The last thing you want to do when you’re exhausted and nauseous during early pregnancy is to go workout, but believe me ladies… it will actually make you feel better!
I had an amazing first pregnancy. I never had problems sleeping, I never swelled up, I never got to a point where I felt miserably uncomfortable and I honestly attribute how great I felt being pregnant to my ability to remain active teaching and taking classes at Neighborhood Barre up until the day before I went into labor. Additionally, due to the strong core and back muscles I had maintained throughout my pregnancy taking barre, I was able to come back four weeks post-partum.
Here are some tips for working out while pregnant:
- If possible get in a workout routine before you get pregnant. It will be easier to maintain your fitness if it’s already established.
- Find a low impact workout before you get pregnant. I like the cardio too… running, bootcamp, jazzercise, spin… but there will come a point in your pregnancy when those workouts aren’t possible anymore or they are just too uncomfortable for your body. Having a “go-to” low impact workout will give you a safe and effective means to continue staying fit as your bump grows!
- Drink LOTS of water. You would think more water would make you swell more but it’s actually the opposite. I drink anywhere from 130-150 ounces of water a day – it’s tough in the beginning and end of pregnancy on your potty breaks but the benefits are worth it!
- Eat a small protein packed snack before your workout and bring a few bites of something into class with you. Going from sitting to standing to laying to sitting, etc. can sometimes give you the dizzies. Don’t let your nausea ruin your workout… just take a bite and drink a few sips and continue on!
- Ginger Altoids. Enough Said. My best go-to, low calorie nausea remedy. This helped me realize I didn’t have to eat a loaf of bread or a sleeve of saltines every time I felt nauseous. These Altoids are 10 calories each and the ginger provides natural nausea relief.
- Don’t be scared to modify. During the first trimester you will likely be able to continue to do most things but don’t hesitate to pull your instructor aside and ask for modifications. There are lots of different positions and support tricks that can make working out while pregnant more comfortable for you and more importantly, safe for your baby!
- Be consistent. If you know how hard it is to get back into your workout routine after a week vacation… getting back into your workout routine after a week vacation while pregnant is 3x as hard. Commit to your weekly classes each Sunday and hold yourself accountable to doing them. If something happens and you just can’t make it that day… do something active at home! Just stick with it.
I loved being pregnant and I believe my fitness level made it very enjoyable for me. I was also able to naturally go into labor and deliver my son drug free. My strength and endurance built up from working out during my pregnancy definitely made this happen!
Remember, pregnancy is not a disability or an illness and we don’t have to hunker down and lay low for 40 weeks! We are strong, beautiful women and pregnancy is a miracle our body was built to experience. Get moving and enjoy every second of it!
Angela is a full time mommy to baby boy Sam, 13 months, and expecting a second baby boy due in January, and a part-time booty kicker at Neighborhood Barre! Angela also works part-time from home as a marketing, administrative, and public relations consultant. She has competed in dance competitions, triathlons, and half-marathons – just to name a few. Staying fit during the busyness of life is a top priority to Angela and she feels that it makes her a happier and better mommy and wife!