29 Weeks: Pregnancy Weight Gain

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It’s time for another bumpdate! As of Sunday, Baby E hit 29 weeks. The pace of life keeps speeding up, and November is going to be here before I know it.

29 weeksHow far along? 29 weeks

Baby’s size? Approximately 2.5 lbs and 15 inches from head to heel

Total Weight Gain: About 20 lbs (as Homer Simpson would say, the big two-doh!)

Stretch marks? Nope.

Sleep: Sleep wasn’t so great, but it was better than last week. Since Kevin and I had separate beds (thus giving me five pillows all to myself) and a cranked up air conditioner in our hotel, I slept pretty darn well on Saturday night!

Best moment this week: Beach trip!

Miss Anything? I missed beer on Friday.

Movement: Yup! Baby E has traded in his cute little flutters for uppercuts to my ribcage and dropkicks to my bladder.

Food cravings: Though I’m still loving ice cream, I’ve kind of been on a cereal kick. Okay… that was actually just yesterday, but it was quite a kick!

Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope.

Gender: BOY!

Symptoms: the return of fatigue and severe ligament pain. The pelvic pain I described last week let up a bit from rest, but it’s definitely still there – a reminder to rest often and take it easy!

Belly Button in or out? Flat, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it pops out soon

Wedding rings on or off? On

Happy or moody most of the time: Happy!

Looking forward to: My baby shower this weekend

29 weeksGet comfy, I’m about to talk about something that’s a little taboo – pregnancy weight gain. The topic is pretty heavy, and I didn’t really understand what the big deal was until I was expecting.

What’s the big deal? You’re supposed to get big, so don’t worry about it – right??? Well… sort of. It’s more than just wanting to get back to that pre-baby body. Too much weight gain can lead to gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia, an overweight baby, miscarriage, stillbirth, a baby with diabetes, and a need for an emergency c-section. Does gaining a few extra pounds mean this will definitely happen to you? Heck no!!! But it’s a pretty good motivator to not eat the entire pint of Ben & Jerry’s… at least not in one night. ;)

What’s recommended? In the early 20th century, docs recommended a gain of 15-20 lbs. In the 1960s, docs recommended about 25 lbs. Later, in 1990, docs changed it to 25-35 lbs, which was an across-the-board recommendation for women of all sizes. This was modified in 2009 to better fit different female bodies. Underweight women should gain 28-40 lbs; normal women should gain 25-35 lbs. Overweight women should gain 15-25 lbs, and obese women should gain 15 lbs. Those carrying twins can expect weight gain closer to 35-45 lbs. Ladies can expect to gain 0-5 lbs in the first trimester and approximately 1 lb per week up to 40 weeks. These are ONLY guidelines!!!

What’s normal? This is hard to say. Some ladies have trouble gaining due to morning sickness and other such issues. Yeah… I haven’t had any trouble gaining! 1 in 5 women gain over 40 lbs, which is more than docs recommend for anyone. Women’s bodies vary so much that even finding a “normal” number wouldn’t really tell you much, at least in my opinion.

Where does it all go? We’re not giving birth to 30-lb babies. You obviously have the baby in there, but aside from that, the placenta, amniotic fluid, and breast tissue can all weigh 2-3 lbs each. Blood volume is about 4 lbs, and the uterus is 2-5 lbs. Ladies, you can also expect about 5-9 lbs of fat. Why that fat has to go to my thighs instead of my boobs is still a mystery to me…???

What’s not normal? Pregorexia. Yup. It’s a thing. There’s a lot of pressure on ladies to “be all belly” or get their “pre-baby body” back as fast as celebrities. If you notice yourself getting upset when you weigh-in at your doc’s office, start getting on the scale backwards so that you don’t see it. If eating only the recommended extra calories extra per day isn’t filling you up, eat more! Numbers are just that – numbers. Only your doctor can tell you if you’re on the right track or not.

How am I managing?  In the first trimester, it’s recommended that pregnant women not increase their caloric intake, but I definitely did.  I tried to count calories early on, but always going over was upsetting – so I quit!  I often found myself totally ravenous, even in the middle of the night.  Ladies “should” increase their calories by 300 per day in the second trimester, but that didn’t quite cut it either.  I should note that these numbers increase if you’re active.  Now that I’m in the third trimester, docs recommend 300-450 extra per day.  That’s still not “eating for two.”  I mean, 300 is like a cup of low-ish fat ice cream or two slices of toast.  I definitely need a little more than that to keep me going.  I’m not counting calories, but I’m still closely tracking my weight.

The preg comparison trap is hard too. I fell in to that myself. Just know that every woman gains differently, carries differently, eats differently, and has her own stuff going on. I know it’s easier said than done, but try to focus on your and your baby’s health.

Wow… that was a mouthful. If you read all that and made it to the end, you deserve a cookie.

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26 Responses to 29 Weeks: Pregnancy Weight Gain

  1. I never knew pregorexia was a thing, but I’m not surprised…thanks to the media and hot celebs who bounce back literally a week or 2 later. I do struggle with weight gain, and I’m up 5lbs so far, but really, all I want is a healthy little babe and I can work it all off after. I think weight gain in general is hard for a healthy person who works out, so especially 20-30lbs will be tough for me! You look great, btw! :)

  2. First off, I need to say that you look absolutely gorgeous – you definitely have the pregnancy glow thing down :) And second, I think it’s great that you addressed a topic that’s sadly a little taboo. I’m not gonna lie and say that thinking about gaining weight when I get pregnant doesn’t scare me – it does – but at the end of the day, it’s all about the health of the little one, right? You’re doing a great job, momma <3

  3. You ,look great! I think that the recommendations are a tough thing, I have had a few talks with my Dr’s about it. Since I am very petite and only 5’1″ my weight gain is on the low end but tummy is measuring right on track. My Mom gained about what I am on track to gain (20ish lbs) so I will say between genetics and being small I cannot really follow guidelines. I would be concerned if baby was not growing but she definitely is!

  4. You look amazing! I know weight gain is one of the things many women worry about during pregnancy. I know whenever I do have kids I will probably stress about it, but as long as your trying to be healthy and your doctor says everything is okay you shouldn’t worry about it!

  5. Can you be any cuter? Seriously, you have that baby glow. I really can’t believe that you’re only a couple months out. Eh, so exciting!

  6. You look SO fabulous! it sounds like you’re doing everything right, you look so great and so healthy. its sad that celebrities influence pregorexia. thats how you know, eating disorders really are a disease- its one thing to put yourself through that, but i dont think anyone would purposely put their child at risk if they had control over it.

  7. You’re looking so good! And I’ve heard about the pregorexia thing, and it makes me sad – definitely a downside of negative culture. And I’m happy to hear that you’re listening to your body’s signals when it comes to eating – you know what your body needs more than any guidelines.

  8. Michelle says:

    You look so great!

    I feel like I was much more concerned about weight gain with my first baby – mainly because I really didn’t know what my body was going to do — so I can really see why pregorexia is a thing. The loss of control can be mentally tough. Ultimately, I realized that my body was craving different types of foods for a reason….and I just needed to make (relatively) healthy choices. It’s not all or nothing! I DO think it’s a time to splurge (same with breastfeeding – I NEED those extra calories!), but everything in moderation. Moderation just takes on a different definition when you’re pregnant!

    The good news is that my self/body image is SO much better after having kids. My perspective just changed so much.

  9. Interesting information…lots of things I did not know about pregnancy.

    You are beautiful! Loved that you had a great time at the beach too :)

  10. Whitney says:

    Great post. I’m 14 weeks and am up 8 pounds. Not totally thrilled about it but what can you do? I’m still working out and barely eating sweets but I was so nauseous the 1st trimester and carbs were the only thing that helped. Hopefully I can get back to normal pretty soon.

  11. You are gorgeous girl! I have heard of pregorexia and it almost makes me want to cry. That baby needs those extra nutrients. Your body is doing an amazing thing by carrying a NEW LIFE inside of you! Good for you for honoring your body. :)

  12. you look amazing momma :) I gained about 46 lbs. I let myself go a little crazy in the first trimester, but I don’t care. next pregnancy I will be more mindful of what I eat, because noone needs chinese food once a week. I’m still struggling to get the weight off but it took me 10 months to gain it… it will take me at least that long to take it off.

  13. I’ll take a cookie!! ;)

    you look fantastic, first of all!

    Second of all, it’s amazing how much we focus on this stuff (we as in everyone) b/c of the media & the emphasis placed on women’s bodies. It’s like we forget that ummmm we’re creating a HUMAN in there!! And that is where the focus should lie. ;)

    But I agree yes, that there should be guidelines, but that is just what it is–guidelines & not a rule book. I haven’t gained that much weight but my doc isn’t worried, and so I’m not worried. Baby girl is measuring perfectly and that is all that matters to me! :)

    p.s. I feel like I eat 1000 extra calories per day at least lately…I am in the kitchen like every hour! hah

  14. Karen H says:

    There is a lot of pressure on pregnant women regarding weight! I had a stranger at Babies R Us comment on my size (“you look awfully small for 35 wks”) while a friend had a stranger in a grocery store indicate she had gained too much. We both gained within the guidelines, and were deemed healthy by our medical care providers!

    I ran through most of my pregnancy, and constantly worried I would under-nourish because of burning those extra calories. I ended up eating constantly, though I was pretty good about keeping it healthy with occassional treats. I just hate that so many people think they can insert their opinion on anything a pregnant woman is doing or how she looks. It does not help.

  15. cottercrunch says:

    i had no idea pregorexia, that’s scary! But thanks to you for being so honest and REAL! You look good and you SOUND even better! I’ll drink your wine for you tonight and cheers!

  16. You look great! This is so great info. Thanks for sharing!

  17. Pregorexia?! Whoa. that’s is so sad. I don’t want kids, but if I was preggo I’d be the once on the couch dipping cheetos into pints of stracciatella gelato. ;)

  18. You look fantastic! Thanks for tackling such a touchy subject!

  19. I found this fascinating and I’m not even pregnant!

  20. I can imagine as people who are conscious of our bodies that it would be strange watching it grow and knowing that it’s a really good thing!

  21. you can’t even tell from the front that you are pregnant! You are such an adorable mama-to-be! and neat information about the weight gain! i will have to look back at this in a few years :)

  22. Tiff… You look amazing and seem to be handling your preg. with smart thinking and love and care. I wish you only the best and (hopefully) a speedy and pain-free delivery.

    xoxo from Trinidad

  23. thanks for the comment that led me to your blog — which, coincidentally, describes my passions in its title :) I bet you can’t wait to get back to that beer part! ;) meanwhile, your pregnancy posts are really interesting and I found this one pretty informative — I’ve never been pregnant, but when I do, this is good stuff to know. by the way, you’re looking great! enjoy this time :)

  24. theanniehall says:

    as a med student, the guideline we had from our class last year is as follows.
    pre preg BMI 30 gain 11-20 lbs.

    but as you mentioned, it’s only to be followed loosely and too much weight gain is ONLY if the mom is obese and/or diabetes.
    i can’t believe they were recommending just 15-25 for early 20th century!

  25. Ah yes, pregnancy weight gain… I do agree that it’s important not to gain too much weight. It drives me a little nuts when people tell you, “Oh, go ahead and eat up, you’re eating for two!” Nooooo. Like you said, you really only need a few extra hundred calories per day. But on the other hand, I do feel like it’s important to listen to your body and not get too caught up in the calorie thing. Just eat when you’re hungry, stop when you’re full, and that’s that. Maybe easier said than done, but our bodies are pretty darn smart and know what we need. I also think the pressure on women to gain minimal weight and bounce back super quick post-baby is just as much of a problem as women gaining too much weight. Sooo it’s all about that balance! ;) You’re looking great!!!

  26. Brittney says:

    I was at the upper end of the recommended spectrum- close to 35 lbs gained and felt huge, but I really had no problem losing it all (I attribute breast feeding and walking), and if anything have trouble keeping weight on right now at 6 months post partum. I didn’t overthink it and kind of trusted my gut on cravings. I really didn’t feel like I ate all that differently pregnant than not pregnant, except for more cheeseburgers and ice cream than usual. I think pregnancy weight gain is just a very individual thing.

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