Image by: David Salafia
By Tallulah Ray
Exercise is important for any body type; even when you’re pregnant. It will help keep all of your parts running smoothly while you are taking in all of those extra calories for you and baby. The key to working-out while pregnant is to check with your physician before you do anything, and to make sure that you are choosing safe workouts so that no one gets hurt.
As your baby develops, it will get harder for you to find a safe workout that will keep your strength, energy, and fitness level up. So I’ve researched some of the safest exercises that you can do while in your final trimester of pregnancy.
But no matter how safe this is, it is still important for you to check with your physician before you start, to make sure that it is the right thing for you.
Before I get started, I wanted to make sure that you know some basic safety rules about exercising while pregnant.
Avoid contact sports or activities that could throw you off balance. Later in pregnancy, you should try to stick to stationary exercises (like a stationary bike instead of an actual bike). You could be the world’s most elegant ballerina but during pregnancy, even the most graceful are more susceptible to sprains and injury from falling because of how your body is changing for the impending birth. Because of that, warming up before exercise is especially important.
Wear the right clothes: breathable and in layers that you can take off if you get too warm. Getting too warm (especially in the first trimester while peanut is developing his/her organs) could harm your baby. Make sure that you drink plenty of water, cool down and warm up properly, and don’t overdo it.
If you are doing a floor exercise, make sure you get up from the floor slowly. Your center of gravity gets thrown off the more that peanut grows so you are more susceptible to falling or losing your balance.
The last thing is to make some of these following exercises a habit. Something like 30 minutes of one of these activities (or any moderate workout activity) a day, is healthy. But only if you get your physician’s approval.
Swimming is the favorite choice for healthcare providers and fitness experts because of its benefits and the comfort level for you. Swimming works your arms and legs, provides cardiovascular benefits, and helps keep you toned. You know the weightless feeling that you get when you’re underwater? That’s pretty helpful in relieving the weight of the extra pounds from pregnancy.
#2) Low Impact Aerobics
The awesome thing about doing low impact aerobics while pregnant is that there are classes that are strictly for moms-to-be so you can enjoy camaraderie and make some great friends while you are staying healthy for you and peanut. It also keeps your body toned, strengthens your heart, and is especially safe because there are people all around just in case something happens.
#3) Stretching, Yoga, and/or Pilates
All three has its benefits but for pregnancy, I’m favoring Yoga because it adds a couple extra elements to exercise that the other two don’t (meditation which exercises your spirit and mental well-being, and the flexibility of being able to change the workout to meet your needs).
Stretching is a general term and can be used as a warm-up activity to get your heart rate elevated and your joints moving but Yoga and Pilates are workout routines on their own. In addition, you might want to augment one of these with some walking or swimming to get a little more cardiovascular work.
I also suggest talking with your physician and also checking to see if there are any classes that are geared toward pregnant women. Don’t take regular yoga classes (unless you talk with your physician and yoga instructor) because it can be dangerous to stay in one position for too long. It can make you dizzy, decrease blood flow to your uterus, and cause blood to pool in your legs.
#4) Women’s Health Third Trimester Workout Routines
This article about third trimester strength training exercises was created by Galya Talkington, CPT. They asked her specifically to create a safe and healthy workout routine for women, late in their pregnancies. Pair it with this cardio workout and preceded by these warm-up exercises.
If you choose to do these exercises at home, I urge you to find someone to spot you. This would be a great bonding experience to share with your man or with your best friend. Although these exercises are designed for pregnant women, there is always a chance of you getting off balance or something else happening.