Tips for those thinking about getting pregnant
I’ve come to realise that there is NEVER a right time to get pregnant, however you want to make pregnancy as stress free as possible. I put off having children for a few years to chase adventures and dreams of completing an Ironman and representing Team GB as an age grouper.
My biggest tip would be to go into pregnancy as fit and healthy as possible, pregnancy is not the time to suddenly take up new sports and exercise. So I would recommend getting yourself healthy FOR pregnancy.
Here are my top tips for those thinking about getting pregnant:
Start taking supplements such as folic acid and vitamin D. Folic acid reduces the risk for birth defects such as spina bifida and anencephaly, by 50% or more.
Continue doing exercise, but perhaps avoid high intensity which can increase cortisol/stress levels. If you are overweight this can affect fertility, according to NHS.
Reduce stress as much as possible in your life. I changed careers a few months before getting pregnant and I would admit it was hard and quite stressful as I built my business, and dealing with 1st trimester nausea.
Understand and record your menstrual cycle. this way you can track when you are ovulating and the best time to conceive, when your ovaries will release an egg every month. I recommend the CLUE app.
Knowing when you are most fertile will help you and your partner plan your time. I kept booking holidays and triathlons during fertile time so actually missed 4 months of trying because of this.
Come off the pill well in advance of trying to conceive to give your body a few regular cycles that aren’t affected by the pill.
Eat well and get plenty of sleep and rest.