Coach Jesi | September 18, 2020
5 major Lifestyle areas that helped with Pregnancy and Labor
- Stress Management
Having strongly cultivated my top 5 lifestyle areas, prayer/meditation, nutrition, sleep, exercise and stress management, I can say that I was blessed to have successfully came out with some victories—a cute healthy baby girl and a healthy recovered mama.
#1 is my prayer and meditation, however I am going to save that for the end. Best for last!
Here is one giant reason it is important to cultivate these areas—PPD, aka, Post-Partum Depression. The icky part about PPD is that in happen to ANYONE, even the healthiest of women. It’s a disease that is still being closely studied. There is just a mess in the biochemistry that occurs and it can take a while to balance out. But by taking precaution and praying/envisioning positive outcomes, cultivating a strong lifestyle, the better your chances are at beating PPD.
NUTRITION– I silently giggle, as I recall my bizarre cravings in the first trimester. Let me just start this off by admitting the guilt of me thinking pregnant women just blamed “preggo cravings” so they can tarnish all the fast foods and sugary goodies in sight. But boy, are those cravings legit! Luckily for me, I had a very short-lived sugar craving, and could really only function without wanting to puke so long as I nibbled on them—pop tarts! Strawberry and Smores were my guys. Fortunately, it was only like a 10-day thing. Then my other long-lasting craving was avocados and bean burritos. With my eyes down, whole-heartedly ashamed, as I admit that on certain days, the specificity of the bean burrito needed to be, had to be, only could be… from Taco Bell. (I know, I know!). And I was never really ever a Taco Bell thug to begin with. I don’t even know if I ever ate a bean burrito from there ever in my life. But, again, I only permitted myself to have it once in a while, which was torture, since the craving was so bad!
Anyway, as a health geek, I knew better. Every food was gross. I have always loved salads, I could eat them every day, but when I was pregnant, everything was gross—the smell and texture. EW. So, I would sneak healthy good stuff in smoothies. I drank a lot of veggie fruit smoothies and I did really well with Acai bowls, although high in sugar, nonetheless it was just important to get quality whole foods in. I did NOT watch my calories—I never do anyways, because I only focus on eating quality foods and not OVER eating. So, in short, eat whole quality foods, sneak in all your veggies in your smoothies, indulge in your cravings sometimes. Also, I should mention, the ONLY time my feet swelled was when I ate Taco Bell. Makes sense, since it is processed foods.
SLEEP– I had no problem sleeping. LOL! I could fall asleep anywhere, anytime. I took frequent naps, most of the time it was against my will, but it would just happen. My husband could be in a midsentence with me in a car ride, and I’d literally fall asleep. But because I’ve studied a lot on sleep, I know that it is a SUPER POWER for your body when it needs recovering and growing. Read blog “Beasts Sleep Too” as I cover quality sleep more thoroughly. So, I totally let myself sleep. Luckily, I also had a job and a boss that allowed me to do so! The only time I had issues with sleep was having to overcome my favorite sleeping position—belly sleeper! But luckily, my sister-in-law sent me a preggo pillow, which is like a giant snake pillow.
EXERCISE– One would think that would be my number one, or even in my top 3. I, too, would have thought. The old me, would have thought, since I was a shallow soul, fearing the pregnant weight wouldn’t come off after. Silly. But once I found out I was pregnant, that foolish way of thinking went out the window, and all I cared about was making sure Baby was fed and happy. Total health stands on a few different pillars, all having an important role. Sometimes, one pillar is needed to be prioritized more than another. Example, if you are not sleeping well at night, chronically, and have stressful issues at work, then the first priority in that to wellness, is focusing on sleep. Then, managing the stress, how to eliminate it. After, exercise can be configured. Flip one stone at a time. Exercise was a diaper dandy in derailing my nausea pains. I found that when I did some fitness, I felt almost normal for the rest of the day. Exercise was also my saving grace during the physcial aspect of delivering. It’s like a sitting squat when delivering your little one. And mentally, I was sharp and focused as practiced well during exercise.
STRESS MANAGEMENT– I definitely used the “I’m pregnant” card kind of a lot in this area. Stress hormones is such a negative domino effect within the body. I wrote a great blog on it called, “No Stress Bruh”, on how stress is such a health killer, please check it out. Mainly, it covers on addressing what is causing stress, eliminate or decrease time spent with or around it. It could be people, like family or co-workers. It could be other silly things, like the News, or stomach twisting books/movies, workloads. It is especially important to know thy self and how well you do with stress. There is a good saying a friend said, “The baby feels what you feel. Happy mama, happy baby.” And so, it would be a great benefit to you and Baby to weed out negatives or come up with plans to lessen stress.
PRAYER/MEDITATION– I could even shine the light on “ENVISION” here, along with prayer and meditation. Long story short, “For this child I have prayed”, couldn’t be more cliché and true. I spent A LOT of time, more than I had prior to being pregnant, praying and envisioning a safe delivery for Baby and a healthy recovery for myself. I listened to a lot of other women’s positive birth stories and surrounded myself with love frequency music. And I definitely spent a lot of time talking to Baby, rubbing her and praying with/on her. Sure, some fear would sneak in, but I would cut them off and replace with positive affirmations like, “My body knows how to give birth, my body knows how to grow a baby, my body was created to create life”. Whatever perspective you have on spiritual/religious beliefs is something that should be personal to you and Baby. I would mix it up, I would pray, out loud talking to God/Spirit/Source/Jesus the Universe (whatever you believe in), then I would spend 15-20min of meditation, sometimes with Sage, or just out in the sun on the ground. Whatever you feel like doing is the one to do, there is no right and wrong in this area. ☺ Just see yourself carrying Baby all the way through, then delivering Baby, holding Baby after. All. The way. Through.