Hey guys! A lot of you have asked for tips and tricks that I’ve learnt from pregnancy, and since I recently gave birth I thought it’s the right time to share what worked and what didn’t!
Much like any journey or trek, being pregnant can be made so much easier and more enjoyable when you have the right gear. I thought it would be fun to put together a bunch of survival guides for how to get through each trimester. First up? The first.
As most people will say, the first trimester was hard. HARD I tell you. I don’t think I had truly grasped the warnings people said about how bad I would feel – nauseous all the time and exhausted beyond belief. Here I was timing the birth of our baby for the quieter (content wise) June/July/Aug season, but what that meant is that I was in the first trimester during the busiest part of the year. But whatever, you live and learn right? One upside of the first trimester is that some things actually did make me feel better! Here are a few of them.
My First Trimester Survival Guide
Smoothies & Soups
One of the most shocking things about the first trimester was just how little I felt like eating healthy. Just the thought of putting broccoli in my mouth made me want to retch. Salads… ICK! Instead, all I wanted was croissants and pain au raisins, with a wheel of melted cheese thrown in for good measure. Which is so far from what I’m usually like (it felt like perhaps Ben’s genes had actually taken over my whole body). And for a while I didn’t mind this, I mean you gotta do what will make you feel better (and not vomit) right? But after a while, I just started feeling worse because of all the bad food. Finally, I worked out that by eating soups and smoothies that had healthy ingredients hidden inside, I was able to get some nutrition into me without being completely turned off. This helped so much!
Ahhh, my faithful friend for those months, nausea in the first trimester was pretty bad. But luckily there are a few things you can do to combat it. The first thing is to literally have food by the bedside so you can take a bite as soon as you wake up. This really worked for me, although led to a lot of awkward crumbs in the bed. I went for multigrain cracks, but dry cereal or almonds also worked. I actually found myself waking up in the night feeling sick and eating helped them too. Poor Ben would wake to me munching away.
Although you might really want to stay in bed all day long, my personal experimentation proved that on the days I was less active I felt so so much worse. Being someone who usually exercises daily, I obviously changed my usual routine in the first trimester (the thought of being in an enclosed gym made me claustrophobic) so instead walked every day amongst the trees and fresh air. Even a little walk around the block made me feel soooo much better.
I found myself to be so so so thirsty for the whole first trimester. I found that drinking very cold still water made me feel better virtually straight away, and so I made sure always to have big bottles in the fridge at home and at work. I found that sparkling water had the opposite effect though, as the extra gas was something I didn’t need. I also drank some ginger tea now and again, although interestingly my father (who is a doctor of Chinese medicine) advised not to overdo it because ginger is warming and what you in fact need is to cool your insides… Which goes against everything you read but it worked for me.
OMG smells! Even my favourite perfumes and beauty products had me ready to throw up, so I picked up a few unscented products for the first trimester, including shampoo and conditioner and moisturiser. I think this made a big differences, as did avoiding anything that was going to be too strong smelling.
Most of all, you’re just going to want to sleep during that first trimester, and don’t feel bad about it! Your body is doing soooo much hard work at this stage so you would be crazy to push yourself. Take your work and exercise down a notch (if you can) and give in to it. Slap on that eyemask and take some shut-eye.