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Effective Pregnancy and Post Birth Workouts

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Effective Pregnancy and Post Birth Workouts

Being pregnant means that your body is changing beyond all control and, especially if it’s your first pregnancy, you may be worried if you want to exercise but you’re not sure what’s safe.

Every woman's pregnancy is different to the next, so it’s always best to seek advice from your doctor or midwife before starting any exercise regime both during pregnancy and after you’ve given birth (the advice will be different depending on whether you had a vaginal birth or a Caesarean). 

Once you have the go ahead, here’s some exercise ideas that will keep you fit and active throughout your pregnancy and beyond.

Exercising During Pregnancy

Walking, at a pace that suits you, is a great exercise for anyone, especially if you’re pregnant and for one reason or another don’t feel like doing anything more energetic. Morning sickness, a growing bump and feeling shattered are all bound to make you feel less like doing a full workout. Walking helps to keep your muscles supple and also allows time for destressing and taking some headspace to prepare for the future.

Yoga and Pilates can also be great for pregnant women, but take care to follow medical advice concerning lying on your back or front, holding your breath and bending forwards and backwards. Once you’ve been given the go ahead, have a look at our Yoga workouts with Julie and Davina.

Swimming is wonderful for taking the weight off your feet and can help to improve your circulation if you’re suffering with swollen, puffy ankles and lower legs.

If you’re used to weight training and using gym equipment, then it’s usually safe to carry on during your pregnancy. Again, always check when you visit your midwife, and don’t start anything new or vigorous when you’re pregnant that you’ve never tried before.

Exercising After Giving Birth

The most important factor in getting back to exercise after having your baby is listening to your body and taking things at your own rate. It isn’t a race to get back into your pre-pregnancy jeans!

Exercising at home is ideal if you’re not ready to spend time apart from your precious bundle or you’re not feeling your most confident. Try incorporating the following exercises into your day to help you feel fit and healthy:

  • Floor bridges
  • Low plank
  • Squats
  • Lunges

The exercises you may have carried out during pregnancy such as walking, yoga and swimming are all also great for many women after they’ve given birth.   

Buggy Fit is also great and is often organised by local women’s groups in local outdoor areas and is ideal for bringing baby along to and meeting local mums.

Perhaps the most important muscles to work on are the ones you can’t see, but that may have become weak during pregnancy and childbirth – the pelvic floor muscles. Kegel, or pelvic floor exercises can be carried out when you’re sitting down or whilst feeding your baby.

Ask your health advisor for information on how to carry out these important exercises and for advice on when you can safely begin carrying out all types of exercise. And lastly, congratulations, you’re going to be a great mum!

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