Tips for Surviving Pregnancy on the Beach!
i have now survived being pregnant on the beaches of hawaii for our babymoon as well as panama city beach in florida! i think for our next kid (yes, we are planning on two total), i will make it so that i’m not experiencing my third trimester in the summer because hot damn, it’s hot. this experience has allowed me to experience a few things and now be able to share tips for surviving pregnancy on the beach. plus, no need to worry about toning that tummy because it’s full of a baby anyway!
the biggest qualm with beaching going while pregnant truly caused me momentary panic:
“how do you tan the back of your legs when you are pregnant?!”
i mean, you cannot lay on your stomach so unless you are a contortionist, this stressed me out. i had images of being golden brown on the front of my body and then stark white skin on the back of my legs. i feared looking like some white bread with peanut butter spread on the front of it (this is what happens in my brain).
thankfully my friend allison had ventured to the beach while she was pregnant and didn’t come back looking like my favorite sandwich. i immediately texted her while i sat on the beach. she’s a genius so i will share this most important tip with you:
1) dig a hole in the sand big enough for your belly!
it’s actually outrageously comfortable if you do it right. the sand helps support you along the sides and there’s plenty of room for baby because you are in control! sheer. genius.
i realize i still look like a piece of white bread for the most part but it felt so good to finally lay on my stomach! just be sure that you don’t put strain on your stomach muscles and obviously i’m not a midwife or doctor so check with yours if this is a safe option for you.
2) take triple the water
dehydration is no joke, especially while pregnant. the mayo clinic recommends that pregnant women consume 10 cups (2.3 liters) of water daily. if you exercise or sweat a lot, add another 1-2 cups for each hour endured. beach = sweat so bring way more water than you think you may need.
*freeze a water bottle or two and take them to the beach with you so you can replenish with cold water to help keep your body temperate cool as well.
3) have access to shade
this is so important. i am typically a person that can sit on the beach for hours upon hours and feel totally fine. now that i’m pregnant, not the case. i lasted about 20 minutes before feeling overheated and then slightly nauseous. either bring down your own umbrella or rent one if available. it is necessary and more important to keep your body cool than to get that tan. listen to your body!
4) bring a chair
whether it’s your own chair or you rent one, do it! once you get past the first trimester, it’s ill-advised to lay flat on your back for very long. it compresses a major artery in your lower back that can slow blood flow to you and your baby. if i’m flat on my back longer than 3 minutes, i can immediately feel my pulse throughout my body – not good. a chair allows you to be at an incline (when you aren’t doing tummy time). plus, laying on a towel for very long isn’t comfortable so bring a chair!
5) watch your salt intake
of course when you sweat you are losing salt so eating some salty snacks is perfectly good but be careful not to over do it. potato chips tasted a little too good after one of my beach days and when you eat from the bag, you have no idea how much you are actually consuming. this made me retain water and caused my fingers and feet to swell some so pay attention to what you eat!
6) lather up on the sunscreen AND bug spray!
sunscreen seems like a given but many women may experience more sensitive skin while pregnant so apply and reapply often. since the horrible zika virus is running wild, it would be wise to also do a spray down of you (and your partner since it’s been found to be sexually transmitted) with bug spray. when i talked to my midwife, she said get spray with up to 30% DEET in it to repel those little buggers.
7) take frequent dips in the ocean
this helped me immediately feel better since both oceans i visited were a bit chilly rather than bathtub water temperature. utilize this!
8) know when to go in
again, you know what is best for your body so listen to it! if you are getting uncomfortable, can’t cool down or just don’t feel quite right – it’s time to go inside to air conditioning. plus, hopefully there are cookies in there anyway!
leaving home to get to the beach? check out my *free* printable packing list for travel! happy summer!