The cure for the hiccups

sweat pink bosustrong

You had hiccups this morning, baby girl. You woke me up with that strange, regular pulsating in my far right abdomen. Did you maybe have too much to drink last night? Did you go out with our houseguests until 3am? 😉

Not to worry if you missed out. You have a lifetime of shenanigans ahead of you. Hopefully you’ll wait a while before you really get wild, but not as long as I did. I probably won’t think so in a few years, so take note now, and rub it in my face later: risk taking is good.

This is the first time I’ve written to you. Plenty of times I’ve written about you, but until you had hiccups, I didn’t feel inspired to write to you. Now I think it’s clicked for me that you’re a person who will have random quirks and uncontrollable laughter and independent interests and strange mishaps and occasional hiccups.

Someday, you’ll find my by then long-forgotten pregnancy blog and be super embarrassed and think I’m a complete dork. You’ll be right on both counts.

You are really making my belly stick out now. It’s not really a cute basketball bump like they show on TV – more of a sloping protuberance. But that’s okay. My stomach has never looked like the ones on TV, and there’s no reason that should change now.

bosustrong sweat pink

 

I’ve gained 20 pounds, thanks to you. Or at least, I’m going to pretend it’s thanks to you, and that the potato chips have nothing to do with the highest number I’ve ever clocked in at. The thing is, I don’t feel like I’ve gained 20 pounds. I’m softer in all the likely places. But the only place I’m gaining that actually bothers me is my face. Did you have to go and make my face fat?!

Okay, you’re right, that was probably all the sodium in the potato chips.

Less than 4 months until you show up. I’m super nervous about that. You don’t have a name or a carseat or any winter clothes yet. Also, historically, infants aren’t really my jam. I’m counting on you to inspire that heady cocktail of mom-love hormones and change that for me, forever.

 


 

If you’re following along on our #BOSUStrong Challenge, today’s prompt is #FreeFriday. Just show us what you got, no matter what it is, and tag @BOSU_fitness @fitapproach #BOSUStrong #sweatpink

Getting out of a rut

The last few weeks have been very much a time of transition. I’m watching my body shape shift before my eyes, and Moonshine has been kicking up a storm. She wakes me up in the morning with her ferocious little jabs, then celebrates with a happy dance after every meal and in every savasana.  (She’s clearly my and Nathan’s daughter; eating is already her favorite activity).

All this movement, and the increasing proportion of clothes in my closet that just don’t work anymore, is making this whole baby business a hell of a lot more real.

Cue freakout.

I had a moment, last week, while I was walking the dog. I caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror, wearing what had become my uniform for the last two weeks or so: branded cotton tank, wrinkled maternity shorts, and birkenstocks.

Because every bump photo needs some duck lips.
This was literally my uniform for nearly a month.

 

I have this rule for myself. Basically, the ONLY real rule I have for myself: don’t go outside looking like a homeless person. Just because pajamas are my default state of being doesn’t mean the rest of the world has to experience my tattered sweats, sleep creased face, and crazy hair.

I had drifted really, really close to breaking my cardinal rule. It’s a slippery slope, y’all. And while I could push the boundaries while we were in Tahoe—where dusty outdoor gear is the universal uniform—it doesn’t blend in so well in downtown Austin.

More than that, my clothing complacency was just an index for what was happening in the rest of my life: I was slipping. Meal planning and grocery shopping was basically nonexistent. Planning for the baby (and maternity leave?) was something I had been avoiding. My exercise was getting haphazard (and occasionally offensive).

Something had to change. Many things had to change. I had to get my butt in gear and start owning this big thing creeping up on me and my waist size.

I started with the clothes: I went and got myself some maternity-friendly tops so I could pretend to be more put together when I left the house. I even invested in a maternity LBD that will carry me through a couple fall weddings and the holiday season.

sweat pink
More on this dress later – it’s magical.

I started grocery shopping, and actually making myself delicious, nutritious things to eat. Moonshine is doing all sorts of happy dances.

I’m also diversifying my snacking opportunities (since I find myself needing to eat every couple of hours, I was in a serious snacking rut). My Bulu Box provided just that opportunity to change it up without having to commit to new products at the grocery store.

sweat pink lovebulu

The chicken jerky, especially, is rocking my damn world. I haven’t been much on the meat train, for whatever reason, but for some reason this salty savory jerky is the exception to my meat aversion rule. Probably because I fall immediately in love with anything that involves basil. Hooray for lean protein! (Happy dances are happening).

My Hemp Heart Bites are making a regular appearance in my purse, too. I love having little protein rich snacks handy at all times, and these are chock full of omegas (so good for Moonshine’s brain development!).

sweatpink hhbites

I’m doing better on the exercise front, too. I’m recommitting to yoga, and even found a prenatal class I like.

sweatpink yoga

 

I’m also rocking out my home workouts on my BOSU.

sweat pink bosustrong

Then I tackled the work thing (or at least, started to). After reading a ton on the internets, trying to find other moms-to-be who run their own businesses, and trying to figure out just how they managed TWO babies without letting either one suffer, I decided I just need to create my own reality.* I made myself a Do-or-Die-Before-Baby list so I can make my absence easier for my team, and I’m actively trying to make myself dispensable so that as few people as possible are depending on me.

I’m feeling so much better already. So much more in control of my life, my health, my career. There’s still a lot of opportunity to improve – but all trends are pointing in the right direction.

In closing, I leave you with this:

2015-09-07 09.21.39

p.s. You can get 50% off a 3-month subscription to Bulu Box with the code SWEATPINK.

p.p.s. You can get 15% off Hemp Heart Bites with the code HHBitesLaunch15. You can also enter to win a case of Hemp Hearts by sharing a photo of how you and your family stay active and tagging @manitobaharvest #hhbites!

* That said, if you’re someone who had a baby and runs her own business, and wants to keep running her own business, I would LOVE to hear how you did it. I’m really struggling with this, and my online searching was pretty unfruitful. 

I received the BOSU, Hemp Heart Bites, and the Bulu Box for free. All opinions and life plans are my own. 🙂 Thanks for supporting the brands who support the Sweat Pink Community. 

You can save your mansplaining

So, this thing happened this week. I’ve been doing lots of yoga, because statistically yogis have shorter, easier labors, and I’m really trying to keep both of us happy and healthy.

One day in class, with a teacher I’d never taken from before, things were going along just swimmingly. I staked out a place by the wall so I could invert with backup, I kept my twists open, and I alternated shallow chaturangas with camel poses for my vinyasa.

We did some core work, all of which, for the record, I participated in, because it felt fine. Then, as we stood back up for the next pose, the instructor walked toward me, patted his lower abdomen a couple times, and said,

“Now THAT’s what you need to work on.”

I was so confused by his statement I just kind of stared at him. I hadn’t told him I was pregnant before class, so I wasn’t sure if he was referring to my baby bump, or if he was making a criticism about a supposed beer belly.

After class, during the put away your props and find your shoes shuffle, he said to me, “How’s that working out for you?”

“How’s WHAT working out?” I asked, and I think I saw him flinch.

“Movement. Yoga. You know, fitness,” was his copout response.

“Great.” I said. “I’m pregnant, so I modify, but overall I feel great.”

He then proceed to mansplain to me why yoga was so important during pregnancy and what muscles I should focus on to make birth easier.

Needless to say, I got out of there as fast as I could. I’m still not sure if he was aware that I was preggo when he made that first comment about my stomach, but either way, so inappropriate!!

It took me a couple days to process. I kept doubting myself and my reaction to that comment in class.

Did that really happen? Maybe I misheard? Surely it wasn’t done with any kind of ill intent, so I should just let it go. 

At the end of the day, it’s really NOT a big deal. Yes, it’s wholly inappropriate, and potentially super offensive, but a remark like that shouldn’t have preyed on my thought patterns for a matter of days. What is a big deal is the mental gymnastics I went through trying to decide if my own experience deserved trusting. I can’t believe I didn’t believe my own ears, or that I went through the motions of making apologies for what was probably just a foot-in-the-mouth dumbass slip of a comment.

Isn’t the whole point of yoga trusting your body, your experience, and your intuition?

Here’s what I’ve come down to, after a couple of days of ruminating:

  1. I’m never going back to that class.
  2. Giving birth is pretty much the last thing I’d like to get mansplained about.

Roadtrippin’

We’re currently en route from Tahoe to Texas, and oh my, roadtripping while pregnant is a a whole different ballgame, from having to pee all the time to struggling to get comfortable in the car. I’m also doing lots of foot and ankle movements and pedaling my legs to help prevent DVT. The idea of getting a life-threatening clot in the middle of nowhere, with no cell service, is just terrifying.

I packed about a million snacks for myself to make sure I wouldn’t demand extra stops when I got hangry. These delicious nectarines were so worth the sticky fingers and dripping juice:

nectarines

I packed up my Wild Friends nut butters (both the full-size jars and the travel packs).

sweat pink wild friends nut butter

Inside my awesome shark lunchskin? Hemp Heart Bites, my new go-to travel snacks. They’re so satisfying and delicious, plus full of protein and omega-3s.

wild friends and lunch skins

Here’s a picture of the actual Hemp Heart Bites. They’re kind of like a soft, chewy sesame brittle, and they swing both ways in being a savory snack and a sweet snack. (Try them for 15% off with code HHBitesLaunch15)

sweat pink hhbites

Speaking of sweets, my prenatal vitamins have been my candy fix on the roadtrip.

smartypants prenatal vitamins

Oh, except for that one box of red vines…  #necessaryroadtripfood.

To be fair, I’m not even road tripping the whole way. We’re in Utah for the day—I put my foot down about not doing two long driving days in a row—and tomorrow we’re off to Denver to see our godchildren. From there, I’ll fly home and Nathan will continue the drive with Tigger. He’s so good to me. 🙂

 

alyse utah
The ski runs are so green this time of year!

 

high lunge park city
Oops, my knee is farther forward than my ankle. Don’t tell the yoga police!

In other news, I stepped on a scale today, and woah, Nelly, I’m up 12 pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight.  I’m usually sort of neutral toward scales, I know I’m supposed to be gaining weight (and I’m having a ton of fun doing it!) but something about moving up a decade in weight was surprising in a not-so-good way. I haven’t weighed this much since I came home unhealthily stuffed with chocolate croissants, cheese, and cheap booze after my junior year abroad. Being full of a baby is definitely a better reason to be back in this weight class, but it was still a shock.

(This isn’t a cry for attention or counterarguments, by the way – I just surprised myself with how surprised I was to see that number, even though I was expecting it.)

Anyway, back to the business of downloading more podcasts for tomorrow’s drive and getting a little more active time outside of the car.

And…speaking of active time, it’s the last day of the #liveinprAna challenge. The prompt is:

What are your favorite ways to restore your mind, body, and soul? 

Share on social and tag @prana #liveinprAna @fitapproach #sweatpink

prana sweat pink

Beer? or Baby?

You guys. I’m still in this awkward phase where I just look kind of thick and pouchy through the middle. I am not obviously pregnant; just obviously weirdly proportioned. I love seeing pregnant ladies rocking their bumps, and I WANT to be one of them, but right now my bump-rocking looks like more bloat-flaunting.

As fewer and fewer of my tops cover this strange growth in my midsection, my husband and I have started playing a little game.* It’s called:

Beer? or Baby?

Here’s how you play:

  1. Put on a shirt you used to wear, pre-pregnancy.
  2. Show your husband.
  3. Ask, “Does this look like a beer belly or a baby bump?”
  4. Watch him squirm.
  5. Repeat.

*This is actually more of a game for me. I think it terrifies him, along the lines of the dreaded “does this make me look fat?” question.

So, tell me: beer? or baby?

These are the few shirts I have remaining that (a) fit over my belly and (b) cover up the elastic top of my maternity pants. Most of them I bought way too big, though there are a few surprise holdouts from pre-pregnancy that still work.

prenatal yoga clothes

This Gaiam top has been a lifesaver for the last month or so. It’s one of the few I can still wear to yoga classes without feeling like everything is hanging out, thanks to a loose, long cut, and a higher-cut neckline with a shelf bra and modesty cups (which I normally like, but ended up removing).

maternity clothes

I bought this bro tank several sizes too big, just because it was the last one and I couldn’t live without it. I’m so grateful I bought it in a large, now. I love wearing this shirt outside of Texas. People give me really strange looks.

prana top 18 weeks

This prAna top has worked surprisingly well both pre-pregnancy and up through 19 weeks (and maybe longer?!).

prenatal yoga modifications

Ah, the good old SweatGuru tank. This is the ONLY one my husband says makes me look pregnant, rather than ambiguously bloated. The color also blends in nicely with the elastic tops of my maternity shorts, so even though it’s a little shorter and tighter than the others, it’s still hanging in there.

Of course, when I don’t feel like looking ambiguously beer- or baby-bellied, wrap sweaters have been my actual lifesaver. I’ve been relying heavily on my prAna georgia wrap, which disguises the bump and gives me a more streamlined silhouette, while still being light enough to wear during the summer (at least, in the cool early mornings in Tahoe, and in air conditioning!).

prana sweat pink #liveinprana

Today’s prompt for the #liveinprAna challenge is:

It’s our mid-week stretch it out, show us what’s getting you through your hump day? #7daystretch #liveinprana #sweatpink @FitApproach @prAna

And I have to say the clothes pictured above are just what’s getting me through this week! Tomorrow I am officially 20 weeks along, or officially HALFWAY there. (Cue freakout).

What’s keeping you going? Share with us on social!

Disclosure: I received some of the apparel in this post for free. Opinions, bumps, and husband-terrifying games are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands who support Alyse MB and the Sweat Pink community!

And speaking of supporting brands, don’t forget you get 15% off prana.com with the discount code LiveInprAnaF15 through 9/30!