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Exercise- what should I avoid? & healthy eating in PG

(28 Posts)
PeppermintInfusion Tue 17-Jun-14 16:32:42

Just found out I'm pregnant at the weekend, early days though as only missed AF on Friday.
I'm a bit overweight at the minute, not massively (5'8 size 14-16). For my wedding last year I lost 2.5 stone, with Xmas followed by some work stress in the new year I've out about 1.5 of that back on, following by an indulgent holiday a couple of weeks ago I'm feeling a bit gross.
I didn't expect to get pregnant right away and had sort of stopped trying before we'd even started but turns out I was already pregnant.
So I thought Id spend the next month or so losing a bit of weight then baby time.
Ive been to the gym regularly these past few months, though not super fit I enjoy spin, Pilates, etc.
we have just told both sets of parents so far, but both DM, MIL and DH were horrified when I said I was going to spin this week. Normally they aren't that precious about these things, so do you think I'm being reckless?
When I went in Saturday (before I knew) I did feel a little off but put that down to not going for 2 weeks.

Also, I'm worried that the midwife etc will make a big deal of my weight as my BMI is 31 at the min.
My own GP assured me previously that although I read heavy on the scales he isn't concerned as I don't have high fat %, exercise, eat well.

Anything sweet is turning my stomach at the min anyway (even fruit) and I am on a healthy eating mission, not dieting but slimming world type/non processed meat and veg salad type meals. Still eating enough calories, so don't flame me for undereatingwink

Mummymidwife87 Tue 17-Jun-14 16:45:35

If your BMI is 31 you will most likely be treated under a BmI protocol which includes slightly more regular BP checks, advised to have a glucose tolerance test.. This is because you are at a higher risk of developing pregnancy induced hypertension/pre eclampsia and gestational diabetes. Extra scans don't normally kick in until BMI of 35 and over and there is an increased risk of low birth weight.

Eat healthily if you can and continue exercising as you were. You will need to adjust exercise habits as your pregnancy progresses. Weight lifting probably isn't that advisable, but running, walking, Pilates, yoga, spinning, cycling, swimming etc is completely safe in pregnancy. Ensure you drink plenty of fluids.

ViviPru Tue 17-Jun-14 16:46:54

The advice on exercise is unless it is directly dangerous (combat/extreme sports) there's no need to stop activities you are used to. I told all of my gym instructors before I told anyone else. They are trained to advise you and modify any sections of the class which may not be suitable, for example in pump I have to do alternatives to the abs track and in advanced step, I have to take it easier as I usually monster it till I feel sick. Now I have to tone it down a bit so as not to raise my BP too high, which will probably be the same advice they give you in spin. In Denmark they encourage pregnant women to cycle so I'm sure spin will be fine to continue.

I think the advice with running is not to take it up from scratch if you're not ready used to it, but gentle jogging is fine.

But yes, just tell your instructors. If they're anything like mine they'll be really helpful. It's a bit weird telling all these strangers before you've even told some of your friends but I just think of them the same as a medical professional, really.

PeppermintInfusion Tue 17-Jun-14 16:56:46

Thanks for that smile

Yes hoping these next few weeks I can get my weight down bit, as suspect a lot of it comes from a few weeks of overindulgence and also I felt very bloated before I found out which was probably a symptom.
I know I'm not unhealthy in that I eat generally healthy meals and get about 10 portions of fruit and veg a day, drink plenty of water etc. and walk about 6 miles most days as well as exercise. My weight gain is from portion sizes and my love of cheese and wine, so 2 of the 3 are already ruled out wink

Glad to hear I won't be on the special measures as I assumed the BMI35+ might apply to me.

Oh and I'll be going to that spin class!

Mummymidwife87 Tue 17-Jun-14 17:02:00

If you drink a lot of wine, you may find you lose a bit of weight quite easily in the early weeks, and cheese.. Depends on what cheese you ate.
Be careful with spinning, it's quite full on... Ensure lots of water before and and after, stop if you feel dizzy

PeppermintInfusion Tue 17-Jun-14 17:02:27

Thanks Vivipru, I haven't done Bodypump or the higher intensity aerobics classes for a month for various reasons or so I probably won't go back to them but I'll definitely keep up spin and the light running I do anyway and any other gym stuff.

I was just so genuinely surprised that the 3 of them had such a strong opinion on it, as they are generally not mollycoddlers.

PeppermintInfusion Tue 17-Jun-14 17:05:44

Mummymidwife, that's what I thought as these are my indulgences rather than gobbling chocolate/crisps/takeaways. Last year when I cut them out it made quite a difference.

I read up on the cheeses I need to avoid, unfortunately all the good stuff!

Thanks again!

Mummymidwife87 Tue 17-Jun-14 17:14:26

Some people think pregnancy means cut out everything, stay indoors and hibernate... Oh and eat for two. Exercise is advisable in pregnancy, eating for two is not. I'm almost 39/40 and was in tesco over a week ago and the shop assistant asked me why I was still going out at this stage. People have some strange ideas about pregnancy

kaykayblue Tue 17-Jun-14 17:18:42

People are actively encourage to exercise during pregnancy - not just when they are overweight, but everybody!

The only thing I would say is in line with others: You can exercise until you are pretty out of breath (otherwise there's not really any point...) but not until you are unable to say anything.


"What.........are you......doing....this...PANT weekend?!?!?" is fine.

" *????"?"??"??!?"??"?"?"?mentalshoutingcan'tspeakurgh?"???"????"?!?!?" is bad.

If you already did classes then you probably get what I'm talking about!

Don't do any abdominal exercises - it can really screw you over.

Make sure to tell ALL your instructors that you are pregnant, so they can keep an eye on you and help you to...

get a seat next to the fan. You do NOT want to overheat. That's really bad. Obviously you can sweat, but you shouldn't be going purple/bright red with heat.

One other thing, I think spinning classes are great, but I would personally avoid cycling outside. It's sort of stupid, but there's always a risk you could fall off the bike, which doesn't exist with a stationary bike.

Also whilst there's no point in "dieting" you should start watching your portion sizes - you only need an extra 300 or so extra calories during pregnancy during the last three months. That's it!

PeppermintInfusion Tue 17-Jun-14 17:25:25

I'm definitely not planning on "eating for 2", just cutting out the naughty stuff and protein with veg type meals. Still tracking my calories on my fitness pal to ensure I'm not under or over calories. I more or less did that anyway, just think the wine calories weren't so accurately recorded wink
I'm not a massive drinker by the way, but seem to have had a run of birthday parties, people visiting, holidays etc these past couple of months.

DulcetMoans Tue 17-Jun-14 19:37:04

Glad I found this thread as I got kicked out of a yoga class today for being pregnant!

I took the same approach as vivi and told my instructors to know what to avoid (and so they didn't think I was being lazy!) and they have mostly been helpful. Today though I tried to go to yoga which I haven't done before and she told me that yoga is not for pregnant people and that, actually, you should do any exercise in the first 12 weeks. What absolutely rubbish! And completely contradictory to what the midwife said.

The instructor from my other class says I can't do any laying on my back exercises from 12 weeks onwards. Does anyone know about that??

mssleepyhead Tue 17-Jun-14 19:44:21

You can't lay on your baby as the baby gets bigger as it presses on a major artery (or vein?) and makes you feel poorly. You'll find you can't sleep on your back for the same reason.

I've been happily continuing to cycle throughout my pregnancy. The first 12 weeks were pretty tough as I was so low on energy but now in the third trimester and cycling is by far the easiest way for me to get around. Wonderfully supportive midwife helps, and I'm just super cautious on the roads. Staying active is the way forwards! Good luck, and congratulations.

mssleepyhead Tue 17-Jun-14 19:46:16

Ps. People will share all sorts of opinions with you about exercising in pregnancy. My favourite one yet came yesterday from someone who told me I would be too strong for labour. Never heard that one before! I generally nod and politely ignore everyone but my midwife and how I feel.

PeppermintInfusion Tue 17-Jun-14 20:17:45

Think it depends on the yoga class, I went to one that you could definitely not do when pg, I struggled even then as it was very much about strength poses and he kept the room quite warm. The other one I went was more about stretching which I think would be fine with caution.

nc060 Tue 17-Jun-14 21:00:22

there are actual pregnancy yoga classes...I love them! x

FruitBadger Tue 17-Jun-14 23:12:25

I've carried on with the Pilates class I'd been doing for 18months before I was pregnant and trips to the gym. I will probably start to modify some of the Pilates exercises over the next few weeks but not made any changes so far. With the gym, they re assessed my workout and I now wear a heart rate monitor they lend me, the machines read my heart rate and adjust the intensity of what I'm doing so my heart rate stays below 120. I told my instructors as soon as I knew, so about 8 weeks, I'm 18 weeks now. Listen to your body and the advice you're given by professionals smile

ViviPru Tue 17-Jun-14 23:29:04

Silly woman, Dulcet, her particular yoga class may not have been suitable but what sweeping generalisations to make. I reckon there would be nothing more beneficial than a yoga class tailored to pregnancy. I do a fast-flow style yoga that probably wouldn't be ideal in in our condition ordinarily but I've been doing it ages and the instructor happens to be my antenatal fitness advisor so she just gives me modifications as we go. I'm doing adapted Pilates too but I'd love to find a dedicated pregnancy yoga class.

"Too strong for labour" is interesting... My super-fit Pilates instructor has just come back from mat leave and said her pelvic floor and lower abdominals were actually too tight and that hindered the birth. No chance of that here <eyes flabby midriff and laments poor compliance to daily kegel regime>

PeppermintInfusion Wed 18-Jun-14 11:43:24

I've heard that about the pelvic floor too (not that I need to worry about that blush)

Mummymidwife87 Wed 18-Jun-14 12:13:00

There is a theory that your pelvic floor can be too toned for birth, athletes, horse riders, dancers. Not sure how evidence based this is

LisaC2611 Wed 18-Jun-14 13:09:39

I have been seeing my personal trainer the entire way through my pregnancy (even before I knew I was pregnant), he knew as soon as I did and he was very adamant that nothing changed. HAve still been lifting weights and doing adominal exercises and I still feel fit(ish). HAve continued to run, but I have found that I have struggled with that more than with the PT, but that's because I get out of breath a lot quicker. Was running about 8k a time before I found out I was pg and still trying to do 5k but it is walking and running now rather than all running. The only thing I gave up was Boot Camp because I didn't want to run the risk of falling over on slippery ground.

Good luck with your spin class and the advice previously given about being near to the fan and plenty of water is very good advice.

DulcetMoans Wed 18-Jun-14 15:14:01

I know ladies, I was a bit shocked and rejected! I have been going to classes for years and have continued to go. I still run and have been in the gym. I just take it easy when I need to. Not sure why she thought yoga would be too much! There is pregnancy yoga but not until 12 weeks so I am in limbo at the moment at 10.5 weeks.

Should get reassessed in the gym really, get a new programme.

My thought is, labour is hard work - you need to be fit. I don't want to stop doing stuff because I am pregnant! I want to be fit!

BeckaH123 Wed 18-Jun-14 15:18:46

I totally agree you should continue to excercise in pregnancy. The only thing I would say is that personal trainers do not have to have any specific qualifications to train you. I would be careful about whom I take advice from. MW / GP, absolutely. Personal trainer with no medical qualifications, perhaps not.

Eastwiththem Wed 18-Jun-14 17:46:53

I'm 27 weeks and still quite comfy lying on my back for short periods (so can manage a yoga class but not a whole night's sleep). The weight of the baby is supposed to put pressure on one of your major veins but I think it really depends on the position of the baby, your muscle tone and various other factors. Even if you did restrict blood flow you'd feel queasy and uncomfy long before you did any real damage.

Definitely keep up exercise as long as you can - I had to stop running at 16 weeks as even an easy 5k was like wading through treacle but I would have continued if I'd found it easier. Still walking lots and going to start swimming once I find maternity swimming costume I like.

weebairn Wed 18-Jun-14 18:05:34

I think you can do everything you want to really apart from obviously stupid things like a class where you could be kicked in the stomach.

I find in the first couple of weeks of pregnancy I worry about what exercise I can do and then the tiredness/sickness kicks in and it's hard to do ANYTHING! I think all you can manage is good, but also give yourself rest and kindness.

I did lots of exercise in my first pregnancy, mostly hiking, and was still easily walking 5K /day by my due date. I ran till 20 weeks or so.

I've been tireder and sicker this pregnancy so have done some gentle pregnancy yoga when I can and not much else. I am very active though and walk everywhere - I live in the city centre- and my job involves me being on my feet for up to 13 hours a day and I have a toddler to run after, so I try and tell myself I am generally active even if not as super fit as last time.

Good luck and I hope the pregnancy treats you kindly.

kaykayblue Wed 18-Jun-14 18:08:10

Lisac2611 - You really really shouldn't be doing abdominal exercises whilst pregnant. It can cause diastasis recti - where your abdonimal muscles separate.

There's obviously a difference between naturally having to use your abs when doing exercise (which is fine) and actively targeting those muscles (which is not).

It's a little worrying that your personal trainer was adamant that nothing should change - that's not a healthy attitude for a personal trainer to have. You might want to double check he is actually qualified to teach exercise during pregnancy.

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