Hey there, friends, welcome to today’s episode. Thank you so much for being here. So truly happy you’re here. I hope you’re having a great day and a great week so far. Great month so far too.
So if you’re listening to this, maybe you’re just curious. But maybe, and maybe more accurately, you’re in this similar season, like you are preparing for upcoming childbirth, you’re pregnant, you’re hoping to be pregnant, you’re recently postpartum. And just curious about how I went about things. And this is one that I’m hoping just is on, you know, the podcast, stay up forevermore, pretty much. So maybe you’re listening to this like way after it aired, but now it applies to you and you’re searching through pregnancy and postpartum things. I know I do that on different podcasts, you know, I will flick through and when it applies to me, then I go check it out. So I hope that you know, something in here, maybe you can apply for yourself. Truly, this question just came up a couple times from different ladies who listen to the show, asking me to kind of share what I’m doing this time around to prep for birth and postpartum. I truly did not prepare any formal thoughts here. I just kind of want to treat it like a q&a and go through things, you know, just as I’m thinking about them, and as it’s coming up. So the question was, I would love to hear more about how you prepare for birth and postpartum, whether it is nutrition specific exercises, slash physical activity, or even mental prep, or even what you’re planning on doing the same or differently this time around. So just going to kind of explore that for a little bit in this episode. And I love that I love the last part too, of like, what am I going to be doing the same or differently.
So at the time of recording this, I am 31 and a half weeks pregnant, you got to have a half, like a kid saying are two and a half or four and a half, three and a quarter. I am 31 and a half weeks pregnant with my fourth baby. And I all three boys so far, this one’s a boy. And that’s as much as we pretty much know going in. Alright, so right now, I know I’ve shared and I have other just podcast resources for right pregnancy tips, workout tips. And I’ve you know, shared my own personal experiences on those of like first trimester survival tips kind of earlier things. So to kind of pick it up from where I am right now. So, you know, especially when I think preparing for birth, and then we’ll get into postpartum, but varying for birth, I think really like 34 ish weeks on but things I’m starting to do even now maybe, you know, some people start in their last trimester or whatever. For me, some of these things are sort of like this week. So I’ll start with what I consider easiest to chat about his nutrition, because it’s not that different. When I’m looking at prepping for birth, I personally am not really changing much the kind of the the flow for me, this has been very on brand with my other pregnancies too, is I get to third trimester, and I just don’t want to eat and nothing sounds good. And I can only eat a little bit at a time. And things like that. This is a lot of people’s I feel like I experienced like the reverse of most people’s pregnancies. Because typically it’s like this is how a lot of people feel in first trimester. And they don’t gain a lot of weight, first trimester and all that stuff. Then my third trimester, you’re typically gaining about a pound a week towards the end and things like that. And this has just never been me and so far this pregnancy has gone exactly the same, where I joke that I pee on the stick and I gained 10 pounds because I went to my doctor and they’re like you’re only up X amount of pounds from your like initial weight. But I was like actually though, that was up like eight to 10 pounds for me already when I walked into that first appointment at 12 weeks or whatever. So eight weeks 12 weeks. So truly I the first trimester I’m usually eating a ton to just feel better, like eating a lot of carbs. Again, we’re not really talking about first try here but then this at this point, I just yesterday I was at the point, I told my husband where I was like what sounds like nothing sounds good. Like you couldn’t eat anything right now. I don’t want to eat it. So I just need to like pick something and eat it and kind of graze as much as I can because I get really full really fast coffees back off the table for me I’m sad report at time of recording this like I first trimester can usually not drink coffee and then I’ve been fine ever since second try. And then the last couple of days I’ve tried with that morning coffee and I’ve taken a couple sips so it depends like if somebody else makes it or get you know coffee out or something. But anyway, so I don’t really do anything purposely different or extra in these final weeks of pregnancy. Except that while so this is not different extra I do still try to eat in macro-balanced way so I still do try with whatever I am eating to make sure I’m getting it Good carbs, and good healthy fats, and good protein and proteins. So important all the time. But it’s really important in pregnancy. And it’s, I love this. This is where like a lot of birth professionals intersect with good trainers who will tell you to eat high protein. Because I’ve heard doulas and midwives and whatnot, like give us advice to like eat high protein, it’s good for the baby, it’s good for you. So that’s, you know, my typical. So I’m just trying to be, you know, cognizant of keeping that in there. So even if I’m grazing and snacking, it’s still things like cashews, like salmon, I’m still keeping in there. Like that’s really good for brain health and things like that. So I’m still just what I’m eating is mostly hoping foods 20% treats just like when I’m not pregnant, but what I have added, and now I’ve added in the red raspberry leaf tea, and I would love to say daily, but it’s a couple times a week, I’m drinking next, I know it’s supposed to help as labor approaches help prepare the body for labor and things. I bought bone broth. Like, I want to say like 25 weeks, I’m going to start drinking this daily daily, I’m going to do my greens powder, my red raspberry leaf tea and my bone broth. And I do greens powder, sometimes only when I’m not getting enough vegetables in just you know, in their own whole form. And then red raspberry leaf tea I said I’ve tried to get a daily at this point. This is only as of about like a week.
But the bone broth I have not touched and I think I have a bad idea in my head from this because my first labor I was just like looking up things that were okay to have during labor that people said were good for during labor. And one of the things I read was bone broth. Well, I had no idea of bone broth was how you should do it anything. So I just bought the little like serving sizes from the grocery store and tried to chug it cold like during labor, my first labor and was obviously really turned off by that. And then it’s just in my head. And I have since you know, had bone broth in a bunch of things. I love bone broth, I’ve talked about the benefits bone broth, for I have not been able to bring myself to drink it. And some people do this I use somebody might be listening to this and does it. I’ve heard of people who do it first thing in the morning or who do it at night. And I would love to be that person that can drink a cup of hot bone broth. If you do this, tell me how you do it. Because I’ve heard some like, add an onion, add this that like make it better. And just this this thus far, I have not been able to do it. But I’d love to start doing that. So maybe now that I’ve said on the podcast, I will. But I’ll continue the tea that’s really about it. Sometimes I mess around with dates closer to pregnancy, or to my due date, because I’ve heard that before that, you know dates are supposed to expedite labor make you progress faster, whatever, I don’t like dates. So that’s like a real issue to try to work in. But sometimes they’ll just buy like bunch of Larabars and wonder if it counts or I bought the actual like package of dates before made myself eat them. I don’t see myself doing this that this time around kind of like well rather you just come when you’re gonna come then we have to eat these dates because I don’t love them. So that’s all for I’ll go back into nutrition then I guess after for postpartum. So that’s kind of just now what were my feelings are for nutrition, specific exercises and physical activity. So similar again to the rest of pregnancy where I just kind of dial down the frequency and going from five, six days a week, usually to more like a three four. I’m usually then doing like three full body lifts. Instead if I’m gonna dial it down and it looks like I’m only gonna do three or four. Then I’ll make sure those are usually full body. Sometimes they’ll fluctuate sometimes I’m doing a workout with a chasing greatness group so it’s upper body or I’m doing you know filming something it’s got to be lower body whatever but I try to at least have those three strings in there this that you know in a week, but I tried to prioritize walking all pregnancy long interesting though just timelines and season wise. My third boy was due July 23 born July 26 One fact all of them have always been late but that was like the shortest amount of late is three days so hoping that we’re getting shorter each time here I know it’s a you know rough estimation but anyways, because he was due kind of in the middle of summer I walked a ton when I was pregnant with him and I remember that in the end I don’t think the last maybe two weeks I don’t think I did any weights at all. I think it was all walking and stretching.
I can look back at pictures and videos to see if I even did anything but if anything might have still been doing like bodyweight squats and stuff where we’ll see again I’m still couple you know several weeks out probably about two months out from this baby’s birth and I just don’t see myself I loved all the walking last time that’s what I loved it because it was just like getting outside getting the son getting I was enjoying that like time where I knew I could just leave versus how much you have to make that like a well engineered plan. When you have a newborn like either you’re taking the newborn way If you are going to like plan how you’re going to nurse them right before you leave, and you know, the whole thing, where this baby just seasonally is due in the beginning of December, I live in upstate New York. So, you know, practically speaking, I don’t know how much in late November, I’m going to be getting out and walking because it just gets darker, like my window is shorter. That was a luxury with the judo my third was like, I could still go get a walk in at 8pm. Because, you know, it wasn’t, it’s not the cold, it’s really more the hours thing, I don’t like walking in the dark, just for safety reasons. So, you know, I don’t think I’ll even be able to get out much during like, maybe like a weekend walk or something. So anyways, as I’m just thinking this out and flushing this out with you, I don’t think I’m going to be walking quite as much towards the end of this time. So I do plan to just keep working out three to four times a week, I do plan to just keep the strength in there. And I will still keep the stretching in there too.
This is once I start doing some kind of like pre labor stretches like deep squat holds. And things like that, to try to focus more on relaxing my pelvic floor. And just stretching it out in general, usually, you know, this is like the peak of one your back doesn’t feel great because you’re so forward. And that arch becomes you know, even more pronounced. So, I just do a lot of stretching my back a lot of bird dogs, that kind of stuff. And yeah, I just plan to keep that honestly going. I sit on the birth ball a lot sitting on it right now while I’m recording this podcast. And mental prep wise, this is something interesting because I really think the only time I even really mentally prepared was attempted to mention prepare was my first baby. And I was very intent on trying to go into that birth. Like medicine, free drug free, do it natural, all the things. So I like you know, looked up some affirmations I put Bible I printed out like Bible verses and quotes and made a little like vision board to look at and everything, which I’m sure is very effective for a lot of people. And I know people listening to this who have like, absolutely rock these natural births. And then since that So long story short, with the first one, it was a very classic, I think, like first baby story of labor was super long, like things, whatever. But I personally where I’m stuck mentally anyways, whether or not this is true, but what I believe to be true, is that I really don’t think I can relax without the epidural because essentially what happened in the first birth was like we were at 26 hours of active labor, like after my water had broken. So they were like get spent 24 hours and your water’s broken, like we kind of need to get something going here. This is going to be C section. So they encouraged me to just take the epidural at that point. And I you know, the whole thing I’d been thrown up knees knocking together, everything looked like the exorcist. So I take the epidural, I immediately like relax, like my body just relaxes, I dilate 10 centimeters, and we have a baby. Like, that’s how it went. So it’s in my head that I cannot relax and I will not dilate without the epidural. So then going into the second and third births. I was kind of just like I don’t need to mentally anything for this because I just take the epidural where for my last baby, I really should have because my third baby I had intense prodromal labor. And it was like I went into the hospital Thursday night because I swore I had to be having the baby. And then like couldn’t you know, the whole labor stopped and everything once we got to the hospital contractions got farther and farther apart the whole thing. And then on but then that continued Friday that continued Saturday. That continued Sunday to the point where I was at maths on Sunday crying, crying through maths because my contractions were so but I didn’t want to go to the hospital again like in fake out. So I told my husband like if this baby does not come today, like I’m going to die at like 7pm Sunday night. And then I finally like 230 in the morning was like I’m pretty sure my water broke and we need to go and then I the baby a couple hours later. But again, I got to the hospital like do you want the epidural? And I said yes because I was just so afraid of not dialing civil 10 So these are now you know a lot more about me and my birthing stuff. And I’m sure a lot of you listening are like, but you just need a good birth person or you just need a doula you just need this. Like yes, you can do it without it and like all the things I have a sister who’s very passionate about natural birthing, and whatnot and she and I were just having a conversation about this the other day where she was like you don’t really surprises me that with all your like, Go hard and yeah Oh, no one cares work harder, don’t complain kind of things like that you don’t do natural birth. And I was like, I know it’s just really mental to me that I’m gonna get stuck somewhere and then it’s going to be a C section, I’m be like, I wish I just had taken the epidural. So I have not had a bad experience with the epidural yet. And so in my mind, I’m like, there’s no reason not to rely on this so that I know that I dilate, whatever, it’s it’s one of those things. It’s obviously personal preference. And we could talk about this all day with each other of that, you know, if we all knew the timeline, like you knew for sure, like my last baby, but I would have known when I got to the hospital, I had them three hours later, pretty confident I could have done it. However, what I actually had him three hours later if I like had, you know, relaxed, dilate, so I don’t know. But all I know is I have not done much mental work since that. And I remember after last one being like, I wish I would have listened to a podcast about managing prodromal labor or had some kind of pain management techniques like in my playbook, because I did a lot of pre labor anyways. So I probably should have learned how to deal with that better. So I haven’t to this point. But that’s something that I might just start kind of researching. There’s a podcast I like called things called like birth, something made easy, but it used to be called my essential birth. So if you search that it will come up. And I like I’ve listened to a lot of their just practical episodes about like hospital birthing bags and postpartum must haves and those kinds of things. I started going through and relisting to some, because I listen to them, it’s my third but listening to some of those and they have a bunch of great resources for like pain management and preparing for labor and I’m going to go through I am going to as it gets a little closer and just maybe get some kind of pain management techniques. But that is usually my approach anyway is to be asked me my birth plan that in my birth plan is get to a hospital, get the epidural have the baby that’s really as far as the plan goes, hopefully breastfeed the end. But so all that honestly is kind of the same plan as the you know, the other times around. Now, the other part of this question was what how else am I preparing for postpartum and then what would I be planning on doing the same or differently this time around and honestly, I plant the first one I think was the only one that I just tried to go really hard after like it was like, Alright, have this baby move on with life like get back to lifting like do the stuff get you know, whatever. And that wasn’t great just all the way around I was I mean I have snapped right back quote unquote, I was like back in all my normal clothes and like probably four weeks I did do damage though to my abs because I didn’t have a huge gap after birth at the time delivery between my abs and then I made it worse because 11 days after I started doing pull ups again literally 11 days after and you know just not smart stuff. So
that was the only time I made that mistake though and then listen to my own advice and realize like wow, I would never tell a client this so second and third baby is basically the same thing that I did there I plan to do this time around which is those first two weeks I just basically enjoy is is the MO but in that it’s still in my nature to prioritize good nutrition and hydration and I think it should be for any mom as well because you’re just gonna feel better you’re you know, you can’t live in absolute chaos you’re not eating or drinking like yet take care of yourself. So I don’t exercise in that first two weeks like this is a little bit fluid of if I want to go for a walk I go for a walk if like I’m not bleeding super heavily like kind of listen to my body there were I’m sure Judah because he was like middle of summer I’m sure I went for a walk somewhere in those first two weeks or several walks but it was like you know a 10 minute walk or 20 minute walk it wasn’t like power walking it wasn’t doing anything crazy. So that’s my approach is just right away to start you know to continue on I really never stopped eating in a macro balanced way so even if people make us meals or something like and it’s a wonderful meal but it’s like pasta and bread and more carbs and brownies. I’ll do that and then I’ll like grab some rolled up deli meat on the side or something or have some protein powder on the side so that I get protein in and you know just prioritize the same kind of hydration but even more because in breastfeeding that I did before I will say another thing this was exactly part of it but um you know I go back and forth with the kind of quote unquote classic post birth must haves where I’ve never used anything like a heating pad for those like post delivery uterine cramps and things but I do have one this time around that we had for something else some somebody’s back injury or something. So I was like well Hold on to that in case they want that. And then things like, you know, people make homemade pads nickels or you can buy pads nickels. Basically, what it sounds like a popsicle for your disposable diapers, that first couple of weeks. And I bought a box of them this time. I don’t know if I just, you know, again a marketer’s dream or what was like, that’s kind of cool. You just like break him, like you do an ice pack, and they’re ready to go. So I got those this time around, got my nipple butter got that kind of, to have ready. So I guess in practical level that stuff, but yeah, nutrition, I just continue trying to eat in a balanced way. Same thing with water, I do not at all, sort of tracking my macros are trying to restrict kale or anything like that. I’m trying to like, if anything, I’m usually eating like a horse, the first month of postpartum just, you know, keeping up with the baby. Interesting. I’ve been looking at more studies lately about a mother’s diet and breast milk. And this is such a controversial topic. But for years, we’ve been told like, it doesn’t matter what we eat, or breast milk is still bold. And I think that there’s a lot of evidence that points the other way. And a lot of research that shows the other way of like, know, what you eat directly affects your breast milk. And I’ve always had really rich, really huge supply of breast milk. And I’m not saying that to be like, yes, so I’m so proud of myself. But I just think like, I’ve never tried to do anything to boost it or enhance it or whatever. I just think a lot of the way that I naturally eat with flaxseed with things that are even in lactation cookies like I already eat on the daily. So I guess you could throw that in there. I do usually make several batches of lactation cookies, healthy ones before delivery and freeze them. I did that last time around two. So that might help I don’t I think the blast babies only when I did it for so might do that. Otherwise, I’m just eating normally. And then yes, as far as exercise, things go. I did jot out a skeleton plan for this the other day, I didn’t bring it with me to record here. But just for my own peace of mind was like the first four weeks and it was week one and two, like enjoy. Snuggle baby, drink water, eat food. And then like week three, start doing some basic AB engagement, pelvic floor and breathing exercises, posture stuff stretching. Week for probably like circling for light walks it feeling up to it. And again, this is just going to be different, because I’m looking at the end of December, slash beginning of January for those last couple weeks, and I probably am not going to be walking outside right away, maybe I will maybe it’ll be safe. Maybe it’s not because I just need to listen to my body and like play it safe. Because your core is not backward needs to be at your inner thigh strength, like all of that stuff, where I don’t want to slip on ice with or without the baby attached to me and you know, be set back. So just try to be really smart about things. I don’t. So I would you know, tell anybody who’s going to ask or who’s wants to purchase the postpartum program or something like that? Do you need to wait for Doctor clearance to start anything is what you know, legally I have to advise. But which for most people is around six weeks or eight weeks. But I personally do start the just core pelvic floor kind of stuff, usually around three weeks, is I feel like when I get a little bit antsy, I’m like, Okay, I gotta do something here. But not before that. And again, I don’t push stuff like a like last time I said, if I wanted to walk I walked isn’t bleeding too much, or whatever. But this image is I think that’s going to be a reality, I would love to do that seasonally out of something so so that’s really truly what I do and how I approach it and try to have that mentality. I know, we all want to, like feel like ourselves again, get back to what we could do before all that stuff. I fully embrace the this is a short season. And you know, rushing the recovery is not worth it in the grand scheme of life. Because this really is true. I’ve been through it three times. Now I’m sure you feel that way. If you’ve been through it, you know, even once or whatever, that you look back and you’re like, I also could have just slowed down. Like that’s how I feel is I have not really, the last baby was the first time that I savored that time of like, you know, what is what it is like, I’m gonna sit on the couch and have this baby sleep on me. And I’m not gonna get up and mop the floor right now. And like things that are very contrary to my normal tendencies and personality. I just let take a backseat because I was like, this is such a fleeting season. And, you know, like I said, the basics of quote unquote self care need to be there or else you’re gonna feel terrible like drinking enough water eating and a food. As long as those kinds of things are going like you don’t need to rush the rest at all. There’s no award for being the first one back in your jeans. There’s no nobody holding, if anything, I should feel pressure. You know, as the owner of healthy Catholic moms who’s recording workout videos and having to take pictures and things like I should if anything, feel that like I gotta get back to and I’m telling you that I don’t and I truly mean that I know Oh, I recorded up through March in the chasing greatness workouts, which means that I gave myself December in January and February to recoup, and do all my smart core rebuilding and all that stuff. And then sometime in March, I’m gonna have to start filming April. And it is what it is, I’m not trying to be back at my pre pregnancy, weight, or fat body fat percentage, or fit in the same workout clothes like, it is what it is, but I have started filming April. And that’s real life. And that’s how it should be. And I’m just hopefully demoing for all of you a realistic and what is my opinion balanced way to do that. There’s one more thing I was gonna say about it being a fleeting time and taking the time Oh, am I truly mean that like, time of year, we have never had a baby in December before. And I’m super excited about the fact that it’s kind of a hunker down time anyway, like, it could be a crazy holiday time. If you want a look at it that way, or it could be a hunger downtime. I already told my family we have a million family birthdays in December. So there’s like at least there could be at least like four family parties between when I have the baby and even just Christmas like its own family party thing as well. Or holiday celebration. I told them and I told my husband, I was like, You know what, Brett’s gonna opt out of a lot of that this year. And you know, we’ll decide what’s best for our family, if he’s going to, you know, probably some of the birthday parties with the kids. And I’m home with the baby. And then what we do for Christmas, we do it all home this year or whatever. But I have truly never done that it kind of quote unquote take in the past, I’ve always just strapped a baby to me and gone on to the next thing. This time around, we’re blessed for Ben to have some more time off work, which he does not usually have, it has usually been like two days at the hospital three days at home, and he’s back. And I’m going to have him for at least two weeks this time. So that to me, I’m like, wow, we’re just going to hide from on through December, I’m going to snuggle that baby, I’m going to eat the food, balance of good food, drink the water. If I don’t even start the core stuff till four weeks, that’s fine. If I start walking, because I want to get moving a little bit because we’re indoors a lot. That’s fine. Like the very flexible approach to this. I don’t know if that’s good or bad. But that’s where we’re at. That’s where we’re at right now. So it’s gonna come quickly, it’s gonna be here before we know it by the time you’re hearing it. Hopefully I’m only a couple of weeks out. So please pray for me. I will take all the prayers for smooth, healthy, safe delivery. And all of you who I know who are going to be delivering soon and who are going through the pregnancy program or just have reached out to me and I know that you’re delivering soon or if I don’t know. I do pray for just you know, our whole community and listeners all the time. So you are covering my prayers to all right. Thanks so much. I would love to tell you what we’re talking about next episode, but I’m not sure yet. I know it’s in front of me. So I hope you tune in then and I hope you have a great rest of your day. I’ll talk to you next time.
Pregnancy and postpartum preparation. 0:02
Brittany discusses preparing for birth and postpartum at 31.5 weeks pregnant with her fourth baby, sharing personal experiences and tips.
Brittany mentions doing specific exercises, physical activity, and mental prep to prepare for birth and postpartum, with a focus on what she’s doing differently this time around.
Pregnancy nutrition and supplements. 2:38
Brittany experiences a reverse pregnancy, gaining weight in the third trimester instead of the first trimester.
Brittany cravings change in the final weeks of pregnancy, with nothing sounding good and needing to graze on small amounts of food.
Brittany discusses their pregnancy diet, emphasizing high-protein, healthy fats, and good carbs, and mentions adding red raspberry leaf tea and bone broth for potential labor benefits.
Brittany struggles to drink bone broth, despite its purported benefits, and seeks advice on how to make it more palatable.
Prenatal nutrition and exercise plans. 7:23
Brittany prioritizes nutrition and exercise, dialing down frequency and intensity as pregnancy progresses.
Pregnancy, labor, and postpartum care. 8:54
Brittany plans to keep working out three to four times a week during the final weeks of her pregnancy, focusing on strength and stretching exercises to help with relaxation and pelvic floor support.
Brittany will prioritize safety and comfort during her walks, aiming to get out for a weekend walk or something but not pushing herself to walk in the dark due to safety concerns.
Brittany has a history of long and difficult labors, leading them to believe they cannot relax without an epidural.
Brittany experienced prodromal labor with their third baby.
Birthing preferences and pain management. 14:30
Brittany has not had a bad experience with the epidural and finds it helpful for managing pain during labor.
Brittany plans to research pain management techniques and listen to a podcast called “Birth Made Easy” for practical tips and resources.
Postpartum recovery and nutrition. 17:00
Brittany reflects on their previous postpartum experience, noting they prioritized nutrition and hydration but made a mistake by resuming exercise too quickly.
Brittany plans to take a more gradual approach to exercise this time around, focusing on enjoying the first two weeks and then gradually incorporating physical activity.
Brittany discusses postpartum must-haves, including nipple butter, protein powder, and homemade “padsicles.”
Brittany shares her approach to nutrition during breastfeeding, focusing on balanced eating and tracking macros, with an emphasis on flaxseed and lactation cookies.
Postpartum recovery and self-care. 22:15
Brittany discusses postpartum recovery, emphasizing the importance of listening to one’s body and taking a slow approach to exercise and other activities.
Brittany shares their personal experience with postpartum recovery, including their own approach to exercise and self-care.
Brittany encourages listeners to prioritize their own recovery and well-being, rather than rushing to return to pre-pregnancy shape or activities.
Brittany discusses their upcoming baby delivery, mentioning their flexible approach to the pregnancy and their husband’s work schedule.
Brittany asks for prayers for a smooth, healthy, and safe delivery, and thanks listeners for their support.