Pregnancy Articles

Week 19: Keep Talking to Exercise Safely

Your Week-by-Week Guide to Pregnancy

Your Baby This Week

Baby starts growing again, and you can feel it, with backaches and even some heartburn!

Six inches (15 cm) in length and weighing more than 7 ounces (.20 kg), your baby is still tiny. But remember, by the time you deliver, baby's weight will increase by about 15 times what it is now! Your baby's skin has begun to develop a creamy, protective coating called vernix, but on a sophisticated ultrasound, you will clearly see the network of developing blood vessels showing through baby's thin skin.

Your Body This Week

Heartburn, backache, constipation, leg cramps, swelling of your feet and ankles--these are just some of the discomforts you may experience as baby grows. Dizziness is also common, often due to a drop in blood pressure, so be extra careful when rising from a bed or chair. You may also notice tiny bright red bumps, known as spider nevi, appearing on your body. Not to worry, they are just dilated blood vessels and will also be gone shortly after your deliver. Sometime during your second or third trimester, you may also develop melasma (also known as "pregnancy mask"). These brown spots of hyper-pigmentation (usually across cheeks and bridge of the nose) are related to raging hormones but are exacerbated by the sun. Most often it fades after delivery.

Support for the Vegetarian Mom

If you're trying to have a vegetarian pregnancy, you're not alone. A number of BabyFit mothers know how to get plenty of protein, zinc, calcium and vitamin D without meat or dairy products. By adjusting their serving levels for other plant-based foods and focusing on a rich, balanced diet, they go meatless without concern. With dozens of vegetarian recipes to choose from, they're also finding out how easy it can be. Join this community of vegetarian moms.

Talk The Talk As You Walk The Walk

In the past, carrying on a conversation at the wrong time (middle of a staff meeting) or the wrong place (homeroom) has sometimes caused trouble. But we're here to tell you: talk away! It may actually help you have a healthier pregnancy. It is very important to keep your heart rate at a relatively low level when exercising while pregnant. One very effective way to do this is by using the "talk test." In other words, you should be able to carry on a conversation for the duration of your workout. If you are not able, you are working too hard and need to back off a bit. This test will allow you to exercise within your appropriate intensity level and is a very easy way to keep yourself in check. Read on to learn more about your rate of exertion.
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