If you are an avid exerciser, pregnancy might feel like a huge roadblock. But there is no reason you should give up something you love so much!
The fact is, you SHOULD exercise during pregnancy. Working out can do wonders for your expanding body. Yes, staying active is vital for a healthy pregnancy. Even if you are a novice to the exercise world, pregnancy is a good time to take the plunge.
But are all exercises equally good? What exercises are not safe during pregnancy? If these questions are keeping you from working out, fret no more! This article will answer all the questions zipping through your mind!
Benefits Of Exercising During Pregnancy:
Why should you work out while pregnant? Well, there are scores of reason for it! Some of the major benefits of chalking out a pregnancy workout plan includes:
1. Keeps Pregnancy Discomfort Away:
Pregnancy is the time when your body feels heavy and uncomfortable. It also brings a horde of uncomfortable symptoms to the fore. Work
2. Keeps Weight Under Check:
You need to gain weight during pregnancy. But if you are already overweight, you may want to keep a tab on your weight gain. Working out can help you manage your pregnancy weight better.
[ Read: Is It Safe To Lift Weights During Pregnancy ]
3. Helps You Sleep Better:
Sleep is one of the biggest victim during pregnancy. If you work out, you can ensure better sleep at night.
4. Boosts Your Confidence:
The changes happening in your body can take a toll on your confidence level. Exercising can give your self-esteem a helping hand.
5. Makes Labor Easy:
Working out can make the whole birthing process easier.
6. Prevents Gestational Diabetes (GD):
If you are worried about developing gestational diabetes, start working out! Exercising during pregnancy can keep blood sugar levels in check and can prevent GD (1).
7. Helps Develop Fetal Brain:
Working out during pregnancy not just helps you but also helps your unborn baby! Exercising is shown to improve brain development in the growing fetus (2).
8. Helps You Get Back In Shape:
One of the biggest struggles after giving birth, apart from sleep deprivation, is losing the pregnancy weight. Working out during pregnancy will make losing weight that much easier.
9. Reduces Risk Of Pregnancy Induced High Blood Pressure:
Some experts also believe that exercise could help reduce the risk of pregnancy-induced high blood pressure and keep your body in shape to prepare it for labor and delivery (3)
These were just few of the reasons why you should work out while pregnant. But before you do, consult your doctor. Once he gives you the green signal, find a good instructor and start moving your body! But wait! Your body is now different. Not all your pre-pregnancy favorite exercises are suitable for your changing body.
[ Read: Kegel Exercise During Pregnancy ]
8 Exercises To Avoid During Pregnancy:
There are some exercises that just don’t work with your pregnant body. Here’s a list of what exercises to avoid when pregnant:
1. Sit Ups Or Crunches:
Before pregnancy, these two amazing exercises must have found a place in your workout regimen. But it is time to take a break from them! Your body is just not the same now. Sit-ups or crunches are not good choices when your abdominal muscles are already so stretched!
2. High Intensity Interval Workouts:
High-intensity interval workouts are not for everyone, no matter how good they are for your body. When you are pregnant, these workouts can prove to be extremely dangerous. These workouts can put pressure on your heart, which can prove to be risky. This is because your heart is already working hard to pump 30% more blood for your changing body. Here’s a simple test to check if your heart is beating too fast – if you can carry out a conversation while exercising, your heart is doing okay (4)!
3. Over-head Shoulder Press:
Here’s another pre-pregnancy favorite you’ll have to give up! As your belly expands, it puts extra stress on your lower back. Doing over-head shoulder press during this time is not a good idea as it can put excessive strain on your back.