Pregnancy fitness in the three trimesters
Expecting a baby, whether it's your first or fifth is a different experience for every woman. It's common to be apprehensive about what exercise you can do to maintain your fitness during your pregnancy. That's why we've asked pregnancy fitness expert Lorraine Scapens to help!
Lorraine Scapens is the founder of Pregnancy Exercise, she has more than 20 years experience training pre and post natal clients and has put together 3 amazingly helpful guides, one for each trimester of pregnancy:
Pregnancy Exercises First Trimester - your attitude to pregnancy fitness should be the same as any approach to fitness - it entirely depends on your regular level of activity. If you live an active lifestyle, getting pregnant doesn't mean you have to stop all exercise, but you may have to make some changes.
As any mum-to-be will tell you, the first trimester can be like having a 24/7 hangover without enjoying the party! If you're suffering severely from morning sickness and general nausea, you may want to step back your exercise intensity.
The hormonal changes in the first trimester will be the biggest challenge to your activity levels, rather than physical changes to your body.
Pregnancy Exercises Second Trimester - contrary to what you may have assumed, it is actually easier to stay active in your second trimester than your first. Your body has adjusted to the changes going on and you'll be less fatigued.
Lorraine says "it is not unusual for exercising mums to not look pregnant until well after 20 weeks" - check out some of her ladies in training:
Pregnancy Exercises Third Trimester - this is the period during pregnancy when you will have the biggest physical changes to your body, if you feel you can exercise then there are many benefits to doing so.
You are more likely to feel tired in the third trimester but here are a few reasons why it's worth exercises up to your due date:
- Can reduce labour time by up to 2 hours
- Reduces the stress on your baby during labour- your baby has adapted to the good stress of exercise so he/she is less stressed during labour
- Reduces the need for medical intervention by 30%
- Reduces the chance of a ‘C’ section by 30%
- Prepares you physically and mentally for labour
- Increases how quickly you recover post birth
- Exercise pre and post pregnancy has also been shown to reduce post natal depression
Her 5 key points she addresses are:
- Pelvic Floor
- Pelvic Instability
- History of running
The most important thing covered in all these guides is self-awareness - are you comfortable with the levels of activity? Listen to your body and remember that this is not the time to be striving for a new PB!
If you are expecting a baby, join the Pregnancy Fitness Tribe to get support and advice from other Tribesports Mums.
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