Sumiko Tan, 36 weeks pregnant with her first child, a girl
“As my husband was going to Norway for work for three months the very week we found out I was pregnant, I felt unsettled and slightly scared at the same time. I have always heard about how pregnant women are emotionally unstable in their first trimester. I wondered how I could cope without my husband for the first trimester. I have always led a very active life as a PE lecturer and triathlete and I had doubts on how I was going to maintain my lifestyle.”
No Less Active
“During my first trimester, I constantly felt tired and experienced nausea. During the second trimester, I suffered from very bad backaches from long periods of standing. Even though lying on the bed seemed like the perfect choice, I chose to keep myself active instead. I still follow my daily routines as usual now. My gynaecologist encouraged me to continue cycling, running and swimming daily and to continue teaching PE. He even told me I could continue racing if I wanted but may not be able to win races because my body will not be in tip-top condition. Exercising four to five times weekly made me feel much more energetic and my backaches lessened. I will continue to exercise till my baby decides to pop out!
Making Little Lifestyle Adjustments
“I used to wake up early in the morning for trainings and spend the hours after work training till 9 or 10 pm before meeting my husband for dinner. Now, I do not wake up in the morning for trainings and will meet up with my husband after work to exercise together. He goes for his gym session and I will swim at the same location. I guess being pregnant also allows me to spend more time with my loved ones by reducing the time I spend on training. The other major difference is my walking pace. My friends know me as somebody who walks really fast. However, after getting pregnant, I make an attempt to slow down and look out more carefully for obstacles in my way. As I move nearer to my due date, I also plan to take this opportunity to give myself a bit more rest time. I realised that I have been a workaholic for years and I have not been able to have a good rest even during holidays.”
A Whole-family Affair
“As I already have three nephews, my parents are excited about me carrying a girl. When they first knew about my pregnancy, they kept nagging at me to stop vigorous exercise. But after signing my mum and my sisters up for the 5km SHAPE Run with me, my parents stopped nagging! My youngest sister is the most excited family member. She cleans the whole house, prepares the cot and has even shifted out of her room to make space for my husband and me as we will be residing at my mum’s place during my confinement. My sisters-in-law have also been very supportive and have passed me numerous essential baby items that have saved us a lot of money!”