News + Motivation

July 6, 2015

Modifying Your Exercise Plan for Pregnancy

We strongly encourage our members to continue working out during pregnancy.  The benefits to mood and energy are huge, and thus great for both momma and baby!  Regular exercise can keep you more comfortable over the months by improving posture, reducing back aches, and improving quality of sleep.  If you are expecting, make sure to discuss your exercise plans with your doctor and the trainers at Main Street Fitness early on, and make a few adjustments to your normal exercise routine.

Your primary focus during pregnancy is maintenance, not on setting personal bests. Pregnancy places significant extra stress on your body.  Here are some of the activities we offer at the gym, and how you can still participate during your pregnancy.

Step Aerobics can still be part of your routine. Consider lowering the height of your step as pregnancy progresses and as your balance decreases, and keep your intensity level comfortable.

Yoga offers many prenatal benefits, but some poses are not designed for pregnancy. Avoid downward facing dog (late in term), crane pose, cobra pose and upward facing dog; elevate your chest and head on a bolster when doing corpse pose; and avoid inverted poses, backbends, and lying on your stomach after the first trimester. Your best bet is to share your concerns with your yoga instructor before class so that they can offer modifications during your usual routine.

Strength training is safe and beneficial during pregnancy. You will only need to slightly modify your routine so that you don't lie on your back, your balance is not compromised (hold onto a rail or chair for support to help you balance during some moves), and you are paying closer attention to your posture and spinal positioning. The weight around your midsection places a lot of stress on your spine and can cause an arching of the back and rounding of the shoulders. Avoid lifting weights so heavy that you have to lean in any direction to help you lift, and ensure that your spine is neutral and your posture is upright.  You want to avoid straining or overheating yourself and exercises that put pressure on your pelvic floor.

Boxing.  Depending on your level of experience you may choose to take part in a boxing class, working on the bags or work one-on-one with a boxing coach. Boxing will use your shoulders, biceps and core muscles. Keeping your body in motion between punching combos to strengthen your most important muscle: your heart.  Keep yourself and your growing baby safe by doing only what is comfortable and, of course, no sparring

Running during pregnancy is fine if you are already a runner, and should be tapered as the months progress.  You want to take it easy, avoid overheating, and monitor your heart rate. And of course, stop or walk if you feel pain or discomfort. You may want to stop running at 20-24 weeks and switch to lower-impact cardio.

Core Class.  As your belly expands, core work is often overlooked.  Your core is defined as all the parts of the body except for your limbs and head. Think of your core as your abdomen, chest, back and hips. Some of your abdominals, in particular your pelvic floor and transverse abdominis are involved in labor. Having those muscles as strong and flexible as possible can greatly ease the process of labor.  Post pregnancy, your healthy muscles will bounce back more quickly.  Have a chat with the class instructor, Noelle, to see about modifying the moves to your stage of pregnancy.  You should not do core exercises while pregnant if you have diastasis recti. Diastasis recti is a condition that up to 60% of women experience during pregnancy. This is a vertical separation of your abdominal muscles, and your doctor can check for this.  Proper abdominal exercise post pregnancy is key to repair diastasis.

Sometimes exercise during pregnancy is strictly forbidden due to health conditions of the mother, the baby, or both. Listen to the advice of your healthcare provider and remind them of your fitness routine during each checkup.



Talk to us about how to fulfil your nutritional requirements during your pregnancy or visit

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By Kylee Seifert | Tags: Training Tips