Exercise During Pregnancy

Exercise During PregnancyCongratulations! Ticking pregnancy off life’s to-do list is a major milestone for any woman. Having a healthy baby is likely your main goal now. Did you know that getting enough exercise during pregnancy is the best action you can make to help ensure your baby (and you) is healthy?

When you exercise regularly, your mood stabilizes, your circulation improves and it’s more comfortable to carry your baby. But, don’t fall into the trap of thinking you need expensive equipment and trendy workout clothes.

Doctor’s have always agreed the most beneficial exercises for pregnant women are walking and swimming.

Walking Exercise During Pregnancy

All you need for walking is a quality pair of walking shoes. And maybe a walking buddy!

One of the first things you probably observed after achieving pregnancy is how tired you get as the day goes on. Walking is the best thing you can do to lift-up your flagging energy!

Walking improves your circulation and strengthens those abdominal muscles. You’ll sleep better too. One of the best benefits from walking on a regular schedule is endurance building. You will need endurance during delivery!

Fact: Women who kept their body fit during pregnancy report their labor quicker and easier.

Swimming Exercise During Pregnancy

Swimming exercise during pregnancy will tone and strengthen every major muscle group in your body. It helps increase your body’s oxygen capacity and affords cardiovascular benefits, even though swimming is low impact. You’ll burn plenty of those naughty calories too!

Swimming, or simply standing in the pool, can alleviate swollen feet towards the end of your pregnancy. Contact your physician if this persists.

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Don’t Push Through the Pain!

During this phase of life you must discard any notions of “no pain, no gain”. In fact, STOP doing what you are doing if you feel pain. Be aware of undue fatigue also. Put your attention on hip joints, pelvis and lower back. These are vulnerable areas of your pregnant body. Call your doctor. He/she may prescribe another form of exercise.

The two activities we suggested – walking and swimming – are generally safe to engage in throughout pregnancy. Also, there is minimum potential for injury.

Don’t Entertain these Exercises During Pregnancy

Say “NO” to some floor exercises!
Following the first trimester (2nd trimester & 3rd trimester), stop any floor exercises that require you to lie on your back in a supine position. Standing up from this position could cause dizziness.

Say “NO” to exercises with a high risk of falling!
While pregnant, you should eschew exercises that carry a high risk of falling such as,

  • Pregnancy High Risk ExerciseSkiing
  • Basketball
  • Soccer
  • Ice hockey
  • etc.

Say “NO” to scuba diving!
Absolutely, do not go scuba diving while pregnant.

  • The unborn fetus could suffer decompression sickness, which might prove fatal.
  • If you develop decompression illness, chances are it will be passed along to the developing fetus, whose lungs aren’t capable of filtering nitrogen.
  • Clinical studies show women who scuba dive while pregnant may have a miscarriage or their babies may have birth defects, such as heart abnormalities or neonatal respiratory difficulty.

Signs to Watch for when Exercising

Usually when you exercise during pregnancy it is not harmful to you or your fetus. However, if you feel like something is wrong, it probably is. Watch for signs that indicate you should stop exercising and contact your physician, such as leaking amniotic fluid.

Fact: Women who kept their body fit during pregnancy report their labor quicker and easier.

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