Five ways to stay active in pregnancy without trying too hard
Staying active when you’re pregnant has so many benefits for Mammas-to-be, helping to avoid a whole raft of niggles and discomforts from backache to heartburn.
Exercise lifts your mood, helps you sleep and will improve your circulation – improving the flow of oxygen to your baby too. Women who exercise regularly find it easier to avoid piling on too many unwanted pregnancy pounds and generally regain their pre-baby shape more quickly too.
What’s more, research has shown that babies born to mums who exercise are leaner (that’s a polite way of saying not so chubby) and smarter, responding more quickly when it comes to learning.
Experts agree that all healthy pregnant women should aim for at least 30 minutes exercise a day, ideally for at least five days a week. It’s not a lot – but sometimes it’s hard to get going!
We asked the pregnancy fitness experts at FittaMamma to come up with their five top tips for exercising without trying.
• Walk more. It’s free, easy and doesn’t require any training or special equipment. Thirty minutes brisk walking will raise your heartbeat and, if the sun’s shining you can enjoy an extra dose of Vitamin D too. Leave the car behind, get off the bus a few stops too soon or fit in a stroll at lunchtime instead of lingering over a cup of tea and a magazine.
• Include stairs as part of your exercise routine. There are workout machines in the gym that emulate climbing up stairs – or you could just climb up the stairs. Change your leading leg, change your pace and if there’s an option to take a lift – walk up the stairs instead.
• Dance more. Turn up the music and dance at home. Dance with the vacuum cleaner, dance with a paint brush, dance on your own or dance with your partner. Studies have shown that babies in the womb respond to music – try it with your baby and less us know if she dances too!
• Buy a fit ball. A fitball is a great way to exercise your abs and your core, even if all you do is sit on it whilst you’re watching TV or using your computer. It will come in handy as a birthing ball too. If you want some more exercises there are some lovely easy to follow fit ball exercises on the FittaMamma website.
• Half an hour doesn’t have to be all in one go – three ten minute workouts add up to half an hour a day. There are some easy ten minute workout routines on the FittaMamma website.
Wearing the right clothes will improve your motivation and confidence. FittaMamma offer a lovely range of maternity fitnesswear designed to support your bump and make you feel good and look good whatever exercise or activity you enjoy.
FittaMamma.com is a great source of information for safe exercise in pregnancy, yoga, trimester specific workouts, recipes and pregnancy nutrition.