This article will guide you through some workout programs for getting fit while pregnant.
Health practitioners have always recommended that working out is an important aspect when you are expectant. It will not only improve your health but that of your baby as well.
Before we start discussing getting fit while pregnant, is it even safe to exercise during pregnancy?
IS IT SAFE TO EXERCISE DURING PREGNANCY?
The most certain way to find about your safety is to see a medical doctor.
It is usually safe for most pregnant women to exercise. If you have a normal pregnancy and you’ve been healthy, then you should be good to go.
However, some females may have difficult pregnancies or conditions that require them to limit or completely cut out exerting physical activities.
IMPORTANCE OF WORKING OUT WHILE PREGNANT
According to the American Pregnancy Association, pregnant women with active lifestyles have fewer chances of developing complications during pregnancy.
Getting fit while pregnant is important because it helps reduce the risk of pregnancy complications such as preeclampsia and gestational diabetes.
Preeclampsia is a pregnancy condition characterized by high blood pressure. Gestational diabetes is a kind of diabetes that is first experienced when a woman is pregnant.
It occurs when the level of glucose is high in the blood.
If these conditions are left unchecked, they may lead to complications such as premature birth.
Getting and staying fit is important because it helps reduce the chances of having a cesarean surgery.
Working out can help you gain energy and strength in preparation for your labour and birth. Pilates and prenatal yoga will greatly help you practice calming methods.
HOW MUCH EXERCISES DO YOU NEED WHILE PREGNANT?
According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), a healthy pregnant woman should have at least 150 minutes of aerobics per week.
Assuming that you take 2 days off, resting will equate to 30-minute sessions of moderate intensity aerobics.
Moderate intensity activities mean those that can make you sweat enough to increase your heart-beat rate.
An example of moderate activity is walking – it is simple and requires no equipment.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF GETTING FIT WHILE PREGNANT?
Getting and staying fit reduces backpain associated with the weight of the pregnancy. Research has found that pregnant women who attended fitness programs recovered very quickly.
Physical activity has been found to boost the mood of expectant women. It is during and post-pregnancy that pregnant women are easily affected by depression. Studies have found that working out during pregnancy can greatly reduce depression and anxiety.
When you exercise, the body releases endorphins which help in boosting your mood and in suppressing stress.
Physical fitness programs can help expectant women to put their blood pressure in check. As your baby bump increases in size, it puts pressure on your lower half, resulting in back pain.
Expectant women who attend fitness programs have reported improved and better sleep.
Fatigue is a common occurrence among expectant women. An active body does not get easily fatigued.
12 BEST EXERCISES FOR GETTING FIT WHILE PREGNANT
These are some of the moderately intense activities that can help in getting fit while pregnant.
Taking a walk is a great way to start your fitness journey. Challenge yourself by increasing the speed at which your walking to achieve a higher heartbeat rate.
2. RIDING A STATIONARY BIKE
It is safer to ride the bike indoors than to ride outside. This is helpful because there is no risk of falling.
Many swimming workouts can assist in getting fit while pregnant.
With your baby’s weight supported by water, swimming for a considerable time can significantly raise your heart beat to the desired rate.
Another physical activity that can aid in getting fit while pregnant is prenatal yoga.
It is good to inform your instructor that your pregnant. In doing so, your instructor will guide you through what suits you best.
Prenatal yoga improves posture and increases free circulation of blood.
5. STRENGTH TRAINING
Strength training is important especially for your lower body. You need stronger bones to carry your weight around.
Add some weights so long as you have clearance from your instructor. You should also include exercises that support the muscles of your pelvic floor.
6. LOW-INTENSITY AEROBICS CLASSES
Low-intensity exercises are those that will not put so much strain on you but can slightly increase your heartbeat rate.
Example of such exercises are walking, elliptical and Stairmaster machines can be most helpful.
7. CLIMBING STAIRS
Climbing stairs is almost the equivalent of using the Stairmaster. It can be very effective especially as a cardiovascular and strength exercise.
Plank is an endurance exercise that can help pregnant women strengthen muscles and improve their heart rate.
To do it, you first lie on the ground. Raise your upper body and support it with your forearms on the ground.
Raise your lower body and support it with the tips of your toes.
9. KNEELING PUSHUPS
Lie flat, then raise your body up with your hands.
Lower your lower body by kneeling, that is, your knees making contact with the ground.
Lower your body up and down using your hands.
10. MERMAID STRETCH
Sit on the ground with both feet folded.
Lift your left arm then inhale and exhale as you bend sideways towards your right knee.
Reverse the directions and do more reps as you withhold breathe while bending.
You don’t need to acquire sophisticated machines like the elliptical, there are many activities that you can do on your own even without going to the gym.
Much as physical activity plays a big role in getting fit while pregnant, some activities can be dangerous, like those that require a lot of force and involve sudden impulsive movements like basketball and boxing.
Other activities that can make you fall and hit your head or make you fall on your stomach, like skiing and surfing, should be totally avoided.
Also, avoid activities that increase your body temperature. Scuba diving, rugby, hot yoga and heavy weight lifting should also be avoided.
Remember to take a lot of water before and during training sessions and when you start feeling dizzy, stop and take a rest. Avoid using heavyweights and, by all means, get clearance from a medical doctor.[related_posts_by_tax posts_per_page="4"]