'my kids didn't ruin my body. Ben did. and Jerry.'


i snagged my blog title from a random preggo message board concerning weight gain and had to include it in this post somewhere!  while the commenter was being funny, there is so much truth to her statement.  i stated on IG that the full list for preventing 'stretchies' (as my best friend refers to them) would be posted here to my blog, but honestly the list is quite short and sweet and focuses on these 3 things:                              skin, diet, and exercise.

madewithOver (77)

overall great health begins on the inside, and so does the handling and even prevention of 'tiger stripes'.  i do the whole cocoa butter & sometimes olive oil thing on my belly at night (ok almost every night..sometimes i'm already in the bed and say screw it) and sure, that helps to keep my belly smooth, moisturized, and the itching to a minimum.   does that actually prevent them from forming? in my opinion, not at all.  i don't believe they are hereditary either, but eating habits can be.  nevertheless, stretch marks are caused by          ----->rapid<------ weight gain and / or weight loss.  for all the creams, treatments, and remedies i researched, avoiding aggressive weight gain is usually in the fine print somewhere and one of the biggest factors in avoiding stretchies altogether.  since babies don't go/grow from 0 to 60 in the blink of an eye in your belly, it's important to make the weight gain process a gradual thing as best you can.  now, i have a few preggo friends fighting hard to get through their first trimesters, and i can empathize with them greatly as the memory of my own is still pretty strong :shock: .  for the majority of women, you either can't eat a thing, or you want to eat everything during that time span.  or, you can only eat certain things without...well, you know.  so when your appetite and normal eating patterns have pretty much been shot for a few weeks or more, motivation to stay active, be active, and eat healthy can be at an all time low. what has worked for me after getting back on track around week 14? read on!

1. eating a skin nourishing diet

  • antioxidants - nourishes and protects skin.  eat leafy, dark greens, blueberries, strawberries, and fresh, unprocessed produce, period.
  • vitamin E - protects skin cell membranes. eat nuts, seeds, avocados, broccoli, cabbage (pictured above and part of my dinner one night), and collard greens.
  • vitamin A - repairs skin tissues.  eat carrots, sweet potatoes, mango, squash, & red bell peppers.
  • omega 3s - keeps cell membranes healthy for glowing skin. eat fish (salmon's a winner), fish oil supplements, walnuts, eggs and oysters.
  • prenatal pills - keep popping them, everyday.


2. chug, chug, chugging that H2O

  • keep those skin cells plump and hydrated by drinking a full glass or bottle of water with every meal. how much in a day exactly? half your body weight in oz is a standard rule, especially if you are staying active.  i know, pee, pee, and more peeeeeeeee
  • all natural, flavored, herbal, decaffeinated teas (in the bag) sweetened with Stevia have helped me achieve my water intake goal these days.
  • seltzer water with a bit of 100% juice is awesome too and the closest thing to soda i will go.
  • snacking on water-filled fruits and veggies counts too. watermelon, strawberries, cantaloupe, honeydew, cucumbers, bell peppers, & celery are great picks.

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3. MOVEing

  • if you're a reader of my blog then you know physical activity is automatic and understood! exercising keeps your skin elastic, flexible,  improves your body's blood circulation, keeps those joint lubricated and from getting stiff...the list goes on.  plus it just makes you feel so much better in most cases.  you'll need all the endorphins you can scrounge up.. every drop.
  •   staying active *drum roll* prevents you from gaining too much weight too fast which is what we're trying to prevent!
  • as you grow, modify your movements and your workouts as needed.  as i near the 3rd tri, prenatal yoga, the elliptical, walking outside, zumba, and spinning will be my go-to activities.  light weight training here are there for my back and upper body, but that's about it.  slow down, but don't stop.

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KEEP IT GOING.  exercise will be added back into your routine eventually, but use that inactive window of time to sustain those healthy nutritional habits as you enjoy your newborn, breastfeeding or not.   your skin and body will still need to get those vitamins and nutrients to renew itself from all the stretching.  no crash diets! you'll need to lose the weight as gradually as you gained it.

if you get'em, treat'em 

  • bio oil - this method gets high marks and reviews across the WWW as it is great for both old and new scars.
  • glycollic acid - women who use this cream on new stretch marks saw huge improvement as it is proven to boost collagen.  the word 'acid' always makes me raise an eyebrow, but unlike Retin-A, which apparently causes severe birth defects if you are preggo or breastfeeding, you can safely use this cream during and after pregnancy.  it can be bought over the counter, but you can get a stronger dose from a dermatologist.  read up on the pros and cons of this method.
  • laser treatments - this is not my area of expertise, but according to Dr. Oz, banishing them completely is just not possible at this time.  laser treatments can successfully reduce redness, diminish the appearance of white marks, and improve the texture of the skin, making them a lot less noticeable though.
  • and then i came across a story that was shared on bodybuilding.com from a young lady with a surefire stretch mark treatment (and four kiddos later might i add). it's worth reading and checking out her progress pics; some of her methods just might work for you too.

tiger stripes

battle scars, stretchies, war wounds, tiger stripes, etc...there are far worse things to worry about.  so nip them in the bud while you can, or minimize them as best you can.  these knuckleheads were worth it.

Q: what has worked for YOU?  prevention and  minimization? share and help another mama out.


not so fast

everything happens for a reason!  you better believe it.  i logged into Facebook earlier this week and saw that two friends of mine had been selected to run in the Chevron Houston Marathon 2013!!!  if you can run a 10K in 51 minutes or so, you automatically qualify to run in either the half or the full marathon.  if not,  you have to sign up for the lottery and then wait to be selected randomly.  i excitedly pulled up my email account and right away this caught my eye: 2013 Aramco Houston Half Marathon Lottery: Not Selected.  disappointed? a little, but i was immediately reminded that what i want is not always what He wants.  who knows just what the heck i will have gotten myself into by early next year!  i did one of my first posts on this annual event- seems like yesterday.

 i have so many fond memories from this race and i'll definitely do the 5k again or just go volunteer and support all the other runners to keep my tradition going.  outstanding event to attend and be apart of whether you are running or not.  i still got love for you, ChevronHM!! :roll: kidding :lol:  congrats to all who were selected!  if you weren't, KEEP running!!!

my mom got me one of those enormous desk calendars ( just 54 cents, who knew? i didn't).

it helps me stay organized and see just how much time i have left before my first show.  i know it's 2012 and i should be putting tasks, reminders,  etc. in my iPhone or have an electronic copy somewhere (according to Sonny), but there is just something about writing things down and 'x'ing off the days by hand that keeps me on track, positive, and focused...and hopefull!

it's that time again-

 blueberries are in season :)

 sometimes it's all you can get your hands on, i know, but store-bought blueberries fail greatly in comparison to the wild, hand-picked ones straight from the country.  i do hope you get the chance to taste the difference.  i happen to have a country connection i'm so grateful for- 1 gallon for 20 bucks.

  i split up that big bag into smaller portions for my meals so they are ready to grab and go.

frozen blueberries are SO GOOD! get you some snack size bags and go to work.

if i wasn't in training right now i'd be making blueberry crumbles, pancakes, cobblers, turnovers and muffins GALORE.   i have even been putting them in Chiso's food:

his dinner last night: grilled chicken, new potatoes, and wild blueberries!

(before and after i blended it with a little breast milk.)

off to go burn some more fat- 1 hr of cardio awaits me.  my first posing camp is coming up this weekend- i gotta go buy my shoes and get ready to soak up all this knowledge.  may the rest of your thursday be EXCELLENT!


perfect snack food?

one of Yahoo's top stories happens to be about today's post!  coincidence? prolly.   the article claims that popcorn contains more antioxidants than ANY other fruit or vegetable.  that's pretty big news, i'd say.  popcorn really is a great, whole grain, fibrous, healthy snack.

before you saturate it with butter, oil, salt and/or sugar, of course.  it's best to pop it yourself (on the stove or by air popper) so you are in control of the amount of toppings.  i don't have an air popper, so i whip out my pot.  never done it that way? keep reading.

no additives just plain ol' popping corn.

so, 3 tbsp = 3 cups and 1 cup = 25 calories.  i added 1 more tbsp to make it an even 100 calorie snack.

try to use as little oil as possible.  here's a tip though- both cooking spray and olive oil will have your kitchen smoking. it's best to use vegetable or corn oil.  i pour a little in the cap of the bottle and drizzle it in a medium heated pan.  you really don't need more than 1/2 a tsp.  toss in a few test kernels- once they pop, it's time.everybody in.

very important- cover the pan (preferably with the correct top) and shake it back and forth across the burner to keep the kernels from burning.  this also ensures that there are no kernels on top of one another and that they'll all get popped.  you'll need to repeat this shaking process until you don't hear anymore popping.  and yeah i know...i couldn't find the right top though.

keep shaking..almost done.

makes a nice big bowl.

now, add what you want, or eat it plain!  adjust the nutritional stats accordingly.  i normally do LOL butter and keep it at that.   this past time, i found a packet of truvia and made some kettle corn.

if you must snack while watching tv, reading, etc., munch on some homemade popcorn.  even bag it up and take it to work.

is during movie watching the only time you eat popcorn?