If you’re worried about keeping second pregnancy weight gain under control, you’re not alone. It’s a concern of many moms who are pregnant again. Take a look at a few ways that you can help keep it under control, as well as the things you just can’t control.
Second Pregnancy Weight Gain: Accept the Baby Bump
Let’s start with the one thing you can’t change, because the sooner you accept it, the sooner you can move on. You can’t control how quickly you show. Most moms “pop out” way earlier in the second pregnancy than in the first. Like WAY earlier. I’m talking “hello, baby bump” at as early as 6 weeks.
That baby belly is going to pop when it’s going to pop, so deal and move on, okay? Here’s the cool thing, though, about that baby belly: it alone does not cause weight gain. You may LOOK like a small house, but you don’t weigh as much as one! Good news, right? Basically, your first pregnancy wreaked irreparable havoc on your abdominal muscles and your uterus got a bit stretched out, both of which account for the earlier popping.
What can you do to control second pregnancy weight gain?
Now that you know what you CAN’T control, let’s talk about what you CAN do to keep second pregnancy weight gain under control. Here’s the thing: chances are you’re too tired after caring for your first child to go out and run a marathon, or take that prenatal yoga class you took with little Susie One. Maybe you’re too frazzled to make a nice healthy salad, so you grab the nearest candy bar for a boost of energy. These things help contribute to excess second pregnancy weight gain. Instead, try these tips:
- Back away from the candy bar! Keep a stash of healthy pregnancy snacks around the house, in the car, in your first child’s diaper bag, in the stroller, behind the toilet seat (kind of kidding, that’s gross). Basically, everywhere, not just in your kitchen pantry. As a mom, you know that we only have moments to eat at times, and those moments come in the oddest places. If you have tons of healthy snacks on hand, you’re less likely to grab a candy bar.
- Turn playtime into workout time. Don’t have time to take a prenatal fitness class because you’re too busy watching Susie One at the park? Stop watching and start playing. Get off the park bench and swing on the swings for a good leg workout. Race your child to the bathrooms (two birds, one stone). Go for nature walks, play a low-impact game of tag. Just get up and play.
- Get a good night sleep. Stop laughing! I know it’s way easier said than done, especially if your first child is still really young, but you have to at least try to get more than 5 hours of straight sleep. See, lack of sleep can contribute to weight gain because it messes with the hormones that control hunger. Enlist your spouse’s help, borrow grandma for a few night a week or hire a babysitter to come stay at night. Okay, that last one may not be practical for those on a budget. The point is, do what it takes to catch your zzzs.
- Stop comparing your pregnancies. If you compare your first pregnancy to your second and set the same expectations, you’re going to get frustrated fast. Frustrating leads to apathy, apathy leads to over-eating. Don’t set yourself up for failure. Every pregnancy is different. Just because you ran a mile a day the first time around doesn’t mean you can this time.
- Don’t give yourself a free pass either. While you have to accept that things are different this time around, that doesn’t mean you can throw up your hands, say “”whatever will be will be” and slack on good nutrition. If you get into the mindset that you can’t control second pregnancy weight gain, you’ll lose the battle before you even start.
Controlling second pregnancy weight game is a challenge. Sometimes we all need help with challenges. If you feel like you’re struggling, talk to a prenatal nutritionist. If you find that you’re rapidly gaining weight despite your best efforts, definitely talk to your doctor. Conditions such as preeclampsia, gestational diabetes and others can contribute to second pregnancy weight gain.
How did you control second pregnancy weight gain? Tell us in the comments!