Information about developing or maintaining a fit body is coming to us daily. This is no different during pregnancy, however, it can be more difficult to stay active and make healthy choices because of your physical, and at times mental, health. We stimulate to keep moving in pregnancy anyway, why? Read this blog!
What are the benefits?
Research has shown that women who remain active throughout their pregnancy:
- Limit their weight gain;
- Suffer less from low back and pelvic pain;
- Feel mentally better;
- Sleep better;
- Maintain or even improve their physical fitness;
- Are probably less likely to develop a pre-eclampsia (especially when you were working out before and during the first trimester of pregnancy).
This means that you start your delivery more fit, which will benefit your childbirth! For women with a BMI >= 25, the mentioned benefits are even stronger. And they also reduce the risk of gestational diabetes when they stay or become active during pregnancy.
Not for every pregnancy and pregnant woman it is encouraged to stay active due to pregnancy complications. Do you have doubts? Discuss it with us!
How active should you be?
To what extent you can and may remain active varies per woman, and may vary per pregnancy. Some women who are used to run several times a week before pregnancy can keep up this routine until 38 weeks of pregnancy. For others, their body is protesting and a step back must be done earlier in pregnancy. The most important thing is to listen to your body, try to keep your physical fitness level without wanting to improve it during pregnancy.
Don’t be surprised if you feel short of breath, this is due to the changes in your body. While working out it is wise to do the ‘talk test’. Still capable to talk while moving? Then your heart rate is acceptable. During pregnancy, sports like walking, swimming and cycling are recommended. On YouTube you can also find suitable ‘prenatal workouts’. With half an hour of daily exercise and a little more intensive sports twice a week, you’re doing a great job. It is better to avoid contact sports, and other sports where there is a risk on a ball in your abdomen, or where you can easily fall.
It is also good to realize that not every woman can control her weight gain. Some women retain more moisture and store more fat reserves than others with the same living pattern and diet. Your body is working hard to grow a child (or several children), which is the ultimate goal. Always keep that in mind. Good luck ladies! 🙂
Source: Up Until 2019. Artal R, Lockwood C, Fricker P, Bars V. Exercise during pregnancy and the postpartum period.