True or False: Exercise during pregnancy is safe.

Let me preface by saying every mother, baby, and pregnancy experience is different. Therefore the answer is not true or false, but an educated "it depends". Let’s begin by outlining the no-scenarios to exercise during pregnancy as outlined by The American College of Obstetrics & Gynecology (ACOG); cervical insufficiency and/or cerclage, severe anemia, risk factors for preterm labor, ruptured membranes, preclampsia, heart/lung disease . Click here for a little more detailed info on ACOGs pregnancy and exercise FAQs . 

 

If you are pregnant and you have been told by your physician that you have no risk factors for a high risk pregnancy and your pregnancy is thriving, morning sickness included  (yes, ironically it is a positive thing) then your world for exercise/fitness is wide open. It DOES help the process if you already have some level of fitness to begin with. The age old saying is that if you are not already a runner, just for example, then pregnancy is not a good time to start running. I would agree with that mainly because running is not for the faint of heart and you would not be setting yourself up for success if you dive head first into an already challenging activity. Slowly building up your walking distance and speed accompanied by gentle yoga and *body resistance strength training* is a GREAT place to start for exercise newbies. It's also a great place for those who are experiencing the phase of pregnancy where you could literally fall asleep while trying to pick out a ripe avocado at the grocery store (don't judge, it happens) or you have to take a bite of that protein bar (who am I kidding, I really mean cookie) before your feet even hit the floor in the morning.

 

Moral of the story, if you want to exercise during your pregnancy, but you are as fit as a pop-tart (as my sister describes herself), please do not begin with box jumps and burpees. There may be days where exercise is the last of your worries, and that is okay. Keep in mind that there is no competition, but your window to experience yourself at yourself’s maximum capacity during this season is short. Make the most of it, mama!

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