Staying fit while being pregnant has plenty of benefits to offer. However, not all pregnant women exercise during their pregnancy because of the misconception that a pregnant woman should just sit back and not do anything that can harm their unborn baby.
These misconceptions sometimes prevent pregnant women and their unborn baby from experiencing all of the benefits associated with exercise. Exercising during pregnancy can be very daunting, but there are ways to make it safe and effective. Here are some key tips to keep you safely fit and active while pregnant.
- Talk to your healthcare provider first.
You should always talk to your healthcare provider first before you start exercising. Ask your doctor, if it’s okay for you to exercise or what type of exercises you should be doing.
- Running is good.
Running is an effective and safe form of exercise for pregnant women. Here are some essential tips to remember when running:
- Make sure to drink plenty of water to keep yourself hydrated during the run.
- Always wear supportive running shoes.
- Stick to running on flat surfaces, especially during your second trimester.
Just remember not to push yourself too hard when running. It might cause you to slip or fall. Also, it’s better if you to stick to walking or a light jog when your due date is fast approaching.
- Don’t do anything too risky.
Exercising is good, but it should be the safety of your unborn baby that comes first. Avoid doing exercises that can prove to be dangerous for you and your baby. Pregnant women tend to have weaker joints and tendons and if you push yourself doing heavy exercises likes lunges and squats, you and your unborn baby could be in danger. Just stick with light workouts.
- Be comfortable.
Pregnant women should always try to feel comfortable, especially with the changes that are happening to their body and mind. When exercising, it’s essential to wear appropriate clothing to make sure that you can exercise properly.
- Pregnant women should wear loose-fitting, comfortable clothes when exercising.
- Wear a good supportive bra.
- Also, always wear supportive shoes designed for the exercises you’ve chosen.
- Stretch before physical activity.
Always start your exercise routine with at least 5 minutes of warming up and another 5 minutes for stretching. Also, don’t forget to finish your daily exercise routine with at least 5-10 minutes of a slower and lighter exercise and end it with gentle stretching.
- Hill walking.
If running is inconvenient for you, you may want to try hill walking instead. Walking is the best exercise for pregnant women as it helps in burning fat while not having a significant impact on the joints. Start walking slow and then gradually build up your pace over a couple of weeks. Walking for at least 20-30 minutes a day can do a lot to keep you fit and active, even while you’re expecting.
- Do yoga.
Yoga is one of the easiest and most relaxing exercises for pregnant women. Prenatal yoga exercises help in maintaining your flexibility. Yoga also improves blood circulation and strengthens your muscles. Additionally, the techniques you learn while practicing yoga can help you during labor and childbirth.
Cautions to Avoid When Exercising During Pregnancy
When exercising, it’s important that you avoid doing these things:
- Avoid exercising in places that are too hot or have high humidity.
- Avoid doing strenuous exercises like heavy weightlifting.
- Avoid doing exercises that expose you to extreme air pressure, like scuba diving or high-altitude running.
- Avoid exercising too hard or to the point of exhaustion.
- Don’t exercise at a fast pace. Slow down the activity first and gradually build up your intensity over a couple of weeks.
- Avoid contact sports.
- Avoid exercises with a high risk of falling like gymnastics.
Also, stop your workout if you feel lightheaded or if you have vaginal bleeding or spotting.
Benefits of Exercising for Pregnant Women
Exercising while pregnant provides numerous benefits. Aside from keeping you fit and active, exercising during pregnancy can help you:
- Reduce back pain.
- Control your weight gain.
- Prepare your muscles for labor and childbirth.
- Increase your heart rate and improve circulation in your body.
- Keep your body strong and flexible.
- Shorten the labor process.
- Increase your chances of having a natural birth.
- Decrease the need for pain relievers.
- Make your recovery quick after childbirth.
- Reduce the risk of gestational diabetes and hypertension.
Exercising during pregnancy can also help your newborn child to have a healthier start. Staying healthy during your pregnancy can help to prevent birth injuries. In addition, your newborn baby may have a lower fat mass, healthier birth weight, advanced neurobehavioral maturation, and improved stress tolerance.
Exercising while pregnant is a good thing. But it doesn’t mean that you can workout right away. You have to make sure that your chosen exercise is safe for you and your baby. Be sure to talk to your healthcare provider first to find out if exercising is good for your situation and find out what specific exercises are right for you.
Dianna Charles is a promising young law enthusiast that hopes to bring her youthful spirit in her field. She tries to add a refreshing modern take to topics on the legal world that people can learn from. Dianna enjoys her free time with friends and family, and loves to cook for them.