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- How much should I exercise during pregnancy?
- Is it safe to exercise during pregnancy?
- Best cardio workouts during pregnancy
- Best strength and flexibility workouts during pregnancy
- Tips for pregnancy-safe workouts
During pregnancy, exercise works wonders for both you and your baby. Here are the best and safest ways to break a sweat while you’re pregnant.
What’s more, it doesn’t matter if you were an iron woman or a sofa slacker until now. You can still benefit from getting active during pregnancy. Exercise is also perfectly safe, as long as you get the okay from your practitioner before hitting any new or familiar workout routine and follow a few pregnancy-specific modifications.
So lace up those sneakers and get going! But before you do, read these guidelines and learn about some of the best pregnancy exercises and workouts.
How much should I exercise during pregnancy?
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) suggests that expecting moms get at least 30 minutes or more of moderate exercise per day, most (if not all) days of the week.
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What counts toward that 30 minutes? As far as your heart and general health are concerned, three 10-minute walks sprinkled throughout the day are just as beneficial as 30 minutes on the treadmill or bike at the gym. For that matter, even non-exercise activity — like 15 minutes of vacuuming and 15 minutes of light yard work — counts toward your daily goal.
Is it safe to exercise during pregnancy?
While it’s true that now isn’t the time to learn to water ski or enter a horse-jumping competition, most women can still enjoy most fitness activities. In fact, many exercises that are off-limits during pregnancy (like mountain biking or downhill skiing) are ones you’d probably have a hard time doing with a basketball-sized tummy anyway.
Best cardio workouts during pregnancy
As long as you get the go-ahead to exercise from your practitioner, you can consider the following cardiovascular exercises to increase blood circulation, muscle tone and endurance (which you’ll be thankful for come delivery day):
Swimming and water aerobics may just be the perfect pregnancy workout. Why? In the water, you weigh less than you do on land, so you’ll feel lighter and more agile. A dip in the pool may also help relieve nausea, sciatic pain and puffy ankles. And because baby’s floating along with you, it’s gentle on your loosening joints and ligaments (your body’s natural response to pregnancy hormones).
Just be careful walking on slippery pool decks, and step or slide into the water rather than diving or jumping in. Your growing baby isn’t equipped to handle the bubbles that form inside the body when you quickly change altitudes under the pressure of the water (it’s why