Just because you are an expectant mother doesn’t mean that you have to give up your exercise routine. Here are some ways that you can still stay in shape without endangering your child.
There is no reason why you can’t exercise while you are pregnant. In fact, exercise will help you to maintain your health and ward off excess weight gain while you carry your baby. Through different exercises you can also increase muscle strength which is helpful during the delivery process.
As always, consult your doctor. He will be able to tell you if your current exercise regimen is too rigorous for you to maintain during this time. He may also suggest which exercises to perform that are safe enough.
How will you know which ones are safe? First off all, avoid any activities that come with an increased risk of falling such as hiking, rock climbing, and step aerobics. Contact sports are out of the question because not only is there a chance of falling, other injuries may result that could prove life threatening to your child.
Start off slowly. In the early trimester, walking and other exercises that require you to bear weight may be okay since you are not showing yet. Be careful not to raise your heart rate too high with high impact or vigorous exercise. In all trimesters, try to avoid exercises that put pressure on the abdomen.
Also, be aware of your temperature. Try not to get overheated doing any exercise. Dress warmly but not so much that you feel uncomfortable. Indoors, be sure there is proper ventilation in the room or class. Overheating can lead to dizziness, dehydration and other health issues.
As your belly begins to grow, the added weight and pressure may be too much for walking or running. Now, it is better to switch to exercises that are not weight bearing. Consider swimming. It is a good cardio workout and there is no pressure on the joints or the abdomen to cause discomfort.
Another exercise is stationary bicycling. There is no real danger of falling and there is no pressure on the legs or the stomach. You can still get a good workout but don’t risk back pain.
When to Consult a Doctor
If at any time during your pregnancy you experience these symptoms, consult your doctor. It could be that your exercise program is too strenuous and you may have to stop or tone it down considerably.
* Chest pain
* Shortness of breath
* Abdominal or vaginal pain
* Blood from the vagina
* Nausea or dizziness during or after exercise
* Blurred vision
Take care of yourself. Exercise is healthy but taking care of your baby is more important. Use good judgment when making the decision to continue physical activity during pregnancy.