There is a common misconception that pregnant women shouldn’t exercise, meaning that for those of us who used to go to the gym in our lunch breaks or got up at 5am to go lane swimming, pregnancy provided a welcome break. However, don’t hang up your gym gear just yet because gaining weight during pregnancy can put your baby at risk and it is perfectly healthy to continue exercising.
Guidelines suggest that women should consume an average of 300 extra calories per day when pregnant, so this by no means equates to eating double what you usually would.
Furthermore, as long as you have received clearance from your GP, continuing to exercise is extremely important and has been linked to reducing the length of labour, decreasing complications during delivery, preventing back pain and improving energy levels.
Whatever exercise you choose to undertake you must ensure that it is safe. The general rules of exercise will change slightly when you are pregnant in order to ensure your baby stays healthy and protected so try to stick to the following rules:
- Stay hydrated by drinking lots of water.
- If you are sweating this is a sign your body is overheating so take a break.
- Wear a heart rate monitor and keep an eye on it throughout.
- Avoid exercises which involve sudden or quick changes in direction as a change in posture whilst pregnant may affect your balance..
If you are keen to take up exercise whilst pregnant but are not sure where to start, health and fitness exerts often recommend that pregnant women undertake exercise which is designed to address body posture such as yoga and pilates
View the original Evening Standard article.