5 Lifestyle Habits I Made To Ensure I Was Healthy During Pregnancy

Here are 5 lifestyle habits that helped me stay strong and h healthy during pregnancy. Try it out.

Pregnancy is a physically demanding time. In the first trimester, you may not feel very ‘pregnant’ – there’s no kicking and no bump yet, but it can be draining your energy levels. By the third trimester, your belly and the strain of carrying it feels very real. Pregnancy can also be a roller-coaster emotional experience. You feel excited about the new chapter in your life. You can also feel scared that your current self and life- the one you’ve built so painstakingly over the years – may disappear or change.

No matter the scenario, those 9 months of pregnancy are a special time. Your body is running a marathon and your life is on its way to a big change. When I was pregnant, I wanted to own my experience, enjoy it, savour it and in some way, still feel like my usual self – even as I got used to the changes all around and within me.

Here are 5 lifestyle habits that helped me stay strong and stay rooted:

Drink 3 litres of water a day:

I wasn’t drinking a lot of water before I got pregnant, so when my doctor told me I’d now need to drink 3l of water a day – I put it down as a stretch goal that sounds good for a doc to say, not something that I actually needed to do. I was wrong. The fact is that by second trimester your baby is floating in about 500ml of amniotic fluid replenished thrice a day. Add to this the fact that your body is creating and maintaining about 50% extra blood. And the math of 3L is right in front of you. Once you’re convinced of why you need it, how do you actually do it? Two things –  one, always have water available – ideally, by carrying your own bottle and two, by tracking how much you are drinking – through an app on your phone or by putting simple markers on your table (somewhere visible). You can also have milk, juices and soups to add to your daily fluid count.

Walk for 30 minutes a day:

Walking is good for your body and your mind. Our walk every night became the daily time for the husband and me to unwind and catch up on the day. I didn’t push myself on the speed – I kept to what I was comfortable with but did try to be as regular as I could.

Eat every 2 hours:

The foetus is growing at an astonishing pace inside you – and your body needs nutrition to support this. But your appetite could be on a roller coaster  – with nausea in the first trimester or heartburn by the third. What worked for me to handle both these extremes was to eat small quantities every couple of hours. I packed 4-5 small dabbas to work every morning – a mix of fruits and fresh veggies, dry fruits, one hot snack, dahi/ chaach, home-made namkeen – and ate as and when I felt hungry. This also reduced my binge eating from the office cafeteria.

Don’t miss out on pre-natal Yoga:

This one depends on your pre-pregnancy routine. If you weren’t active before, then now is not the time to start. But if you were, then now is not the time to stop! Go to an instructor you trust and do as much as you feel comfortable.  Of course, for any physical activity during pregnancy, work within your doctor’s guidance.

Visualizations and positive self-talk:

I was keen to enjoy my pregnancy – with all its phases – and to still feel like myself at the end of it. So, I motivated myself by reading and hearing positive pregnancy and birth stories – of celebrities, vloggers, friends and colleagues. I imagined myself at different stages – and set myself milestones of what ‘good’ looked like. It could be as small as going for a walk each day of the week to a big milestone like going for a babymoon in the second trimester. Every time I hit a milestone, I celebrated it with my husband and parents. And if I couldn’t do something, I didn’t beat myself up about it.  So, sure I had my days of being lazy in bed. I had many mornings, where I’d wake up, get ready and then again take a nap before going to the office. I allowed myself these. But then I set myself some limits and was back on track. 

Pregnancy is a different journey for each person. And each of us has to carve it out in our own way. Your 5 habits may look different from mine, but what is important is that you choose the 5 things that matter to you the most. 

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