Whenever you become pregnant, there are usually a lot of lifestyle changes that have to take place. There are usually a ton of questions surrounding whether or not physical exercise is safe to engage in during pregnancy. Remember to always consult with your doctor to make sure that the type of exercise you are engaging in is not disturbing the well-being of either you or your baby. Listen to your body, if something hurts always stop.
Warming up is an important element of exercise regardless if you are pregnant or not. It also elevates your heart rate and readies your muscles and joints by the increased blood flow resulting from movement. A great way to warm up is by choosing a low-intensity activity and slowly increasing it for about five to ten minutes.
This is especially important after the first trimester of pregnancy. When you lie flat on your back, the weight of your uterus can put pressure on one of the major veins in your body, the vena cava. The pressure on the vena cava can reduce the amount of blood flow that is going to your heart, therefore diminishing blood flow to the brain and the uterus. This can make you feel dizzy, short of breath, or nauseated. While some women are comfortable in this position, just because you don’t feel any symptoms or pain does not mean that your body is not being affected. Placing a pillow of some sort behind your back in order to prop your upper body up, is a great way to exercise on your back without the pressure and compression of the vena cava.
When you are pregnant, you may experience an increased amount of blood flow at a higher metabolic rate, which will make you feel warmer than usual. This is especially relevant when you are engaging in exercise too. The result of this can mean that your chances of overheating are heightened. Many physicians recommend avoiding exercise practices such as hot yoga or hot pilates. Lounging in saunas and hot tubs can also cause you to overheat much faster than usual. When your internal temperature rises to unsafe levels, your body can’t cool itself down fast enough which can lead to some potentially dangerous situations for both mom and baby.
This is not only important to ensure that you’re comfortable during exercise, but that you also don’t overheat. Dressing in layers is a great way to help keep your body initially warm but also cool enough once you’ve warmed up. Many retailers sell clothes that are designed for pregnant mothers if you find the clothes you used to wear to work out in aren’t giving you the support you need. You also may need to change the shoes that you are wearing. Many women experience swelling of the feet, which can make your exercise experience very uncomfortable if your shoes are too tight.
At Fitness Specialist, we understand how important exercising can be and provide all types of fitness equipment that cater to your needs and lifestyle while being pregnant. Stop by one of our stores located in Lubbock or Odessa, Texas or call us at 432-550-6664.