Posts tagged ‘exercise pregnancy’

June 20, 2011

5 Most Common Health/Fitness Questions from Expectant and New Moms

As I mentioned a few weeks ago, I recently became acquainted with Amanda Perry, a Nutrition and Fitness Expert who did a fabulous guest post for me about Fitness and Pregnancy. I, in turn, provided a guest post for her blog addressing the 5 Most Common Health/Fitness Questions I get from expectant and new moms. Here’s an excerpt followed by the link to the full post on Amanda’s blog:

What exercises should I do while pregnant to help stay fit?

Walking, swimming and modified prenatal yoga are three of the safest ways to stay fit while pregnant. Try and do one of these activities for at least 30 minutes a day if possible. If you regularly participate in low-impact exercises throughout pregnancy you should see that your body combats “typical” pregnancy aches and pains.

Can I safely run while pregnant?

If you were a runner before your pregnancy, you should be able to run safely during your first and second trimesters—but check with your health care provider for details and to get clearance. You’ll want to take it easy while running—not pushing too hard or overheating yourself, and staying very well hydrated is key.

However, I would like to add a physical therapist and women’s health advocate’s perspective on the matter of running during pregnancy. Due to the immense pressure on pelvic health from pregnancy alone, Mom, Physical Therapist and co-founder of Marathon Physical Therapy Jessica McKinney says:

From both a professional and personal perspective, I discourage running during pregnancy and chose to avoid running in each of my three pregnancies. The reasons were not fear of the effect of intense exercise on my baby—I continued to exercise vigorously throughout each pregnancy—but on my long-term pelvic health.

Like most women, I want my pelvic joints to be stable postpartum and I want to avoid any unnecessary risk of pelvic organ prolapse or incontinence. This matters because running is a mechanically challenging task under “normal” circumstances, amplifying the forces absorbed by 3-5 times one’s body weight with each foot strike. When you consider the weight gain (thus more pounds of force per heel strike) associated with pregnancy and the increased motion in the joints, running becomes an inherently more mechanically demanding task during pregnancy. Add to this that uterine weight increases 18-20 times during pregnancy and that this heavy uterus is not bolted firmly in place, but is supported in its place by ligaments that are vulnerable to stretch. That stretching increases in relationship to the stresses and forces it encounters.

To read the rest of my guest post, visit Sistas of Strength and let us know if you have any fitness in pregnancy-related questions or comments by either leaving below or emailing abbey[at]bostonbabynurse.com.

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