Whether you are a regular gym-goer or a complete beginner, pregnancy causes a lot of questions, especially when it comes to what is safe to do.
As a mum to be your journey starts the moment you find out you are pregnant and now it’s not just you need to look after:
1. We all start off pregnancy with our own level of fitness
So don’t take any notice of what others are doing but how you feel. Going on board with someone who knows what you should and shouldn’t be doing and has Pre-Natal qualifications. Always ensure you have your GP or Midwife’s consent that they are happy for you to exercise. Let your instructor or fitness professional know of anything that is causing you pain or is uncomfortable during pregnancy so they can give you adaptations or alternative exercises to do.
2. Ensure you keep the exercise within your RPE (Rate of Perceived Exhaustion)
Everyone is different depending on their fitness levels. Make sure you do not overexert yourself and that you can hold a conversation whatever exercise you are performing and that you are not overheating. Always stay well hydrated.
3. You can continue an exercise program if you worked out before.
And you can carry on as you were providing you are told you can by a medical professional and without contra-indications (low-risk pregnancy). If you are a newbie to the gym or exercise you can start a program with the correct and safe exercises – this is why it is best to go to a Pre Natal Coach, to guide you and ensure you are using the correct form and giving you a program that is suitable for you and your stage of pregnancy.
4. Only go to someone who has the knowledge so a Pre Natal Specialist
If you do decide to take up some new activity regardless of whether you were exercising before, ensure they have the relevant qualifications. Do your research to find the right Instructor or Coach!
5. Good exercise that you can do regardless of the trimester, without contra-indications is walking
Ensure you have a good supportive pair of shoes. Walking gets your heart rate up is great for strengthening the legs. Swimming is also another great exercise as it’s non-impact and exercises all muscles gently and can be really helpful for those aches and pains, taking the weight of your pelvis and back.
6. Any exercise that puts you at higher risk of injury, such as anything that can cause a fall
Ie. horse riding, martial arts, gymnastics, rugby, football – where there is more risk of knocking your growing bump.
We don’t really need to be starting serious hardcore ab workouts during pregnancy! Keeping the abdominals strong and working the pelvic floor and keeping the back strong is important but there are exercises that can be done that don’t involve crunches. This is another reason to be going to see a Pre Natal Specialist because they can give you the right exercises to strengthen the core, pelvic floor, and back. It is just important to be able to learn to breathe correctly through exercising, and someone with this knowledge will be able to help you with this too.
8. With the constant changes that occur throughout each trimester, it is really important to keep your Midwife or GP of any changes that you are noticing, any pain or issues you are having during exercise and inform your Pre Natal Specialist of this also.
They can then change or regress the exercise.
9. Always check that your instructor holds a Level 3 in Pre and Post Natal Certification.
To find the right person for you.
10. There is no reason why you can’t remain active during pregnancy
You do not need to go to a gym for this, there are instructors who will come to your home, who will do sessions online over zoom or the like. You can have outdoor workouts too.
11. It is really important to keep active during pregnancy
It releases Endorphins and will help you feel better and can help with any mental health issues, such as Pre or Post Natal Depression.