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CAN I EXERCISE WHILE PREGNANT?

This post contains advertorial in association with Aptaclub.

As a trainer this post means so much to me as I’ve been on both sides. I’ve trained clients who were pregnant or trying to get pregnant and now of course, I’m pregnant and I have to be honest there’s a lot of mixed advice out there and of course we want to keep our baby as safe as possible, which unfortunately means that over 28% of women give up completely or drastically cut down on exercise, due to fears that it might harm their baby.

I’m currently 26 weeks pregnant and have continued with CrossFit, Running and Yoga throughout my pregnancy. I have received criticism online, from friends, family and even others in my gym or box and so I’m not surprised to hear that 40% of women say the main cause for them stopping all kinds of fitness is pressure. 

I’ve been lucky with my pregnancy so far and can hand on heart say that my one hour session in my local CrossFit box at 9:30 am is the best I feel all day! Those feel-good endorphins keep me going until I crash around 4 pm and start to feel nauseous. It’s at that point that I take my dog for a long walk, usually wearing a backpack with 2 bottles of 1.5litre water inside and anything I can add to make it a little heavier and increase the intensity of my walk. 

“It’s about keeping your heart healthy, your joints supple, your back and core strong and even more importantly your mental health in check..”

As a Personal trainer I would always recommend clients to exercise, however, your viewpoint has to change. You are no longer training to lose weight, it’s about keeping your heart healthy, your joints supple, your back and core strong and even more importantly your mental health in check.

It’s my personal opinion that you have to trust your own motherly instinct and continue to exercise in the way that feels good for you. For example, if you always went to the gym or were a regular runner then you just might need to adjust your pace and the amount of weight or rest time throughout your pregnancy. However, this is not the time to start training in a new way. If you weren’t very active before your pregnancy, then I wouldn’t advise signing up for your first marathon, I would suggest that you aim for lots of walking, swimming and antenatal yoga instead. 

I have noticed that although we are so lucky to have so much information out there, it can become confusing and leave you feeling unsure of what is safe or correct. This is why I am so happy to team up with Aptaclub and their Active for Two campaign which is designed to educate pregnant women about the benefits of exercise and does this by offering free online videos from expert coaches around the UK, with information broken down by trimester and do’s and don’ts. 

“Remember, your body is currently a home for someone else, make it as strong and inhabitable as possible..”

Over the course of my pregnancy I am going to be sharing my workouts, how I adapt them for each trimester and what has and hasn’t worked for me, in the hopes that it inspires you to continue with your exercise and ignore the pressure put on you by others. The healthier you are, the healthier your labour and baby will be, not just physically but mentally and no-one should want anything other than that for you. Remember, your body is currently a home for someone else, make it as strong and inhabitable as possible. 

For more information about the Active For 2 campaign click here. 

Disclaimer: *Some sports carry more risk during pregnancy than others, if you have queries or concerns about your own exercise regime during pregnancy, please speak to your healthcare professional.*

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