The University of North Carolina has done studies that suggest that women who exercise regularly during pregnancy have better outcomes, including lower rates of gestational diabetes, hypertension, and depression.
You might like to do some sort of physical activities during your pregnancy. But which ones are safe? Are any types of exercise best avoided?
Exercise can cause problems for women who are prescribed bed rest; or high-risk pregnancies but thankfully, that’s a minority of pregnancies.
After checking with your Midwife or OBGYN and being assured that you have a normal, healthy pregnancy, give some of these actives below a try!
I did many of these during my pregnancy and I feel like I recovered a lot quicker after delivering and it was amazing! After 9 months being pregnant, I was eager to get my body back!
Many of these helped with aches and lower back pains I had especially during my third trimester so I hope they help you as well!
First off…Don’t Overdo It
Regardless of the exercise you choose, it’s not a good idea to push yourself during pregnancy. So don’t go to cross fit and start lifting barbells. Your body is undergoing many changes and stresses, including increased blood volume.
Thus, pushing the cardiovascular system to the point of discomfort (i.e., excessive breathlessness, sweating, or tiredness) could cause harm. So go easy on your body – exercise is good, but adding stress is not.
No Weightlifting Exercises
This is more for your second and especially your third trimester. I lifted 10-pound weights during the first trimester when I wasn’t spending my morning hovered over the toilet.
But You’re already bearing extra weight from the weight you gain during pregnancy, your baby’s weight and everything else that pregnancy includes.
If your OBGYN or Midwife has not told you already. Experts suggest refraining from weight-bearing exercises during pregnancy and focusing instead on walking, swimming, stationary bikes, and so forth.
Swimming was the best exercises for me because the water helped to take a lot of weight off my aching joints. I never wanted to get out of the water!
Go Easy on Your Joints
Your joints loosen and soften during pregnancy in preparation for the bone-spreading required during delivery. Your hips are especially loosey goosey and flexible during this time.
So go for low-impact exercises like Yoga, swimming, Pilates, and so forth. Avoid exercises that involve a lot of bouncing, jumping, or hopping.
Any exercise that requires you to be quick and balanced on your feet should probably be avoided. Your balance is going to be a little off (or a lot off) as your baby grows, increasing your risk of a fall.
Also, as your baby gets bigger, any exercises that involve lying on your back are probably the best to avoid as well.
The stationary bike can be very helpful for a low-impact workout. It gives many of the benefits of bicycling without having to worry about balance, weather, and accidents.
Swimming and water aerobics are AMAZING during pregnancy, especially in the late second and into the third trimesters.
The weightlessness that water provides can give stressed joints relief. Get on in with all the cute grandmas and grandpas! Signing up for a class is probably best; it’s a good idea to do these exercises with a qualified instructor.
Once again, water provides relief from carrying the extra weight of pregnancy. If you swam a lot before pregnancy, experts recommend cutting back and swimming a bit less often, and more gently.
You don’t have to exercise every day; 2-3 hours per week for healthy, pregnant women is perfect! Don’t expect to lose weight during your pregnancy.
Your body is supposed to gain weight but, it is healthy for you and your baby to get a little exercise.
Get Your Walk On
Walking and swimming were my two favorite exercises! I loved listening to music while I waddled walked around my neighborhood.
I have heard stories of some pregnant women that they would go walking and their water would break!
So if you’re getting a little desperate to get your baby to come because your past your due date try going for a walk. Who knows you might go into labor!
Yoga is a gentle way to move and stretch out your joints. Whenever I did cat cow my back would feel so much better after and my baby would stretch a lot!
You can sign up for some prenatal yoga classes or find some great ones on Youtube! Here is one of my favorite prenatal yoga videos: PRENATAL YOGA: EPISODE 1
It is easy to compare how you look to other pregnant women. Trust me I did the same. But just remember everyone’s body is different and we all carry differently.
Your pregnancy body is beautiful no matter how many stretch marks ( i call them mommy marks) you get, or if you carry really out and round you are still beautiful. You are sacrificing your body for a short time the world greatest blessing!
What exercise are you going to start doing today? Let me know in the comments below!
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