Like most women, your main focus during pregnancy continues to be what is best for the baby.
You are probably thinking…
What will ensure my baby is the healthiest he/she can be? What could harm my baby?
But, you are probably also thinking…
How can I avoid being left with 60 pounds of baby weight once the baby is born?
It can be hard to maintain a healthy lifestyle and to continue to work out during pregnancy. Between swollen feet, extravagant cravings, fatigue and the other feelings that come with being pregnant – eating healthy and exercising might be the last thing on your mind.
Our “mom instinct” kicks in, and we go full-blown motherhood mode. We cut out physical activity and resort to couch and bed rest to avoid injuring ourselves.
Caution is good…
…However, there are far more benefits to exercising and staying active during your pregnancy than just an easy transition into the loss of the baby weight. Surprising enough, exercise is actually especially beneficial when you’re pregnant…
Keep you and your baby healthy with the benefits reaped from exercise and sports during pregnancy:
- Get an energy boost.It is no secret to us moms that pregnancy sucks the energy right out of you. You are literally growing a little human inside of you, and let’s face it, that is exhausting.
But a simple leisurely swim in the pool or a brisk walk on the treadmill can give you back some of that energy by strengthening your cardiovascular system. The strengthening of your cardiovascular system keeps you from tiring so easily.
- Lower your risk of certain pregnancy-related complications.Studies show that exercise during pregnancy can lower your risk of developing preeclampsia and gestational diabetes. Furthermore, it also lowers your risk of having a macrosomic (very large) newborn.
Just by exercising moderately three times per week, your risk of having a macrosomic newborn is reduced by 58 percent.
- Get a good night’s sleep.Pregnancy can lead to many sleepless nights as you struggle to find a comfortable sleeping position. However, when you exercise and use up your energy, you tire your body therefore luring yourself into a more restful sleep.
Furthermore, a good night’s sleep leads to several other beneficial side effects. If you are not sleeping enough you can have trouble with things such as stress management, depression, anxiety and other mental health issues.
Your body is already under enough stress and doing enough work – give yourself a break and help your body get some rest. It will help reduce your stress and lift your spirits.
- Prepare for childbirth.Think about it…
The better shape you are in, the stronger you will be when it comes time for labor and delivery. Sometimes giving birth can be like running a marathon – it requires focus, stamina, and determination.
The more you exercise, the more stamina and determination you will build up for childbirth.
- Get your pre-baby weight back faster.If you have spent the last nine months as a couch potato, your body will be in rough shape once your baby is finally born. It can be hard to get back in the routine of working out and using your muscles after such a long period of dormancy.
But, if you exercise during pregnancy you are less likely to gain excess weight and your body will have an easier time bouncing back afterwards. Exercise after your child is born can be key to eliminating any postpartum back pain you may be experiencing, and with 75% of women reporting to experience pain after giving birth it is a good idea to learn how to combat it now.
Pregnancy is a magical and exciting time for a woman. It is both beautiful and nerve-wracking, especially if it is your first child.
There are plenty of fears and misconceptions when it comes to pregnancy and what is good or bad. There are also several things that you think are unavoidable – stress, weight gain, fatigue.
However, with a little exercise, you can help your body overcome these pregnancy-related feelings, and be the healthiest you that you can be!