Pregnancy and exercise
Unless advised by the doctor or a medical specialist to not exercise, it is not only safe but indicated to exercise or at least keep active throughout the pregnancy.
There is strong evidence that baby’s brain develops better if the mother is active during the pregnancy but also that the mother recovers quicker after giving birth.
It is perfectly normal for the expecting mother to experience some weight gain – as this is going to help with breastfeeding later on – and although the body weight still needs monitoring, pregnancy it is not the right time to take drastic measures to lose weight.
In the meantime, “I need to eat for 2 now” – it is also not justified because the calorie intake really changes only in the last trimester when your little one is ready to come into this world and he or she will need no more than roughly 300 kcal extra.
Harvard Medical School published in an article from January 2020 that “exercise during pregnancy it is not only safe, it is encouraged” and exercising during pregnancy was proven to reduce:
· weight gain
· the risk of gestational diabetes
· the risk for caesarean delivery
· Postpartum depression and anxiety.
Of course there are some limitations too and pregnancy should not be the time when the mother starts running marathons, takes up powerlifting or gets in the ring to practice new mixed martial arts moves, but rather maintains in good health and even expect a drop in fitness level – especially in 3rd trimester - due to the, totally normal and expected, physiological changes within the body.
The general rule of thumb of exercising while pregnant is that you should be able to talk - as in a normal conversation – when exercising and chose low impact exercise regime.
If you were not active at all before the pregnancy, then starting gently and building up slowly is the safest option to maintain healthy.
If in doubt of what to do exercise wise and not sure what exercise you should or should not do – always best to get in contact with a Pre & Post Natal qualified personal trainer.