3 Pre-Pregnancy Tips you Should Know Now for a Fit Pregnancy
My clients as well as my wife tell me that pregnancy is one of the most beautiful times of their lives. It can also be a very scary and daunting time with the looming thoughts of morning sickness, hormonal and body changes, not to mention the labor day.
A Happy Fit Mum & Bub starts with a Fit Mum:
I train a lot of females to their dream wedding day 'bikini' bodies. They get super fit, but once they've achieved their fitness goal and their wedding day is over, they stop training. These same clients then return to train with me again after their 1st pregnancy.
In put it simple, for an uncomplicated pregnancy, there is no down side to exercise. The benefits of exercise during pregnancy including both regular cardiovascular and strength based exercises are huge!
As the pregnancy progresses it's important to note that the levels and exercises need to be modified to suit the physiological changes taking place in each trimester. With all this in mind, I would like you take it back a step and start thinking about your fitness and exercise pre-pregnancy. It is so important to start the ball rolling with your fitness early.
The mums I have trained who entered pregnancy exercising, living a fit and healthy lifestyle experienced morning sickness to a very manageable level and many didn't experience any at all. This will help you stride through the typical fatigue and get you through the 1st trimester with a healthy glow. Your pre-pregnancy fitness will carry you easily through to the second trimester where release of various hormones will help you feel fantastic as you gain more energy and start feeling those kicks.
Your fitness is key in conquering the 3rd trimester where you take on the challenge of carrying your close to full-grown baby, related fluids and yourself, not to mention the higher blood pressure you experience. So my 1st big tip is, be fit pre-pregnancy because I cannot stress enough how much of a difference it will make for you at every stage of pregnancy and a happy fit mum & bub starts with a fit mum.
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Diet & Nutrition:
As we all know a healthy diet leads to a healthy mind and body. A healthy diet during pregnancy will also help mum and baby decrease health related risks, and research has shown it will help the fetus form positive nutritional habits while in the womb.
Along with a healthy diet, consume foods high in folic acid as they have properties that help mum and bub (and dad) during the conception period. Folic acid is a type of B vitamin that helps the body produce & maintain new cells which is great in the 1st trimester. It also helps during the whole pregnancy in the production of red blood cells assisting your baby's neural, brain and spinal cord development.
Foods such as lentils, peas, nuts, avocado and dark green vegetables such as broccoli, spinach and asparagus, as well as citrus fruit are all known to be high in folic acid, and when consumed 2-3 times per week, while looking to fall pregnant can really help increase the rate of conception.
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Fit for Labor Day
Give or take a few hours, labor is a day of your life and when contractions really kick in they are from 5-minutes apart down to 1-minute apart. They last for around 1-minute each and thankfully every contraction is 1 less contraction you will ever have to experience.
If you think of the uterus as one big muscle that contracts continuously throughout labor to deliver your little bundle of joy at the above rates, then I ask you, "why wouldn't you want to be fit?" Don't let these thoughts of childbirth put you off because the solution is simple!
If your muscles across the whole body are used to working out regularly, in set structured way, your fit body will still work for labor but will more durable and tire less and at a far more tolerable level because your body is used to intense muscle contractions, followed by a speedy and highly efficient, beautiful recovery.
So on all fronts it 100% pays to start, pre-pregnancy with a fit, healthy body for a fit healthy pregnancy, mum and bub!
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