vulnerable which I didn't realize until I got pregnant again this time. I can tell you everything now that I am settling in to pregnancy this time and feel relatively confident that things are going to work out.

We have been trying for 2.5 years to get pregnant and things have been complicated and intense. When we first started, my cycles were too irregular and I had no indication that I was ovulating so I gained some weight, cut back on the exercise, and ate a healthy diet with no calorie restrictions. I gained 15 pounds over a year and my cycles become more regular (from 45+ days to 33 days) but we still didn't think I was ovulating.

My OB-GYN has an interest in infertility so she prescribed Clomid, a drug that tricks your brain into thinking it doesn't have enough estrogen so it overproduces it and causes you to ovulate. I hate Clomid but it made me ovulate so I agreed to take it every other month. I was not pregnant after several cycles and we decided to quit fertility drugs and take a break from everything so I could return to running and do a few triathlons. That's when I got pregnant the first time. That's right, I got pregnant when I quit taking fertility drugs. Sadly, the pregnancy was not to be.

Fast forward a year and a few months later and I had been taking the Clomid again but I wasn't getting pregnant. My Dr. referred me to a fertility specialist in the big city and I was just a few weeks away from my first appointment, but first, my Dr. wanted to do a little test called a Clomid challenge. The results came back normal (it tests the age of your eggs) and she advised us to do an insemination (an insemination is a simple procedure where they get the best sperm and inject it into the uterus around the time of ovulation--think turkey baster) during that cycle since I was drugged up. I didn't want to do the procedure. It's slightly humiliating for Bill to provide a sample and I had no faith that the procedure would work anyway since we had done it twice before with no results.

I had a positive ovulation test on Friday that month which meant we would have to do the insemination at urgent care at the hospital the next day since my Dr's office was closed on the weekend. I didn't want to do it, but something told me to schedule the appt. It couldn't get any less romantic but our baby was conceived at urgent care that weekend. Luckily, my OB-GYN was on call so she handled the insemination herself. I owe this woman so much, she kept me going when I wanted to quit and was there for us when we needed her. Plus she impregnanted me, how do you thank someone for that?

I put the procedure out of my mind afterward and didn't think about it until two weeks later when we had a party to go to. I wanted to enjoy a drink for my friend's birthday so I decided to take a pregnancy test, if it was negative, then I would enjoy my drink. I had no expectation it would be positive but the test was positive!

I was pregnant. I went into a mild shock. Bill was thrilled and carried the test around like it was a winning lottery ticket. We went to the party, not planning to tell anyone, but my friend busted me. She said, "Why aren't you having a drink?" My face turned red and she knew immediately! I only told a few more people after that because I spent the next 3 months in a constant state of worry and anxiety.

My experience with pregnancy, as a 36 year old with infertility issues and a miscarriage, is a completely different experience than a couple that conceives the old fashioned way on their first try. I want to write about it over the next few days, then I'm going to move on to other topics.

The bottom line is a beautiful one: we are expecting a baby boy on Oct. 18th and whatever road we take to get to that point will just be part of the exciting journey.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Weekend projects

My mom was visiting last weekend and basically she came in, cleaned up our act, and went home. It was awesome, well, except the part about her going home, we could have kept her. Bill has been working long hours and I haven't been physically well so we needed someone to take charge of us. She got our yard back in working order so we are starting to plant a garden, mostly tomatoes, with the cleared out space. Thank you mom!

It rained hard all day Saturday this weekend so I stayed in and worked on a little project for my friend's upcoming baby shower. I picked up a kid's play tube and a matching tent at Ikea last weekend when I dropped my mom off at the airport. They are cute but they are blue and my friend has two girls so I needed to do something creative. I have some stencils with sea creature theme so I used some Sharpie's to decorate the tube.
Before

AfterI love rainy day projects.