I’m currently in the third trimester of my first pregnancy and I cannot tell you how happy I am that I have maintained an active lifestyle throughout this experience. As an extremely competitive athlete and avid gym rat pre-pregnancy, I was so happy to read that “doctors now agree that women should get exercise, and plenty of it, as long as they’re facing a low-risk pregnancy.”
Being that I’ve been blessed with a low-risk pregnancy, I’ve been able to reap the many benefits of exercising throughout it. Some exercise benefits include:
- Preventing women from gaining too much weight
- Decreasing the risk of gestational diabetes
- Making it easier to shed the pounds after birth
- Building physical and mental stamina that may help during labor (my favorite!)
While exercise during pregnancy is strongly encouraged, it’s very important to keep a few things in mind:
- This is NOT the time to overdo it – listen to your body (something I’m finally learning how to do)! If you didn’t exercise much before and you want to make a lifestyle change, take baby steps (pun intended J).
- Drink plenty of Water – blood volume increases during pregnancy to supply nutrients to the fetus, and this can make it easier to become dehydrated.
- Avoid Impact Sports – per my doctor’s approval, I was allowed to play basketball for my first 4 months of pregnancy. After that, I retired (well, for now) because pregnant women should avoid traumatic falls or injuries that could potentially harm the baby.
Your best bet? Engage in Low Impact Exercises.
There are SO many activities we pregnant women can still participate in. The best part is that in doing so, we know that we’re doing what’s best for baby…and what’s best for us! Here are some of my favorites…
10 Beneficial Low Impact Exercises for Pregnancy
- Start things off right with some quality STRETCHING
- Get out there and get WALKING
- Hop in the pool and SWIM some laps
- Or sign up for some WATER AEROBIC classes if you prefer working out with friends
- Pick up some LIGHTWEIGHT DUMBBELLS and keep those arms toned
- Test out that ELLIPTICAL MACHINE you’ve always been curious about
- Jump on the STATIONARY BIKE and give it a spin
- Join the latest trend and sign up for some PRENATAL YOGA
- Or work on maintaining some core strength with some good old fashioned PILATES
- And most importantly, LAUGH…and laugh a lot…it’s the happiest and best way to burn some extra calories (and I personally think baby loves it!)
Bottom line, if you’re looking to have the absolute best pregnancy possible, exercise will help you achieve that goal. For me personally, my activity level has helped me maintain my stamina, my strength and most importantly, my sanity.
Happy working out, Mommies!
 San Francisco Chronicle. Women’s Health. Come on baby, let’s Move! Erin Allday