Just because you’re carrying a baby doesn’t mean you can’t work out. Yes mama, it is absolutely safe to be active and workout when you’re pregnant. In fact, it is encouraged in the majority of pregnancies.
Gone are the days when women were advised to lie low during pregnancy. Keeping fit is one of the best things a woman can do while she’s carrying a baby, so long as she’s also keeping safe.
ALWAYS Chat with Your Obstetrician First
The first step to adopting an appropriate fitness regime during pregnancy, according to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, is to get your doctor’s clearance first.
Keep your physician informed and immediately report any unusual conditions, like vaginal bleeding, irregular heart rate, extreme fatigue, or joint pain.
What Kind of Exercise Can I Do While Pregnant?
If you weren’t all that physically active before getting pregnant, now’s not the time to start a new, intense program.
Rather, take things slowly, especially during the first trimester, when some women face morning sickness, fatigue, and weight gain. Consider walking on flat, even surfaces.
Whether you’re an avid exerciser or just looking to get started to get fit and healthy while pregnant, we highly recommend you check out this Pregnancy Nutrition and Pregnancy Fitness Course.
These courses are incredibly affordable, cheaper than a personal trainer or nutritionist, but you still feel like you’re getting the personal support and attention from those pricier options.
If, however, you exercised regularly before conceiving, you can maintain or even improve cardiovascular fitness. You can keep jogging or running, gradually reducing the intensity, duration, and frequency of exercise during the second and third trimesters.
A Few Benefits of Staying Active During your Pregnancy
There are numerous reasons why working out and staying active during your pregnancy is so crucial and important for not only your own personal health but the health of your growing and developing fetus.
- You can usually reduce back pain throughout your pregnancy- especially helpful in the 3rd trimester.
- If you’re bound up, this helps ease constipation symptoms.
- May decrease your risk of gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, and the necessity of a cesarean delivery
- Promotes healthy weight gain during pregnancy and decreases your chances of gaining too much weight throughout the pregnancy.
- Improves your general fitness and strengthens your heart and other blood vessels.
- Helps you to lose the baby weight after your baby is born as you’re already in an active routine.
What Should I Pay Attention to While Working Out?
Regardless of what kind of shape you’re in, it’s crucial to monitor your body temperature. A significant increase can be harmful to the fetus. If your body temperature exceeds 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit/ 38 degrees Celsius, take things down a notch.
And avoid working out in hot, humid environments. If you exercise outside, head out in the morning or late afternoon when the air is cooler.
Another thing to watch out for is joint injury.
Because the hormone relaxin is released during pregnancy, joints become looser. Although this makes pregnant women more flexible, it also increases the risk of harm. As tempting as it may be, avoid overstretching.
All of these things are kept in mind when they designed the Perfect Pregnancy Plan. That’s another reason we highly recommend it. We’ve done it during our last two pregnancies and can’t say enough AMAZING things about it.
Important Tips for Working Out While Pregnant:
- Wear good-quality, supportive shoes when jogging, running, or doing low-impact aerobics.
- Make sure to include extended warm-up and cool-down phases in your workout.
- If floor work becomes uncomfortable, try other types of aerobic exercise, like cycling, Spinning classes, swimming, aquatic classes, and water running.
- Pregnant women do have to be careful when it comes to core conditioning. The abdominal muscles can separate, a condition called diastasis recti. If that’s the case, you’ll need to avoid abdominal crunches.
- Eat a small snack before exercise to avoid hypoglycemia. Be sure to be well-hydrated not just during and after a workout but also before. Drink plenty of water.
- You know you’re working out too hard if you feel dizzy, breathless, or you have a pounding heart rate. If anything feels uncomfortable, painful, or just “not right”, stop immediately and consult your doctor.
What Conditions Are Unsafe to Workout With During Pregnancy?
According to the ACOG, if you have any of the following conditions, you should not be working out during pregnancy and you need to be discussing any thoughts or plans to workout with your Obstetrician before doing so.
- Certain types of heart and lung diseases
- Cervical cerclage
- Being pregnant with twins or triplets (or more) with risk factors for preterm labor
- Placenta previa after 26 weeks of pregnancy
- Preterm labor or ruptured membranes (PPROM- your water has broken) during this pregnancy
- Preeclampsia or pregnancy-induced high blood pressure
- Severe anemia
These are not the only conditions that would make it unsafe to work out during pregnancy. So, before you start any workout program, clear it with your medical professional.
Related : 3 Easy Exercises for Pregnant Mamas
How Much Should I Exercise While Pregnant?
This is always the magic question every pregnant lady wants to know. The answer to this can vary from person to person.
But in general, if you weren’t active prior to pregnancy, you want to start low and slow and build up. If you were active previously, you can continue your workout routine with approval from your doctor.
Overall, you want to make sure you’re getting a moderate intensity level of aerobic activity each week.
Aerobic activity is when you are moving large muscle groups and can increase your heart rate and start to sweat.
This is when you can still talk during your workouts but you may not be able to do things like sing or push long sentences over and over without taking a break.
In general, this should be about 30 minutes of exercise 5 days a week. You can also break this up however works for your schedule, for example in smaller increments.
If you’re looking for a safe Pregnancy Exercise program, you really need to check out the Perfect Pregnancy Plan. This plan is designed so you’re reaching the recommended amount of exercise each week without over-exerting yourself.
How Far Into Pregnancy is it Safe to Workout?
Following a safe exercise routine, it is safe to work out all the way through your pregnancy given your doctor says you’re allowed to.