Flickr photo by ZittipieWorking out was a huge part of both of my (back-to-back) pregnancies.
I credit my workouts for my lack of nausea, general happy disposition (only while knocked up), and easy, natural (fast!) labors.
I worked out so much during my two pregnancies that I popped out the mucus plug when I was in my gym locker room. Wait, is that TMI?
But I realize not everyone can find the motivation to run to the gym and hop on the elliptical. Because of that, I've compiled five easy, simple ways mamas-to-be can get their workout in gently and without exhausting themselves.
- Walking: This one is obvious, but so easy. Just put on your shoes and open the door. If you're bored on your own, call a friend. Trust me, at nine months pregnant, even a two-mile walk feels like a real workout. Added bonus? Grab a pair of butt-toning shoes to take along. You can use them after the baby is born too and get a bonus workout while pushing the stroller.
- Lifting weights: If you can't bear the thought of getting your heart rate up, just do some light lifting with hand weights.
- Prenatal yoga: This one does require leaving the house, but it's so worth it. Most classes are very relaxing and if you do your downward dog right, you may even get a catnap in during savasana (just remember to lie on your side and not your back if you're past 16 weeks).
- Workout videos: Pick soothing videos that have meditation and movements that feel good to the body in order to stick with it.
- Dancing: Pop in your earbuds, pick a good playlist, and shake off the exhaustion with some good old-fashioned groove shaking. You don't have to dance too crazy or too long to get a nice energy boost and a shot of cheer.
There's a sixth one too, but every pregnant woman I know gets sick of hearing it. But I'd be remiss not to mention it. Swimming. Feels good. Awesome to get the weight off the body. Nuff said. We all know swimming is good.
The thing is, even when it seems like the last thing you want to do, give working out a go. Be good to your body. You will not regret it.
As always, this is just general advice. Always check with your doctor before starting any exercise program, especially when pregnant!