think about your exercise as soon as you know you're pregnant in order to have an easier pregnancy and quicker recovery after birth .
The more active and fit you're during pregnancy , the easier it will be for you to adapt to your changing shape and weight gain .It will also help you to cope with labour and get back into shape after birth .Keep up your normal daily physical activity or exercise (sport,dancing,or just walking to shops and back ) for as long as you feel comfortable .Don't exhaust yourself .You may nee to slow down as your pregnancy progress ,or if your maternity team advise you.If in doubt ,consult your maternity team team .As a general rule ,you should be able to hold a conversation as you exercise . If you become breathless as you talk ,then you are probably exercising strenuously .
If you weren't active before you got pregnant , don't suddenly take up strenuous exercise .If you start an aerobic exercise programme ,begin with no more than 15 minutes continuous exercise ,three times per week .Increase this gradually yo a maximum of 30 minute sessions four times a week.Inform the instructor that you're pregnant .
Exercise dos and don'ts :
- Do remember that exercise doesn't have to be strenuous to be beneficial .
- Always warm up before exercising , and cool afterwards .
- try to keep active on a daily basis . Half a hour of walking each day can be enough .If you can't manage that ,any amount is better than nothing .
- Avoid any strenuous exercise in hot weather .
- Drink plenty of water and other fluids .
- If you go to exercise classes ,make sure your teacher is qualified and knows you're pregnant and how far your pregnancy has progressed .
- You might like to try swimming because the water will support your increased weight .Some local swimming pools provide aqua-natal classes with qualified instructor .
Exercise to avoid :
- Don't exercise flat on your back,particularly after 16 weeks ,because your bump presses on the big blood vessels ,and it can make you feel faint .
- Contact sports where there's a risk of being hit ,such as kickboxing ,judo or squash .
- Horse riding,downhill skiing,ice hockey ,gymnastics and cycling,because there's a risk of falling .
- Scuba diving ,because the baby has no protection against decompression sickness and gas embolism ( gas bubbles in the bloodstream) .