Fitness for pregnant women. Yes or no?

Author: admin |Mon, 06/22/2009


Doctors confirm: pregnancy is not illness and is a necessity throughout all nine months to lead a normal and healthy life where possible. Even if the pregnancy proceeds without complications or difficulties, it will still have a dramatic affect on our body, mind and appearance.

The most "suffered" part of the body, certainly, is the abdominal region. The skin is stretched for nine months, and additional weight is stored here too. Invest in a good daily moisturizer which will help keep the skin supple and less likely to develop stretch marks. Some moisturizers have been specifically develops to reduce the appearance of stretch marks too. After giving birth, it is important to remember you won't immediately return to your former shape. Yummy-mummy celebs give a false impression to new mums, as realistically the change in your body should be gradual and healthy. It takes many new mums several months or even years!

Returning to your pre-pregnancy shape will greatly depend on how much exercise you did during the pregnancy, and how quickly you get back into it after birth. Let your body relax and don't rush into too much too soon. Pilates and yoga focus on core strength and stretching, which is great for new mums. Swimming is also a great low impact cardio session. After each further pregnancy it will be more difficult to return the form of your belly.

Be wary of what you eat during the pregnancy, and don't using cravings as an excuse to overindulge. Your body actually only needs an additional 300 calories a day during pregnancy. That's the equivalent of eating a banana and washing it down with a glass of milk. In addition to energy, your body needs proteins to build and repair tissues and build all the tissues, organs and muscles of your developing baby. If you eat too much food on a regular basis during your pregnancy your body will store the extra as fat. This storage will happen more efficiently than before pregnancy because your higher estrogen levels during pregnancy increase the rate at which fat can be stored. The key is to listen to your body. Eat when you are hungry and stop when you are full. Eating several small meals rather than a few large ones is beneficial due to the metabolic changes during pregnancy.

The only real way to loose inches off the stomach is to do cardio training. While sit ups and abdominal exercises are great for toning, this type of workout will not remove the layer of fat covering the muscles. There is no quick fix, and watching your calorie intake and doing regular fat burning cardio workouts is the only solution.

The second problem zone after pregnancy and delivery are the breasts. Hormonal changes during pregnancy cause increased blood flow and changes in the breast tissue, which may make your breasts feel swollen, sore, tingly, and unusually sensitive to touch. Starting at around 8 weeks, your breasts also begin to get bigger, and they'll continue to grow throughout your pregnancy. It's common to go up a cup size or two, especially if it's your first baby. Your breasts may feel itchy as the skin stretches, and you may even develop stretch marks on them.

Your best bet is to find a few good, supportive bras. Take the time to get fitted by a knowledgeable salesperson in a large department store or maternity shop. You may find that bras with underwires are less comfortable now. To prevent chafing, look for soft material with no seams near the nipple. Cotton bras will be more comfortable and breathable than synthetic. For extra support during the day, try a maternity bra. During your third trimester, you might want to invest in a nursing bra, since you'll need one anyway if you'll be breastfeeding.
It's especially important to wear a supportive bra that fits properly while you exercise because your breasts are heavier. A bra designed for exercise will provide the additional support you need and minimize discomfort. Light weights focussing on the chest region will help tone the muscles and keep breasts from sagging less.

Remember to go at your own pace and don't rush into getting back into shape. Linking up with other new mums can be a great way to share your thoughts and gain motivations and inspiration.

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