It is generally recommended that healthy pregnant women get at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise daily, most days of the week. I can certainly attest to feeling less lethargic and invigorated after every session during my own pregnancy with Noah.
If you were physically active prior to your pregnancy, then there is a good chance that you can continue to exercise at the same level, as long as you are comfortable. This includes high impact activities such as running, which many women tend to avoid during pregnancy.
Numerous studies clearly show that pre-natal exercise offers numerous health benefits for mom and baby. These include less weight gain during and more rapid weight loss once you’ve given birth. Women who train during pregnancy also tend to have easier pregnancies and fewer complications at birth.
As long as there are no health concerns and you have been cleared for exercise by your doctor you can do the exercises you love for as long as your body lets you do it comfortably. The point at which running or any other exercise becomes uncomfortable will vary from person to person depending on how big you carry, the way you carry etc. Some women can run up until seven or eight months. Just wear a support belt and good sports pregnancy bra and always good shoes. Jipeeee!!..;-)
Being very fond of the weight rack myself, I was tentative to keep on hitting the weights room. After my first few sessions however I realised my body will set the pace as long as I moderated weight and intensity.
If you are a beginner, do not start a rigorous exercise program. Your body is not accustomed to doing a certain type and intensity of exercise. Adding the demands of physical exercise to those of pregnancy may then do more harm than good. Pregnancy however is the ideal time to get moving. Nowhere in the literacy does it say anything about moderate exercise being harmful or unsafe even in sedentary women. So; walk the dog, the hubby, the friends and the neighbours. It looks like we’ll at least have some freedom in the near future.
How do you start? Regular brisk walks are the ideal way to start incorporating exercise into your daily routine. Some other great low impact exercises include spinning and rowing. Swimming is also a great choice because it creates a weightlessness that soothes aching joints. Always wanted to attend a class? Well Prenatal yoga and preggie-pilates are popular options. Still homebound? Contact me for my “Growing a baby and staying fit’- program that will keep you moving in the comfort of your own sitting room without fancy equipment.
Do not exercise without strict medical supervision if you suffer from the following:
- Uncontrolled high blood pressure
- Uncontrolled diabetes
- Heart disease
- Placenta previa (or other issues with your placenta)
- History of pre-term labour
The importance of an exercise program during pregnancy is that it should keep at maintenance level. Nothing more and nothing less. We are working towards long-term health benefits for you and your unborn child and not looking to achieve weight or performance goals.
Hope that helps!
Stay fit and active and – always remember “Don’t stop until you’re proud”
- 5 months pregnant – “Throughout my pregnancy I loved the weight room, I just made sure to adjust weight and intensity”