Even if you have never worked out before, it’s not too late to get moving with your unborn baby.
Being pregnant doesn’t mean it’s time to put up your feet and relax for the next nine months. In fact, an exercise routine can help keep you energized and healthy during the length of your pregnancy.
Benefits of Exercising During Pregnancy
Keeping up an exercise routine during pregnancy has benefits that can last long after you’ve given birth. According to the Nemours Foundation, exercising during pregnancy helps ease common problems that may occur during pregnancy, such as constipation, back aches and insomnia. It can also help ease the discomfort associated with labor and delivery. Furthermore, women who exercise during pregnancy will find that it’s easier to bounce back to their pre-pregnancy shapes after delivery.
Listen to Your Body
When exercising while pregnant, the key thing is to pay attention to how you’re feeling. If anything feels uncomfortable or you feel overexerted, then you should stop. A good rule of thumb to go by is that if you’re unable to talk comfortably while working out, you should dial back the intensity of your exercise.
If you’re new to working out and you’re concerned about the strain on your body, you can always rely on walking as your primary form of exercise. Aim for at least 30 to 60 minutes of walking per day.
To avoid overheating and stave off dehydration, make sure you drink plenty of water before, during and after exercise. Avoid exercising in very hot weather. And also don’t forget to stretch before and after each workout session.
According to the Mayo Clinic, certain medical conditions could prevent you from exercising. This includes high blood pressure, placenta previa, diabetes and heart conditions. If you have any of these conditions, consult your doctor first before exercising. Pregnant women are typically advised to avoid any exercises that require them to lie flat on their backs. Physicians typically discourage sports that carry a higher risk of injury, too, such as skiing and mountain biking.
Remember, you are exercising for two. Recent studies have shown that a fetus can benefit from its mother’s accelerated heart rate and breathing during workouts, as long as it isn’t overdone. When in doubt, always ask your doctor about what type of exercises are safe during pregnancy.
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