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Advises for exercising safely during Pregnancy

Exercising safely during Pregnancy

The first to do when pregnant women decide to do some exercises is to consult the heathcare provider.

Getting enough nutrients

Since exercising implies a lost of calories it is very important to be well nourished to strenghten your body. The more the time passes, the more weight you will gain. There are forms to stay fit and healthy during pregnancy, this will depend of your body mass index (BMI). If the BMI is in a healthy range, which is between 18,5 and 24,9 you will need to eat about 340 more calories a day in the second trimester than before the pregnancy, and about 450 more calories a day in the third trimester. This will depend on the exercise routine you have chosen. The amount of calories intake should be adjusted in cases of underweight or overweight, this means you may need to gain a little more or less weight than someone with a healthy BMI.

Wearing comfortable clothes

There are some important issues such as choosing breathable clothes e.g. 100% cotton or professional sport clothes, which are safe to use while exercising. The maternity bra should be supportive enough and the athletic shoes should be comfortable and have a very soft suport for shock absorbing purposes, which is very important due to the fact that you have gained more weight.

Warming up

It is recommendable to prepare your body by warming up before starting any kind of exercise so that your muscles and joints are prepared for exercise and the heart rate increases slowly. The risk of not doing this is a muscle and ligaments strain and aches and also pains after your workout. It is recommendable to start exercising at a low intensity and slowly increase it during the first five to eight minutes

Getting enough water

Water should be drinken before, during and after exercising because the body needs to be well hydrated to avoid a reduction of the amount of blood reaching the placenta. Dehydration can also increase the risk of overheating or even trigger contractions. There is a simple way of controlling if you are drinking enough water such as controlling the colour of the urine. If the urine is dark yellow color it means that you should drink one or two glasses of water every hour until the urine is pale yellow or nearly clear.

Lying down on one or the other side

Specially after the first trimestre it is very important not to lie flat on your back because this puts pressure on the vena cava (a major vein), which can reduce blood to your heart and may diminish blood flow to the brain and uterus. As a result you may become dizzy, short of breath or experience nauseas.

Switch positions while exercising

It is recommended to keep on moving while exercising, changing often the positions because remaining motionless or standing in one place for prolonged periods for example while lifting weights or doing yoga poses can reduce the blood flow to your heart and uterus and cause blood to pool in your legs. This lowers the blood pressure and makes you feel nausea. A good option is to walk in the same place.

Exercise with moderation

Exercise helps the body to stay fit and healthy but you never should get excessively tired. The best to do is to stop immediately whenever there is a pain somewhere and have a rest until you feel better. When you finish exercising you should rest for the same amount of time that you have been exercising.

Exercise in cool environments

Pregnancy causes an increased blood flow and a higher metabolic rate, so you will feel warmer than usual, specially while exercising. This causes a quicker overheating than before pregnancy. Exercising in high heat or humidity environments causes a lot of sweating, dizziness, nauseas and short of breath. After exercising it is important to drink enough water, get some fresh air and calm down by sitting or lying down. Taking a shower with cool water, avoiding sauna or hot tubes is in the same way recommended.

Exercise with lower movements

The more advanced the pregnancy, the bigger risk of losing balance, which can be very dangerous if you fell down. Therefore it is recommended to change positions slowly and get up from the floor in the same way.

Exercise continuously

Keeping up a routine of exercise between 20-30 minutes daily is very important for having a healthy pregnancy. It is healthier to exercise a little bit every day than exercising for a long period of time in one ot two days.