Women in Chamblee, GA, hundreds of years ago didn’t have to worry whether a workout was harmful if they were pregnant. For our ancestors, daily life was a long, extended workout that started at dawn and ended at dusk or later. Women have always been active during pregnancy, but that was because life demanded it. By the 1940s and 50s, much of that had changed. Many labor-saving devices developed and women’s work wasn’t as physically taxing. Today, exercise is often added to the “to-do” list. That makes exercising during pregnancy a little scary and is part of the reason there are so many myths about it.
Can you exercise while pregnant if you’ve never worked out previously?
The best time to start exercising is as soon as possible, pregnant or not. The difference is the type of exercise you do. If you’re not pregnant and have no health issues, it’s a green light for almost any activity. However, if you’ve never worked out previously you need to ease into exercise. Moderate exercises, like walking, water exercises, or pregnancy yoga are beneficial. Doing 150 minutes a week is healthy.
It’s different if you’ve always exercised.
If you’ve led an active lifestyle, don’t stop. Some activities, especially contact sports or ones that jar the body, should be evaluated. A few of these might include basketball, skiing, or volleyball. Avoid exercises that put stress on your abdomen if you work out at home or in the gym. Some of these include full sit-ups, leg lifts, and deep knee bends. The more active you were before getting pregnant, the more active you can remain. Most research indicates that if you’ve always included high-intensity aerobic workouts in your regimen, it won’t cause complications.
There are always exceptions to the rule.
During pregnancy, listening to your doctor is vital for your health and the baby’s health. If you have a preexisting condition such as diabetes or heart disease, never attempt exercise before consulting your doctors. Anyone with a history of miscarriage, spotting, or a weak cervix also should listen closely to medical recommendations, even when considering light exercise.
- Avoid exercises that require balance. Your center of gravity changes so it can increase the potential of falling. If you ride a bike, make it a stationary bike in your home or the gym.
- Even if you’ve exercised regularly before getting pregnant, always discuss it with your healthcare professional. It’s better to err on the side of caution than increase the potential of a health risk for you or your baby.
- Regular exercise is beneficial if you’re pregnant. It can help you and your baby be healthier. It can lower the risk of high blood pressure and gestational diabetes. It makes delivery easier.
- Avoid certain types of exercises, such as those that make you twist at the waist, bounce, or incur high impact. If you’re doing stretches, avoid holding your breath. It can increase pressure on the abdomen.
For more information, contact us today at Thrive Fitness Atlanta