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Tips For Exercising When Pregnant

How Pregnancy Ruins Workouts (and Ways to Deal)

It can be difficult to embrace that pregnancy makes things like running or yoga hard to do. When I first found out I was pregnant, I was so excited to grow a gorgeous belly and become a momma. Innocently, I had no idea how intense the crappy feelings symptoms of pregnancy would be. If you recently discovered there's a bun in your oven, or you're planning on becoming pregnant in the near future, check out how you can alleviate some of the issues pregnancy brings up that might get in the way of your workouts.

  • Urinating often: In a 30-minute workout session, you may have the urge to pee three different times. Work out close to a bathroom so you can quickly relieve yourself and get back to your workout.
  • Feeling overheated: Head indoors where the AC is flowing, and make sure you're wearing comfortable workout clothes made of breathable wicking material. If you love being outside, move your workouts to a pool or lake.
  • Round ligament pain: As your belly expands, the round ligaments that support your uterus are getting stretched out, so it makes sense that you'd feel intense cramp-like pains in your lower belly. Wearing a supportive compression band that's specifically designed for prenatal exercise might help. If you feel a sharp twinge during a sweat session, reduce the intensity of your workout, and if that doesn't bring relief, take a break.
  • Lower back pain: As your baby grows, your lower spine begins to curve in response to your protruding belly. Stretching your lower back helps immensely. Try this hip and back stretching sequence.
  • Upset stomach: Between nausea and constipation, you've got digestive issues covered, so try to eat bland foods that keep your tummy happy. Nausea may be worse at certain times of the day, such as early morning, so find times to work out when you're not worrying about having to run to the bathroom.
  • Fatigue: Growing a baby is hard work so it's no surprise that you feel like napping all the time. Resting your body is important, but so is keeping up with exercise. Find times to work out when you're least tired, and shorten workouts when necessary.
  • Weak upper body: Release your expectations about what you used to be able to do and focus on your present abilities. That might mean doing modifications of exercises, like placing your knees on the floor when doing push-ups. When strength training, move to lighter-weight dumbbells.
  • Restrictions on what you can do: You may not be able to lie on your back and do crunches, so find other ways to work your core like doing Seated Russian Twists and plank variations. Instead of lying on your belly to strengthen your back doing Superman, get on your hands and knees and do Bird Dog.

Pregnancy only lasts about nine months, so do what you can, and remember you can get back to your old workout routine soon after your little one arrives.

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