The good news is even when you are pregnant you can safely start a workout routine. Even if you have no fitness background before. It’s only important to review your exercise routine with your doctor before you start.
Pregnancy isn’t the right time to lose weight or begin a vigorous workout routine, but if you aren’t in a high-risk case, you can still follow an exercise plan at a mild to moderate level.
Start slowly and wisely
Beginners should start by working out for 10 minutes at a time and so on, until you reach 30 minutes a day on most week days. Don’t go for burning fat and don’t work out to exhaustion. A great rule is: Slow down if you can’t comfortably continue a conversation.
Make sure to eat properly and get enough fluids. Being pregnant means you need about 300 extra calories a day, according to your pre pregnancy weight.
Always stay cool while exercising. Drink a lot of water, wear a sun hat and loose, comfortable clothing when exercising in hot, humid weather. If you’re exercising outside, be sure to wear sunblock as pregnancy makes your skin more sun-sensitive.
If you’re a beginner, consider the following:
Walking: This activity gets high recommendations for pregnant women because it’s safe, easy to do, and improves your cardiovascular fitness. In short, it’s the perfect way to begin if you didn’t exercise before pregnancy.
Low-impact aerobics classes or fitness DVDs: Look for ones that cater to pregnant women.
Swimming: It’s a great form of exercise because it works your whole body out, and puts little stress on your joints. Also the water supports your weight, giving you a temporary reprieve from feeling ungainly as your belly gets bigger.
Yoga and stretching: They help you let go of tension and keep you flexible, calm and strong.
Activities to avoid
Sports that involve high risks, such as scuba diving, and activities with a potential for hard falls, such as horseback riding, downhill skiing, snowboarding, and waterskiing, are off-limits to pregnant women.
Certain kinds of exercise, such as bike riding, should be postponed until the baby’s born.
Pregnancy isn’t the right time to start running, however, if you used to run regularly before getting pregnant, it will be fine, but make sure to modify your running routine during pregnancy, though, so talk to your doctor first.
After the first trimester, sit-ups and other exercises done while lying flat on your back can make you feel dizzy and decrease the blood flow to your uterus. So make sure you avoid these workouts.
Weight lifting and standing in the same place for long times can decrease the blood flow to your baby as well. So keep moving and switch positions or simply step back and forth.
If you notice any of the following signs while working out, stop immediately and contact your health provider:
- dizziness or feeling faint
- muscle weakness
- chest pain
- calf pain or swelling
- vaginal bleeding
- contractions (preterm labor)
- fluid leaking from your vagina
- decreased fetal movement
- rapid heartbeat while at rest