It’s completely natural to gain weight when you’re pregnant. But Lara Carpenter-Beck, 29, from Bristol, gained an incredible 6st 9lb while carrying her first baby Savannah.
Lara’s weight gain resulted in her baby bump growing to 55 inches – quite something when you’re 5ft 7in.
The reason for Lara’s big bump is that she suffers from Type 1 diabetes, which makes her more prone to gaining weight.
Most women will put on between 1.5 and 2 stone during their pregnancy.
Lara grew from a size 12 to wearing size 22 clothes, and found that normal maternity clothes just wouldn’t fit around her bump.
“At just 12 weeks people were asking me when I was due – I was that big. And my bump just kept growing and growing,” Lara said.
“It was my first pregnancy and so I had no idea what to expect – but I knew it wasn’t normal to grow at the rate I was, especially with just one baby.”
Lara’s baby was also quickly putting on weight. At 32 weeks a nurse told Lara her baby weighed 6lb, which was fairly close to the average weight of a full-term baby (7lb 6oz for a girl)..
Just 4 weeks later, she was rushed in for a caesarean at 36 weeks after her waters broke unexpectedly.
Lara and her partner Chris, 38, were delighted to welcome baby Savannah, who was born weighing 9lb 5oz.
“Chris and I always assumed we were having a boy because my bump was so big, so it was a massive surprise to find out we had a girl,” she said.
“She was a big baby and filled the weighing scales.
“We were so happy she was healthy though. We could cope with the fact she was a bit bigger than most newborns.”
Lara was worried about getting her pre-pregnancy figure back – but lost a stone in the first week after giving birth, and another stone in her second week.
A year later, Lara has now shed the weight and is fitting back into her old clothes, and perhaps incredibly hasn’t been put off going through it all again.
“I couldn’t believe how big I became – but it definitely hasn’t put me off having another one,” she said. “Even if I get bigger than last time, it is all worth it to have a healthy baby.”