If you are newly pregnant and have discovered the joys of exercise for the
first time, you should seek medical advice and be careful when choosing
the type of exercise you do.
Not only will exercise during pregnancy increase your stamina, it will also
reduce the risk of excess weight gain during the months leading up to delivery.
In order to maintain a healthy weight you need to burn excess calories.
Not only will exercise do this, but it also boosts the calorie burner -
the metabolism. So even when you're not exercising, you will still be burning
lots of extra calories!
Research has shown that exercise improves the labour process. Women who
regularly exercised during pregnancy were shown to have easier, shorter
labours and use less medical help than those women that didn't exercise.
Exercise helps to relax both the body and mind. This will be important during
the last 3 months of pregnancy, as the final trimester usually sees the
mother having problems with sleep. Exercising may allow you to experience
less sleep related problems as training promotes positive hormone release,
which in turn allows you to unwind, stay calm and enjoy regular sleeping
Exercise in general helps to regulate core body temperature. This is extremely
important during pregnancy as this regulation will allow the foetus to develop
at a normal - or even increased - rate.
Research has shown that the babies of exercising mothers have higher IQ's
than babies of mothers who don't.
Before exercising please speak to your GP of physician.
1. During pregnancy, never push yourself to hard - during pregnancy, a good
rule of thumb is to never increase your exercise intensity or resistance
weights. Maintaining your shape and fitness will be the key, not development.
2. Resistance training should focus on toning the upper body and abdominal
wall. To maintain a healthy back, avoiding excessive lifting above the head.
3. As of 4-5 months all exercises performed flat on your back should be
avoided! For some of you, this may mean becoming more adventurous!
4. Perform lots of stretching after exercise. This will maintain and even
improve the elasticity of your muscles.
5. In general, pregnant women should exercise 3 times a week, using both
resistance and aerobic based exercises. The aerobic exercise shouldn't exceed
140 beat per minute.
Have a healthy pregnancy
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