Encouraged by my masochistic missus, I decided to give pregnancy a go, too.
I strapped on “The Bump” for a day. It looks real and, at 27lb, weighs as much as a full-term pregnancy. Here is my diary:
I decide to take a bus and waddle towards a bus stop.
Suddenly one flies round the bend and I instinctively start to run.
But my extra two stones of ballast means I’m wading through treacle, and the bus flies past.
Women are often pressurised into feeling they ought to exercise during pregnancy but with this extra weight on board, is it possible?
To find out, I go to Fitness First, where personal trainer Marvin gives me a tailored pregnancy workout plan.
“How far gone are you?” he asks, politely. “Nearly full term,” I smile, stroking my bump.
“Well, I’d recommend a gentle walk and upper-body exercises to strengthen your back for the birth.”
While I huff along on the treadmill, a group of sturdy blokes look on, slack-jawed.
As I have a cuppa afterwards, the weight of the bump feels like a small child standing on my bladder. By the time I have a second, I’ve been to the loo three times. I head home. The bus is packed and there are no seats. Five hours into my charade, I’m convinced I’m actually pregnant and expect to be offered a seat. But it doesn’t happen.
I stagger home exhausted, back and legs aching. But any chance of a good night’s sleep is annihilated as I can’t get comfy.
Next morning, I’m as grumpy as hell when my toddler wakes at 5am and I hurl The Bump to the floor.
After 17 hours, I realise childbirth might be the greatest show on earth but us blokes should thank our lucky stars we’re just spectators.