If you are a healthy individual who is having a smooth pregnancy, it is extremely safe to start exercising during the second trimester of your pregnancy. It is best to avoid a new regime in the first trimester of pregnancy.
During the third trimester, your growing belly will affect your center of gravity and you will probably feel too tired to exercise much. So the second trimester is the right and safest time to start exercising.
Besides improving your posture and decreasing some common discomforts such as backaches and fatigue, physical activity may prevent gestational diabetes (diabetes that develops during pregnancy), relieve stress, decrease labour time and build more stamina needed for labour and delivery.
According to Your Fitness Singapore founder and personal trainer, Deepa Primalani, It is necessary to get clearance from your gynecologist before you undertake any form of exercise while you are pregnant. Women who are new to exercise are recommended to start only in the second trimester.
“Once cleared, you should start with simple exercises. I would recommend a mixture of cardiovascular exercises such as walking, aerobics, static biking and swimming to get started, and also some form of strength conditioning exercises, which I myself do, such as light weights, and also body weight exercises. Pre-natal yoga and pilates classes will help with stretches and improving flexibility that aid in the delivery of your baby.
There is no one-size-fits-all solution. You may want to continue exercising in ways you feel comfortable. Runners might want to continue running, dancers might want to continue dancing. It is however most important to use a lot of common sense and to listen to your body. You will not be able to do as much as you used to, so do not try to.
There are also many trainers such as myself who are certified to train pregnant and post-natal clients. This is one resource you could use to make sure that you are doing it right, and to customize a regime that best suits your present condition, goals and lifestyle.”
Note to mums-to-be: Don’t forget to include those kegels!
Were you able to do some exercise during pregnancy? What were your favourites? Share with us by leaving a comment below!