Happy Fitness Friday! Today I’m bringing you a great guest post on staying fit during pregnancy! I have been pregnant twice. Once I was very active and once I was not – exercise makes a huge difference so this is a topic near and dear to my heart. Enjoy! 🙂 -Erin
Why Pregnancy Is Not The Time To Make Excuses
We all know maintaining an exercise program and/or routine is huge and greatly affects the body. Working out clears the brain, enhances the body’s performance, and increases an individual’s self-confidence. If all this is true, then why don’t more people workout?
Time and habit. Life gets in the way, we lose track, and eventually it becomes weeks, months, and years since that last workout. Backaches, knee problems, hip issues, and neck pain seem to settle in and for many, that becomes the norm.
Hold the phone. This does not have to be the case. I am a huge advocate for pushing the body, maintaining a daily exercise regimen, and fighting for you goals. The body will go as far as the mind is determined. Don’t limit yourself.
I have always been a fitness kind of girl. But I grew up in that kind of environment so it comes easy and natural for me. I am now a mother and my second child is due next month. Many would say that I have every excuse in the book to give up my workout routine because 1. I am a busy momma and 2. my body is already working twice as hard by creating a human being.
So what. I’m pregnant. That only means my body is a temporary home for my child. My child doesn’t hinder my abilities to continue working out. My child also doesn’t stop me from continuing a healthy lifestyle.
I am currently 35 weeks pregnant. I still squat, do push-ups, lift weights, perform moderate cardio, and feed my body with healthy nutrients.
Pregnancy Is Not A Handicap!
Pregnancy is not a handicap. Exercising during this time of your life is crazy important because your body is already undergoing a great deal of change. If you’ve been pregnant at least once then you know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s so easy to become frustrated with yourself because of the rapid weight gain, the exhaustion, and food cravings. You almost feel as if you have no control over your body.
Moms and moms to be, this is why I strongly encourage you to either keep up your workout routine throughout pregnancy or begin one. Besides feeling like you’ve lost your body completely, exercising during pregnancy aids with common aches and pains and can also help relieve nausea. I found this to be true for both of my pregnancies. Whenever I feel my back give out I do a moderate workout and cool down with 10-20 minutes of prenatal yoga.
Keeping up with a regular exercise routine will also slow down the weight gain. Exercise will tone the muscles, as well as promote strength and endurance, all super important for labor and delivery. And as for the number one motivation (at least for me), regular activity will make it easier for you to jump back after pregnancy. I experienced this with my son. Because who doesn’t want to fit right back into their jeans as soon as possible?!
Listen To Your Body
Of course I want you to listen to your body and I do this every single day. Some days I feel up for jump squats and other days I modify the move. Pregnancy isn’t the time to lose weight or cause injuries just to reach your goals from pre-pregnancy. Pregnancy is a beautiful season of life. Keeping up with a moderate exercise regimen 4-5 times a week will improve your overall health and help you jump right back into pre-pregnancy mode.
A few exercises I do on a weekly basis are squats, lunges, upper body exercises (i.e. shoulder presses, bicep curls, tricep extensions, back rows), calf raises and my abdominals. I work from the obliques and not the front abs directly as that could injure you more than do any good. The goal is to maintain your fitness level and not overexert to make a point. A guideline that I have followed throughout this entire pregnancy is if I can carry a normal conversation during my exercise routine, then I am in the safe zone with my heart rate.
You Are Worth It
Exercise during pregnancy is beneficial for both you and your baby. Besides maintaining a healthy and active lifestyle, you are also doing something for you—super important. Make time for you because you are worth it and pregnancy is and should be a special time of your life feeling vibrant and beautiful.
Thanks for sharing your story and advice Vanessa! 🙂
Author Bio: Vanessa is a crazy active mom to an 18 month old and soon baby #2. When she’s not blogging she loves to spend time with her family, workout, relax on the beach, and drink weird organic fermented juices.
Raise your hands fit mama’s! What was your favorite exercise during pregnancy?