Pregnancy is something many women face in fear. What is going to happen to my body? How do I continue my workouts in a safe manner? Will I have to stop working out and give up all my hard work? These are a few questions many of us face. The answer is NO, but you do have to modify your workouts to work for you and your baby.
Creating a new life is such an amazing experience and it doesn’t have to be so daunting. When you learn to listen to your body and go with how you feel, you will find that you don’t have to stop working out. Consider a few of my pregnancy pointers and circuit workout and embrace your once-in-a-lifetime experience. Remember that not every pregnancy is the same so go with how you feel and trust in the process!
Gina’s Pregnancy Pointers
Always consult your doctor, as every pregnancy and person is different!
Listen to your body! Although your doctor can provide you with their opinion about exercising, your body knows best! If there is an exercise a doctor says you can do but it is uncomfortable, listen to yourself. On the other side, remember your own exercise experience before your pregnancy, and remember that often doctors are speaking to the “average” woman. Are you average?
Stick to a regular routine, especially if you had one prior to your pregnancy! It’s definitely healthy to exercise while you are pregnant. As much as possible, you want to stick to a regular routine. This helps to maintain the rhythms of your body. Starting and stopping exercise throughout a pregnancy is much harder on the body than simply maintaining a routine throughout your pregnancy. Of course, you will need to adapt or scale down your exercise routine as your body gets bigger with the baby, but setting and sticking to a workout schedule is a smart choice.
Go slowly. You can probably still continue to do many of the forms of exercise that you already enjoy. However, you want to take it more slowly than usual. Slowing down will make all of your actions more fluid and safer for your body. Slowing down will also help you with the process of tuning into your body so that you can immediately sense if something is wrong. I suggest no crazy CrossFit-style workouts.
Stay cool. Paying attention to the temperature when you exercise is a smart thing for pregnant women. You want to make sure that you don’t overheat your body. This can lead to exhaustion and problems with your body. Make sure that you wear breathable clothing that will prevent overheating. Pay attention to the temperature in the room or outside when you are working out. If you start to feel too hot, do your cooldown exercises and rest until another time. If you are into hot yoga, I suggest you put this aside during your pregnancy.
As pregnancy continues to develop, especially after the first trimester, women shouldn’t lie on their stomachs, nor do they want to lie flat on their backs without support. Be aware of abdominal exercises where you are lying on your back. It is important to avoid abrupt twisting movements as well, especially while standing. Leg raises and any lower abdominal exercises should be avoided.
Tone it down when you get further along in the pregnancy. Be aware of the fact that you are probably going to need to reduce the amount of exercise that you do as the baby’s due date gets closer. This is due to your own physical limitations as well as the increased risk for pre-term labor among highly active women. Listen to your body and tone down your workouts, even if you feel you are capable of still going intense!
It is suggested that pregnant women be cautious of plyometric, fast jumping, hopping, bouncing or running during pregnancy, especially after the first trimester. If you were a runner, running while listening to your body may be OK, but it wouldn’t be the best idea to take up running upon getting pregnant.
Breathe! It is so important, always, but especially while pregnant to be conscious of your breath and focus on breathing during exercise.
Remember, every woman and every pregnancy is different, so use basic guidelines and listen to your doctor. But remember that there is no perfect pregnancy guidebook that works for everyone. You know your body best! Continue exercising, unless advised by a doctor not to. Even if you have to scale down your exercise routine, something is always going to be better than nothing, unless advised by your doctor.
Gina’s Pregnancy Circuit
Repeat 3 times