I've been thinking about this topic quite a bit, and for me it has been the most difficult part of pregnancy.
I hate the unknown. I like to know what's going to happen and when. Unpredictable people and situations are the worst thing in the world ha. Just, being out of control terrifies me. I've found the weight gain hard because I feel completely out of control of my body. No matter what, the scale will go up. Of course, I can somewhat control how MUCH I gain throughout the pregnancy, but that number on the scale will increase. The hardest part for me has been not knowing how much I'll gain. Or how I'll look at the end of the 9 months. Or if my body will ever be the same again. It's such a weird and different stage.
Haha this sounds so dramatic when I write it out now, but I've truly had an identity crisis. Being fit and healthy is a huge part of my life. I work for a company as a health coach, and help people lose weight, and I teach spin classes a couple of mornings a week. It's something I live, preach, and breath and I absolutely LOVE everything about it. So suddenly seeing my body change, and having to change my workouts, and not being able to eat my normal foods...man, it's tough!! And I almost feel like a fraud.
Obviously, I know that you're supposed to gain weight during pregnancy. And it's for the absolute BEST cause! My sweet little baby is growing and it is essential for her development. But regardless of knowing it's inevitable and critical, it's still a hard process.
I've never been big into weighing myself. I don't think it's a TRUE indication of progress, and that's something I really push with my clients. I like to go off how I feel, how clothes fit, pictures, energy levels, etc. So I've felt like a HUGE hypocrite (no pun intended) stepping on the scale so much at the Doctor's office, and even more of a hypocrite by letting that number get to me.
I always tell my clients, "YOUR WEIGHT IS JUST A NUMBER". Or "IT IS JUST YOUR BODY'S RELATIONSHIP WITH GRAVITY IN THIS MOMENT." And it totally is!! My weight gain so far has been very healthy and consistent, but pregnancy just mentally messes with you. Your body starts changing. Every part of it. You get bigger in all different areas (some good, some bad HA).
These 9 months aren't about me. They're about my baby. My main job is to help her grow, keep her healthy, and bring her into the world. That's it. THAT'S what I decided to focus on instead of, "I'VE GAINED 13LBS SO FAR! WHAT THE *$*(#)!*" (an over-exaggeration perhaps, but you get the picture).
Being pregnant is hard, these is no doubt about it. But I have found 4 ways things that have helped me the most when it comes to dealing with my body changing:
Exercise is KEY...not so much relating to controlling weight (I've helped a lot of people lose a significant amount of weight before on barely any exercise), although it absolutely helps! But more so because it helps me FEEL better! There are a lot of other benefits to exercise during pregnancy, but it helps me feel in control in regards to weight gain. It helps me feel like I'm doing absolutely everything I can to be healthy.
DRINK LOTS OF WATER
Okay I get that this one sounds stupid, but hear me out! Bloating is so common during pregnancy, especially during the first trimester (goooood times). I know it seems like the last thing you want to do (putting more liquid into your belly???), but it helps keep you regular, keep everything moving properly, and minimizes the water retention so you don't feel so BLAH and gross. The days I feel the "biggest" are the days I'm the most bloated. If you not a good "water drinker", try herbal tea, infused water, even sparkling water. Any type of liquid like that will help reduce water retention.
FOCUS ON HIGH QUALITY FOODS
Nutrition plays the biggest part in any kind of weight gain, and it's the baby's MAIN source of energy and nutrients. No brainer. Cravings, sickness, increased appetite, etc. can make this extremely challenging though. I feel like everyone has good intentions going into pregnancy to eat healthy, and then cravings and exhaustion strike haha. I make sure my meals are PACKED with nutrients (tons of veggies, lean protein, fats, and good carbs), so that I don't feel guilty about having my treats as well. I know that my baby has what she needs (loads of nutrients), and so do I (treats haha).
EXCITEMENT OF BABY
It makes pregnancy a heck of a lot easier when you know you're going through all of this for a reason. Since I found out I was pregnancy, I decided to do whatever I could to make sure she has everything she needs (getting enough sleep, exercising, listening to my body, eating properly, etc). When I focus on her health I actually feel stupid for ever worrying about gaining weight. If I want her to be the healthiest she can be, then we NEED to gain weight.