Remaining active during your pregnancy can reduce risk of gestational diabetes as well as lower your chance of having an unplanned C-section. Regular exercise can also help you manage aches and pains during pregnancy, keep your body strong, and keep wight gain balanced.
Many low-impact exercises can be safely practiced during early pregnancy, but always make sure to speak with your care provider before starting a new workout routine when you’re expecting! If you are not used to working out, try to begin with an easy routine that doesn’t require intense practice or heavy lifting.
Often, women who are very active before pregnancy can safely continue their prior exercise routine since their bodies are used to it already. However, it is always important to have a conversation about this with you care provider in early pregnancy. If your usual activities could result in falls or impacts to your abdomen, it might be best to stop those activities completely.
Here are a few exercises that are typically safe to do during a normal, healthy pregnancy.
Pilates can help maintain strength and balance during your pregnancy, without the heavier joint impact of lifting large weights or over-working your muscles. Make sure you let your instructor know you are expecting, or search for pregnancy-safe Pilates routines. Some more advanced abdominal exercises might not be advisable during pregnancy, and should be avoided.
Yoga is another option for movement during pregnancy, and can safely be practiced throughout your pregnancy, although you may have to make certain accommodations for your belly as it grows! Prenatal Yoga is a popular choice for many moms, so it is often easy to find a class near you, or instructional videos specifically geared toward pregnant yogis.
Taking a Walk
Walking is a great way to remain active while being a little kinder to your joints. Make sure you are walking fast enough to get your blood moving, but not so fast that you feel out of breath or faint. You should be able to maintain a conversation with a friend during low-impact cardio workouts.
If you have access to a pool or other safe swim location, swimming can be a wonderful exercise throughout your pregnancy. Not only is it easy on your joints, it also feels wonderful to have the buoyant water offer a break from the heavy weight of your belly as you get closer to your due date!
While exercising, remember to stay hydrated, monitor your heart rate closely, and pay attention to any new or unexpected aches and pains.
Symptoms such as dizziness, headaches, bleeding, strong contractions, or chest pain are indicators that you should stop the exercise immediately and check in with your care provider about your exercise routine. Sometimes you might even experience these symptoms when you do not feel like you are doing too much, but it is important to listen to what your body is telling you.
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Whatever your exercise of choice is during your pregnancy, remember to stay well-hydrated, well-nourished, and get plenty of rest. Never hesitate to discuss your exercise routine with your care provider, since every pregnancy and body is different!