Exercising during pregnancy has wonderful results for your health. It improves your mood, helps you sleep better and reduces the aches and pains typical of pregnancy. It also "trains" you for labor, strengthening muscles and improving endurance, and makes you recover more quickly after the birth of your new baby.
Pregnancy consults also suggest that exercising during pregnancy may reduce the risk of you developing gestational diabetes and Precambrian. If you have been diagnosed with gestational diabetes, exercise may help you manage this condition and prevent complications.
There are so many benefits of physical cardio exercise that the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends healthy women who have not had complications in pregnancy, who try to do 20 to 30 minutes of moderate physical activity most or every day of the week.
The ideal physical activity is that which exercises the heart, keeps the body flexible, controls the weight gain and prepares the muscles for the physical demands of pregnancy and postpartum without this representing an exaggerated effort, neither for you nor for the baby.
Consult your doctor before starting any exercise program. When you have your thumbs-up, make sure you pay close attention to your body's signals and do not overdo it. If something hurts you or you feel uncomfortable, stop doing the exercise or activity.
Before putting on your sneakers, it is important to know the safety rules to exercise during pregnancy. Many gyms and community centers offer classes for pregnant women and have instructors who can guide you on what you can and can’t do.
The activities suggested below are usually safe for pregnant women, although some you can not do during the last months of pregnancy. Follow the links to learn more about each activity.
Walking: It is one of the best cardiovascular activities for pregnant women, and it keeps you fit without punishing your knees and ankles. Another advantage is that it can be done anywhere, does not require any special equipment other than a good pair of shoes, and is a form of safe exercise during the nine months of waiting.
Swimming: Doctors and physical trainers consider swimming the best exercise for pregnant women and also the safest. Swimming is ideal because it works the muscles of the legs and arms, offers cardiovascular benefits, reduces swelling and allows the pregnant woman to feel light in the water despite her weight gain. And if you have back pain, swimming could help you a lot.
Low-impact: aerobic exercises: Aerobic exercises strengthen the heart and tone muscles. Also, if you enroll in a special class for pregnant women, you will enjoy the company of other pregnant women and you will be sure that all movements are healthy for you and your baby.
Dancing: You can do beneficial exercise for the heart dancing to the rhythm of your favorite music in your own room, following the choreography of a DVD or enrolling in a dance class. The only thing you should avoid is the jumps and the pirouettes.
Running: Running is excellent for exercising the heart and increasing resistance during pregnancy. The intensity of your races will depend more than anything if you are a veteran or beginner runner. If you just started, go slowly and run short distances, to gradually reach 30 minutes.
Exercises of flexibility and strength
Yoga: Yoga exercises can help you strengthen your muscles and keep you flexible, with the advantage that they do not exert anything or almost no impact on the joints. However, if you want to work your heart too, you will have to add two or three days of walking or swimming in your weekly yoga exercise program.
Stretching: Stretching is great for maintaining elasticity, relaxing muscles and preventing injuries. The best way to finish your cardiovascular activity is doing some stretching exercises.
Exercises with weights: If you take the necessary precautions and take care of the technique, making slow and controlled movements, the exercises with weights will be an excellent way to tone and strengthen the muscles. Also, you will have stronger arms to carry your baby!