Pregnant? Let's Get Moving!
Back in the day, doctors recommended lots of rest and not much moving during pregnancy. But today they recognize the benefits to mom and baby of staying fit while pregnant. According to the Office on Women’s Health, exercising during pregnancy has numerous health benefits, including better mood and sleep, reduced chance of pre-eclampsia and gestational diabetes, reduced pregnancy discomfort and shortened recovery time. Exercise, along with a healthy diet including wheat germ, can also help prevent women from gaining excess weight during pregnancy.
Before you begin exercising, check with your doctor. If you’re given the OK but experience any discomfort—including dizziness, headache, shortness of breath or decreased fetal movement—during exercise, stop and call your healthcare professional.
How much exercise do I need?
At least two and a half hours of exercise a week is optimal for prenatal women. If you’re already exercising more than that amount, however, keep it up as long as you feel healthy and you’ve discussed your workout regimen with your doctor. If you are new to exercising, don’t worry! Start slowly, try to be consistent and consider seeking out the advice of a trainer who designs fitness programs for moms-to-be.
Here are some great ways to get you started or keep you going during pregnancy:
- Take a walk in the park. Don’t forget a water bottle, a friend and a snack like Honey Crunch Energy Bars with Wheat Germ to help keep you fueled.
- Sign up for a yoga class designed for prenatal women.
- Go for a swim. Swimming is an excellent exercise during pregnancy because it’s easy on the joints and can help relieve some back pressure later in your pregnancy.
- Kick up your heels. Dancing is a fun way to get moving. Show off your best moves, but remember: no leaping, jumping or spins—save those for after your pregnancy!
- Kegel exercises help strengthen the pelvic muscle, which can ease childbirth and help get your abdomen back to normal after giving birth.
Remember to stay well nourished and hydrated before and after exercising. Start your day with a hearty oatmeal sprinkled with wheat germ, blueberries, bananas and skim milk. After a good workout, refuel with a protein-packed meal like Salmon with Lemon, Dill and Wheat Germ Sauce.
Why wheat germ?
Wheat germ is an excellent addition for pregnant exercisers because it not only tastes good, but a small serving also provides folate, a nutrient necessary to prevent neural tube defects in unborn babies. A sprinkle in your favorite foods will provide the essential nutrients for you and your baby and also give you that extra boost to get moving.
What’s your favorite exercise when pregnant?