Getting back on the pre-IVF health bandwagon, anyone?

(21 Posts)
merricat Fri 10-Jul-15 19:42:19

Tips and motivation most welcome!

I had a failed IVF cycle in April/May, and promptly fell to comfort eating, drinking, and even re-acquaintance with my old friend nicotine, in a vain attempt at consoling myself. Ugh.

Cycle #2 is coming in Oct/Nov. I even pushed it back a month because of that pesky three month rule (the one where apparently eggs and sperm take three months to develop, so what you do three months before IVF is even more important as what you do during).

Le sigh. I'm at the three month cusp and am hauling myself back onto the wagon. I'm swimming, Couch to 5K-ing, eating clean, taking supplements, and have packed in my vices. I know I'll get into a rhythm eventually, but right now motivation is flagging. I don't want to start feeling like I'm hothousing myself, but at the same time, slipping up will send me into a sneaky guilt spiral. I know, I know, the odd treat is fine. If only infertility didn't make me want down a bottle of cava, smoke a ten pack of Marlboros, and eating a bag of Doritos, eh?

Anyone else on the IVF health kick?

*Disclaimer - it's not all bad, I do enjoy the exercise and the food. I just hate having to be so goddamn responsible, especially when I don't have particularly high hope and positivity levels...

merricat Sun 12-Jul-15 12:37:20

I guess it's just me then!

Persipan Sun 12-Jul-15 15:17:02

Sorry, I'm busy falling off that wagon even as we speak!

NotSoSkinnyLove Sun 12-Jul-15 22:53:40

Hello! I'll join if that's ok. Not quite in the same spot as we've only just agreed to really go for it and am mustering up the courage to book the first consultation of our ivf journey. However yep all the reading I've done tells me the same thing and as of tomorrow I'm on the healthy wagon with the three month minimum in mind.

I'm going back onto weight watchers to try and shift a few pounds and help maintain a better eating plan and I'm also going to get back to running. Like you I really enjoy it when I get going but it's so hard to get into. I've been comfort eating /drinking for weeks and need to break the habit!

lugo40 Mon 13-Jul-15 10:25:49

hi all, we are a long way off ivf really as i need to get my bmi down but am also going this now where i feel like my life is all about harvesting eggs.

I am doing slimming world and loosing weight, joined a gym and going daily to classes, dont drink, have never smoked thankfully as i am not sure at times of this much stress i could give up! I have also bought the "it starts with the egg" book and feel compelled to follow it to the nth degree. have already stopped wearing make up and nail varnish but not gone as far as to change shampoo or throw away all plastic from the kitchen!! as i type this i can't quite believe who i have become to be honest....

bessie84 Mon 13-Jul-15 12:12:16

we are in week 7 of ivf healthy stuff. 5/6 weeks wil we start our first (hopefully last) icsi cycle.

no drinking - at all. (we dont smoke) Taking pregnacare supplements his n hers. eating healthy. my bmi is about 24, struggling to get it down, but trying... it wont shift for some reason.

the only thing i cant control is stress.... i worry a lot. so going to try either hypnotherapy or some kind of relaxation stuff for the remainder of the time......... take each week at a time. or day. it is soooooooo hard, but now i have random appts for pre-tests, its kinda kicking me up the arse.... hard to act pregnant before we even start............ good luck peeps x

barenkaren Wed 15-Jul-15 13:17:27

hello!
Yes... or rather I am on the protein bandwagon...
Not starting for a couple of months but I need to go go go with the protein.
Anyone else?
Anyone take Royal Jelly?

eurochick Wed 15-Jul-15 13:21:19

I did a lot of this. And then we decided to squeeze in one last round (our fourth) before Xmas. Two weeks before the cycle started I was getting trollied at a family do in Ireland. The cycle worked. Being healthy is good but IVF is stressful enough without putting a lot of extra pressure in yourself.

TheRainDrops Wed 15-Jul-15 17:55:52

Me! Although, the three month thing is a bit late as I start stabbing in about 2 weeks! grin
But, like the wonderfully named barenkaren I am all about the protein this month! Cutting out carbs is proving tough tho as I am a pasta and rice addict. PS karen I tried Royal Jelly last year - totally screwed up my cycles (increased in length by about 4 days) so use with caution!

euro speaks very wisely tho, I think the most sensible approach is 'best endeavours' and if the odd plate of chips/takeaway/G&T or three slips in it really isn't worth stressing over.

How did your first cycle go merri and what, if anything, are they going to try differently this time?

TheRainDrops Wed 15-Jul-15 17:58:54

Ps bessie I've tried acupuncture, which was extremely relaxing! Didn't help me get preg (obviously!) but I am hoping to resume it during our ivf (this will be our first attempt) if only for the stress relief.

merricat Thu 16-Jul-15 16:41:56

Aha there are some of you, good smile

eurochick thank you, I can also do with that kind of perspective. It's easy to pile on the pressure and police yourself to the point of insanity, when really, as I'm all too painfully aware normal, unhealthy people get pregnant every day. The infertility industry is just such a massive mindfuck...

Anyway, I went on a massive bender two nights ago, so clearly haven't been taking my own advice. If any of you can pull me back up onto that wagon of yours, I'd appreciate it!

Raindrops My first cycle was disappointing - lots of empty follicles, only two embryos, neither stuck. Despite the possible empty follicle syndrome, they're not going to change anything this cycle because apparently it might have just been a fluke (hmm). The only thing that's changing is that I'm starting naturally, rather than from a norethisterone-timed period, because norethisterone turned me into an angsty teenage emo. Massive good luck with your imminent stabbing - I hope it works for you!

barenkaren I'm sending lots of good motivation vibes for the protein kick. I think I fail on that score. I do get lots of it, but I can't commit myself to the no carbs thing without making myself horribly miserable and resentful of everyone around me. Royal Jelly - yes, I take it. It's about the only thing that can supposedly improve my egg quality without making my endometriosis worse.

I hope you're all doing well? smile

TheRainDrops Thu 16-Jul-15 21:12:42

I tend to follow the principle that I prefer running just behind the wagon with one hand on it wink.
You're right about 'the industry', and the media don't help either. Seriously, the anxiety, stress and guilt that comes naturally with infertility is enough to be dealing without being exacerbated by people telling us we're eating the wrong food etc., especially when people who probably shouldn't even be alive let alone pregnant, they're so unhealthy, get pregnant at the sniff of a willy. Grr!

Today I ate two pieces of toast (peanut butter on one, marmite on the other), an americano, a beetroot pomegranate halloumi and cous cous salad, two Fox's party rings (classy!), homemade pesto with shell pasta and a bit of bacon and two water crackers with a little bit of Camembert, plus about 2 gallons of water. Man, that looks so unhealthy now I've written it down sad

Come on then, your turn.....

merricat Thu 16-Jul-15 21:35:21

The sniff of a willy! grin And yes, my sentiments exactly.

Oi, that food intake doesn't look bad at all - props for the beetroot and pomegranate and couscous and HOMEMADE pesto and so on, and all the water, that's fabby. Good amount of protein in peanut butter and marmite too, no doubt.

Today for lunch I had an avocado / hummus / salad wrap (wholemeal, natch), and for dinner I made courgette 'pasta' ribbons* with kale, yet more avocado and garlic and various veg with vegan (but not homemade) pesto. I know that sounds a) reprehensibly healthy and b) not enough, but I spent yesterday recovering from the hangover from hell with endless rounds of toast and my first Indian takeaway in months. So I was much too sheepish to eat even remotely badly today. This is how I work, it seems: one week on, one week firmly off the wagon. Must try harder...

*the pretentious-sounding monstrosities are instead of actual proper pasta because my DH seems to have become pasta-intolerant. Nothing to do with me! They're pretty nice though.

What do you lot do in terms of exercise?

TheRainDrops Thu 16-Jul-15 21:50:23

No need to apologise for the fake pasta, I am partial to a courgette ribbon myself! grin
Today is obviously pesto day in the IVF dieter world then - are you normally vegan or is this part of the clean eating? I am a total sucker for cheese, it's my biggest weakness!!
Sounds like an excellent day's eating if you ask me, but please assure me that you did have breakfast somewhere? <stern>

I think I was mostly disappointed at the lack of veg today, outside of lunch, will have to try harder tomorrow (which will be tricky as we're going to Secret Cinema in London and there will definitely be alcohol...)

Exercise is a bit hit and miss to be perfectly honest. I walk a mile to/from work every day and am up and down from my desk a lot. Up til last month I was swimming once a week and enduring a Jillian Michael's DVD once/twice (mostly once!) a week too. I know I need to get back on that really but my clinic did say not to do anything to drastic to my 'normal' routine in the run up so I might just stick to Swimming (although even that is worrying me, given they recommend you avoid pools after embryo transfer). You sound pretty active, how are you getting on with C25K?

merricat Fri 17-Jul-15 15:43:44

I've never heard of Secret Cinema before - it must be a pretty well kept secret grin. Have a fabulous time and have a drink for me too

I think walking two miles plus a day is great, and a lot more than most people do. I work from home so don't have that incentive. I do however have lovely countryside, which is great for walking in general. The C25K is going all right - I'm right at the beginning mind, but I think I'll make fairly good progress. I love swimming (weird, because I hated it at school) - don't let it worry you! I was the same actually, and stopped swimming almost completely between 6 and 12-ish months of TTC. Then I thought fuck it, swimmers get pregnant; swimming is not the reason I'm not getting pregnant. After embryo transfer is probably wise to avoid it yes (as you'd also avoid running, yoga, hot baths, perfume, etc). But to be fair, I doubt you'll feel like exercising at all during most of the IVF process anyway. Exercise completely ground to a halt for me after the first week of stims!

Oh and yes, I've been vegan for coming up to four years now. I seem to remember putting it off because of my cheese addiction, like you say - but I never think about the stuff now. I REALLY WISH I could say the same about coffee though. I quit coffee about two years ago because of TTC, and I've realised this week that actually my productivity / concentration has really suffered. I was fine for the first year, but now I can find it really hard to get going mentally during the day, and I know coffee would help.

Do you drink it? Can I?! It's one of the few things I've been really strict with myself about...

merricat Fri 17-Jul-15 15:44:55

(Oh, and your stern reminder about breakfast has prompted me to make a big vat of granola, which should keep me going a while. I'm usually very good with breakfast, honest! wink

enocar Fri 24-Jul-15 06:21:16

Anyone mind if I take a seat? smile Got to the top of the IVF list faster than I thought we would, so both OH and I are in our first few days of quitting smoking, I'm taking conception vitamins and trying to eat healthy! Got an mp3 player and as soon as I work out where my songs keep disappearing too (when did they get so complicated!) I'll be blowing the dust off my treadmill and getting fit!

enocar Fri 24-Jul-15 06:23:52

Oh and can anyone recommend some tunes? Pretty much into anything but rap! Cheers! smile

Elektra83 Fri 24-Jul-15 09:32:04

Can I jump on too? I was trying to lose weight to lower my BMI which I managed to do and think I got a little lazy (and stressed with work), I'm good with the exercising, definitely have a good routine with that. Except I'm on a hiatus from running because I've hurt my hip, I miss it! I'm also a little worried because I've had acupuncture for my hip/general pain and my IVF forms ask about that...so I'm not sure if this will have an impact on treatment confused

It's the food thing that I struggle with, I also love cheese! I am trying to better with that. I'm also trying to resist the urge to comfort eat - work is a little stressful and a friend has announced her pregnancy (she doesn't know about our issues) mehhh.

merricat is there a list of exercises to avoid after embryo transfer? Apart from the running, I do go to the gym (rowing/weights) and go to a few classes, I'm wondering if I will need to avoid them all for a while?

TheRainDrops Fri 24-Jul-15 12:14:27

sorry, had a busy few days! I think if you can totally avoid caffeine that's good, but the official advice does permit the equivalent of a couple of cups a day. I get to work so early I think I'd totally crumble without my morning cup of joe. It's more important to be feeling well in yourself I think, one cup of coffee isn't going to stop it working!

I've been choosing to think my cheese addiction is actually a good thing! our clinic have said I should be drinking a glass of milk every day during treatment, and cheese is made of milk so..... grin

Your vegan diet must be great for all the vits merri! I definitely struggle with my five a day sometimes! again, our clinic have actually suggested avoiding fruit as a snack and encourage you to eat more veg than fruit. Not sure what the science behind that is!!

Elektra, acupuncture won't be an issue. a lot of clinics go so far as to actually recommend it during treatment (even if only for the relaxation). If yours was combined with any sort of Chinese medicine they might want to know about that, that can be more iffy.

eno when do you start treatment? good on you for the health kick, I hope you are coping with the changes!

Elektra83 Fri 24-Jul-15 13:59:39

Haha I like your thinking TheRainDrops about milk and cheese smile

Thanks for the comment re acupuncture, I was a little concerned. Definitely no Chinese medicines, it was just acupuncture to help release some muscles. I am mostly hoping that my physio tells me I can start running again!

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