The general rule for exercise during pregnancy is that you can continue whatever you were doing before. This is not the time to add new strain to your body by deciding to run a marathon! Before starting or stopping any exercise regime, please discuss it with your doctor.
- Listen to your body. As your pregnancy progresses, you will have to slow down and preserve your energy.
- If something is uncomfortable or causes you pain, stop doing it and ask your doctor for advice.
- Make sure you get plenty of sleep and good nutrition to balance out the calories you burn through exercise.
- If you did not exercise regularly before you got pregnant, try to increase your activity level. Remember that the health and safe birth of your baby rely on your body to be working at its peak!
- It is recommended that you get 30 minutes of moderate exercise every day. This can be a walk with friends, a trip to the mall, or a stroll through the woods.
- Walking is the ideal exercise during pregnancy. It is gentle on your body and allows your heart and lungs to work harder without exhausting you. The motion of your hips while walking is soothing to your baby, and towards the end of pregnancy can help the baby wiggle into the best possible position for birth!
- Stretching is wonderful during pregnancy, as all of those muscles can get tired with the extra work of carrying a baby. Try doing some gentle stretching after you exercise and before you go to sleep at night.
- Exercise lowers your blood pressure and your blood sugar, both of which can be raised by pregnancy. Walking for 15 minutes after every meal is one of the best ways to avoid developing gestational diabetes, a dangerous condition where your body keeps too much sugar in your blood.
- Exercise also releases endorphins! Remember that all the hormones your body is making during your pregnancy get shared with your baby. If you are stressed, your baby will feel that stress too. Walking can help relieve stress, and those endorphins make your baby feel safe and loved.