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Overweight while pregnant? Diet and fitness discussion!

post #1 of 31
Thread Starter 

Hi mamas,

 

I am not one of those ladies proud to be plus size especially while pregnant! I tried so hard the last 3 years (why we even waited this long!) to get the 50 pound gain off my body and get to at the very least my pre-preggo weight of 180 which was up 20 pounds because of a miscarriage at 8wks a month before the conception of my DD. I'm 5'5" and medium-framed.

 

I'm feeling lots of back pain and have a bit of trouble standing for long periods, sleeping in the same position, etc. I still cannot believe how much I weigh on the scale right now! My weight before conceiving was about 215-220 and now it's 235! I just feel terrible carrying around this weight, there are so many risks and I am scared for labor. 

 

Any mama in the DDC here who can commiserate? I'm being *very* careful with what I eat. I am doing mostly primal/paleo with the exception of some dairy, the occasional GF (and non-GF) treats and honey as a sweetener in drinks. I am kicking up the workouts but am being careful not to exert myself. Like last night I only did a 10 minute yoga routine (so darn good for my dull 24-hour backache!) and walked for about 20 minutes.

 

Today I want to walk and maybe do an easy kettlebell workout. I've even heard you can safely lose weight while pregnant. This is my last pregnancy I think so I really want to do it right! ;)

post #2 of 31

I'm around 205 and have 10 lbs from each of my two pregnancies so far, plus about 20 beyond that. I've recently accepted that being back at my pre pregnancy weight would still be a healthy weight and while I wouldn't be slim, I would feel good and be more fit.  I'd had lofty goals of getting back to 185 before getting pregnant, but the most I kept off this past year was about 8 lbs from where I started a year ago.  I'm starting to question what it would take to lose weight (it eating a lot less) and wonder if I'm going to screw my metabolism more and start having thryoid issues. I'm very healthy other than the extra weight and am very thankful that I don't have any chronic or obvious hormonal issues that seem to plague many women in their 30s and 40s today. But I do know I'm pudgier than I want to be! 

 

Anyway, what have you read about safely losing weight? It makes sense to me that one could, through the right food and exercise, lose fat and help their metabolism so that over all, they are gaining baby weight but losing unhealthy weight. I'd love to gain less than 25 lbs this time, and if I can keep things in check the first trimester and not gain any, then I think I can meet that goal. I gained 50 with my first, and 35 with my second. I don't feel that I need to put on any baby related weight in the first trimester, and in my second pregnancy, 10 of the 35 was the first tri.

 

I find it a huge challenge to exercise while fatigued. I believe it would help me overall, but I don't want to wipe myself out for the day with morning exercise and am not at all up for it as the day goes on. I'd like to keep up with strength training. How do others fit it in, with a couple kids in tow?  I have no doubt going to bed earlier would help which is also a challenge.

post #3 of 31
I am obese and unhappy about it.

I have been overweight or obese my whole life, but 5 years ago lost 80lbs through diet and exercise while living alone and making that my biggest life project. I gained back about half of that during and after my last pregnancy. I found it near-impossible to diet while breastfeeding while maintaining my milk supply. Since then I also started a new 80-hour-per-week job with limited access to high-quality food at work and have to feed a toddler with many food allergies and in a household with a husband who enjoys lots of less-nutritious foods. The result is that I am 30-40 lbs up from where I was during my last pregnancy and in poor shape. I don't feel good and I'm worried about pregnancy complications. I feel it's really important for me to try to exercise, eat well, and gain minimally but I already have lost battles with myself to do well in theses areas at just 6 weeks in for all the usual reasons plus morning sickness and exhaustion... I don't want to be defeatist, but realistically I have to say this will be very tough. Any suggestions and/or support would be greatly appreciated.
post #4 of 31
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by beep View Post

I am obese and unhappy about it.

I have been overweight or obese my whole life, but 5 years ago lost 80lbs through diet and exercise while living alone and making that my biggest life project. I gained back about half of that during and after my last pregnancy. I found it near-impossible to diet while breastfeeding while maintaining my milk supply. Since then I also started a new 80-hour-per-week job with limited access to high-quality food at work and have to feed a toddler with many food allergies and in a household with a husband who enjoys lots of less-nutritious foods. The result is that I am 30-40 lbs up from where I was during my last pregnancy and in poor shape. I don't feel good and I'm worried about pregnancy complications. I feel it's really important for me to try to exercise, eat well, and gain minimally but I already have lost battles with myself to do well in theses areas at just 6 weeks in for all the usual reasons plus morning sickness and exhaustion... I don't want to be defeatist, but realistically I have to say this will be very tough. Any suggestions and/or support would be greatly appreciated.

 

Oh I hear ya. I'm so upset about my weight too. I'm actually not craving crap and am SO fortunate to work at home. I'm just worried in a few months I'll have trouble walking around. My body being even 10 pounds heavier means less mobility and I will hate not being able to be active. I'm taking baby steps-- doing a yoga workout for 10 minutes, T-Tapping or just walking to the store and back. These are my goals. I've also heard GREAT things about coconut oil, especially for weight loss. I am putting a tsp or two in my herbal tea. I know I'm probably not *supposed* to lose weight per-say but, if I do, it wont hurt the baby any-- I've got lots extra to spare. {{{ hugs mama! }}}

post #5 of 31
I actually joined a gym a week before I found out I was pregnant... so that I could lose some weight to have a healthier pregnancy. I didn't expect to get pregnant this soon. My goal is to just eat healthy, try to exercise everyday when I am not throwing up and super exhausted. I work in a women and children's homeless shelter and eat with the families, so when I take my "lunch" I have already eaten. I usually walk around the block a few times and go to the gym after work when I am feeling well. Usually I swim for about 20 minutes. SWIMMING IS HARD! I am just trying to be the healthiest I can be and accept that this is the weight I am at this time, and most overweight women give birth with no problems.

What I am more concerned about is that Kaiser will assume I will have all kinds of problems just because of my weight, like making me do the early Glucol test... The BMI was never created to assess an individual, it was created to look at populations, but doctors don't seem to know this and use it just like the insurance created height/weight charts from previous decades. For example, my mother and I wear the same size clothes, yet I weigh 40 pounds more than her. I have always weighed more than other people my size, so I think the BMI is a piece of crap...and I hate Kaiser's reliance on it.

I do make sure the nurses use the appropriate size arm cuff when they check my blood pressure since a too small cuff will give a higher blood pressure reading. I wish I could remember the blog, but there is a very good one about being overweight/obese during pregnancy from which I learned the above. I just googled and think this is it: http://wellroundedmama.blogspot.com/ I read it a few years ago and found some good stuff.
post #6 of 31
Thread Starter 
Ugh. I hear ya. It's Jan. so yeah, I was doing my best to lose this darn weight. My holistic doc rx'd me a new thyroid drug that I'm hoping will help atleast control the weight gain during pregnancy but even if it doesn't-- I feel fantastic. Physically I'm not doing so well. I'm really worried about complications but like you am trying to accept what is!

Thank you for this blog, it's very inspiring and the "My OB said WHAT?!?!" is totally ridiculous!
post #7 of 31

I'm also overweight, unfortunately, I have been for 8 yrs:(  After the birth of my second baby, I wasn't able to ever lose the weight.  I'm about 185lbs and 5'9".  I eat mostly organic and from scratch.  My thyroid is all out of wack.  I've worked out quite a bit for the last three years.  It doesn't help my weight, but it does help me feel much better.  With my last baby, born July 11, I was able to keep up with cardio several times a week and yoga two times a week until 39 weeks.  This time I've been doing step aerobics 3x a week and am going to start back in with my prenatal yoga videos soon.  As long as you are eating well, I think the workouts can really be helpful in keeping mobility and getting a good nights sleep:)  I also can't say enough good things about getting into a good chiro and doing hypnobabies:)

post #8 of 31
Thread Starter 
So I realize I'm not in the worst part of the 1st. trimester yet but I wanted to share what I'm doing for nutrition and exercise. I've been eating mostly whole foods and drinking probiotic drinks like kefir and kombucha. I had a bone broth soup yesterday with carrot and potato. I for whatever reason am not feeling especially nauseated like my last few pregnancies.

I just finished another strength training workout. I can't believe I can do it without getting super tired. I think it'll definitely help with weight gain and overall mobility.

Something else to mention-- right before I found out I was pg. I saw a holistic doc because yet another conventional endocrinologist wouldn't help me. He rx'd a natural thyroid hormone with both T3 and T4 called Naturethroid. I'm going to cross post on the other thread where I saw you ladies talking about Synthroid.

I was having symptoms of low functioning thyroid (due to my hashimotos) and actually had it treated. Levothyroxine did not give be the same results. I just wanted to mention this because many women who didn't/couldn't lose weight end up being hypothyroid.
post #9 of 31
...and I've found my tribe...redface.gif I have been trying to lose weight for forever. I wanted to get down from 220 to 185 before getting pregnant but it didn't happen and I conceived at about 215.
Last pregnancy one of my Drs recommended that I find an exercise activity that I enjoyed enough that if she told me to stop because it is harmful I'd still try to do it anyway. I stil haven't found that activity...
post #10 of 31
Thread Starter 
You and me have the exact same weight issues. I still cannot believe I'm pregnant this heavy.

Being an ex-weight watcher is making it so much worse. I feel like I have a horrible body image and not eating when I'm hungry was how I used to go about my daily life-- it's hard to trust my body at all.

I just did a pregnancy weight calculator (lol why? I like the torcher I guess!) and it says I should not gain any more then 10lbs. I'm fine with that but feel out of control. I eat pretty well-- seemingly less then before I got pregnant because of food aversions and haven't gained at all. Can I really sustain this in the 2nd and 3rd trimesters? I went from 180 to 230 last time so I'm very nervous.
post #11 of 31
I haven't gained any weight yet. The nurse practioner i see said i might not actually gain that much since I'm trying to eat healthier and haven't gained any in the first 16 weeks while eating all the freaking time. I'm seeing one of the midwives next appointment so I'll see what she says.
Tilly I'd avoid the weight calculator and go with what your body and doctor are saying. Weight its only a number and one i feel is quite arbitrary.
post #12 of 31
How are you larger mamas doing? I am down 12 pounds from prepregnancy but feeling huge like a sumo wrestler since the baby has pushed my belly fat both up and out. I don't look pregnant at all.

I've been doing medium with eating well and exercising only a tiny bit, much less than I prefer.
post #13 of 31
I only lost 3-5 pounds. I still haven't caught up but i think I'm only down 2 now.
I too am finding it hard to get to the gym. I'm always so hungry after work and want real food not just a snack. So i go home and eat dinner... I eat all the time it seems.
post #14 of 31

Gained 10-15 lbs, but that was mostly in the first two months. I think I've only gained 2-4lbs in the last couple of months, and I feel pretty good about my diet in general (though I've been letting too many treats slip through).

 

Yoga first thing in the morning is hard - I get really hungry about halfway through the class!

post #15 of 31

I just joined this site and this is the first forum I've visited.  I cannot express how thankful I am to hear these things!!  I am 18 weeks tomorrow and have only gained 2 pounds thus far (although I am obese already).  The problem (as beep mentioned!!) is that this kid has pushed my "fat/organs/who knows what" all the way up under my breasts!  I've always had a gut, but it's pushed far up my body now.  It's making me a little crazy!  LOL  I just wish I had a cute belly bump but instead I look weirdly disproportionate now :-)  It's really not that big of a deal, but it has made me a little more self-conscious about how I look. 

 

Thank you all SO MUCH for sharing your experiences!!

post #16 of 31
Thread Starter 
Welcome and I'm really glad to have you here! Mothering is an amazing forum and the wealth of information here from other moms has seriously changed my life.

I feel SO DUMPY. My DH took some photos of me and I look so out of it and just huge and fat. I'm really trying to wear cute maternaty clothes to make the best of it. Bought a new lipstick even to boost my sexy as much as I can! My self image is really irritating my DH and he's telling me in his own way how great I am and look fine. But I feel like he's just saying it sometimes. I even think he feels like some of my normal preggo symptoms are exasperated by my being overweight. He might be right and that makes me so sad.

I even keep thinking because my belly has so much extra I'll not feel the baby moving the same way. It's true that at 16 weeks with my daughter, I felt her move, it was pronounced. This time around, I'm not feeling much of anything. Just weird pressure. I immediately think it's my weight that's the issue. It might not be I'm sure. It could be my placenta being low and absorbing kicks so I can't feel them.

I feel like I have to go around telling everyone I'm pregnant so they'll look past my weight. It's pretty depressing! I'm also not watching what I eat very well and not exercising as much. I have a bit more energy but I'm mostly tired and hungry the entire day. So the time it takes to make a healthy meal or go pick something up is like a no brainer. And what I'm picking up is garbage mostly. I did have a huge salad today atleast!

I've not really gained much. I'm still around 232 which is a few pounds lost though I'm sure I'll gain it with all the food I eat! Though I'm bein very cautious to STOP eating when I feel sick or full. Which is both sometimes!

If any ladies will chime in about their experiences with birth that would be interesting to read about. I worry about it but then know my body knows what it's doing and not to fret!
post #17 of 31

TY for sharing, tilly.  I feel the same way :-(  I also find myself telling people I'm pregnant because of the weird shape my body has become.  I am trying to watch what I eat.  Some days I'm more successful than others which I'm sure is the case for most moms.  I am not exercising at all which is really disappointing because I know that I should be walking and trying to strengthen my legs and core to make delivery easier.  I'm just so exhausted all of the time and what time I do have to relax, I just want to nap or veg out.  The last thing I want to do is exercise, although I know it would likely benefit me. 

 

Because of my weight, I keep worrying about preclampsia, gestational diabetes, and not being able to have a normal delivery (having to induce or c-section).  This is my first baby and I'm 35 so I'm also worried about how my age might factor in. 

 

Anyway, it's so nice to hear other women expressing concerns similar to my own.  It makes you feel far less alone in this thing :-)  Thanks again for sharing!

post #18 of 31
I haven't joined this thread, though I certainly meant to do so earlier. I have been heavier than I want for ~10 years now, especially since DD was born (she is 5). I have also been busier than ever, with three kids to care for, plus buying our first house and being in grad school. I haven't yet figured out a balance that gives me "enough" time for myself and to manage all of those things, so weight management has taken a back seat.
Funnily enough, I'd decided that I needed to make it a priority just before I discovered that BB#2/child #4 was on the way. Two things motivated me there:
1) I wanted more clothing choices than what was available to me in plus-size, and
2) I figured if I lost some weight, my knees would hurt less.

Obviously, my plans have shifted a bit. Now I'm just focusing on eating as healthily as I can, and trying to balance that with my cravings. I have always walked quite a bit, and I am trying to keep that up.
Now that it's reading week/final exam period, I can actually have time for my yoga and prenatal workout DVDs as well, once the kids are off to school for the day.
post #19 of 31

How much weight do you all expect, hope, or have been advised is appropriate to gain?  I know that the bigger you are before pregnancy, the less you need to gain while pregnant, some woman with healthy eating and exercise might lose or maintain a lower weight gain??  I was around 190 when I first found out I was pregnant at 7 weeks, however I think I had already picked up some weight in the by that point.  A couple of weeks later I was down into the 180's. Now at 20 weeks I'm 190 and hoping to stay below 200 if possible.  I walk almost every day and have begun weight training again.  

 

Thoughts..?
 

post #20 of 31
Thread Starter 
Wow weight training is such a great idea-- what's your routine? I'd love to be your buddy and cheer you along.

I walk as much as I can too but it's not routine at this point and I get really wiped out from very little these days.

I was trying desperately to lose weight before conceiving and got down to 215 or so. Then Nov/Dec came and I admit to too many baked goods and lots of wine! Last pre-pregnancy weight was 175-80 so I have a lot to lose.

So I'm not sure how much I gained there because I was trying to not obsess on the scale. I weighed myself when I first got pregnant and I was about 238! I freaked out about it but hit 6wks and had terrible morning sickness. Now I'm going from 229 to around 234. I'd really like to lose but sadly don't see that happening. If I could not go past 240 I'd be happy because I'm really worried I won't stay active that large and in charge.

I really think diet more important then exercise but doing both is optimal! I'm eating more junk then I should so I really need to get my butt in gear! I'm finding this time around (will be my 2nd live birth) that I'm grossed out and feel ill after eating most of the time. Especially bread and sweets and it's usually after eating junk so my body is really telling me something. I just need to listen.
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