Second trimester update: what I eat in a day, exercise & everything in-between

I cannot believe that tomorrow I will be 22 weeks pregnant. Where has the time gone?! It feels like yesterday that I eagerly waited for the second line to appear on my pregnancy test.

 

How I am feeling overall

I truly am feeling so blessed, happy and grateful in my pregnancy. I know there are a lot of people who don't enjoy being pregnant, but I can honestly say I love it and I am so grateful for that. Baby boy has been kicking so much and I just love feeling him kick and roll around in my belly! It is the most insane, indescribable feeling and makes me feel so connected to him. 

Pregnancy has taught me a lot. Physically, my body has changed so much and I truly can say I am embracing every part of it. I am so amazed at the female body and how our bodies adapt and change to nurture a beautiful baby. 

With all of that said, this pregnancy journey has brought up a lot of emotions for me. It has made me miss my mum a whole lot more, who passed in 2014. Not being able to chat to her about her pregnancy, birth and motherhood has been tough. But I am so blessed to have the support of an incredible husband, friends, family and God.

 

Exercise

In terms of diet and exercise, I have been really consistent. I have been working out 5 x per week, getting my steps in, drinking lots of water and eating lots of fresh whole-foods. I truly know what they mean when they say the second trimester is your "best" trimester! I have my energy back, I don't need to nap at 12pm like the first trimester, I don't have any food aversions and I haven't been sick! I have been seeing a women's health Physiotherapist. She is amazing! I have linked her page here. I wanted to make sure I was taking care of my pelvic floor, abdominal coning and getting the correct modifications for my workouts and my body. My Physio is super happy with how everything is looking - all thanks to her homework and exercises she has given me! If you are pregnant and tossing up whether or not to see a women's health Physio, do it. It is so worth it in my opinion. 

 

My workout schedule:

  • Monday: Full-body circuit 
  • Tuesday: Upper-body focused functional strength training
  • Wednesday: Rest day
  • Thursday: Lower body strength session
  • Friday: Pregnancy pilates with my beautiful Physio Charlotte + a long walk
  • Saturday: Full-body functional strength training
  • Sunday: Rest day

As you can probably tell, I love using weights. I'm a resistance training kind of girl. It helps keep me strong, agile and mobile. I will never have a session in the gym that is straight cardio (unless I am walking or running outside).

     

    What I Eat in a Day While Pregnant

    These are the things I have been doing daily:

    • I eat plenty of whole-foods: fruit, veggies, nuts, seeds, legumes, meat, good quality dairy, whole-grains, etc. I also make sure to have a big variety of these foods and mix it up to get a diverse range of vitamins and minerals.
    • I wash all of my fruits and vegetables before putting in my fridge.
    • I have a high protein diet. I have been eating much more protein Greek yoghurt and meat this pregnancy and make sure that every single meal has protein in it. Super important for baby's development.
    • I avoid processed foods and sugar. I will have it here and there (especially first trimester) but I know it doesn't make me feel good so it's not something I will have every day. 
    • Water, water, water. Like 3.5+ litres a day!
    • Taking prenatal vitamins and other supplements, more on that later...
    • Have a look at my highlights on my Instagram for more of what I eat in a day

     

    Typical breakfasts:

    • Wholemeal spelt sourdough toast from our local bakery or Venerdi paleo toast with: 1/2-1 avocado, sautéed kale, rocket and/or spinach, 2 hard poached eggs, sauerkraut (I love the brand Peace, Love & Vegetables) and tomatoes. Easiest way to get 4-5 different types of veggies in one meal!
    • Oats in any form (cooked hot on the stove, soaked in milk overnight or as muesli/granola) with all the toppings. I'm talking chia seeds, almonds walnuts, pecans, sunflower seeds, goji berries, almond or peanut butter, hemp seeds, a high protein yoghurt (I love YoPro), high protein soy milk and fruit. Overnight oats, bircher and protein oatmeal recipes found in my Shred: 30-Day Challenge
    • Protein pancakes - recipe linked here 
    • I will also have a coffee or matcha with my breakfast and I have this with a high protein soy milk (I love the Vitasoy High Protein Soy Milk as it has no added sugar or nasties and 10g protein per serve!)

     

    Typical lunches:

    • If I had oats for breakfast, then I will usually go the toast with everything for lunch (toast, 1/2-1 avocado, sautéed kale, rocket and/or spinach, 2 hard poached eggs, sauerkraut and tomatoes) 
    • Big chicken salad with quinoa, chickpeas, avocado, olive oil and veggies
    • Turkey meatballs with rocket + pasta or sourdough, recipe linked here 
    • Healthy fried rice (recipe in my Shred: 30-Day Challenge)

     

    Typical dinners:

    • Turkey meatballs
    • Meat, roast potato/sweet potato/root veggies + a salad
    • Homemade sushi (sans any seafood, yes because I'm pregnant but also I just don't like the taste of it)
    • Tofu and vegetable curry (recipe in my Shred: 30-Day Challenge)
    • Beef burger with sweet potato fries (recipe in my Shred: 30-Day Challenge)
    • Burrito lettuce cups or Mexican bowls (recipe in my Shred: 30-Day Challenge)
    • Baked veggie bowls with rice/quinoa and some kind of protein (tofu, chicken). 

     

    Typical snacks:

    • Protein shakes with yoghurt, nut butter, frozen fruit, protein powder and oats
    • Nuts, seeds, trail mix
    • Fruit
    • Crackers, hummus and veggies
    • Toast with avocado or natural almond/peanut butter, honey and banana
    • High protein yoghurt topped with granola, nuts and fruit

      

    Sleep

    My sleep has been amazing since getting my pregnancy pillow. I'll link it here. It's this U-shaped contraption that wraps all the way around me and sits under my belly and supports my back. The first night I despised it and thought "why did I buy this?!" but after another night of giving it a go, I cannot sleep without it! Seriously so good and so comfy.

     

    Skincare

    In terms of skincare, hair care and body care, 99% of products I was using were already pregnancy safe. When I suspected I may have been pregnant, I stopped using retinol and any skincare with active ingredients. I also stopped using my Beauty Chef power and whey protein. 

     

    Supplements / Vitamins

    - Prenatal vitamin 

    - Fish oil. I use the Nordic Naturals one.

    - Iron

    - Vitamin C 

    - Protein powder (if I feel like I haven't had enough throughout the day). I use Tropeaka lean protein.

    - Collagen. I rotate between the Skinstitut Collagen Plus and the Nutra Organics Collagen Beauty.

     

    Hopefully that answers some frequently asked common questions that you may have had! If you want to know anything else, let me know!

    November 12, 2021 — Beth Parkes

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