Exercise & Pregnancy

Safe Exercise Guidelines During Pregnancy

If you normally do vigorous exercise, follow these guidelines for safe exercise during pregnancy and postpartum.
•Heart rate should not exceed 140 beats per minute.
•Stop exercising when tired, and don’t exercise to the point of extreme tiredness (because of increased need for oxygen).
•Don’t do any exercise that could result in abdominal trauma (contact sports, karate, etc.).
•Avoid hard exercise in hot weather, wear light clothing.
•Drink enough water. (You will need more water when you are pregnant.)
•Don’t exercise while lying on your back after you are 4 months pregnant.
•Avoid exercises which could lead to falls. (As you grow larger, you may not have as much sense of balance.)
•Avoid jerky, bouncy, or high-impact movements.
•Avoid full sit-ups, double leg raises, and straightleg toe touches.
•Eat enough food to replace the energy used to exercise and maintain a healthy pregnancy.
•After giving birth, begin exercising gradually, based on your ability.

Kegel Exercises

1.   Lie on your back. Put a pillow under your head and neck.
2.    Let your arms lay next to your sides.
3.    Bend your knees, feet about 12 inches apart, soles flat on the floor.
4.    Squeeze tight the muscles around your vagina and anus. Hold these muscles tight for as long as you can (work up to 8 to 10 seconds). (When you pee, stop for a second. Those are the same muscles you want to tighten and relax.)

Before the 4th month:
1.    Lie on your back on the floor.
2.    Press the small of your back against the floor or wall while you let out your breath;
3.    Relax your spine while you take in a deep breath.
4.    Repeat this several times.
5.    Slowly release your muscles and relax.
After the 4th month: Stand against a wall and press you’re back next to the wall. This is also a good way to improve your posture.
After the 4th month:
Stand or sit to do Kegels. You can even do them while urinating (peeing).
Do Kegels up to 25 times in a row, several times each day.
Note: Do not exercise while lying on your back. Your growing uterus can put too much weight on large blood vessels.

Angry Cat

Do this to take the weight of the large uterus off your spine.
1.    Get down on your hands and knees. Make your back flat.
2.    Keep your head straight and neck straight.
3.    Arch up your back like an angry cat, and pull in your tummy muscles.
4.    Then relax, and make your back flat again.
6.    Do this several times each day. You can also do it when you are in labor.

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