April 18, 2014
by hyedi
1 Comment

App Lets You Hear Baby’s Heartbeat: Bellabeat Review + Giveaway

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this post. Bellabeat provided me with one device at no cost to review and one to give away. All opinions shared are my own. 

Our big anatomy scan and ultrasound is coming up in just a couple of weeks and we still haven’t decided if we’re going to find out the gender or not! And while I still haven’t felt movement that I’m 100% sure is the baby, every so often I feel something strange that I’m starting to believe could be the start of full-on kicking! I haven’t talked a lot about worrying during pregnancy on the blog, but it’s something that consumed my life during the first couple of months.

In an earlier post, I alluded to the fact that J and I had experienced a miscarriage the first time we got pregnant. While it’s not as much fun to talk about as things like, what color we’re going to paint the nursery or what’s the name going to be, it’s something that many women unfortunately go through, yet it isn’t talked about often. Well I’m not going to go into detail about that experience, but my point is that being pregnant has brought my worrying to a new and different level, but thankfully (and surprisingly) it’s stayed at a healthy level and hasn’t been majorly anxiety-inducing. I’m also realizing that it’s normal to be worried and that it isn’t going to stop once baby is born :)

Right now, with our doctor appointments taking place only every four weeks and the fact that I’m not feeling any major movement yet, I count down the days until my next appointment so I can be assured that baby is doing OK. Recently, I was given the opportunity to try out a pretty cool new app and device that has the potential to help minimize this worry in between appointments.

Bellabeat is a pregnancy tracking app that lets you:

  •  Listen to & record your unborn baby’s heartbeat.
  •  Track your baby’s movement & keep a Kickcounter Chart.
  •  Organize your prenatal care & keep a pregnancy diary.
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Pretty wrapping paper!

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What’s in the box:

  • Handheld fetal doppler
  • Headphones
  • Cord to connect your phone to the device
  • Ultrasound gel
  • User manual

The hubs and I were so excited to try it out for the first time.

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The device connects to your iPhone and instead of using the headphones, we connected it to a portable speaker so J and I could hear at the same time.

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(Photo courtesy of Bellabeat. No, that photo is not of me.)

After just a little bit of searching around and first finding the placenta (it makes a “whoosh, woosh” kind of sound) and my own heartbeat (which was much lower than what I knew to be looking for, for the baby’s) we locked onto the baby’s heartbeat.

(I can’t figure out how to embed this, so click on the link if you want to hear baby Nelson’s heartbeat! It was strong, right around 143 bpm.)

It was really cool to then be able to upload the file — it gives you the option of sharing it on Facebook if you want, but we chose to email it to some family members instead, which was really fun! There are also a ton of other features within the app like a mood tracker, kickcounter tracker, weight gain tracker, lots of informational articles and a prenatal calendar with pregnancy milestones. I’m not sure that I’d use all of the features because I’ve been using some other apps that I simply came across before Bellabeat.

For me personally, the one major downside of this device is not anything that’s actually wrong with the device itself. It’s more about what I’m comfortable with in terms of exposing baby Nelson to. The Bellabeat uses ultrasound waves instead of simply amplifying the sounds (think: fancy stethoscope) so each time you use it, you’re exposing the baby to this. And although the Bellabeat emits a very low level of these waves, I still don’t necessarily feel comfortable with using this too often since the research is still ongoing about the long-term risks of repeated and prolonged exposure. Also, I’m not a health professional and do not have training on how to properly use a doppler or what to be looking for, so there is always the risk of a false sense of security that everything is OK.

But other than that, this is a very cool product and I love the founder’s vision for it. Check out this video for an interview with her here. If you want more information, check out the Bellabeat website or on Facebook or Twitter.

I’m so excited to be able to give away one Bellabeat device (retails: $129) to a lucky reader! To enter, leave a comment below with your answer to: What are your favorite apps? Tracking, organizing, health, fitness, food-related (doesn’t have to be pregnancy apps).

For an extra entry, tweet about the giveaway and make sure to tag Bellabeat (@getbellabeat) and myself (@hyedi) and link to this post. Good luck — I’ll choose a winner when I get back from Boston first thing next Thursday morning!

April 14, 2014
by hyedi
10 Comments

FAB Fitness: 17 weeks (weekly workouts)

I definitely spaced and skipped last week’s recap, but I promise you that it wasn’t all that interesting.

Monday: Rest day

I took a half day at work because it was a very important holiday — the Minnesota Twins home opener!

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With a (Minnesota) Twins-inspired bump pic!

We didn’t win and I had a headache, but I’m so glad outdoor baseball is back. That means summer is right around the corner!

Tuesday: 1.2 mile walk

I got my first “when are you due?” question from a stranger today. Talk about awkward. I was so caught off guard that I almost forgot when I was due and definitely stuttered a bit when answering her. It really didn’t bother me too much, but I do think I took a little longer looking at my side profile in the mirror in the bathroom after that.

Tuesday afternoon I took a nice walk with Patti and the pup and enjoyed the sunny weather!

Wednesday: Rest day

The hubs and I attended a Dogs and Storks class on Wednesday evening. What bad timing — an amazing 70 degree day and I go straight from work to a classroom for two and a half hours. Oh well.

The class was really interesting and included tips for introducing your dog to your new baby. Now if only they had some sort of feline introduction class.

Thursday: 1.2 mile walk

A nice walk after dinner with Mandy!

Friday: Rest day

I flew home to Wisconsin on Friday to surprise my mom for her 60th birthday! Technically, her birthday isn’t until Wednesday but it was too hard to get home in the middle of the week. My dad picked me up from the airport and had it all worked out to meet my mom for dinner. He planned it so we’d get there about ten minutes before her. When she walked in, she exclaimed, “what are you doing here?!” (But in a much more excited way than typing that out makes it sound.) It was pretty fun to pull off that surprise and then I got to eat fish fry (complete with corn fritters and potato pancakes) — win!

Saturday: Rest day

Saturday was pretty relaxing. My mom and I were going to go for a walk but it ended up raining almost all day (with some thunderstorms at night!). So instead, we ran some errands and baked this beautiful cherry pie:

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I mostly just supervised.

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That night, my dad and I took my mom out for her birthday dinner. We went to a place near where my mom grew up and although it took FOR-ever to get our food, it was definitely worth it. We had an asparagus tart for an appetizer that consisted of a pastry puff filled with brie and asparagus covered with some kind of horseradish sauce — really amazing. My entree of prosciutto-wrapped shrimp with mushroom ravioli was delicious, and the bite of my dad’s rack of lamb was also outstanding.

Sunday: Rest day

Sunday was my last day in Wisconsin so we made the most of it with breakfast at my favorite place: Egg Harbor!

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The Handler: over hard egg with swiss cheese, bacon and ham on a pretzel bun with fruit and breakfast potatoes!

Before I knew it, it was time to head to the airport. It was a great weekend with my family, but it’s always so nice to get back home.

Next week I hope to surpass my goal of working out 3x/week to make up for my lack of workouts this week. I also have yoga on the schedule next week which always helps.

Random pregnancy-related things this week:

I think my fruit cravings have subsided a bit. Nothing really seems to have taken its place either.

We’ve decided on a babymoon location! We are going sometime in May and I’ll share all of the details once we return :)

All week I was hoping to feel the first signs of the baby moving and nothing. Although a couple of times while I was working (and drinking a smoothie) on Friday, I thought maybe I felt something. And I had a few other moments of thinking I felt something over the weekend, but nothing that I am 100% sure about. Can’t wait to feel that actual first kick!

Do you ever visit your hometown? Do you still live where you grew up?

How do you know that summer is right around the corner?

April 10, 2014
by hyedi
3 Comments

Liebster Award — thanking you for inspiring me!

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Thanks so much to Erin, Jess, Shawn and Katie (OK, Katie and Shawn, you nominated me a long time ago and I never got around to doing this post — sorry!) for the nominations. I hope you know how much all of you ladies inspire me with the healthy lifestyles you lead and the awesome blogs you write!

Just so this post isn’t TOO long, I’m only going to answer Erin’s 11 questions :)

What was the inspiration for your blog and its name?

I originally started my blog in grad school for my master’s project and it was targeted at college students who were trying to find a balance between the go, go, go to class and work and internships and parties and late night study sessions with making healthy decisions. I quickly realized that the journey to finding a balance in life is one that I’ll likely experience the rest of my life!

Why did you start blogging?

I started blogging in hopes it would help inspire even one other person. Healthy living blogs have really helped me live a healthy lifestyle and I’d love to pay that forward.

What’s your favorite topic to write about?

I like writing race recaps and writing about my pregnancy has been a lot of fun (for me anyways!)

What keeps you motivated?

Seeing progress and feeling good overall. Before I started taking care of myself better I didn’t realize just how crappy I used to feel.

If you could have a super power, what would it be?

I’d love to have the power of telekinesis or teleportation. Telekinesis would just be cool and plane tickets are expensive, so teleportation would just be so much more economical (and better for the environment!).

What’s your biggest fitness goal, or A race, this year?

To  have a healthy pregnancy and to get back into shape once baby arrives!

Describe your perfect day.

Summer day: Sleep in, morning run, brunch, walk with the dog and hubs, dinner at Sea Salt = perfection.

Do you have a mantra, and if so, what is it?

I don’t really have a go-to mantra, but I used “you can do anything for ___ more minutes or ___ more miles” and “you’re stronger than you think” during my last marathon!

What’s your go-to dinner?

Tilapia tacos, pizza on the grill, Lee’s super easy pad thai. Simple and both the hubs and I enjoy them!

If you could give your 16-year-old self a piece of advice, what would it be?

This isn’t what life is going to be like forever. In ten years, it won’t matter how popular you are or what kind of clothes you wear. Start taking care of yourself and develop healthy habits now!

Are you going to pass the torch and nominate 11 other bloggers?

No :( But I am going to update my blogroll soon since my list of blogs that I regularly read has grown since I originally created it! Thanks again for the nominations, everyone!

Also, congrats to Katie M. or @carrotrunr who won the Nasoya TofuPlus giveaway!

April 7, 2014
by hyedi
8 Comments

#Meatless Mondays + a giveaway

Happy Monday! Hope you had a good weekend. You’ve probably seen the hashtag #MeatlessMondays on Twitter and maybe you even participate in them from time to time (or religiously). I had been starting slowly, making an effort to do a meatless dinner for the hubs and myself, but now am paying closer attention to what I also eat for lunch on Mondays. Everyone has different reasons for participating in #MeatlessMonday — mine is that it just makes me pay closer attention to what I’m eating on Mondays and I tend to make healthier decisions when I do that!

SO in honor of #MeatlessMondays — it’s giveaway time!

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Photo courtesy of Nasoya.com

The folks at Nasoya contacted me about trying their TofuPlus — their line of tofu that’s “beefed up” with the nutrients commonly lacking among those actively reducing meat in their diets. I was immediately interested because this was something I struggled with when I followed a vegetarian diet (for four or so years).

I picked up a package of the Extra Firm TofuPlus, as well as a package of their wonton wrappers (found both at SuperTarget) and the first recipe I made was off of the Nasoya website. I tried to pick something that the husband wouldn’t turn his nose up at, so I went with the Parmigiana Tofu. I’m pretty open to eating most things and have been eating tofu for years now, but the husband? Not so much. So you can imagine my surprise when he took his first bite, and then his second, and just kept on eating, barely stopping to breathe. And THEN he went for seconds! I call that a success.

Some other information about Nasoya Tofu:

All Nasoya Tofu is Organic and Non-GMO Project Verified as well as gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian/vegan. Replacing just one serving of beef (the size of a medium hamburger) with a serving of Firm TofuPlus or Extra Firm TofuPlus avoids 9 grams of saturated fat and 66 milligrams of cholesterol, while maintaining important B and D Vitamins, and Calcium.

• Available in two varieties: Extra-Firm for a solid, meaty consistency perfect for stir-fry or baking and Firm ideal for scrambling or dips

• Fortified with vitamins B-2, B-6, B-12, Zinc, D-2 and Calcium

• Provides 20 percent of the daily nutritional requirements of the vital nutrients most commonly found in meat

• Low in saturated fat, is a good source of protein, cholesterol-free, USDA Certified Organic, is made with non-GMO whole soybeans, contains 80 calories or less per serving

I’m already looking forward to all of the new recipes to try. While I am limiting my soy intake while pregnant, my doctor said it’s fine to

Now it’s your turn. Want to win two free Nasoya products?  Just leave a comment answering one or both of the following questions:

  • Do you participate in #MeatlessMondays?
  • What’s your favorite way to use tofu?

I’ll choose a winner on Wednesday! This giveaway is limited to US only, as that is where the coupons are valid. There is a store locator on the Nasoya website,www.nasoya.com but you are able to find the product in retailers nationwide.

Disclaimer: I didn’t receive any compensation for this post. I did receive product for free to try. All opinions are my own.

April 3, 2014
by hyedi
3 Comments

FAB Fitness: 15 weeks (weekly workouts)

First, this week’s bump pic! I don’t think I’m going to post a photo every week, just when I feel like something has changed quite a bit. I do think that I actually look somewhat smaller this week — the bloating has finally seemed to decrease slightly.

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Oiselle Flyte tank and Stride shorts

Unfortunately, with the exception of running the Shamrock Shuffle and walking my a** all over Chicago, my workouts were nonexistent for most of this past week. And what a shame since my energy levels have pretty much returned to normal, despite my inability to sleep more than six hours each night. The cause for my lack of workouts was due to a sprained ankle. GAH!

I did have a really great doctor appointment last Monday. Things are still looking really great and it was really funny — baby was moving around so much, my doctor had to “chase” baby to be able to get the heartbeat. Once she found it, it sounded strong! The next appointment will be when we return from Boston and then we’ll schedule the anatomical scan and we’ll have to make a final decision about finding out the gender! And even though my doctor said it’d be a few days, I got a call from her office the very next day saying that my lab results were great and no further testing is needed.

One thing we did talk about at the appointment was my frequent headaches lately. She recommended that I keep an eye on my sugar levels throughout the day which is something I really should be doing anyways.

This week I’ve also been reading my new book:

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If nothing else, it’s inspired me to clean out my closet and get rid of three bags of clothes/shoes. I couldn’t bring myself to get rid of any handbags, and let’s be honest — it was only one pair of shoes. But it’s a start! Next up, cleaning and organizing all of the paper clutter around the house. AND the hubs said I’ve inspired him to go through HIS closet.

Finally, I decided on a doula this week! Actually, two doulas because the ones that I chose work as partners so you get to know both of them throughout your pregnancy. We met in person when I interviewed them and then we had a great call to go over some initial questions I had. I’m so happy to cross this off of my to-do list!

Also this past week, fed up with the rate at which my hair is growing and thickening, I decided to get a haircut (which may have been evident in my Chicago photos). I didn’t have any ideas, just let the lovely Jesikah do what she thought would look good and cut down on the amount of time I spend blow drying it. I’m loving it so far! Haven’t had short hair in a long time but it feels so much lighter on my head and it really does take less time to do in the mornings.

Short hair or long hair?

Have any house organizing tips for me? 

April 1, 2014
by hyedi
11 Comments

Race Recap: 2014 Shamrock Shuffle 8K

Saturday

Andrea and I got into Chicago around 10:30 a.m. and were able to check into our hotel early once we arrived. We stayed at the Hotel Allegro and while I’m totally a Kimpton gal, I was disappointed with our overall experience here. I would be willing to give their other hotel property (the Palomar) a try but would likely just stick with the Hotel Monaco in the future.

After getting situated, we braved the chilly weather and walked to have brunch at Frontera Grill. I was so excited to be back at one of my “happy places.” Frontera did not disappoint — we shared the chips and salsa (I love Frontera’s tomatillo salsa) and I had gorditas for my entree. Delicious!

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After brunch, we burned off some calories walking to the Expo. As much as I love big race expos, I absolutely loathe this expo. Mainly, because of the location. Last year, I learned my lesson and took a shortcut to the Festival Hall, but with all of the construction at Navy Pier, we were forced to deal with the crowds and chaos. Once we finally made it, it was so much fun to meet up with fellow Oiselle teammates, Kim and Kelly and to meet their adorable wee birds. It made me even more excited to have one of my own :)

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After the Expo, my feet were feeling pretty sore so we headed back to the hotel to rest for a bit. We cancelled our dinner reservations and carb loaded at the Corner Bakery instead. Exhausted (and full), we turned on the NCAA tourney when we got back to the room and I passed out before 9:30 p.m.

Sunday (Race Day)

On Sunday morning our alarms went off around 6:30. We got up and started getting ready — I decided my race day outfit would be my Oiselle singlet, arm warmers, Flow Tights, and sunglasses. I also threw on my Oiselle Trials Hoodie for the walk to the start. Before we left, I drank some water and ate a granola bar — I realized I’m so out of practice when it comes to race morning preparation!

A mile walk to the start from our hotel was a nice warm up and we arrived around 7:45 a.m. My corral closed at 8:20, so Andrea and I made a quick bathroom stop and checked our gear bags before parting ways. Once I entered Corral B, I remembered how much I love this race. The corrals give you plenty of space and the staggered start minimizes the congestion at the beginning of the race. There were a few announcements, the singing of the National Anthem and then the elites and Corral A were off — Corral B was next!

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As soon as we started running, I knew I had a long five-ish miles ahead of me. For starters, I had to pee (like, really bad) the entire time. In fact, my biggest victory of the race might have been that I didn’t pee. My feet and legs were tired from walking around the day before, my hamstrings felt tight and the ankle I sprained earlier in the week was starting to act up again. But I did my best to ignore all of that and just get to the finish line. Mile one passed fairly quickly and before I knew it, I heard the vuvuzela so I knew I was nearing mile 2. (That’s where I saw Jenny and crew — they spectate like nobody’s business!) Mile three was probably the toughest, I was getting passed by people in Corral C and two miles seemed like a really long ways to go. But once I knew I only had a mile left I started to feel better, mentally, and that helped me feel better, physically. Plus, the crowds thicken again and running down Michigan Ave. is pretty fun. We rounded the bend into Grant Park and up the last uphill (which wasn’t as bad as I remember it) and I knew the finish would be in sight shortly. I crossed the finish line feeling pretty good but happy to be done!

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16 weeks pregnant. An experience I won’t forget!

After the race, I met up with some of the other Oiselle ladies for a quick photo.

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Andrea finished shortly after that (congrats again on the PR!) and we grabbed some DD coffee (decaf for me) before heading to brunch at Theory with Kim and Kim and Kim’s husband, Joel.

mmm, waffles.

mmm, waffles.

I always love meeting other Oiselle birds — ladies, seriously YOU ARE SO INSPIRATIONAL! Not only did they put up some amazing times (PRs that right now I can only dream of and finishes in the top 20 of 30,000+ runners?!?) but everyone was also so friendly and fun!

That afternoon, Andrea and I spent a couple of hours at Eataly Chicago. It was hard not to buy (and taste) everything in sight, but somehow I managed to leave only having purchased one foccacia with proscuitto, two (very small) cannolis, and some pasta. It would be amazing to have a place like Eataly in Minneapolis.

A nap was in order and then we got ready for our 9:30 p.m. dinner reservations at Girl and the Goat. I realize that I’m getting old, but I couldn’t believe how packed it was and that people kept getting seated, even after us! I ordered the most delicious mocktail (they called it “Happy Juice”) that consisted of some mix of ginger beer, lime, soda and cranberry juice. And then, Andrea and I accomplished the difficult task of narrowing down the amazing menu to just a handful of things to try.

My favorite dishes were the roasted beets (green beans . white anchovy . avocado creme fraiche . bread crumb) and the goat empanadas (marinated sheep feta . pickled golden beets . tzatziki)

My favorite dishes were the roasted beets (green beans . white anchovy . avocado creme fraiche . bread crumb) and the goat empanadas (marinated sheep feta . pickled golden beets . tzatziki)

We also had the pork shank (buttermilk dressing . grilled spring onion kimchee . naan) wood-grilled broccoli and squash wontons with mushroom ragout

We also had the pork shank (buttermilk dressing . grilled spring onion kimchee . naan) wood-grilled broccoli and squash wontons with mushroom ragout

We didn’t have room for dessert, so I’ll be back!

Monday

Monday morning we hit up Wildberry (my fave!) for brunch and got some Chicago Mix at Garrett’s before heading to the airport.

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Wildberry crepes and an Intelligentsia decaf latte!

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Chicago — I miss you already!

What are your must-dos in Chicago?

What’s your race day/morning ritual?

Any tips for saving your feet while walking around all day?

March 24, 2014
by hyedi
2 Comments

FAB Fitness: 14 weeks (weekly workouts)

Monday: Prenatal yoga

Wednesday: .97 mile walk

Sometime on Tuesday I started getting a headache and I’m pretty sure it didn’t go away until Thursday morning, but it never ventured into migraine territory (thank goodness) but my plans to run after work turned into a brief walk with the hubs and pup instead.

Saturday: 4 mile run (9:44 pace)

The weather took another turn for the worst (temps dropped significantly below freezing) so I hit the gym for my Saturday run. I was planning to run three miles and even though I didn’t feel the greatest going into this, I ended up deciding to tack on an additional mile because I was feeling so good. Basketball on the treadmill TV helped pass the time and the Chipotle the husband had waiting for me at home also was a nice incentive to turn up the pace and get this run in the books!

Sunday: 2.28 mile walk

This winter has not just been hard on us, I think it’s been hard on our furry friends as well. We try to still keep up with walks and trips to the dog park, but our dog also just doesn’t seem to be feeling it when it’s SO cold outside. So I bundled up and took Cole along for my walk.

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I wish I would have gotten that run in earlier in the week, but I’m not sweating it even though Shamrock Shuffle is this Sunday! I’m heading to Chicago with Andrea for the weekend and excited to be running on the Chicago Oiselle team. Crossing my fingers for good weather!

Not too much new on the pregnancy front. I didn’t even take a bump pic this week because I don’t feel like much has changed. I have been craving red meat lately though, so thinking I might be lacking enough iron in my diet. Other than that, heading to my monthly prenatal appointment later this morning — I can’t believe the next appointment will be the halfway mark!

Is anyone else racing this weekend?

March 20, 2014
by hyedi
9 Comments

FAB Fitness: Workouts Lately

So I’m going to start up my weekly workout recaps now that I’m working out regularly again, but for now I’ll just recap some highlights from the past few weeks.

I call this one my “Comeback Run:”

It wasn’t fast (3.05 miles at 11:25 pace) but it got done and it didn’t hurt!

Walking never felt so good:

Although taking the dog for a walk with the hubs is one of my favorite activities, I previously thought of myself as physically incapable to going for a walk on my own. I would just get so bored and feel like it was taking SO LONG — and I’m a pretty fast walker! But ever since some time around my eighth week of pregnancy, walking has felt AMAZING. And I’ve never doubted that walking can be a great workout — I mean speed walkers mean business!

A prenatal yoga virgin, no more:

After a long and tiring day at work, I’ll be honest — I did not feel like going to yoga. But I knew my friend Jen was waiting for me and I’m so glad I went! Class started out with everyone introducing themselves and although there were a few parts of class that weirded me out at first (like when we sang to our unborn babies) I found myself really enjoying the deeper connection I felt with baby during class. And although it wasn’t nearly as intense (obviously) as Bikram or a “regular” vinyasa class, but parts of the class were definitely still challenging! And I left with that usual feeling of yoga bliss — just with a little less sweat than usual!

Preggo personal training:

A fabulous early morning session with my personal trainer, Dawn, was just as much an amazingly educational lesson as it was a great workout. We went through some basic exercises that are really great for preparing for childbirth, as well as some exercises that are best to avoid during pregnancy. If I get my act together, I’ll do a separate post on this topic at some point. And Dawn tipped me off to a great resource: 10 minute prenatal pilates. So awesome. My arms and legs were jelly by the end!

Running and college basketball:

This past weekend, I headed to the gym to get in a few miles on the treadmill. The Big Ten tournament was on so the miles flew by. Although this run didn’t feel as effortless as the last, I was really happy with the pace I was able to comfortably maintain (I did three miles at 9:52 pace). I walked briefly a few times and drank more water than I normally would, but felt pretty great, overall.

Back to back runs:

The sunshine was calling my name and after the hubs got back from his 20-miler, I was itching to get outside for a run. It was still a bit chilly, so I had to bundle up. Once I started running, it was clear that my body was not ready for me to run a second day in a row. I was only planning on running two miles, so I tacked on a little extra and took some extended walking breaks (2.45 miles at 10:29 pace). Still happy I got out there and got moving.

Juicy hips:

I woke up sore on Monday after those back-to-back runs so I was really looking forward to prenatal yoga. We had a different instructor for this class and I loved her!  She did a little “juicy hips” series that felt amazing and I loved her energy.

The rest of this week I’m hoping to get in a couple of runs (Shamrock Shuffle is next weekend already!) and if I’m feeling brave I might sign up for a barre class at the studio I’ve been doing yoga at. I’m also looking forward to a prenatal massage this weekend. I’ve heard mixed reviews about prenatal massages, so we’ll see how it goes!

How were your workouts this past week?

Do you get bored “just walking?”

March 18, 2014
by hyedi
6 Comments

Keeping myself in check (in more ways than one)

First things, first: Marie was the winner of the Yasso Frozen Greek Yogurt giveaway!

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Marie, please email me at hyedi [dot] nelson [at] gmail [dot] com. Congrats!

First up — keeping my health in check: So if you read my impossibly long first trimester recap, you might have picked up on the fact that I wasn’t a huge fan of the first trimester. And I’m well aware that compared to some, I had it pretty easy. I felt nauseated just a handful of times and that was bad enough. I can’t imagine ’round the clock morning sickness. But what I found interesting was that even though being pregnant made me want to take even better care of myself than ever before, the first trimester made my good intentions really challenging. True, I did crave (and indulge) in fresh fruit like nobody’s business, but I also had a few too many bagels and cream cheese and salt and salt and vinegar chips and so on. Also true, I have given up all caffeine (totally personal choice, I know that 100-200 mg/day is considered safe during pregnancy) but I also have rekindled my love affair with ginger ale. Because going out to eat and just ordering water when everyone else is drinking beer, wine and cocktails isn’t that much fun. And then there was ALL THE SLEEPING. I’ve never slept so much during my life (except, of course I assume, when I was a newborn myself) which I obviously needed, but it kept me from exercising which is good for me (and baby) both mentally and physically. But the first trimester is over and I think I came out of it having made mostly good decisions. And now I’m eating more salads and watching my carb intake, drinking lots of water and getting running, walking, light strength training and yoga back into my routine.

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Out for a run with the pup!

In addition to my health, lately I’ve been working on keeping my spending in check. So far I think I’ve done OK. In the past 14 weeks, I’ve purchased:

Some reading material.

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A few maternity pieces (also not pictured here, a pair of maternity jeans from Old Navy). (These four items shown below all cost less than $100 total with free shipping!)

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Stretch mark oil:

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And also unpictured are my prenatal vitamins, one baby outfit, one amazingly comfortable nursing bra and one issue of Fit Pregnancy. Oh, and a 10-pack of prenatal yoga classes!

Finally, I have to share some super fun gifts I’ve received. Kate sent me Preggatinis so I can enjoy fun and fancy non-alcoholic drinks over the next six or so months and Jen sent me the super cute The Belly Book which is a journal/scrapbook to document all of the fun (and not-so-fun) memories of being pregnant!

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Historically, my knee jerk reaction to many big life events has been to respond in extreme ways. And often times, that doesn’t work out so well for me in the long run. And even though having a baby is perhaps one of the biggest life-changing events, I’m trying really hard to take a balanced approach in embracing all of the changes. One example: we’re making an effort to only tackle one or two big projects at a time, like researching daycare options and picking a wall color for the nursery, so we don’t get overwhelmed. I know that as “go time” gets closer, things might change, but for now I’m feeling surprisingly calm and confident about everything. And most importantly, very excited!

How do you typically approach or respond to major life events?

How do you keep yourself in check?

March 13, 2014
by hyedi
6 Comments

First trimester recap (week by week)

I plan to give some regular pregnancy updates on the blog, starting with this recap of the first trimester, but I promise I will do my best not to overshare. (I say “do my best” because you and I might have different definitions of what constitutes oversharing.) I want to share a certain level of detail because reading others’ blogs has been really helpful to me over the past few months. Alright, here we go. Warning: this is extremely long. And it probably goes without saying, but if pregnancy stuff just isn’t of interest to you, skip this post!

Week 4 – December 31, 2013

We were heading out for dinner before having friends over for New Year’s Eve. It was still early (3 days before I was supposed to get my period), but I decided to take a HPT before we left. I was sick with a cold so wasn’t planning on drinking very much that evening anyways, but thought I’d better check. I POAS and when my iPhone timer went off, to my surprise, I thought I saw a very faint second line! I gave it another minute and sure enough, a very faint positive! Super excited, but also very cautious (I had a miscarriage earlier in the year), I called the hubs to give him the good news right away. He matched my enthusiasm/cautious optimism and I spent the rest of the day feeling pretty giddy. New Year’s Eve came and went and I had my sip of champagne at midnight and headed to bed.

Overall this week I feel pretty much normal. Just a little run down feeling, but nothing extreme. I also notice that I wasn’t experiencing any abdominal cramping like I did with my first pregnancy.

Week 5

I made an appointment with my primary care doctor to see if I could get some blood work done to make sure my HCG levels were where they should be. I absolutely love my doctor and my appointment turned into her telling me about her pregnancy and labor/delivery experiences, answering my questions and reassuring me that my previous miscarriage had no effect on this pregnancy. It was such a wonderful appointment that we didn’t even end up doing the blood work. After the appointment, I decided to give my mom the good news. She, of course, was ecstatic!

Running was tough this week. I’m feeling more fatigued in the evenings and having a harder time getting out of bed to get any workouts done in the morning. But no other symptoms to speak of.

Week 6

Definitely noticing more symptoms this week but they are still pretty mild. Running also seemed easier this week. I even got in a 7:42 minute mile in some of the speed work Coach had me doing. Took my first “bump” pic, too — nothing, yet!

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Week 7

Oh, hello symptoms! They show up out of nowhere. I am feeling tired, tired, tired and the bloating has gotten out of control. I also have my first prenatal appointment at a new clinic which is basically consisting of a pregnancy confirmation and the physician’s assistant sharing information about healthy pregnancy. She also does some lab work, answers my questions and gets me scheduled for my first ultrasound!

Week 8

The highlight of the week is FOR SURE our first ultrasound! As instructed, I go in with a full bladder, but still end up needing a vaginal ultrasound (totally normal this early on). The less-than-friendly ultrasound technician lets us know that “baby” is tracking at 7 weeks and four days, not the 8 weeks and one day the due date calculators had calculated. This makes sense. I had been doing fertility tracking before we got pregnant and I was pretty sure that I ovulated a few days later than what the due date calculators go off of. The doctor follows up later in the week to confirm that everything looked great. Baby’s heart rate is 160 which is normal and good. Very exciting!

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Week 8 part deux

With my new due date of September 13, I reach the 8 week mark (again). This week  I’m slacking on getting in my exercise. Every time I think about going for a run or even a walk, I feel like a nap would be so much better.

Cravings come on strong this week and all I want is fresh fruit, fruit and fruit. Also, (“fruit”) snacks, salt and vinegar chips and salads (with fruit) sound amazing right now. After the positive ultrasound, the hubs and I start talking about telling a few close friends and our immediate families.

Week 9

On Monday I flew to Anaheim for a work trip. Luckily, my energy feels like it’s returning somewhat. But since traveling already makes me feel ill normally, I felt pretty awful during the days where I had to fly and am absolutely exhausted when I get back to MSP after midnight on Thursday night/Friday morning. But the trip was wonderful (80 degrees and sunny).

Week 10

So thankful that my mom is staying with me this week while the hubs is out of town. We get another six inches of snow and since it would take me FOR-ever to shovel since I get so out of breath so easily, my mom is helping me out with shoveling duties and cleaning up around the house since I haven’t really cleaned in weeks. Symptoms are pretty much the same (used the hair tie trick for the first time to button my jeans) and cravings are also still the same.

Week 11

SO TIRED AGAIN. WTF. I sleep all day on Sunday and also somehow manage to pick up a cold. Wonderful. I don’t think I ever realized how reliant I could be on DayQuil to get me through the work day.

On Monday we had our first official prenatal visit and it started off a little shaky. Traffic was awful and then the clinic assistant takes my blood pressure. Instead of telling me what it is, she’s obviously frustrated about something and then writes something down and tells me she has to take it again. After the second time, she sighs and asks me if I was nervous because it was really high for someone who is pregnant. (Um, no not nervous. But now I am, thank you very much.)

But the appointment quickly turns a corner because I absolutely love the doctor. She’s a family practice doc whose mom is a certified nurse midwife and who supports natural birth and can perform water births. She has two young children and had doulas at both of her births. She also has a brother who was adopted from South Korea.

After she patiently answers all of my questions, she does a quick physical, goes over my lab results from my first visit and then it’s show time! She gets out the hand held doppler and goes to work to find a heartbeat. As she tries for what feels like an eternity to locate it, I feel myself getting nervous. And like she is reading my mind, she said “it sometimes takes a little while to find something the size of a pencil eraser!” And not two seconds later, there it was. The sound of a perfect heartbeat! It was around 180 bpm and she said it sounded nice and strong. I also learned that I gained two pounds so far. Right on track.

Other milestones this week:

I bought my first pair of maternity pants at 4 a.m. during my new found bouts with insomnia! Yipee. I also bought this:

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My first prenatal yoga class. Loved it!

My first absolutely effed up pregnancy dream. I originally was going to include a synopsis but then deleted it for fear of what you all would think of me.

Weeks 12 and 13

My energy feels like it’s returning this week. On Wednesday, we have our ultrasound and blood work done for the Down Syndrome screening. (This is a completely optional screening that we decided to do.) This experience is completely different than the first one — the gel is warm and the technician is so kind and very thorough in explaining everything he is looking at. When our baby first appeared on the monitor, I noticed it was facing downwards. In all of my baby blog stalking, I had not seen this before, so I was a little worried at first, but the technician explained that our baby was sleeping (aw!) and basically assumes all sorts of positions in there to get comfy. He had to get just the right angle, so he asked me to cough and see if we could wake baby up. I felt so bad but also wanted to see our baby awake! It took a little while but baby eventually woke up and was moving around like crazy! The technician took tons of photos and said that he no concerns, as far as the ultrasound was concerned. We’ll get the blood test results back in a week, but we’re feeling good about everything. One thing we learned though is that the baby is now measuring back at my original due date which means I could be a little further along than we thought. I know that in the long run, a few days doesn’t make a big difference — especially when it comes to when I’ll actually have the baby, but now it feels like such a psychological thing since it a few days means whether I’m technically out of the first trimester already or not.

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So with that extra reassurance, we decided to start telling the rest of our friends and family and I shared the news at work (with cupcakes, of course) and that has been a lot of fun. We even did a little of shopping a couple of weekends ago. It wasn’t easy, but we refrained from buying anything besides one outfit (for nursery theme inspiration).

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The bump showed up at the end of week 12!

Today – somewhere between 13.5 and 14 weeks

No matter the due date I’m going by, I’ve officially entered the second trimester! Overall, the first trimester has mainly been a lot of intense fatigue like I’ve never experienced. For the past couple of months, I basically had the same routine each day: 1) finally make it through the work day 2) lay on the couch until 3) it was a socially acceptable time to go to bed. BUT I am extremely lucky — morning sickness hasn’t been an issue yet for me. However, because of the fatigue, it’s felt nearly impossible for me to keep up my fitness regimen. And my migraines made a reappearance for a couple of weeks right away in the beginning. So I’m especially happy to say that my energy is slowly coming back — the last two weeks I actually made my goal of working out at least three times per week. More to come on what my workouts have been looking like!

We’re starting to plan our babymoon! Any suggestions? (Think: budget-friendly, good food, relaxing-destinations) 

(Also, I apologize for all of the switching back and forth between past and present tense. I gave up trying to make it consistent. Hopefully you aren’t confused.)