When Dawn found out she was pregnant, we obviously knew she’d be putting on some weight. Dawn is naturally a tiny woman, so 25-30 pounds during pregnancy was to be expected. What was unexpected was the 5-10 pounds I managed to put on. People don’t realize this, but it’s not uncommon for expecting fathers to put on weight as their wife goes through the pregnancy. It’s often referred to as “sympathy weight.” I’ll go ahead and call it “lazy weight.”
During Dawn’s pregnancy, I’ve been lazy. Really lazy. It doesn’t help that I’ve also been busy (hence the two-month unplanned hiatus from this blog), but there’s really no excuse for the shape I’m in. When we found out Dawn was pregnant back in February, I was at a healthy 165-170 lbs and was pretty strong. I’d post pictures to prove the shape I was in, but I don’t think anybody wants to see me in workout clothes or without a shirt. Some things cannot be unseen. The point is, I had pretty visible muscles and a flat stomach. At the time, I was lifting five days each week, going on 3-4 mile runs four or five days per week and hitting the spin bike for 15-20 miles while watching TV a couple of times each week.
So how does Dawn getting pregnant suddenly halt this? Why is there a new layer of dough around my entire body? I think its a few things.
1) When Dawn first got pregnant, she wasn’t putting on much weight. It wasn’t because of nausea or lack of appetite, she just wasn’t gaining any pounds. To combat this, I insisted that she keep eating. Whether we were out to eat or dining at home, we had appetizers, full meals and desserts. Of course, I didn’t think twice about eating with her, thus, my calorie intake went way up. We’d also grab large meals after work, a time I normally worked out, so my calorie intake increased while my exercise level decreased.
2) Dawn and I like working out together. We have a nice little home gym, so often times we’d go down there and get a workout done at the same time. While pregnant, Dawn understandably worked out a lot less. It’s not easy to run two miles carrying a child, and you can’t lift heavy weights.
3) Going back to #1, I think my dietary habits suffered for another reason. Like most couples, Dawn and I have designated chores around the house. I take out the garbage, and most of the time, she cooks dinner. It’s not that I wouldn’t like to help, but the likelihood inevitability of me preparing a purple pile of mystery food and/or cutting off my finger puts us both at risk. Dawn’s a little more tired now, with the whole “I’m carrying a human in my stomach” thing, so we have fewer dinners at home. Again, this probably hurts my calorie intake.
So here I am, sitting at a doughy 175-180 lbs. My clothes still fit, but they’re much more uncomfortable than they were seven months ago. Next time around (assuming we have another child…that’s the plan) I need to adjust my habits accordingly. There’s no excuse for a sudden halt in activity, and if conditions change, you need to be prepared to change with them.