Pregnancy workout is defined as a regular exercise routine you carry out or perform as an expectant mother.
First and foremost, maintaining a consistent exercise routine throughout your pregnancy can help to keep you healthy and at your best. Regularly engaging in pregnancy workouts can make your posture better and reduce discomforts like fatigue and backaches. From studies, physical activities might prevent gestational diabetes (diabetes that develops during pregnancy), relieve stress, and increase your stamina needed for labor and delivery.
Furthermore, if you were physically active before your pregnancy, you should be able to continue your activity moderately. Do what’s most comfortable for you now instead of exercising at your former level. Preferably, engage in low impact aerobics instead of high impact. If you’re a pregnant competitive athlete, you should be closely monitored by an obstetrician.
Again, if you were not exercising regularly before, you can safely begin an exercise program during pregnancy. However, that will be after consulting with your health care provider. Do well to stay away from any new, strenuous activity. Walking is seen as a safe exercise to initiate when pregnant.
Who Is Exempted From A Pregnancy Workout?
Pregnancy workouts might be harmful if you have any of these pregnancy-related conditions below:
- Bleeding or spotting
- Low placenta
- Threatened or recurrent miscarriage
- Previous premature births or history of early labor
- Weak cervix
Furthermore, before you begin a workout program, talk with your health care provider. Putting your medical history into consideration, your health care provider can also give you personal exercise guidelines.
Which Exercise Is Safe To Use For A Pregnancy Workout?
It is safe to perform most exercises during pregnancy if you exercise with caution and do not overdo them.
Brisk walking, indoor stationary cycling, swimming, step or elliptical machines, and low-impact aerobics (taught by a certified aerobics instructor) are the safest and most productive workouts. This is because they have little risk of injury, benefit your entire body, and can be continued until you give birth.
Also, tennis and racquetball are generally safe activities. However, changes in balance during pregnancy may affect quick movements. You can moderately do other activities like jogging, especially if you were doing them before your pregnancy. You may want to engage in exercises that do not need great balance or coordination, especially later in pregnancy.
To learn strength and toning exercises that are safe to do during pregnancy, see The Very Best Pregnancy Workouts You Definitely Never Knew
Which Exercises Should Not Be Added To a Pregnancy Workout?
Certain exercises and activities can be harmful if you carry them out during pregnancy. Some of these exercises are:
- Activities where you are likely to fall like skiing and horseback riding.
- Contact sports such as basketball, softball, volleyball, and football.
- Exercises that may cause even mild abdominal trauma like activities that include jarring motions or rapid changes in direction.
- Holding your breath during any activity.
- Activities that require bouncing, hopping, extensive jumping, skipping, or running.
- Waist-twisting movements while standing.
- Bouncing while stretching.
- Double leg raising, deep knee bends, full sit-ups, and straight-leg toe touches.
- Intense exercise spurts followed by long periods without activity.
- Hot, humid weather exercises.
What Should a Pregnancy Workout Consist Of?
A pregnancy exercise program should strengthen and condition your muscles for you to be totally fit.
To begin with, always start by warming up for five minutes and stretching for five minutes. Also, you can add at least fifteen minutes of cardiovascular activity. Don’t forget to measure your heart rate at times of peak activity. After aerobic activities, you can add five to ten minutes of gradually slower exercise that ends with gentle stretching.
Below are some basic exercise guidelines for pregnant women:
- Wear comfortable clothes that have loose fitting as well as a good support bra.
- Choose shoes designed for the type of exercise you do. Wearing the right shoes are your best protection against injury.
- Exercise on level flat surfaces to prevent injury.
- Make sure you consume enough calories to meet the needs of your pregnancy. Thus, you should consume 300 more calories per day than before you were pregnant. This also meets the needs of your exercise program.
- Finish eating at least one hour before exercising.
- Drink water before, during, and after your workout.
- Get up slowly and gradually to prevent dizziness after doing floor exercises.
- Do not exercise to the point of exhaustion. While exercising, if you cannot talk normally, you are probably over-exerting yourself and should slow down your activity.
What Pregnancy Changes May Affect Your Pregnancy Workout?
During pregnancy, you’ll experience physical changes that create extra demands on your body. Bearing the changes listed below, remember that you need to listen to your body at all times. Again, adjust your activities or exercise routine as necessary.
- Your developing baby and other internal changes need more energy and oxygen.
- Hormones produced during pregnancy causes your ligaments that support your joints to stretch. This increases the risk of injury.
- The extra weight and the uneven distribution of your weight shift your center of gravity. Also, this extra weight puts stress on joints and muscles in the lower back and pelvic area and makes it easier for you to lose your balance.
How Quickly Can I Exercise After Delivery?
The best thing is to seek advice from your healthcare provider. They’re in a better place to tell you how soon you can begin your exercise routine after delivering your baby.
Although you may be eager to get in shape quickly, gradually go back to your pre-pregnancy fitness routines. Adhere to your health care provider’s exercise recommendations.
Again, a lot of women can carry out low-impact activities one to two weeks safely after vaginal birth or three to four weeks after a cesarean birth. Also, do about half of your normal floor exercises and don’t try to overdo them.
Pregnancy workouts are very helpful for any expectant mother. However, be in constant touch with your health practitioner and your gym instructor so you can do exactly what your body requires. Also, make sure you use the right outfits for your pregnancy workout, it’s important!