If you are reading this article then a congratulations is probably in order. You are well on your way to motherhood and with a bit of luck you are thrilled at the thought. One concern many mothers-to-be share is how they are going to keep their fitness level up during their pregnancy. Particularly during the advanced stages of a pregnancy, staying active can be a challenge. Fortunately, there are plenty of exercises out there that are suitable for expecting women, right up until the day the baby is born. The most important thing is that you take it easy and do not over-exert yourself as this could jeopardise both your own health and that of the baby.
Here are five exercises you can do to stay fit while you are pregnant.
While running is not the best idea, brisk walking is fantastic. You get to be outdoors, breathing in healthy gulps of fresh air, and your heart rate will be elevated for a sustained period of time. Grab your iPod and pump some tunes as you power walk through your local park or even just around the town. If you can do this for 30 minutes at least five times a week, you will maintain a good level of fitness throughout your pregnancy.
Swimming is the perfect exercise for pregnant women. It relieves your joints from any impact and works out virtually all of your muscles groups. You will be able to swim right up until the big day and, in fact, the bigger your bump grows, the more you will appreciate that weightless feeling you have in water. Swim lengths or join an aqua aerobics class if you want to work out with other people.
Pelvic Floor Exercises
This is far from a whole body work out, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t really important. Keeping your pelvic floor strong will prevent you from expelling small amounts of urine when you cough or sneeze. What’s more, having a strong pelvic floor can make sex more satisfying. Now are you convinced? To exercise this part of your body, sit or lie in a comfortable position and contract these muscles for ten seconds. It should feel like you are holding in a wee and wind at the same time.
Imagine cycling but without people getting in your way and the constant fear that you might fall off. Indoor cycling is perfect for pregnant women as it takes place within a controlled environment and keeps pressure off your joints, which are already under a lot of strain. As your bump grows, you will be able to adjust the bike height as well as the resistance to match your needs.
Yoga is a gentle form of exercise that will strengthen your body without endangering your precious bump. There are all kinds of different positions you can try without your belly getting in the way. If you are new to yoga, you can still take classes, but make sure not to go too hard. There is a strong focus in yoga on breathing and keeping your core strong.