Posts Tagged ‘ Pregnancy Weight ’

I Didn’t Have Pregnancy Abs—and You Won’t Either

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

Alesandra Dubin 35 weeks pregnantHave you been following the controversy surrounding the pregnant model with abs? In short, 30-year-old Sarah Stage has been documenting her pregnancy on social media sites like Instagram. Now nearly ready to deliver, her bump is—shall we say—quite subtle, appearing more of a gentle arc surrounded by visible abdominal muscles.

This has people very much in a tizzy. Her posts have generated thousands of comments, ranging from the envious and self loathing to the hateful and shaming. My first question, to borrow a cultural phrase from a very formative time in my life, is: Can’t we all just get along? Seriously, can’t we all agree to stop body shaming and judging? If the comments on this model’s photos—and on every pregnant woman’s posts, and every parent’s posts, and every person’s posts—looked like the warm and supportive comments on the Humans of New York posts… well then, the world would truly be a more magical and perfect place.

But moving beyond that, let’s all get with reality here. This model looks gorgeous, obviously. She also says she has gained 20 pounds so far in her pregnancy, which is nearing the recommended guidelines for a person of normal weight. (And she claims to eat the occasional cheeseburger, so she’s apparently not starving herself in the hopes of keeping weight off during pregnancy.) And she hits the gym with regularity. But in addition to her workout regimen, it would be quite obvious to anyone with the remotest critical-thinking abilities (so all of us here, of course!) that genetics plays a huge role in her current physique—and our inherited genetics, alas, are out of our control.

That’s why, likewise, most of us have only some amount of control over our pregnancy physiques. That’s me in the photo at 35 weeks, pregnant with twins. You’ll notice my decided lack of abs while I carried 12 pounds and 2 ounces worth of baby in my midsection. I’m also a generally fit person, who has been known to schedule entire days around gimmicky workout classes that excite me. So imagine my surprise and disappointment when I found myself halfway through my pregnancy and unable to work out—and discouraged by my doctors to do even prenatal yoga given my risk categories, and excessive fluid, or polyhydramnios—and barely able to even walk by 32 weeks. It’s not what I’d had in mind, and it wouldn’t have been my preference nor my choice, but it didn’t happen because I was lazy and didn’t want pregnancy abs (I can barely write the words without laughing because of how unlikely the phenomenon is among the masses) bad enough.

Similarly, pretty much no one else ever will have pregnancy abs. There is a margin of error there, but I’m pretty sure it’s small. But all pregnant bodies are freakin’ miraculous—can I get an amen? So I’d prefer we all use that language to describe them instead of using words like “fit” on one side of the spectrum (with implied judgment that women who gain more are lazy) or “GIANT” and “huge” on the other (as if, in many cases, those women could choose the precise ways in which their bodies changed).

So that’s my take on the pregnant abs dust up. Now don’t get me started on the cultural post-pregnancy body feedback

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Alesandra Dubin is a new twin mom. She’s also a Los Angeles-based writer and the founder of home and travel blog Homebody in Motion. Follow her on Facebook, Instagram, Google+ and Twitter.

Photo courtesy of Alesandra Dubin

Pregnancy Workouts: Is It Safe to Exercise?
Pregnancy Workouts: Is It Safe to Exercise?
Pregnancy Workouts: Is It Safe to Exercise?

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The Big Lesson Milla Jovovich Is Learning With Pregnancy Number Two

Wednesday, January 21st, 2015

Mila Jovovich pregnancy weightDuring my twin pregnancy, I picked up a lot of common mythology—like “Breastfeeding makes the weight just magically melt off!” and “You’ll be teeny tiny in no time with two babies to keep up with!” While those concepts may play out for some people, they hardly proved true in my case. Losing the weight has been all about huge effort and perseverance steadily over months—no magic involved.

That’s a (hard) lesson I learned as a naive first-time mom, and something I’d be more realistic about if I were planning to be pregnant a second time (which I’m not, since I got my two in a one-shot deal)!

Of course, I’m not the only mom to have been naive about pregnancy weight gain. It’s a common fallacy among many of us—even celeb mamas. Among those is second-time expecting mama Milla Jovovich, who just posted a prenatal fitness update on her Facebook page that reveals she had some of the same thoughts after her first time around—and is a lot smarter about weight gain now with baby number two on the way.

Writing candidly about her current weight (170 pounds) and her plans until delivery day, she said, “I’ve gained all the baby weight I need to have a healthy pregnancy—30 pounds—and as of last week, I’ve started having to be really careful about my lifestyle so I don’t continue to gain unnecessarily, which is not healthy for me OR my newborn. I’m really proud of myself for not gaining the same amount of weight that I did with our first child (75 pounds) because I have to be ready to start filming Resident Evil—The Final Chapter in August of this year and I will also be nursing an infant simultaneously (get ready wardrobe department for Alice’s new “easy mama access” costume) so I don’t want to be on any extreme diets to get ready to go back to action hero mode!”

Two-time mama Jessica Simpson is also among the stars who had the same experience following her first time around. She told ABC News in 2013 that she didn’t gain as much weight with the second baby. She said, “Any woman, dealing with their body after pregnancy, you look at yourself and you’re like, ‘What just happened to me?’… Going into my second pregnancy, I was just like, ‘Oh, I can’t eat the whole cake. I can just eat a piece of cake.’”

And that sounds like a sensible plan!

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Alesandra Dubin is a new twin mom. She’s also a Los Angeles-based writer and the founder of home and travel blog Homebody in Motion. Follow her on Facebook, Instagram, Google+ and Twitter.

Photo courtesy of Facebook/MillaJovovich

Weight and Pregnancy: Gain Only What You Need
Weight and Pregnancy: Gain Only What You Need
Weight and Pregnancy: Gain Only What You Need

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Is Pregnancy Weight Gain Connected to Baby’s Gender?

Tuesday, December 23rd, 2014

Pregnancy Weight GainPeople are always looking for patterns to connect pregnancy symptoms with baby’s gender. And while many such connections are just myth based, there’s hard data to show that the latest pattern to emerge is totally grounded in reality: The more weight you gain during pregnancy, the more likely you are to deliver a boy.

This news comes from a study published in PLOS One, which analyzed data from nearly 70 million births over a close to a quarter century. It determined that increased pregnancy weight correlated with male babies.

When moms-to-be gained about 20 pounds, they delivered about 49 percent male babies—so under half. But when pregnant women gained 40 pounds, they delivered boys about 52.5 percent of the time. And when they gained 60 pounds, they delivered boys a notable 54 percent of the time. (Above 60 pounds, the connection went away.)

Why is this the case? Well, it’s not completely known. But Kristen J. Navara, the doctor who analyzed the data, wrote, “It is possible that this relationship results from the fact that male embryos and fetuses have higher metabolic rates, and likely need more caloric energy to develop successfully.”

Given that I delivered a boy and girl at the same time following my twin pregnancy, I’m never a great test of these theories. But I’d love to know if this jives with your experience—let me know in the comments!

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Boy or Girl: How Genetics Determine Your Baby's Gender
Boy or Girl: How Genetics Determine Your Baby's Gender
Boy or Girl: How Genetics Determine Your Baby's Gender

Alesandra Dubin is a new twin mom, as well as a Los Angeles-based writer and the founder of home and travel blog Homebody in Motion. Follow her on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

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Struggling to Drop Those Pregnancy Pounds? A New Study Says You’re Not Alone!

Tuesday, December 16th, 2014

Pregnancy weight gainIt’s hardly breaking ground to point out the dangers in observing the postpartum weight-loss patterns of celebrities and expecting the same results from ourselves. The lives of us real-world moms—which involve childcare, sleeplessness, work, and other nonstop responsibilities—don’t support the kind of post-baby fitness habits of those women whose job depends on flaunting their bodies in the public eye, and who have limitless resources to support their weight-loss goals.

But even if the rest of us can’t—and should never be expected to—lose pregnancy weight as quickly as the stars, a new study shows that many of us are not losing it at all. And that’s problematic.

Specifically, the findings of the new University of Chicago study indicate that a full three quarters of all women weighed more a year after giving birth than they did prior to their pregnancies—and many of those moms actually became obese. Among the category of women who were of normal weight before giving birth, a third were overweight or obese a year later.

However, the study does have its handicaps: For one thing, the women were in the low-income category, meaning their access to things like gyms may have been more limited than they are for more affluent women. Beyond that, the average body mass index of the nearly 800 women in the study was in the overweight category. For women who start off their pregnancies overweight, it may be even harder for them to lose afterward. (But let’s face it: It’s not easy for any of us!)

Of course, new moms have so much to worry—and feel guilt—about. Do we really need a new study to pile on the concern? Well, it’s not just about vanity. Carrying extra weight adds to long-term health risks—and short-term ones, too, during the timeframe of pregnancy. Overall, the study points to the fact that pregnancy itself can be a risk factor for obesity, and as we already know, that can be a dangerous thing.

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How I Lost the Baby Weight: At-Home Workouts
How I Lost the Baby Weight: At-Home Workouts
How I Lost the Baby Weight: At-Home Workouts

Alesandra Dubin is a new twin mom, as well as a Los Angeles-based writer and the founder of home and travel blog Homebody in Motion. Follow her on Facebook, Google+ and Twitter.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

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See Which Petite Pregnant Star Is Up 40 Pounds — And Owning It!

Tuesday, November 4th, 2014

While it’s rare for celebrities to talk about their pregnancy weight gain in plain terms, it does occasionally—refreshingly—happen.

Consider Kendra Wilkinson Baskett, who recently revealed that she gained 55 pounds during her second pregnancy, going from 120 to 175 on the scale. Of course, she’s shed much of that weight already, and was well on her way to her trim pre-pregnancy model bod by the time she dished on those specifics.

But what’s even more rare—you might call it the unicorn of celebrity pregnancy coverage—is a star who’s talking about her significant pregnancy weight gain while she’s right in the middle of it.

Pregnant actress Hayden Panettiere told Hello! magazine (as cited in the Daily Mail) that she’s gained close to 40 pounds on her itty bitty frame. “I’m 5 feet, 2 inches, and I started out at 106 pounds and guess how much I weigh now? Around 145 pounds,” she said. “And the worst part is that my feet are still size five and they’re going, ‘What’s going on with all this weight?’ They’re about to snap from underneath me with the strain.”

She also believes her muscular nature—she was a former gymnast—is contributing to the extra pounds.

Not surprisingly, the star has every intention of taking off the weight after her baby girl comes. She told the mag she wasn’t planning to wed fiance Wladimir Klitschko carrying 40 extra pounds.

No matter what, the expectant mama looks gorgeous. Check out our gallery of other stars who looked fab filled out with extra pregnancy weight, too!

Pregnant? Track your pregnancy weight gain. And sign up for our pregnancy newsletters to give you the inside scoop, every step of the way. Plus, don’t forget to like Everything Pregnancy to keep up with the very latest in pregnancy news.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock

 

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