Are you expecting? Congratulations! Yes your life is about to change but the new addition will make it some much more memorable. but before baby arrives your body is going to go through significant change on its own. Wondering if you can still exercise? Not too sure about what you should be doing/avoiding…keep reading to find out.
The day I found out I was pregnant with my first I scratched the side of my car. I was waiting to tell my husband after he returned from work. I knew this meant change and I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. Luckily I had enrolled in the Girls Gone Strong Pre & Post natal course and as my body grew and changed so did my knowledge of what was possible.
So can you exercise? Yes, it is actually one of the main things I would recommend. I found it helped massively with my symptoms, it helped me feel normal and also build my fitness for the big day. It also meant I was able to return to exercise quicker after the birth but for the moment lets talk pregnancy.
Trimester 1- so this was pretty much work away as normal. Firstly make sure you have the go ahead from your GP to exercise! Once you have the next important thing is to LISTEN to your body! I mean some days you feel like you can take on the world, other days walking up the stairs might tire you. So if you feel comfortable doing certain exercises go forth and beast it. The only exercises I avoided during this time were ab crunches and lying flat on my back for long periods. Planks are ok if there is no pulling on the stomach. Some of you might feel naseau, dizziness, weakness and tiredness this is normal. Now is the time to start those pelvic floor exercises. Learn how to engage and strengthen the PFM before birth to make things 10 times easier after. Again listen to your body or work with a coach to help you navigate through these periods.
Trimester 2- The dream trimester! For a few glorious weeks you will feel like your old self (apart from the growing bump) and again you can work away with exercise provided it is comfortable. You can always adapt certain exercises e.g. increase the incline on your bench press so there is less pressure on your back. Avoid any exercises lying on your back or that cause doming in your stomach; so planks/deadlifts or pushups may need to be altered here. You may feel like your joints are getting looser as the hormone relaxin is released in the body to prepare you for birth. Just know you limits and LISTEN to your body!
Trimester 3- Slow down, just as you were starting to enjoy the pregnancy you enter the 3rd trimester. Everything including your movements start to slow down. Fatigue/naseau and other symptoms may return. Now is not the time to be hitting PB’s in the gym and some exercises will just feel uncomfortable. This is when you use exercise to maintain mobility, strength and focus on enjoying the activity rather than what you accomplish in the gym. Rest when necessary and focus on those all important Pelvic FLOOR MUSCLES.
If you would like to work with Cathy to help you stay active throughout your pregnancy please fill out this form