Preventing Stretch Marks While Pregnant

8.5 Months (Second Pregnancy)
Okay, I have read quite a few articles that seem to be pretty doom and gloom about stretch marks.  What I have read is that it is mostly genetic and if you have good genes, great and if you don't, the best that you can do is to minimize them.  However, that is not consistent with my experience.

My mom has very bad stretch marks from her pregnancies.  I look like mom, I have her personality, and in all things biological, I am very much liker her.  Therefore I must be prone to stretchmarks, right?  However, after two pregnancies, there are no stretchmarks.  Maybe it skipped a generation and I was lucky.  But that is not right either, when I was about 13, I was about 30 lbs overweight and when I lost the weight, I had stretch marks on my thighs.  I still have them today.  I must then be prone to stretch marks. Therefore the only conclusion that I can come up with is that I must have done something during my pregnancies that helped me avoid them.

Before going into the specifics of what I did, here is some background information that might be relevant.  The first pregnancy, I gained close to 50 lbs.  This last one, I was closer to 25 lbs.  I was 29 yrs during my first and 34 during my second. I excercised for both but definitely more during my second.

Okay, so here is what I did.  I don't know which of these helped the most, but it was probably a little of everything.

3 Months After Delivery
1.  Good nutrition:  I eat non-processed organic foods.  I was not the most diligent about taking my prenatals, but my eating habits include the consumption of an extensive amount of fruits and vegetables (for more specifics on my diet you can visit my blog on Nutrition, Running, and Breastfeeding).

2   Excercise:  During the first pregnancy my cardio workouts included mostly the elliptical machine.  During this second pregnancy, I ran 5-6 miles three times a week up until I was 6 months and then hit the elliptical again.  For both pregnancies I did some weight training, and safe pregnancy abdominal exercises.

3.  Cocoa Butter/Coconut Oil:  I religiouslystarted putting cocoa butter on my belly and towards the end switched to coconut oil.

4.  Staying hydrated:  I drank lots of fluids, primarily water and hardly any juices.

 After three months post-partum, my belly is almost back to the way it used to be.  I still feel the skin a little loose, but there are definitely no stretch marks.

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