If you’ve been cleared for exercise from your doctor, the benefits to exercising during pregnancy are endless. More specifically, it’s beneficial to your overall health, your ability to work through active labor, and your recovery after delivery. If you are able, here are a few benefits of exercising while pregnant:
More energy: There will be times when you feel like crashing on the couch (especially in the first and third trimesters), and that’s okay. Seriously, sometimes you just need a nap! Just remember, the more you move, the more you’ll feel like moving. The more you exercise throughout your pregnancy, the more you’ll be capable of as your due date approaches.
Increased endurance: One of the first things affected by growing a tiny human is your endurance. Walking up and down stairs can start to make it feel like you’re training for a marathon. Don’t give up! Your endurance can improve with consistent exercise. And one of the biggest benefits is increased endurance during active labor! Pushing is hard work, and you’ll be thanking yourself for working through all those squats during your pregnancy.
Better posture: To compensate for your constantly changing center of gravity, you may notice a pronounced arch in your low back and shoulders rounding forward. These changes can contribute to low back pain, as well as hip instability and added pressure on your abdominal wall. However, exercises that focus the posterior chain of the body (rear deltoids, back and glutes) enable you to maintain good posture throughout your pregnancy, minimizing the inevitable aches and pains.
Elevated mood: Consistent exercise can make you feel better mentally, decreasing anxiety and giving you a sense of control over the changes you’re experiencing with your body.
Controlled pregnancy weight gain: Staying active throughout your pregnancy and eating nourishing foods will help you to gain the amount of weight your body needs throughout your pregnancy.
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About Jeni Hartwick
Jeni Hartwick is a certified personal trainer, specializing in prenatal and postpartum fitness. She lives in Ferndale with her husband and son. As a new mom, Jeni loves coming up with ways to sneak in workouts and stay active with her family. jenihartwick.com