Stay Fit During Pregnancy: Exercise can be an excellent way to reduce stress and ease the discomfort felt during pregnancy. If you were physically active before you became pregnant, you could still exercise to stay fit during pregnancy and have more energy during the day.
You will have to consider low-impact exercise, however. Even though the baby is protected in a cushiony layer, you should not participate in strenuous activities or activities where you could injure yourself.
Reasons To Stay Fit During Pregnancy
In addition to reducing stress, giving you more energy, and staying fit during pregnancy, there are other reasons to exercise. These include the following:
- Help you have a shorter labor
- Will help you lose the extra weight gained while pregnant
- May help with postpartum depression
- Reduce fatigue
- Will give you more energy when you go into labor
- May help lessen the pains felt during the pregnancy
- May reduce your chances of having a cesarean birth
With all these reasons to exercise during pregnancy, you must talk with your care provider to determine how much exercise will be appropriate.
If you have trouble getting pregnant, you may not be allowed to move around as much as you would like. Again, this will depend on many factors, including age, weight, prior health issues, circumstances of conception, issues during other pregnancies, and emotional stress.
But if you are having a healthy pregnancy so far, you should be able to take daily walks and full stretches in the morning and at night.
The key is to find low-impact exercises that will help you during each stage of your pregnancy.
During your last trimester, depending on the amount of weight you have gained, you may not be able to be as active as you were before. Seeing how your body reacts is the best way to determine if you should continue exercising or not.
Top 10 Exercises To Stay Fit During Pregnancy
Below are the top ten exercises you can try while you are pregnant. You will find that exercising is an excellent way to feel more energized during the day. It will also improve your mood.
It would help if you exercised three times a week. This can be altered depending on how you are feeling.
Walking: is the best way for you to get some exercise while pregnant. Taking a short walk around the block or the neighborhood will work your leg, back, and thigh muscles and get the blood flowing safely.
Walking with other pregnant women or with friends and family is also a way to connect with others. You can talk while walking and share exciting conversations while staying fit.
Stretching: every morning will help reduce leg cramps and other cramps you may begin to feel as you enter your second and third trimesters.
Keeping the muscles limber will also help during labor. It would help if you stretched before walking so your muscles would be relaxed and you would not be sore the next day.
Exercises To Stay Fit During Pregnancy
Yoga: If you have never practiced yoga before, you should consider it during pregnancy.
There are beginner classes, especially for pregnant women, that will teach you simple poses that will help you when you are under stress, have feelings of anxiety or depression, or when you cannot sleep.
These stretches can be done at home once you are comfortable. If you are joining a class, not for pregnant women, it is best to tell the instructor so that they can give you simple versions of the poses they are teaching.
Some yoga poses should be avoided during pregnancy. Poses that twist the abdomen or require you to balance your weight should be avoided. If you are uncomfortable practicing yoga, some basic stretches when feeling anxious will help you stay calm.
Free weights to stay fit during Pregnancy
Another good low-impact exercise is using three or five pounds of free weights to work your arms and back muscles. These weights will tone your muscles but will not give you the workout you may have been used to before you were pregnant.
Water aerobics: Being in the water will help you relax and act as natural resistance when exercising.
Whether you are just swimming laps or working out with a class of other pregnant women, you will enjoy being in the water. This is a low-impact exercise that will keep you energized during your pregnancy.
Stationary bike: I enjoy riding a bike, but you don’t want to risk falling on the pavement while pregnant; a stationary bike may be the answer. As long as you don’t overdo it, you will be able to ride your bike for thirty minutes each day if you want to.
Exercises To Stay Fit During Pregnancy
Elliptical Trainer: An elliptical trainer is an excellent way to build your leg, thigh, and hip muscles when pregnant. These muscles will come in handy during labor, and you will have fewer cramps in the meantime.
An elliptical trainer may be better for some pregnant women than a treadmill because the knees have less impact.
Treadmill: are another way to exercise in a low-impact way.
If it is raining outside or you are feeling self-conscious on certain days about your growing body, you can still fit your walk into your day by using a treadmill.
It is not recommended that you run on the treadmill while pregnant; a nice walking pace will give you all the necessary exercise.
Light aerobics: Light aerobic exercises should be fine as long as you are not targeting your abs and working out for an hour or two a day. You can target many muscle groups through aerobics.
Pilates: This form of stretching allows you to hold a stretch for a certain amount of time. The goal is to lengthen the muscles so that you will be long and lean. Some stretches will help relieve tension in certain muscle groups when pregnant.
Warning Signs When Exercising
Staying in tune with your body will help you know when to continue exercising and when to stop. If you begin feeling any of these symptoms when exercising, you should stop immediately:
- Shortness of breath
- Heart palpitations
- Intense fatigue
- Vaginal leaking or bleeding
Even if these symptoms disappear after you stop exercising, you should not exercise again until the next day. If these symptoms continue, you should stop exercising. Break up your exercise regimen into ten-minute daily sessions.
Consult your care provider, or find another low-impact exercise. Even though exercise is beneficial, it may not be for you.
When to stop exercise during pregnancy
If you suffer from any of the following conditions, you should not exercise during your pregnancy:
- Weight issues
- High blood pressure
- Previous miscarriages
- Lung issues
- Muscle issues
- Joint issues
- Heart issues
Ask your care provider if you can stretch or participate in other low-impact exercises that will not influence blood pressure or trigger an asthma attack.
Alternative Ways To Stay Fit During Pregnancy
If you are under doctor’s orders not to participate in exercise regimens while pregnant, there are small ways to stay fit. These include:
- Light house cleaning
- Wading into the shallow end of the swimming pool
- Walking around the house
- Basic stretches
- Carrying a book in each hand while walking around the house
- Grocery shopping
You should find daily activities and turn them into exercises. This will help you stay energized and reduce stress.
Exercises For Three Trimesters
During each trimester, you may find it more challenging to exercise. This is for several reasons:
- Weight gain
- Increased fatigue
- Not enough time
- Balance issues
If you started your pregnancy exercising each day, you might find that you may not be exercising much by the third trimester. This is normal as the days draw closer to your due date.
During your first trimester, you may experience nausea, increased fatigue, and stress. Walking, eating a healthy diet, and managing stress will be the key. You should try walking at least thrice a week for thirty minutes if possible.
You can also join an evening yoga group if you experience nausea during the morning or vice versa.
Yoga will help settle your stomach and allow you to focus on your body for a while.
Depending on how you feel physically, you can participate in many low-impact exercises that will help reduce nausea and cramps in the legs, back, and shoulders.
Many women claim that during their second trimester, they feel more energetic because nausea has ceased, and their bodies are becoming more used to carrying a baby.
If you are experiencing the same feelings, take advantage by participating in low-impact exercising, including water aerobics, walking, and using exercise equipment.
You will be gaining weight during this time, so you want to tone as much as possible to make losing weight easier.
You may feel sluggish, tired, and stressed during your third trimester because your baby will arrive soon.
You may also gain a little more weight which could cause you to lose your balance or get stuck in smaller spaces.
When exercising, be aware of how your body is feeling. If you cannot lift weights without falling over, then switch to simple stretches, walking, or stick to light housework.
You may feel like your pregnancy will never end, but don’t worry; you are getting closer to your due date.
After your baby is born, you will be busy caring for them, but you do not want to forget about yourself altogether.
Try to sneak in a few minutes of exercise daily when your baby is napping. This will help you overcome your feelings of depression, anxiety, and stress.
Leg exercises, free weights, stretching, and other low-impact exercises will help and are quiet enough for you to do when your baby is sleeping.
When the weather is nice, you can take your baby for walks, which will also help you lose the extra weight.
Postpartum depression can happen for many reasons. Your hormone levels will be changing again, you will feel unattractive because of the excess weight, and you may be under stress because you now have a baby to care for.
Whatever the reason, exercise has helped many people overcome their emotional changes and stay fit during pregnancy.
Start slow and work your way up to thirty minutes a day. You will be amazed at how fast the weight will come off and how good you will feel afterward.
If you have to work after having your baby, try to exercise at night. This will help you become more energetic and will also improve your mood.