What I experienced in my first trimester (besides the nausea)


Yesterday was the day I hit four-months pregnant.

Months! I can describe it in months now! My friends told me that this would feel like it went by in a flash, but after four months … I feel like I’ve been pregnant forever.

The first trimester was technically over a month ago. Cut me a break, one of the symptoms of pregnancy is being exhausted all the time.


These come and go so quickly, it’s not like I have a consistent list I could rattle off that describes my diet for the last few months.

So far I’ve sent Tony to the store (usually in a snowstorm) to get one of the following: ice cream, salmon, corn muffins — corn muffins were all I could eat in week 8 — pickles, and tuna fish.


In the first few weeks I didn’t eat any sushi with raw fish, based on recommendations I had read. This sparked a mad desire to eat raw salmon and tuna ALL THE TIME. I’ve done some more research and now I just limit my sushi intake to this list. Fish is actually quite good for you!


It started with anything BBQ and pulled pork, much to the disappointment of my husband and co-workers who love to grab lunch from Mo’s regularly (I think they are tired of sushi, too). As time has gone on, that’s gone away, and I even inadvertently ordered my favorite thing from Gritty’s when we where there last weekend, the pulled pork fries.

The smell of coffee made me sick in the first trimester, but I’m back to about my usual level of coffee by now, too.

It’s totally true that pregnancy has made me a super taster. Anything with a really strong taste or smell hasn’t been super appealing. Like hot wings (another old favorite) or Indian food.

Other symptoms

Peeing all the time

I haven’t had a full night’s sleep in months.


Which, thank god, was pretty much gone by New Year (week 12 or so). Sometimes it comes back, but it’s momentary. There was a period that this was completely dehabilitating and I have no idea how I got through the day.


I know, this could be a textbook list, right? I remember the first night in months that I was able to stay up past 9 p.m. It reminded me a lot of the time I had mono sophomore year of college. Still, even with the exhaustion, I ran a bit more in the earlier weeks than I am now.

By my friend and follow all my training on the Daily Mile. :)

Week 41 (when I ran 23 miles) was the first week I was pregnant.


I really haven’t gained much weight. I gained some weight before I got pregnant but in the last four months I haven’t gained more than 2 or 3 pounds. My midwife says this is OK; some women won’t gain much weight until week 20. The baby is still quite tiny now! — about the size of an avocado.

Even so … a lot of my clothes don’t fit (well) any more, which is demoralizing even if I have every reason in the world for that to be happening. I remember what it feels like to never feel like you look good in anything. I don’t look like my old self but I don’t look pregnant, either.

How I’m staying fit

I still try to get to get out every day, but it’s getting harder and harder to get motivated in the mornings. And in the evenings? If it didn’t happen before 2 p.m., it wasn’t going to happen that day. I’m averaging 4-5 active days a week now.

Running is still my favorite sport and I do that more than anything else. But, I’ve accepted that I’m not as fast as I used to be. Four months ago a 9-minute mile would have been a comfortable pace. Today it is work to run an 11-minute mile. I’m running the Mid-Winter Classic 10-miler on Sunday in Cape Elizabeth and still training for the Race the Runways Half Marathon in April (I’ll be at 28 weeks then), but I plan to walk for good parts of both of those races.

Swimming is a close second and I love living so close to the Bangor Y which has a great pool that’s open almost any time I want to use it. I had to buy a new bathing suit, mostly to accomodate my growing boobs.

BTW, pregnancy bathing suits? I guess you could just go for a two-piece. ‘Cause I felt so comfortable wearing them before my middle started swelling.

Spinning is something I added this year. I bought a road bike in the summer off Craigslist and the woman sold a magnetic trainer with it. It’s great — just like an exercise bike — and I can move it around the house depending on where the best TV is.

You can see my beautiful bike peeking out from behind me at the Black Bear Tri last fall.

You can see my beautiful bike peeking out from behind me at the Black Bear Tri last fall.

The great thing about the bike at home is that it was a minimal cost investment beyond the bike itself — you can get a trainer for under $200 — and it’s a decent last-resort cardio workout for those times I don’t want to leave my house (like when it’s 31 degrees and raining ice). It’s a low impact workout and there aren’t any balance issues, so I can keep doing it up until July.

What it’s been like

I know that our lives are going to change in a huge way in five months. I feel ready — recall my “I’ve been pregnant forever” comments — but I also feel like these are the last few months to cherish it being just me and Tony and pugs.

Tony has a lot of pictures like this ... cause I've spent a lot of time here lately.

Tony has a lot of pictures like this … cause we’ve spent a lot of time here lately, playing board games.

We’ll get to meet you soon enough, little one. 🙂

Baby Reaves at 12 weeks.

Baby Reaves at 12 weeks.


Pattie Reaves

About Pattie Reaves

I'm a new mom and renegade fitness blogger at After the Couch. I live in Brewer with my husband, Tony, our daughter Felicity, and our two pugs, Georgia and Scoop.