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Exercising while pregnant

(32 Posts)
expectingwriter Tue 26-Feb-13 14:28:01

Hello all. About to enter week 8 and first (early) scan next week. Just wondered how long other mums-to-be waited before exercising? I'm a keen runner and used to do regular yoga until finding out I was pregnant (was training for a half marathon up until that point!) so I've been on a pause for the last two months. I'm getting itchy feet though, feel like I want to be active, - planning on going swimming, re-taking up yoga, gentle treadmill jogs/fast-walks....

Is 8 weeks still too early to go swimming/ yoga/ gentle run?
I keep reading on the NHS website that if you were active before your pregnancy that then it's okay to stay active, just being sensible - but I just don't know whether to still wait for 12 weeks? Anyone similarly into keeping fit with any thoughts?

Woodifer Wed 27-Feb-13 10:46:14

I read that the 140bpm was bobbins (or at least overly consevative) and you are better off using perceived effort.

This book documents a lot of the research on the subject
http://www.amazon.com/Exercising-Through-Pregnancy-James-Clapp/dp/1886039593

And has a focus on running and the benefits of weight bearing exercise. I think they recommend no more than 16 or 17/20 effort where 20 is a max (which is quite high really) - i'd refer to the book but i leant it to someone.

Another thing I've read a few times is that it is better to exercise a few times a week (i.e. 3 or more) than say once a week - so that the baby gets used to it rather than it being a "shock" to the baby.

EuroShaggleton Wed 27-Feb-13 10:50:58

I'd also heard that the 140 heart rate limit advice had now been retracted.

HazleNutt Wed 27-Feb-13 10:55:24

Sure you should find exercise that's comfortable for you, pregnancy is not the time to challenge yourself when exercising. But I'm quite fit (also teaching some classes, including pump and combat), and if I followed the "don't get sweaty and don't let heart rate over 140" that you constantly hear, I would be restricted to slow walks or similar.

SeriousStuff Wed 27-Feb-13 13:31:59

I'm 7+6 weeks and I've been doing the Tracy Anderson Pregnancy Project since I got my BFP (that is when I don't have nausea which is all the time at the moment!) but when I can't get my exercises done I take the dog for a walk.

If you're used to exercising anyway, you should be able to carry on but just reduce the intensity a bit.

CareerGirl01 Wed 27-Feb-13 15:55:22

Take it easy in the third trimester though - however fit you are.

ExhaustedMamasita Wed 27-Feb-13 16:49:33

Hi expectingwriter – I was in a similar’ish predicament, I used to exercise about 4 times a week – high impact cardio and toning exercises but after my BFP my body wasn’t having any of it! I’m now 12 weeks and have been exercising on average about 2-3 times a week for the last 6 weeks. Anymore and I’ll just knock out with exhaustion – tried and tested! Had a scan and hospital check-up earlier this week and my baby and I are in perfect health.

Sometimes I jog, sometimes I walk uphill – just depends on how I’m feeling that particular day. I used to feel bad if I couldn’t give it my all at the gym but I’ve stopped all feelings of guilt and just go with my body’s flow. My biggest advice to you is just LISTEN TO YOUR BODY and drink lots of water.

From what I’m starting to understand, nothing in pregnancy is prescriptive – so long as you don’t overdo it, everyone has their own boundaries and experience totally different symptoms. If you’re full of energy and well up for a run – go for it. If not, just go to the gym with a good magazine and just enjoy taking it easy. Remember some exercise is better than nothing – especially if you were a fitness fan like me before. Oh and defo tell your Yoga instructor that you're pregnant before the class starts – there will be some positions which may cause you serious nausea. I learnt the hard way!

I second CareerGirl's advice. I got SPD towards the end, and I'm fairly sure spending too much time rushing about triggered it.

Also you need to go into labour well rested and well fed. The ante natal class midwife explained to us all that if the body runs low on energy it slows labour right down to the point where hospitals have a tendency to whip you off for a emcs. Her advice was to REST in the last weeks, and insist on a break and some food before agreeing to intervention. Slightly off topic, but interesting.

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