Wellness Embodied Blog

We are discussing all about exercise during pregnancy!

 

Congratulations! You may be expecting 🙂 

There are a lot of misconceptions surrounding this topic, as a lot of people may think that it is unsafe to exercise at all whilst pregnant.

We are going to bust a few myths related to exercise during pregnancy!

🔹 Exercise is harmful to your baby
🔴 BUSTED – exercise is not harmful to your baby provided that you follow advice from your healthcare professional, and follow recommended guidelines on how to exercise safely

🔹 If I haven’t exercised before, I shouldn’t start exercising during pregnancy
🔴 BUSTED – if you have been cleared for exercise by your health professional, you may start light to moderate intensity exercise provided that you begin gradually. Begin with walking and some light weight resistance exercises or gentle stretching and always listen to your body!

🔹 Walking is the only safe form of exercise that I can do
🔴 BUSTED – there are lots of different forms of exercise that are recommended and “safe” during pregnancy. These include walking, stationary cycling, aerobic exercise, resistance training, hydrotherapy and general stretching!

If you are unsure about exercising during pregnancy, it is important that you speak to a qualified health professional about ways that you can exercise safely! Remember (if you have been cleared), exercise is healthy and recommended during pregnancy!

 

The warning signs that indicate that you should discontinue to exercise.

The following are warning signs to tell you that if you do continue to exercise, you may be putting your health at risk.

It is important that women who are pregnant and wanting to exercise (with clearance from a health prof) are aware of the warning signs that mean their body/baby isn’t tolerating the exercise well.

1. Chest pain
2. Unexplained shortness of breath
3. Dizziness, feeling faint, or having a headache
4. Muscle weakness
5. Calf pain, swelling, or redness
6. Sudden swelling of the ankles, hands, or face.
7. Vaginal bleeding or amniotic fluid loss
8. Decreased foetal movement
9. Uterine contractions, or pain in the lower back, pelvic floor or abdomen.

If you are pregnant and experiencing any of these symptoms whilst exercising, you should cease, and speak to a trained health professional as soon as possible about what to do next.

Remember, exercise is generally safe whilst pregnant, and there are lots of benefits for the mum. Like anything though, it is important to put safety first, and exercise should only be continued if you have spoken to a health professional and are following their advice 

 

Here are some things that you can do to ensure that you are getting the best out of your workouts, whilst making sure that you are looking after yourself and your baby!

1. Limit prolonged exercise sessions i.e. if you would normally sweat it out for an hour or two at the gym, cut it back to 30-40mins, or 60mins low intensity 🏋️‍♀️

2. Ensure that you have taken in enough calories before your workout (don’t go on an empty stomach!) 🥦🍉🥑🍎

3. Stay well hydrated before,during and after your sessions 💦💦

4. Perform your exercise in a thermo-neutral environment e.g. don’t go running in the afternoon in the middle of Cairns summer 😂 Perform your workouts either indoors with an aircon, or early in the morning/later in the evening when it has cooled down 🏃‍♀️🧘‍♀️

5. Make sure you are training your pelvic floor and transversus abdominis as part of your exercise regime! Learning how to train the pelvic floor often requires the help of a women’s health physiotherapist, and learning to activate these muscles will help you maintain a strong core and pelvic floor during and post-pregnancy! 🤰

As always, before you start to exercise, make sure that you have clearance to do so from a medical professional.

 

The reasons why absolutely everybody (who has been cleared by a medical professional), should participate in regular low to moderate intensity exercise whilst pregnant. 🧘‍♀️🏋️‍♀️

🤰Gestational weight gain control

🤰Reduced risk of pre-eclampsia/gestational hypertension

🤰Reduced risk of gestational diabetes

🤰Reduced symptoms of depression

🤰Reduction in pain and disability among patients with pelvic-girdle pain

🤰Prevention of low back pain

🤰Higher cardiorespiratory fitness

🤰Improved sleep

🤰Long-term lifestyle changes and benefits

🤰Social benefits (you may make a few extra friends along the way!)

Above all, safety is paramount. So, before engaging in physical activity whilst pregnant, it is important to discuss with your medical professional whether it is safe for you to exercise. If you have that clearance, but are unsure about where to start, make sure you speak to a physiotherapist about suitable exercise options and guidelines! 😄

We would love to support you and your baby on your special journey!

Call our friendly clinic staff on 42319777 to discuss your individual case or to book an appointment visit our online booking page here 

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