Sometimes, despite knowing better, we still find excuses to do things differently. During pregnancy this tendency can easily grow: after all, it is the pregnant woman who is having a tough time and everyone has to be sweet to her. Being lazy during pregnancy is, therefore, the easiest thing a pregnant woman can do.
Moreover, your body will encourage you to be lazy and inactive as the changes within your body take a physical and mental toll. This doesn’t mean it is okay to skip or avoid being active during pregnancy!
In this post I will be sharing my experience and the benefits for you and your baby of an active pregnancy, but also how to get into and stay in “active mode,” when to take it easy, and some expert’s tips!
Are you ready for an active pregnancy? 🙂
Benefits for you
Being active during pregnancy doesn’t mean being in the gym 24/7. No! Absolutely, please don’t. It simply means that you keep an active lifestyle going, including sports, daily movements, going out, eating healthy. There are just some changes as you go further into your pregnancy.
For example, I used to do fitness and many group classes at my gym. However, at the end of the first trimester it became hard and it did not quite feel good anymore. I stopped going to the gym, but instead of that I started going on long walks and biking.
Then, in later stages of my pregnancy when biking was uncomfortable, I did more of swimming and prenatal yoga.
Moreover, I continued doing household chores and just tried to do as much as I could by myself.
As I am writing this, I am in the 39th week of pregnancy, and I am feeling super good, touch wood! I am sure that it really has to do with being active and not just lazing around…
Let me provide some benefits:
- You will experience fewer pregnancy ailments – I had no crazy craving, no pain (just a little in my back sometimes, as my tummy became bigger and bigger), no retained moisture, as a result of which:
- You will have more energy to do things you enjoy;
- You will be more relaxed in general;
- And, your mood will be better (almost no mood-swings).
- You will sleep better. As you are using your energy during the day, you will fall asleep much easier.
- You will gain weight in a much healthier and appropriate manner. Of course, you will still gain weight, there is a little human growing inside of you after all, but you won’t gain unnecessary weight:
- After birth, you will lose the weight gained much easier and quicker;
- And, your body will recover much faster and better.
- The stamina that you are keeping and building upon will help you when giving birth.
Benefits for the baby!
In addition to the immediate benefits to yourself, being in active mode also impacts the baby:
- No unnecessary complication during pregnancy or birth;
- Good blood circulation in placenta;
- And, less risk of chronic diseases.
Stop or reduce!
Now, it’s very, very, very important to understand that you have to listen to your own body (NO EXCEPTIONS)! There are a few guidelines that will help you understand and take action to either reduce or stop completely with a particular exercise or sport:
- When you are feeling nauseous, dizzy or have a headache – STOP;
- When you lose blood – STOP and contact your midwife;
- When any exercise just doesn’t feel good, in any way, look for an alternative;
- Exercises on one leg? Avoid, as joints are weaker.
Esther van Diepen, movement expert at Mom in Balance, wrote an article for the Dutch magazine Ouders van Nu. She pointed out some great tips for pregnant women, which I am sharing with you all:
- Keep a check on your body’s temperature, it should not rise too much;
- Train at max. 70%, you should be able to talk;
- Have lots of water, guideline: 1 glass of water for every 20 minutes of activity;
- Don’t do any sport/activity more than 1 hour a day;
- And don’t exhaust yourself, as your body needs energy the entire day.
Were you active during your pregnancy?
If so, how did it make you feel?
If you have questions, suggestions and/or something to share, mail me at: email@example.com