Exercises During Pregnancy First TrimesterFeeling tired all the time? Do not feel like moving around much? Start a fitness routine during pregnancy. Studies show that regular exercises during pregnancy first trimester can help you become active and beat the stress and discomforts of the gestation period effectively. A regular fitness during pregnancy not only helps expecting mums stay healthy but is also best for the babies.
Why Should You Exercise for First Trimester of Pregnancy?The first trimester of pregnancy is a critical phase for any mother-to-be. This stage of pregnancy is marked by several hormonal, physical and emotional changes that can leave a woman exhausted and anxious. To regulate the changes and to manage the mood swings, exercise during the first trimester of pregnancy plays a vital role. Here is a list of some of the benefits of exercise during pregnancy:
- Improves body posture
- Reduces backache
- Alleviates morning sickness (nausea and vomiting in pregnancy)
- Improves mood swings
- Maintains weight gain
- Improves sleep
- Reduces stress
- Increases energy levels
- Prevents gestational diabetes
- Lowers stress
- Decreases fatigue
- Builds stamina for labour and delivery
- Eases other discomforts of the first trimester of pregnancy
What Are the Different Exercises During Pregnancy First Trimester?You can try one of the following exercises after consulting with your gynaecologist. If you have been working out even before you were pregnant, then make a few changes in your routine and continue. However, if you were not into a fitness regime before your pregnancy, then now is the right time. You can start with a less-effort work out plan and gradually increase the output. If you prefer going to a gym, work out with a trainer. If not, take up any course of exercise and do not forget to enjoy.
WalkingWalking is an excellent cardiovascular exercise for first trimester of pregnancy. Put on your walking shoes and start walking every day. A stroll a day will help you build your upper body, strengthen your arms and increases your heart endurance. If you are not a walker, you can begin with a 10-minute walk for 3-5 days a week. You can gradually increase the time up to 30 minutes a day and improve your stride. Having said that, do not walk on rocky and uneven surfaces. Choose a safe and even place to walk on.
RunningRunning is also a great cardiovascular exercise for first trimester of pregnancy. A few minutes of running a day can improve your heart health and strengthen your body. Moderate running may not have any adverse effects on your baby during the first trimester, but first, seek your doctor’s suggestion. If you are not a jogger or runner, you can choose another type of fitness during pregnancy. You can start jogging or running for a few minutes a day and slowly increase your pace and time. However, you would have to opt for other ways of working out after a few months. If you are a runner, you may continue the routine in your first trimester as well. Nevertheless, you need to be cautious about your speed, place, flat track and safety at this stage of pregnancy. Jog or run for about 30 minutes a day for 3 days a week.
YogaYoga is the best exercise for pregnant women. According to www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/, studies show that yoga may improve pregnancy, labour and birth outcomes. So, practice yoga to build strength and flexibility, to lower your blood pressure, and to practice breathing rhythm that may be useful during delivery. If you have been practising yoga, continue to do so. However, avoid hot yoga, backbends, headstands, abdomen twists or poses that need you to lie on your back. If you have never tried it, you can join a few classes to see the difference. If you do not enjoy the steadiness of yoga, you can choose the fitness regime you like more. You can join a class of 30 minutes/day a week.
SwimmingSwimming is one of the best low-impact exercises during pregnancy first trimester. It has several benefits and is excellent for your heart and building muscles. Also, swimming reduces swelling in your arms, legs, ankles and feet and lowers back pain. Swimming during pregnancy builds your core strength and helps you in labour and delivery. If you are a regular swimmer, you can continue the routine. Yet, avoid abdomen twists and focus on your energy limits. If you want to take up swimming, then it is best to get trained under a coach. You can swim for about 30 minutes a day for 3-5 days/week.
AerobicsAerobics and other dancing exercises during pregnancy first trimester are good ways of staying active and healthy during the first trimester. Aerobics strengthens muscles, lungs and heart. It also relieves stress and any other discomforts of early pregnancy. Even so, inform your instructor and do only low-impact steps and avoid jumping, twisting and sudden direction-changing steps. You can start with a 15-minute class and slowly increase your time to 30 minutes a day for 3-5 days a week.
CyclingCycling can be a viable option to get strength and power during your first three months of pregnancy. However, it is recommended that you need to shift to a stationary bike in your second trimester. This is for your and your baby’s safety. It is advised that you do not overstretch yourself while riding a stationary bike because in the latter part of your first trimester, your centre of gravity changes. So, check and adjust your bike accordingly.
PilatesImprove your balance, reduce lower back pain and boost your core strength. Start the session with warm-up exercises and then slowly increase the efforts. Do not lie on your back, avoid abdominal twirls and do not exceed beyond the recommended limits. You can take one pilates class a week.
Weight TrainingPrepare your body to carry pregnancy weight with lightweight training. Build body strength and support your back. Start working out under a trainer after consulting with your doctor. At the gym, lift light weights and work out on machines, but avoid heavy weights and do not lie on your back. Make sure that you are breathing correctly and not holding your breath for too long.
Exercises to Be Avoided During First TrimesterYou need to avoid a few exercises during your gestation period for a safe pregnancy. Here is a list of activities to be avoided:
- Holding breath for too long
- Jumping, skipping, twirling and twisting
- Heavy weightlifting
- Leg crunches
- Rigorous workout
- Cricket, basketball, horse riding and other such sports
Exercises During Pregnancy First Trimester and Warning SignsA regular fitness regime keeps you healthy and supports your baby’s growth. Yet, there are conditions that you must safeguard yourself against in the first trimester. Stop exercising if you are:
- Feeling any discomfort, such as chest pain, weak muscles, headache
- Feeling dehydrated
- Feeling nauseous
- Feeling hot
- Experiencing pelvic or abdominal pain
- Experiencing vaginal discharge
- Feeling dizziness or light-headedness
- Feeling shortness in breath
- Experiencing irregular heartbeat
Pregnancy is not a time to push your limits. It is time to gain energy that will help you with safe delivery. Moderate exercise for first trimester of pregnancy is beneficial than aiming for big goals. Keep yourself hydrated during pregnancy and eat healthy snacks. Though you should sweat out in the first trimester, you should not exert yourself where your heartbeat accelerates. Do not be competitive at this stage of pregnancy. Your goal is to be active and healthy.