exercise during pregnancy

Exercising During Pregnancy – A Complete Guide For Pregnant Women

Exercising During Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a delicate period in a woman’s life. The bad news is that most pregnant women believe that this is the time to sit back and relax. It is very crucial to be physically active during all the trimesters of pregnancy. According to doctors, all pregnant women need about 2-3 hours of physical exercises in at least 3 days of the week.

A pregnant mother does not have to undertake all the exercises at once because they can all be done in portions with correct splits. When a woman is expectant, it is advisable to keep moving throughout the three trimesters. Pregnant women who do frequent minor exercise have more energy, less back pain, and will gain their pre-pregnancy shape quickly after delivery.

It is equally important to know that being fit does not mean that one has to purchase expensive equipment or go to a gym. There are simple workouts that can be done at home as long as you observe all the precautions for safety purposes. Before you start any exercising during pregnancy, get clearance with your doctor to avoid any complications.

exercise during pregnancy

Benefits from Exercising During Pregnancy

  • Exercises reduce the risk of complications arising during delivery: This is a fact that has been proved by health experts beyond any reasonable doubt. If you exercise at least three times in a week, you are likely to avoid gaining excess weight, which is one of the major causes of complications that arise during delivery. Moreover, adequate exercise also reduces the chances of the baby developing excess weight which causes complications during delivery.
  • Reduces risk of complications during pregnancy: Apart from the mother being at risk during delivery, there are also complications that can arise during pregnancy. Participating in fitness programs is one of the sure ways of avoiding these complications. Exercising right from the first trimester of pregnancy reduces the risk of developing diabetes and high blood pressure.
  • Keeping fit: Regular exercise during pregnancy improves the physical fitness of a mother. If you are fit during the entire period, you will be able to cope with labor. In essence, it even makes it easier for a mother to get back in good shape after the delivery.
  • Speeds post-delivery recovery: Recovering physically after childbirth is one of the most challenging tasks that mothers have to go through. However, this can be easier if you exercise adequately during pregnancy. The more you exercise during pregnancy, the faster you are likely to recover after childbirth. It will be easier to resume household chores just a few weeks after delivery.
  • Better mood: Pregnant mothers are known to have mood swings and are more susceptible to depression. According to credible studies that have been conducted, at least one out of two pregnant mothers experience depression or a increased levels of anxiety during the expecting period. The same researches have proved that exercising during pregnancy reduces depression. A good exercise moment is enough to help the body release endorphins thus improving the mood and reducing anxiety during pregnancy.
  • Lower blood pressure: There are many instances when a pregnant mother’s blood pressure goes up. Even though it is normal, too much pressure can be a sign of preeclampsia. However, if you exercise regularly, you can prevent the blood pressure from rising.
  • Eliminates back pain and fight fatigue: Back pain and pelvic pain are very common during pregnancy. This is caused by the extra pressure that is being exerted by the growing baby. Adequate exercises will reduce the lower back pain and also reduce the achy pelvis. The issue of fatigue and tiredness is also a common problem that affects pregnant women, especially during the last trimester. Too much rest will make matters worse so the best way to reduce the fatigue is by participating in minor exercise such as swimming and walking.

Who Should Avoid Exercising During Pregnancy?

pregnancy exercises

As much as exercise during pregnancy is important, not all pregnant women can take part for many different reasons. Gynecologists and Obstetricians have a category of women who should take part in any form of exercise when they are pregnant. Others may be able to exercise only for the first and a part of the second trimester.

For starters, women who suffer from restrictive lung diseases are not supposed to exercise when they are pregnant lest they will develop complications. Significant heart diseases and hypertensive individuals are also not supposed to exercise when expecting.

Apart from persistent bleeding, other conditions such as placentia praevia and ruptured membranes are also sensitive and will not need exercises. Other sensitive conditions that need a doctor’s advice before exercising include chronic bronchitis, low levels of iron, extreme obesity and type 1 diabetes. These are conditions that need advice from a qualified doctor before one can start exercising during pregnancy.

How To Do Exercises Safely In Pregnancy?

Generally, exercising during pregnancy is considered safe. However, this should be done with prior advice from your healthcare provider. As long as you are comfortable and your health condition does not suggest otherwise, exercising is very recommendable. If you want to do exercise safety during pregnancy, Women Fitness Magazine – best women’s fitness blog suggests some tips:

  • Avoid exercises that involve activities with high chances of falling.
  • Desist from activities that involve rapid changes in direction. This includes exercises that comprise vigorous hopping, jumping and skipping.
  • Discontinue any exercises that need wait-twisting movements, especially when you are standing.
  • It is important to avoid exercising in humid or hot weather.
  • Do not over exercise for a long period until you reach a point of exhaustion.
  • Do not hold breath for a long period of time.
  • Make sure that you get enough essential nutrients and best prenatal vitamins during pregnancy.

Basic guidelines that will enhance safety during exercise. What you wear matters a lot when you are exercising during pregnancy. It is important to wear loose fitting, a supportive bra and comfortable clothes. Ensure that you are on a flat surface when exercising to avoid injuries. Above all, it is important to avoid exercising immediately after eating. Give yourself an allowance of at least 1 hour before exercising. It is equally advisable to drink plenty of water before and after workouts. When it comes to pregnancy shoes, ensure that they are well fitting, and are specifically designed for the type of exercise you are doing.

Regina Dinges

Regina is a Founder of momdiscuss.com, a blog dedicated to providing many useful tips and guides for all parents or to-be-parents on pregnancy stages and baby care.

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