Project Fit Pregnancy: Week 23


weight gain during pregnancy

Sometimes I feel like this pregnancy is just crawling, but other times the weeks seem to fly by fairly fast. Like just now when I typed in “23 week”. Already? Wow!

What’s cool this week is that the baby’s big enough that I can make out individual parts, although I have no idea which are which from the outside, only that it’s either a head or backside, because it’s too big to be anything else. It’ll be interesting to see what my midwife says regarding the baby’s position when we see her (hopefully next week).

Causes for concern this week are that the baby seems to be really active at night. Seriously kid, that’ll have to change. No night owls allowed.

Aside from some walking and onion planting in the garden, my workouts this past week are strictly what was prescribed by the 5×5 program. My poor kettlebell is lonely.

Bench press
Bent over row

Over head press

Bench press
Bent over row

Thanks to the fact that I’ve gained access to a (semi decent) squat rack only recently, I’m now squatting the heaviest I ever have. It’s still under 100 pounds for now – don’t laugh – but it’s climbing.

The 5×5 method calls for increasing your weight by 5lbs on all the lifts (except deadlift, which is 10lbs), every workout session, which is what I’ve been doing. This program however, was design for guys, who would naturally have a much higher max lift even in the beginning of their weight lifting career than I do now, meaning that starting with nothing but the 45lb bar, and increasing by 5lbs each workout would be much less challenging, for much longer for them than for myself.
All that to say, since the goal is to keep progressing as long as possible,  I plan to slow my rate of progression down to 2 1/2 pounds per workout. I already implemented that plan yesterday with my squats.

Since this series is all about staying fit during pregnancy, I suppose I should address weight. Body weight that is.

I honestly haven’t been weighing. It’s almost pointless given how dramatically my weight fluctuates depending on how well my digestive tract decides to work from one day (or week) to the next. The best way I’ve found so far to keep from excessive bloating, heart burn, and other unpleasant digestive issues which shall remain unnamed, is, aside from Staying away from excessive sugars and junk foods, to not allow myself to eat past a certain time in the evening. This allows my body to deal with what’s already there and get that cleaned out before adding more to it. This is often referred to as intermittent fasting (which is unfortunately, becoming something of a fad diet), athough I don’t stick strictly to a time schedule (i.e. 16 hour fasting window, with an 8 hour feeding window), I do my best to have supper before 6:00 and be done for the evening, and very rarely eat breakfast before 9:00 in the morning.

I’ll probably weigh next week for the midwife. When I do, I’ll have gained some weight. I’ll hope some of it has been muscle (I’ve read that under ideal circumstances, a woman can gain one pound of muscle in a month, so my own muscle gain – if there is any – would probably only be a fraction of that), most of it I’m convinced, will have been necessary pregnancy weight gain. I don’t feel like I’m over indulging and gaining fat.

With that said, gaining fat during pregnancy is a necessary “evil”. It’s your body storing up nutrients so it can go on to nourish the baby via breastfeeding after the birth.

Of course, most of us find this extra weight a terrible nuisance since we have no lack of nourishment at any time, breastfeeding or not. In my experience, if you’re active and eating reasonably, the weight will come off. Slowly but surely.

It’s also important to remember that you’re a mom, not a model. We’re meant to have a higher body fat percentage than what society tells us is the “ideal”. It’s important for proper hormone function, and proper hormone function is important for carrying  and nursing our babies.

Pregnancy weight gain isn’t as bad as it’s made out to be.

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