Okay, honestly you may have heard like a thousand different topics on what to work on before baby. But, I wanted to let you in on 3 things you may not have heard as much and that if you implement, can be complete game changers for your longterm health.
Know Your Cycle.
Yes, seems generic and not revolutionary – but ladies your cycle is a window into your overall health. Are your cycles consistently long? (31+ days) Or short? (Less than 25 days) Or maybe they are all over the place and you never know when to expect it? What about your periods? Are they really long and painful or super short? (7+ days or less than 2?) All of those indicate something your body is trying to communicate. Your cycle is your first line of defense and it will tell you if something is off. It may be common to hear about super painful cramps or super long periods – but it doesn’t have to be that way. Invest in the book, The Fifth Vital Sign. It will give you all the information you need and you can get ahead on some nutrient deficiencies you may have.
Plus, when you know your cycle – you have a better idea when you’re fertile. If and when you decide to have kids, that’s one less thing you will need to focus on.
Get a Baseline on Your Fitness
I would have loved to understand how my core + pelvic floor, among other muscles, were functioning before kids. What was my baseline? No idea. Going to a Pelvic Floor PT for an assessment can help so much! Are you doing kegals correctly? Do you need to focus on fully relaxing your pelvic floor and lengthening those muscles? How functional is your core right now? Advocate for yourself. You will probably hear you don’t need to and it isn’t necessary. Says who? The same people who say its okay to wait 6 weeks post birth to make sure your body is healthy and working correctly post delivery — and often aren’t qualified to make an assessment on your pelvic floor. It’s okay to have a different opinion than your care provider – it’s okay to say you need this. You need this.
Also, invest in your longterm health by getting or staying active. Are you implementing movement into your daily or weekly routine? Are you working on mobility? Is the body you have today the one you want to grow a baby in? If not, start making small changes now so you don’t go into pregnancy in a state where you are deconditioned. Pregnancy is demanding on your body, strengthen her now so you can be confidant you did what you can to set yourself up for success.
Get Ahead in Your Nutrition
How does your nutrition look? Does your body have full stores or are you depleted in a certain category? Do you even know how to know if you were? These are questions to ask yourself before the baby. Baby will take the nutrients it needs – but your body will be left with little if you haven’t and aren’t eating well. Don’t let this scare you – but let it inform you so you can make the changes now so you don’t go into your postpartum seriously depleted. It can make pregnancy and postpartum so much harder. Postpartum depletion can manifest itself with anxiety, fatigue, foggy brain, mood swings, shakes, insomnia, headaches, etc. It’s not something we want go through when caring for one or multiple babies.
So what can you do? You can actually get tested to see your nutrient and hormone levels. Figure out what you are low in and eat accordingly – eat your colors. Eat whole foods! Eat good food. Do not depend on supplements to cover everything – they only supplement. If you are low in iron, eat some greens. If you are low in vitamin A, eat some red peppers. It’s as easy as looking up what whole foods are high in whatever vitamin or mineral you are low in, then add that to your diet!
Implementing these three things will significantly impact your longterm health for the better. Follow me at @rootedstrengthcoaching for more!