No one expects expectant mothers to train like Amber Miller, who arrived at the winning line of the Chicago marathon and gave birth that same day. Hilary Riley, a mom from Columbia, Maryland, had no plans to run a marathon, but trained to give birth as if she were going to prepare to do it.
"I always liked being in shape," Riley said. When she found out she was pregnant, she asked her doctor for advice. He left cardio-kickboxing during the first months, when he began to feel nauseous and, instead, began with low-impact activities such as walking and swimming. He also practiced yoga and did repetitions of squats and contraction exercises of the pubococcygeus muscle (Kegel) to develop flexibility and strength.
Pregnant women have many exercise options; however, you must approach each routine safely. You should also remember that there are not two equal pregnancies. Listen to your doctor - and your body - when it comes to choosing your training program.
Most women want to not lose everything they earned when they exercised. But neither do they want to endanger their pregnancy. Then, the intensity of the exercises should be adapted to their possibilities.
Dr. Michael Applebaum
Strengthen for the baby
Instead of believing that pregnancy limits you, think of it as an opportunity to change your focus. Investigate what exercises you can perform. Pregnant women can do specific exercises during the nine months of pregnancy, for delivery and after birth, says Ilene Bergelson, instructor in physical training (fitness) and founder of Lifemoves Health in New York City.
The first trimester of pregnancy is the best time to strengthen the muscles you will need for the early stages of motherhood, says Bergelson. Doing repetitions of rotation of the ribcage (Bird Dogs) or Superman exercises (Supermans) will develop strong muscles in the center of the body; and practicing weight training (deadlifts), or going up and down stairs with a dumbbell, can help you prepare to get up and move with a baby in your arms from here to there.
After the first trimester, it is preferable to avoid exercises on your back, since the weight of the baby can interfere with blood circulation. And as the pregnancy progresses, carrying the weight of your baby is an exercise in itself. You can relieve tension by practicing pelvic oscillations, performing sideways breathing or simply raising your arms above your head.
And of course, there are the always important exercises of contraction of the pubococcygeus muscle (Kegel), movements that strengthen the lower part of the pelvis and increase the ability of the woman to push for the baby to be born.Perform these exercises by compressing, or contracting, the muscles you would use to stop urination. Bergelson recommends practicing the Kegel at different times, containing each contraction for two to ten seconds, and always taking more time to loosen the contraction than to maintain it.
Riley's pre-release course recommended a series of Kegel exercises per week, gradually increasing from about 20 per day to 150.
"I had not realized how much I had to practice to reach such a high number "Riley said
Rules and recommendations
If you're pregnant, be careful every time you exercise, pay attention to your body's warning signs. Indicate you should stop.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) guidelines include a list of warning signs: vaginal bleeding, shortness of breath, dizziness, headaches, chest pain, muscle weakness, pain or swelling in the calves, premature labor, decreased fetal movement and loss of amniotic fluid.
Also, avoids diving (scuba diving) and contact sports, warns the ACOG. That does not involve the risk of you falling.
"I am a firm believer in totally firm surfaces... in not falling when you can avoid it. I like the stationary bike, "said fitness author Dr. Michael Applebaum. He also recommends walking and swimming and doing aerobics or swimming if you feel comfortable doing these types of activities.
Applebaum also advises women to be careful when stretching because during pregnancy relaxin is released, a chemical substance that helps flexibility and if too much force is applied, injury can occur.
For the rest, the same rules that apply to all athletes are for pregnant women: they must stay hydrated, wear comfortable clothes and perform warm-up and muscle-cooling exercises every time. Bergelson uses three fundamental words: food, liquid, bath, which in English all begin with F (food, fluid, facilities). "Keep the three close!" He wrote in an article for the magazine "Club Success".
Riley took her training to heart... and said she saw its fruits when she gave birth to her son.
"The more you train, the more seriously you take it and the more you deliver, the better results you get," he said.
Cancel that class?
After taking into account the guidelines for the gestation period, pregnant exercise lovers may be tempted to leave their physical training classes (fitness), but should they? Not necessarily.
Zumba "Zumba has many patterns of floor movements and changes of direction.This, when the mother is progressing in her state, becomes a little complicated, "said Ilene Bergelson, founder of Lifemoves Health, Ilene recommends limiting the movements of this and doing it at a slower pace accompanying the advance of pregnancy.
Pilates Adrian Ramirez from Adrian's Power Pilates in Los Angeles said that pilates can strengthen the muscles of the back and abdominals that will relieve labor pains, but recommends finding a Pilates instructor who is specially certified to train women pregnant.
Yoga Practicing yoga "calms both the mind and the body, providing... relief from physical and emotional stress," warns Tracey Mallett of ATP Specific Training and Physical Therapy, and Tracey recommends that you tell the instructor that you are pregnant. he can adapt the poses, avoid those that are face up, extreme stretches and hot yoga.
Fixed Bike (Indoor Cycling) Bergelson says that l indoor cycling - on a stationary bicycle - is acceptable for pregnant women as long as they have tried it before becoming pregnant and have not had issues with their cervical integrity. The repetitive movement of the bicycle can wear loose joints. Wear shorts or a padded seat, keep the pelvis stable during the class and lower the intensity to avoid any risk.