Self-Care During Pregnancy
Getting your life in order before a little one’s arrival shouldn’t have to mean trading in time designated for pampering. In fact, self-care is as important as ever during pregnancy because your body is undergoing significant changes – and how well you treat it can directly affect your developing baby. These tried and true tips from Marie will ensure that your health and well-being takes top priority during this exciting transition!
Take a Walk
Marie has made walking a major priority during her own pregnancies by going for hour-long strolls every day to maintain her endurance. She finds that moving her legs as much as possible is helpful in preparing to give birth.
Simply taking in your surroundings can be restorative. But, if you’re looking to further occupy your mind during your exercise routine, consider listening to an audiobook, podcast or relaxing playlist – such activities will help time pass more quickly and give you something to look forward to each day.
Live in a neighborhood full of hills? This makes for an even better workout – Marie enjoys walking up and down steep streets in the early hours of the morning or later in the evening, when the weather isn’t too hot and the surrounding scenery is at its gorgeous peak.
Move Your Muscles
During pregnancy, Marie spends her evenings doing squats to further move her body. But, everyday exercises like squats, yoga or weight lifting may become more challenging as you progress in your pregnancy. Be sure to listen to your body and modify these activities as needed. Even day-to-day household chores can easily take the place of these physical exercises, as they often have physical components to them!
Tasks such as gardening, cleaning or tidying can all be great ways to move your body, particularly in the earlier stages of pregnancy when bending down is less uncomfortable. Marie greatly enjoys maintaining her own garden and planting fruits and vegetables in her yard. An added bonus of such a hobby? Fresh produce on hand whenever you’re hungry – after all, you’re eating for two (or more!).
Shift Your Skincare and Bathing Routines
During pregnancy, Marie generally keeps a similar skincare regimen but adds body oil to her routine, applying it to her stomach to fight stretch marks and prevent dryness. There are many oils to choose from that boast beautiful, unique fragrances, but if you’re experiencing a heightened sense of smell during pregnancy and are more sensitive than usual, you may wish to purchase an unscented option.
Just like joy, the way each person experiences pregnancy is unique to every individual. If you find that bathing rituals still spark joy for you during pregnancy, then you can apply body oil following a relaxing bath – just consult your medical provider first regarding water temperature and general safety. For Marie, bathing is a vital solo ritual for maintaining overall well-being. To make the experience even more relaxing, she typically lights a candle or listens to music she loves.
The busy months spent getting ready to welcome a little one can often leave expectant families feeling preoccupied. Tidying your time – by setting boundaries and letting go of unnecessary obligations that may not spark joy – is an important part of pregnancy because it ensures you have enough energy to rest and reflect on upcoming changes, both personal and physical.
Prioritizing sleep is crucial for both mom and baby. Your body needs time to recharge and renew – especially when it’s working double time. Listen to your body for naptime cues, set your electronics on “Do Not Disturb,” then turn off the lights or use an eye pillow for some true shut-eye.
Create Time for Reflection
Taking care of your mind during pregnancy is just as important as taking care of your body. If left untempered, the sheer amount of preparations that go into welcoming a new baby to the family may keep your thoughts running rampant at all hours of the day.
Two of Marie’s favorite mindfulness exercises are journaling and meditation – both of which can ease your thinking and help you cultivate meaningful moments of reflection. By keeping a detailed pregnancy journal, you can make sense of your emotions as you transition into becoming a mother – or becoming one again – by putting pen to paper. Similarly, a devoted meditation practice can help you clear your thoughts and have a peaceful moment to yourself, even if only briefly. Be generous with time spent on your mental well-being!