Reasons to exercise during pregnancy
Your body is going to undergo lots of changes during pregnancy! You’re going to have swollen feet and ankles, your breasts are going to feel tender and probably grow [a lot! that was the case with me anyway], and you’re going to have thicker and healthier hair. But the biggest change to your body that you’ll experience is that you’ll gain around 25 to 35 pounds! But it’s all for that sweet baby. 🙂
What can you do about it? You can exercise! You might be scared of moving around during pregnancy, but pregnancy experts actually recommend being physically active during pregnancy! If your doctor gives you the green light to exercise but you’re still having doubts, check out these many reasons women are encouraged to exercise during pregnancy. Obviously, you don’t want to lose weight while you’re pregnant unless your doctor has specifically advised you to do so, but you want to stay active. 🙂
Shorter labor and easier delivery
Being fit during pregnancy has been said to be associated with shorter labors and easier deliveries. This is because exercise strengthens your abs and your cardiovascular system, making it easier for you to push during childbirth.
Less weight gain
Research shows that pregnant women who work out gain less weight compared to pregnant women who don’t. As a matter of fact, there can be a difference of up to 6 pounds in weight gain between these two groups!
Lessens risk of sickness
Exercise lowers your risk of acquiring illnesses common to pregnant women. The immune system takes a hit during pregnancy, making women more susceptible to different infections. By exercising regularly and keeping fit, you can avoid sicknesses like gestational diabetes. Yay!
Less back pain
During the second trimester of pregnancy, most women report experiencing back pain. This back pain in the lower back is due to the added weight the body has to get accustomed to. But women who do yoga or perform exercises like pelvic tilts exercises are said to feel less pain compared to other women.
Less likely to get constipation
One of the changes your body undergoes during pregnancy is that your uterus will stretch itself to accommodate the baby. This, added to your body’s constantly fluctuating hormonal levels, is sure to get your intestinal tracts backed up. Truth is, a number of women experience constipation during pregnancy. Exercise plus a healthy, high-fiber diet will promote excretion and prevent painful constipation. Trust me, you don’t want to get constipated. BLAH.
Everyone knows pregnancy isn’t a walk in the park. The little baby you’re taking care of gets his/her nutrients from your diet, and his/her energy from yours. It doesn’t come off as a surprise that you will feel tired during your pregnancy. Exercise will not only improve your energy, but it will also revive your tired body! It always helped me during that mid-day slump when I was feeling exhausted.
Exercising during pregnancy helps your body in the long run! A study that followed women for 20 years after their pregnancy showed that those who exercised during pregnancy had stronger, healthier bodies. They could run faster and for longer periods of time.
Avoid assisted vaginal delivery
Studies have shown that pregnant women who exercise are less likely to need assisted vaginal delivery. This means they are less likely to need a forceps delivery, an episiotomy, or a C-section. Exercise will ensure you get a natural childbirth.
Did you follow an exercise routine during pregnancy, or if you’re pregnant now, have you been following a routine? I’d love to hear about how it helps/helped you!