Into the Third Trimester: Week 28

It was exciting to enter the third trimester this week! (I’m a week behind on posts; this was the week of January 2nd.) The first trimester dragged on and on, mainly because I was anxious to share our news with people, and to see morning sickness diminish. In comparison, the second trimester flew by and now we are into the home stretch. This is the trimester where everything will get a lot busier too, as we have antenatal classes starting and we need to get serious about buying the baby items we need. This trimester will likely be the most uncomfortable for me physically, as I approach peak size.

This was the first week of the new year, and I enjoy the fresh start feeling of a new year and the process of setting goals and plans for the coming year.

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This year it all feels a bit different since there will be so many variables and unknown with the framboise bébé on the way, and this is the first year I don’t have specific running-related goals in mind, other than the obvious plan to get back into running once I am able.

A big focus of mine this year is to just breathe. When I get stressed out and anxious, it’s usually because I am trying to do too many things at once, I feel like I don’t have enough time, and then I hyperventilate. This year, I want to slow down and just breathe.

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One thing at a time. Taking deep slow breaths helps me focus and calm down, and is part of what I enjoy about yoga and connecting the breath to the body. I also learned a lot about connecting breath and body and mindfulness in my mindful hypnobirthing book, and want to draw on those principles to help with childbirth. And of course, once the baby is here it will be so important to just breathe and live in the moment, with patience and mindfulness.

I’ve been doing a 30-day meditation challenge run by one of the members of Run Dem which is also a good way to get myself to just slow down and breathe every night before bed.

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Breathe and Stop Meditation

I had my 28-week midwife appointment on Friday. Since it is a rotating group of midwives at the hospital, I always see someone different, which I think is good and bad. Good because any one of them could be there on d-day, so it’s best to get to know them all. And good because if I was just assigned one and didn’t gel with that person, then I would be stuck. On the other hand, in other places it is more common to have your own midwife or doctor that you see every time and get to know, which would be nice – but then there is always the risk that your person is not available the day you deliver. I can’t control it anyway so no point dwelling on it, but so far, I’m fine with the arrangement. I’ve met a good number of people who have delivered at our hospital and all have had great things to say, which is reassuring.

Anyway, my appointment was with a male midwife and he was great, very reassuring and easy to talk to. Incidentally, I met someone recently at Run Dem who told me she delivered at the same hospital last year and she had all male midwives for the birth, and that they were fabulous. He measured my tummy and it is now 26 centimeters, which is on the small size but still within the normal range, and I got to hear the heartbeat. I also had to do the dreaded glucose tolerance test at this appointment to test for gestational diabetes, as well as do some bloodwork. I was nervous about all of these, but was happy to get all my results back on Monday as normal.

I have been worried about whether I am getting enough iron, but the blood test showed I am in the normal range for iron, but just barely. I’m making sure to eat lots of lentils and other iron-rich foods to keep my levels up, in addition to my prenatal vitamins. We made this lentil salad over the weekend and it was excellent.

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One last piece of news for the week – I tried swimming! I had swim lessons at the Y as a kid but I’ve never done it for exercise. I know I’m not a very strong swimmer and I’m sure my form is terrible. I’ve always wanted to try it as it is such a good form of exercise and a nice counter-balance to running, but I’ve been intimidated by my lack of skills, my lack of knowledge around pool usage and lane-swimming etiquette, and the general hassle that goes with swimming as opposed to say, walking out my front door for a run. But since swimming is such a great, low-impact form of exercise for pregsters, I really wanted to try it so I gave myself a pep talk and went down to my local leisure center (basically like a YMCA) early on Saturday morning.

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not my leisure center pool

The locker room situation wasn’t quite as posh as the ones at London’s trendy boutique yoga and spin studios, but for £5 for a lane-swimming session it was perfectly fine. It’s much easier for me to go there on a Saturday and come home after to take a shower; I think it would be too much hassle and I would be too time-crunched to try to swim there before work on a weekday, since it is not at all on the way to work, unless I was working at home.

I approached the pool with so much trepidation, but I needn’t have worried; at 8am on a Saturday it was all old people! There were sections for slow, medium and fast swimmers, and I would have thought I should go in the slow lance but it was full of geriatric types barely moving, so I went into the medium speed lanes where only a few other people were swimming at a moderate pace. I swam for 30 minutes, completing 12 laps, or 600 meters total (I think, assuming it was a 25-meter pool). Which is not a fast pace but it was my first time ever!

I just did breaststroke and occasional backstroke, and I did get passed a few times, but it wasn’t a big deal. I was really proud of myself for trying something new, and I kept telling myself it doesn’t matter how fast or good I am, it just matters to get out there and try it. I definitely want to keep it up, even if just once a week. I also want to take the bébé there for mom and tot classes. One of my earliest memories is going to “mommy and me” swim classes with my mom and I think it’s great to get kids in the water early.

The rest of Saturday and Sunday were both fun London days. I had brunch with running friends on Saturday after my swim, and then Andy and I took a long walk down to the river. On Sunday, Andy and I took a long walk across the city and popped into the British Museum, followed by a pub lunch.

Week 28 Summary

Baby Size

Cabbage I think? All the sites say different things now and I feel like some are repeating.

Symptoms

Probably nothing new really

Feelings

  • Excited about fresh start to the year and all the changes this year will bring
  • Slightly stressed about said changes but trying to just b.r.e.a.t.h.e
  • Lots of fears about the baby’s health; really hoping we have a healthy baby and that I haven’t done anything to jeopardize that

Workouts

  • Went for one or two walks of at least 30 minutes nearly every day, and some days longer
  • Two YouTube prenatal workout videos
  • One spin class
  • One 30-minute swim!

Weight Gain

No new gain so still about 15 pounds up total

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