Let’s talk about exercise during pregnancy, shall we? For eons women have been told that while pregnant essentially any form of physical activity was harmful. Well, now we know better! While there is a wealth of helpful information available to you, including in some of the great books we have in the Freedom lending library, I thought it might be helpful to have some very basic info collected together for you. Peruse through is see what might be useful.
- For starters, exercise should be something you do that brings comfort and joy. Healthy activity and movement helps with swelling, stiffness, constipation, energy, and overall happiness! What’s not to love! If activity is too rigorous, it will probably not be a great source of joy, so that’s probably a tipoff from your body to take it easy!
- Breathing is key. Whenever you engage in physical activity it is necessary to be mindful of breath, and when you have a baby on board this takes on special significance. Breathing helps you maintain balance on a chemical level that has significant repercussions for your overall wellbeing. You should avoid any activity that is so strenuous that it makes you breath rapidly or without ease. If your heart rate is getting really elevated (you know that feeling right? That rabbit-bouncing-around-in-your-chest feeling…), it’s no longer helpful, and you should take some time to relax and normalize your breathing.
- So let’s get specific. Some awesome physical activities for any mama-to-be are those that are easy on joints, focus your breathing, have a certain level of simplicity. Some top choices you may consider are: SWIMMING, WALKING and YOGA! Not only do they naturally hit all the points I mentioned above, but they also help create balance, especially yoga. Did you know that “yoga” actually means “union”? That is, yoga aims to create a union between a soul and the universe, as well as uniting the soul and body of an individual. It probably even helps to bond the union you have with the little one inside of you. It’s no wonder that yoga was created as a preparation for prayer! Whatever you choose, routine is a must. Exercising 2-4 times a week is great!
- Now that we’ve looked at some main things to DO, let’s just briefly visit a short of list of important things that are best NOT to do. While pregnant, your joints are extra soft and flexible, a part of your body’s preparation for birth. But when you are exercising it is helpful to be mindful of this, so that you don’t stretch too much. During yoga, for example, when you are moving into different positions, don’t go past a point of ease. You’ll be feeling it in the morning otherwise… Another thing is to be ever mindful of posture. Try and always have your back remain as straight as possible. If you let your belly lead too much, it’ll give you a killer backache! No one wants that. One more thing is to try to avoid exercise that might cause abdominal strain. Basketball is an example of this, because as you twist and jump it may cause undue stress on your abdominal muscles. No fun for anyone.
- Even if you’re not doing some formal exercise, keep your body in motion. Walking around the kitchen while you cook up some lunch is better than standing in one spot for long. When you’re on your feet do your best to keep moving.
- Last, but certainly not least is this—REST! Remember that activity should always be balanced with rest. If you’re exhausted and you’re scheduled for a yoga workout, skip it. Balance is multifaceted, and this is yet another expression of that.
All right! That’s what I’ve got for ya. If you have any questions about this or anything else bring them up during our next appointment!