Living a healthy lifestyle is beneficial for everyone, including expectant mothers. Whether you’re pregnant and already have a fitness routine, or if you’re looking for ways to stay healthy during your pregnancy, we’ve got you covered. There are some exercises that are better for pregnant women than others, and we’re here to offer some insight into how you can change or begin your fitness program to match the needs of you and your baby. Before you begin a new exercise routine, make sure you clear it with your doctor.
Facts About Exercising While Pregnant
- Your body changes – You’re probably aware by now that your body is going through some changes, and your exercise routine should accommodate those changes. For instance, your posture may shift as your baby grows. This could affect the tilt of your hips and the way your shoulders round. It’s beneficial to add in exercises that will strengthen your back muscles and relieve pain associated with these postural changes.
- Pregnancy affects your workouts – You may notice that you’re not able to get through the same cardio routine that you could pre-pregnancy, and that’s okay. The great thing is that the gym offers tons of options for machines and classes. If one isn’t working for you, try something else. Remember that these are short-term changes and you will more than likely be back to your old routine post-baby.
- Your purpose for exercise has changed – You may have been hitting the gym before your pregnancy in order to tighten up, get toned, or lose muscle. Now that you’re exercising for two, your workouts should aim to help keep you comfortable during pregnancy and get your body ready for labor. You’ll want to incorporate exercises that get your blood flowing, get your body stretching, and help you manage the inevitable weight gain that comes with bearing a child.
Best Exercises for Pregnant Women
- Prenatal Fitness Classes – If you have access to these types of fitness classes, you should take advantage of them. They’re specifically designed to cater to the pregnant woman and be comfortable for you and baby. As your pregnancy progresses, you may find comfort in different types of prenatal fitness classes; pilates may be great during your first trimester and water aerobics may be more ideal for your third.
- At-home workouts – If you can’t make it into a gym, there are still plenty of things you can do at home to add some fitness into your day. Consider doing some bodyweight and light weight exercises such as pliés, lying leg raises, planks, seated bicep curls, and more
- Light cardio – If the weather is nice, take advantage of it and take to the streets! Go for walks or light jogs through nearby parks or through your neighborhood. If you don’t have access to somewhere outside, get on the treadmill or elliptical and take it easy. Just being up and moving will make you feel so much better.