Honoring how you feel each day during pregnancy can be challenging, especially in the first trimester. But slowing down and becoming aware of the changes happening in your body can be incredibly beneficial at the beginning of your pregnancy.
To be honest, I didn’t feel like moving at all during most of the first trimester this time around! Between the intense exhaustion and nausea, I struggled to feel like myself.
So what can you do to feel your best? Here are my recommendations:
1. Breath work - Always start with the breath. Your breath is a tangible tool that you can use throughout pregnancy, labor, birth and parenthood. Learn how your breath can support you when you need it most.
Practice straw exhalations to tone the transverse abdominus muscles (TVA). This muscle wraps around the torso like a corset and is crucial for supporting your body during pregnancy and postpartum. When you breathe with deep, slow, complete exhalations -- as if exhaling through a thin straw -- you can tone the transverse abdominus muscles. This toning can strengthen the muscles needed to push the baby out when the time comes.
IMPORTANT: The focus here is NOT on holding the breath, but on fully exhaling the breath. As you exhale, the abdominal muscles naturally engage in to expel air. If you’re actively toning your abdominal muscles, you’re most likely engaging the obliques rather than the TVA.
2. Pelvic tilts in tabletop - Increasing mobility in the pelvis can help ease discomfort throughout pregnancy. Pelvic tilts gently stretch the torso and pelvic floor.
3. Rest - Exhaustion is common in the first trimester, and learning to consciously relax the body can help throughout pregnancy, labor, birth and parenthood. Prioritize rest as you would any other way of nourishing your body. Naps are key!
Savasana (or just take a nap).
Make yourself as comfortable as possible and close your eyes. Let go of any effort in the body and allow the mind to wander. If you find your thoughts racing, try to focus on the inward and outward flow of your breath.
Listen to a sleep story or meditation. I love the Expectful app, here’s my link to an extended free trial.
Slowing down long enough to listen to your body can help you become aware of the constant changes you’re experiencing in pregnancy, labor, birth and parenthood.
What helped you feel your best in the first trimester? Tell me in the comments.