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Maternity 333 & My Friday Morning Workout



18 weeks maternity style

Sweater: Modcloth (last year); Tank: Loft clearance (this year); Jeans: Express “Barely Boot Cut” (last year); Cat Butt: the famous Yum Yum hunting for a nest 

Today marks 18 weeks. I have continued to proudly show my belly the past two days and while it still makes my skin crawl to catch people looking at it, I think it is an important step towards accepting and embracing this pregnancy.

I’ll do a proper belly shot this weekend but for today I wanted to capture my outfit. A year or two back I did this thing called Project 333 for two seasons. The concept is to only have 33 pieces of clothing in your closet to last you 3 entire months. For me, these 33 pieces did not include undies, workout clothing, PJs or accessories.  I can’t tell you how much easier this made my life. Laundry day was a breeze: one small load of darks, one small load of lights and I was done. Getting ready in the morning was simple. I also found that having a limited wardrobe really taught me how to be creative with the pieces I have. I learned a lot about layering, mixing and matching and accessorizing. I also realized how little we actually wear from our closets full of clothing and I saved a ton of money.

As my infertility journey ramped up and I found myself battling some serious depressive thoughts, I abandoned Project 333 and self medicated with shopping. Looking back I gained nothing from this “treatment regime.” Ladies, Retail Therapy is a farce.

It is time for me to pack up a lot of the clothes in my closet. Pants that are too tight only make me sad and squeeze the Chicken. Shirts that do not flatter the bump need to be tucked away until the bump retreats. I need to have a small wardrobe of pieces that make me feel pretty and show off what I have worked so damn hard for.

So this weekend I’ll return to my Project 333 and put together a 2nd Trimester Maternity Wardrobe consisting of 33 pieces I can mix and match, layer and accessorize. I might need to swap a few things out in the coming weeks, but that is ok. I also desperately need some maternity jeans. The ones I’m wearing above have to be unbuttoned when I sit down, and while that is OK at home or in the privacy of my office, it is NOT cool while in a board meeting or my Mindfulness Group!

The pieces above will definitely be included in my new wardrobe. I love wearing my little cropped sweaters over tanks to show off my belly. I especially love this mustard colored one with sparkly silver dots. Other items I think I’ll include are a few pairs of pregnancy-friendly pants, a dress or two, several cardis, tanks and a few long sleeve tops and sweaters. As for shoes, I’m limiting myself to sneakers, flats and my brown Born kitten heals during pregnancy  I have some delightful bunions that I REALLY don’t want to get worse as I gain baby weight. Major props to you ladies who still wore high heels during pregnancy!


I also thought I’d share part of my morning workout with you all today.  I follow several (ok, a lot) of fitness blogs and always enjoy when they share workout routines. Since becoming pregnant I’m pretty bummed that more pregnant bloggers don’t share what they are doing. So today I’ll give you Belle’s Better Butt Workout:

Have your water, an exercise/yoga mat if you have hard floors, hand weights (I like my 10 pound weight  for this) and some pillows to prop yourself up on.

  • 60 seconds of weighted plie squats (10 pound weight) – squeeze those inner thighs!
  • 60 seconds of weighted regular squats (10 pound weight) – squeeze that badunkadunk!
  • 60 seconds standing leg kickbacks (30 seconds each leg) – squeeze your glutes and hamstrings!

Pause to drink some water and unroll a yoga mat. Then lay on your right side and do:

  • 60 seconds scissor legs with the right leg – work those hip muscles!

Roll over and do:

  • 60 seconds scissor legs with the left leg

Roll on to your back, making sure you prop yourself up with pillows if you are in the second or third trimester, and do:

  • 20 pelvis lifts with 20 second pulse at the end – make the booty burn!

Then stand back up and finish strong with:

  • 24 reverse lunges (12 each leg) – as much as I hate lunges, they are the only way I can personally reduce cellulite so LUNGE ladies!

I finished up the workout with my Perfect Pregnancy Workout video, which I really like for upper body toning. The chick leading it has a rocking bod for being 7 months pregnant. What I would not give for her arms!

That was today’s workout. In total it took about 60 minutes plus a few extra for cool-down stretching and to listen to the Chicken’s heart tones. I reward myself after each workout with a quick check on the Chicken using the doppler. Knowing I get a reward keeps me focused on the point of the workout: to keep my baby healthy and my body strong so the Chicken can make swift and drama-free entrance into the world!

Any interest in reading about my future workouts? Would photos of the exercises help? Want to see or read about my final 333 selections?



Post a comment
  1. jak #
    January 25, 2013

    this is great!! thanks for posting. i have been very disappointed in my bum since ivf. was told by re not to run anymore, so i quit and now i have azzflab. so this. is. perfect.

    not that you asked, haha, but here is what i do ~3x a week:

    gather the sunflowers or other stretch warmup
    wall squats with holds, not weights
    c curve roll downs
    the hundred
    fabulous 5 (this is getting hard as belly gets in the way on the first 2 moves)
    rolling like a ball
    the saw
    tailor sits
    bird dog with holds/modifications
    cat and cow
    side leg kicks stuff
    serratus push ups
    open leg rocker
    modified teaser
    whatever else i can think of if i still have time with stretches in between.

    i was freaked out about killing my baby by still trying to do pilates. then i started reading bradley birth and his exercises and i was like, “what the hell?! this is pilates but they just dont call it that!” so imma keep doing this low key stuff until my belly is so big i cant do it anymore;)

    please do post 333. your craft/house/clothing/sewing/cooking ideas are always an inspiration. and fashion scares me and maybe others too. we could use the inspiration:)

    • January 25, 2013

      Pilates is something I have yet to attempt but really want to! I know it is supposed to be oh-so-good for you. Perhaps I’ll add it to my list of things to try once this baby comes!

      I, too, was terrified of killing my baby with exercise. Actually, I was more afraid of tearing the placenta off the uterus. I have no idea if this can happen for some reason it seemed that way. After 12 weeks of modified bed rest thanks to the hematoma, though, I REALLY needed to move so I just started slow with the prental DVDs. They showed me that there is TONS I can safely do as long as I go slowly and listen to my body. I’m so glad you are doing the same!

  2. January 25, 2013

    I love this Belle! And this workout sounds really good for toning and pumping my tiny booty. Also, you might want to try this really great DVD – Core Fusion Body Sculpt. You only use like 2-lb weights because the movements are so slow, but it feels really good and you build long lean muscles. 🙂

    • January 25, 2013

      I’ll check it out! I’m normally a gym girl but know how carried away I can get when there and am afraid I’ll injure myself! Any DVD recs I can get would be fantastic!

  3. January 25, 2013

    That’s a beautiful bump on a beautiful gal. So glad you’re finally letting the world see the results of all your hard work! You look great!

  4. heatherwallen #
    January 25, 2013

    Love the workout + wardrobe info, Belle! You go, girl. On maternity jeans – I highly highly recommend Joe’s Jeans socialite cut from Pea in the Pod. The price is cringe-worthy but holy bananas, they are insanely booty flattering unlike the Gap ones I bought (which sag and the panel is not clingy enough) – I’ve been wearing mine since 12 weeks (17w6d today) and I think they will last me at least until 3rd trimester with a twin pregnancy. I love them and am sure I will be wearing them for months once the twins are here 😉 I do think they run slightly small perhaps – I went with a 28 and I was a 4 pre-pregnancy.

    • January 25, 2013

      Thanks for the suggestion! I’m going to brave some retail shops tomorrow and hopefully find one pair of jeans that makes me feel fabulous. I’ll consignment shop for everything else, but jeans… jeans are important!

  5. January 25, 2013

    Looking hot! As I think I’ve said before, I just love ANYTHING mustard… one of the best colours. Project 333 sounds like a fab idea. I spent a year reducing my consumption/shopping habits drastically and was SO much happier by the end of it. It leads to more thrift store finds and homemade creations, which are so much cooler than just throwing down a credit card at the Gap. A friend of mine also had a year-long challenge where she didn’t buy a single new thing — and she never looked better! As to the workout regimens — I’m interested, but only if you post photos of yourself doing lunges and squats while increasingly preggo… I want ALL of that awkwardness, please! 🙂

    • January 25, 2013

      Lol! I shudder to think what I’ll look like doing things like labor squats and squats when all big and preggo. Scary!

  6. January 25, 2013

    Please do post the workouts, and if you wanted to link to the fitness blogs, that would be great, too! I was browsing the other day but found more riff than bookmark worthy material.

    • January 25, 2013

      I’ll pull together some of my favs and post them soon!

  7. January 25, 2013

    Yes, please let us know what made the Project 333 for the trimester and the exercises.

    Also, I’ve been meaning to ask… how are you getting these great photos? It looks like you’re using a remote to take the pictures.

  8. Ginny #
    January 25, 2013

    Such cuteness!! You impress me too, by continuing to exercise throughout your pregnancy – and I know you don’t feel this way now, but you’re still TINY for 18 weeks! I teach aerobics and strength training, and pilates moves are fabulous!! DO try pilates post-baby, you’ll love it!

  9. aj #
    January 25, 2013

    I took a mindfulness class and I loved it!!

  10. February 1, 2013

    Kinda jealous of your workout. I was only able to work out for 13 weeks of this pregnancy and then I had to stop. Drs orders. I wasn’t in great shape before, but I was strong. I can feel how much strength I have lost. I know it will come back with all the lifting of babies and when I can actually do stuff again.

  11. February 6, 2013

    I’m using two at-home fitness DVD’s: Great Arms Guaranteed and Yoga Booty Ballet: Baby on the Way, both by Beachbody. I need to look somewhat decent for my sister’s wedding in 2 months- she has us bridesmaids wearing strapless, floor-length gowns.
    I’m also trying to eat 6 smaller meals per day, focusing on meals that are higher in protein, veggies and complex carbs (like whole wheat foods).

    LOVE the idea of Project 333! Looking forward to reading more of your posts!

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