Pregnancy is both a life changing and a body altering life event. Women can’t wait to see their little bundle of joy but at the same time, most can’t help worrying about their and their baby’s health throughout the 9 month journey. They don’t want to do anything that can potentially hurt their babies even if this means skipping their favorite dessert for the next few months.
It is also common belief that women should stop exercising once they get pregnant. However, research done in the past few years prove otherwise. In fact, it has revealed that inactivity, not activity leads to pregnancy complications! Now how about that?
If you need more convincing, here are 5 pretty good reasons why you shouldn’t stop breaking a sweat during pregnancy:
- It helps the labor process go smoothly and quickly. A fit body can help you withstand the physical and mental stress that comes with giving birth. Studies have also shown that exercise can shave up to 2 hours off your labor time and can help you avoid an emergency c-section or a forcep delivery.
- It helps you control your weight and makes it loosing it easier post-delivery. A sedentary lifestyle, pre existing diabetes and genetics can cause a woman to gain more than the recommended 25-25 pounds and lead to complications such as pregnancy induced hypertension, gestational diabetes and an emergency C-section. Getting your body used to activity will also help you get out of the post-partum weight rut easier because exercise is not a foreign concept to your everyday routine.
- It helps reduce the unwanted symptoms of pregnancy. Leg swelling and back pain are two common pregnancy side effects. Exercising can help you by getting your circulation to move vigorously and discourage blood pooling in your lower extremities. Reduce lower back pain with prenatal yoga, swimming or weight training.
- It puts you in a better mood – your partner would surely appreciate this benefit. We all know that women are bombarded by hormones during pregnancy which causes the feeling of elation and depression in the same breath. Regular exercise helps regulate your mood better, promotes a positive body image and provides a sense of control and accomplishment.
- It affects your child’s health and potential. Mothers who exercise tend to deliver healthier babies who are less likely to develop juvenile diabetes and obesity in their lifetime. Studies have also shown that babies born to active mothers have increased academic and physical potential as well.
Exercise it will help you transition easier between the stages of pregnancy and help you deliver a healthy bundle of joy. Once you’ve found out that you’re expecting, consult your physician about what exercises are safe for you!