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The Truth About Pregnancy Weight Gain

I was on the verge of turning 30 when I found out I was pregnant. At my surprise 30th-birthday party, I was only 8 weeks along and I already felt like a blimp. I was wearing a big T-shirt, flat sandals, and a frumpy skirt with an elastic waist. I used to pride myself on dressing in sexy fitted tops and pants. But when I looked around the room at my skinny girlfriends in their clingy outfits, I felt anything but sexy. It was a lovely party, and so sweet of my husband to throw it for me. Yet part of me felt like I did back in college...ike a fat girl.

I'd been about 30 pounds overweight when I graduated from college. It took me four years and a lot of sweat and discipline to lose it, but by the time I met my husband, when I was 26, I was in good shape. At 5'7", I weighed 150 pounds, within my healthy weight range. When we wed two years later, I was down to 138 pounds (thanks to pre-wedding jitters that gave me diarrhea for two weeks!).

I gained back those 12 pounds within the first few months of marriage, but I still felt like a dishy newlywed. Not for long. After a few more months, I was up to 160.

To motivate my quest for weight loss, I decided to train for a half-marathon. By race time, I had dropped 10 pounds. It was a freakin' hot day to run 13 miles, but I sucked it up, just grateful that I was healthy enough to do it. Two months after the race, my husband and I decided we were ready for a baby. Now that my weight was under control, and I was strong and healthy, it felt like the right time. We got pregnant right away.