I am not a lifestyle blogger and although I share a lot of my personal life here, I never intended to blog pregnancy advice for others. But the things I've found to be the most helpful over the last 7 months never showed up on any of the blog posts I read on Pinterest at the beginning of my pregnancy. And since everyone is different and every pregnancy is different and I actually have unique content to share (unlike most of the pregnancy stuff you find on Pinterest), I thought I would go ahead and share it here. Hopefully it will be helpful to someone!
Here are my top 5 favorite things for pregnancy:
1. A leak-proof water bottle. Having water on my bedside table has been so helpful, but after knocking over my water cup at least twice in the middle of the night, I knew I needed something different. I had purchased a Camelbak for my girls weekend trip and found that it was the perfect water bottle to keep on my bedside table at night, because it's leak-proof. I can turn that sucker upside down over my pillow and it's not going to even drip. And I can drink it while laying down, which means I don't wake up as much and saves me the energy of pushing myself into a sitting position. Because you know that's not all that easy anymore!
2. A wedge pillow for my belly. My friend gave me her body pillow and her wedge pillow early in my pregnancy. (How weird is it that sleep is disrupted right away?) I expected to use the body pillow, because I'd heard so much about it. I've tried it numerous times throughout my pregnancy and just didn't find it comfortable. But the wedge pillow under my belly is perfect! (And around 25 weeks, I started using a pillow between my knees as well.)
3. Clothes Mentor. Purchasing second hand maternity clothing (and having some on loan from friends) has been so helpful, because maternity clothes are expensive and they don't go on sale! I purchased a few staple pieces like tank tops and maternity leggings (from Target) at full price as well as a dress I knew I would wear a lot. But Clothes Mentor is the reason that I have 4 pairs of maternity jeans and so many tops to wear. I paid less than $20 for every single item I purchased there and a lot of the tops were under $10!
4. A Belly Support Belt. I purchased the Upsie Belly when I was only 20 weeks pregnant, because my belly was already starting to feel really heavy! I wore it every few days when I felt like I needed a little extra support, but I knew that I'd soon be wearing it every day and it is worth every penny! (Because I purchased it so early in my pregnancy, I wasn't sure what size to get so I went up a size from what the measurements on the website said.) Along with that, pants that have a belly panel (and maternity leggings when I wear dresses) give a little extra support too. I loved my under-belly jeans and jean shorts for early summer, but I knew it would only be a matter of time before I really needed the extra support.
5. Prenatal yoga. I've been practicing yoga for two years now and it has been the perfect pregnancy workout. But in spite of the online research that I had done about yoga modifications for pregnancy, towards the end of my 2nd trimester I was finding that a good portion of my regular yoga classes were uncomfortable, because the poses were not ideal for me! When I started taking a prenatal class, I had the benefit of a much smaller class, a more hands-on teacher, and a class designed for pregnancy. In just the first couple of classes I had picked up several new modifications and tips to help make things more comfortable for me in other yoga classes! (All that said, I recommend starting yoga before getting pregnant, because if you don't know what you're doing, you could easily pull a muscle. And you need to be familiar with the poses in order to make modifications without specific instruction from the teacher.)
Those are my absolute must haves for pregnancy. I hadn't even heard of a belly support belt until well into my second trimester, but it has done the most to keep me comfortable! Stay hydrated, stay fit, stay comfortable!
Photos by Lauren Simmons.