At 32 weeks I am feeling fantastic — healthy, energetic and generally very comfortable. My recent physical complaints (heartburn, rib pain, occasional pelvic discomfort) have more or less vanished, though I expect this will be a temporary reprieve, since there is a whole lot of loosening up of ligaments yet to occur.
My “innie” is mostly an “outie” now (not completely; just mostly :)), and my belly has actually outgrown some of my earliest maternity clothing purchases, which I find amazing, since they used to be so big on me. And judging by the bellies of some of the women in my prenatal class, my wardrobe is about to shrink even more, since the baby will roughly double in size between now and his arrival!
I am still going strong at the gym, usually doing three CrossFit workouts per week plus a recreational fitness activity. This leaves three recovery days, which seems to be just about the right amount to prevent any overtraining injuries in my *ahem* delicate condition ;).
My workouts are definitely going much better than I’d have expected by this point. I still have the occasional days where I top the score board, or come very close. To balance that out, I also have days where I am just proud of myself for showing up at the gym and slogging my way through a modified version of whatever torture has been conjured up for us.
In terms of exercises, the only ones I now consider wholly off limits are the dynamic abdominal exercises such as sit-ups, knees-to-elbows and toes-to-bar. My obliques remain very strong, but the rectus abdominis has relaxed considerably in order to accommodate the growing baby, which means that strenuous abdominal exercises could cause diastasis recti — an abdominal separation down the mid-line. This is a common pregnancy-related condition that generally corrects itself within a few months of delivery, but does require post-partum exercise to be conducted with much greater caution. And I can certainly see the potential for this to occur, since every time I sit up from lying on my back, my stomach — compressed by my obliques — comes to a sharp vertical ridge down the centre (it looks very strange, indeed)!
I am still doing regular push-ups and burpees with no trouble, but I have taken to using a resistance band for workouts with any large quantity of pull-ups. I can do handstands, but not handstand push-ups or inverted burpees. I have also switched to sumo (wide stance) deadlifts, to accommodate my belly in the low position, and have reduced my range of motion when rowing. Other than that, I can pretty much do anything that is required of me, including running, jumping, skipping and all of the lifts.
A few weeks ago I had a little bit of edema, but after two solid weeks of very strict Paleo eating, I have lost all of the excess fluid (about six pounds worth!) and can see my ankles again. It will be interesting trying to explain to the midwife on Monday why I have had a net loss of weight since my last visit…
For the first time in the pregnancy, I am finally noticing an increase in my appetite, but thankfully, no cravings. For a while, I was eating quite a bit less food than usual, as I found that having a full stomach intensified heartburn symptoms, but now I find myself hungry a lot more frequently. Bring on the fat and protein!
Lastly, I shall talk about sleep. Although I know that I should be sleeping on my left side to help the baby move into a proper birthing position (as far as we know, he is still in frank breech position), it seems that I roll onto my back pretty much as soon as I start to fall asleep, and that is where I remain until I wake up. I don’t think I’ve had a full night’s sleep in quite some time, as it takes me a while to get comfortable enough to fall asleep, and then I am usually awoken by early morning light and/or having to go to the bathroom. I don’t feel exhausted like I did in the first trimester, but the lack of overnight sleep is starting to wear on me, and as a result, I’m finding that I need the occasional afternoon nap in order to maintain my energy levels.
And thus concludes the 32-week report 🙂