March 31, 2007
Prenatal Exercise Basics
If you have been following a regular exercise program prior to your pregnancy, you should be able to maintain that program to some degree throughout your pregnancy. Exercise does not increase your risk for miscarriage.
• If you are just starting an exercise program as a way of improving your health during your pregnancy, you should start very slowly and be careful not to over exert yourself.
• Listen to your body. Your body will naturally give you signals that it is time to reduce the level of exercise you perform.
• Never exercise to the point of exhaustion or breathlessness. This is a sign that your baby and your body cannot get the oxygen supply it needs.
• Wear comfortable exercise footwear that gives strong ankle and arch support.
• Take frequent breaks and drink plenty of fluids during exercise.
• Avoid exercise in extremely hot weather.
• Avoid rocky terrain or unstable ground when running or cycling. Your joints are more lax in pregnancy and ankle sprains and other injuries may occur.
• Contact sports should be avoided during pregnancy.
• Weight training should emphasize improving tone, especially in the upper body and abdominal area. Avoid lifting weights above your head and using weights that strain the lower back muscles.
• During the second and third trimesters, avoid exercise that involves laying flat on your back, as this decreases blood flow to your womb.
• Include relaxation and stretching before and after your exercise program.
• Eat a healthy diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables and complex carbohydrates.
Posted by Lisa at March 31, 2007 7:20 AM
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