Working out while pregnant can be challenging. Sometimes you just don’t have the energy or motivation to make it to the gym or pop in that prenatal yoga dvd. Squats are a simple body weight work out that you can do anytime anywhere. In addition to building leg and butt muscles, squatting reduces pressure on your lower back and can help to reduce pressure on your pelvic floor. Many birthing classes also recommend squats while preparing for labor and delivery. When squatting you may want to use a chair or a birthing ball for stability. Remember that pregnancy loosens your ligaments which can put additional strain on your knees and mess with your center of gravity.
Squat Form: Stand with your feet just over shoulder width apart. Keep your back in a neutral position, and keep your knees centered over your feet. Toes pointed out slightly. Slowly bend your knees, hips and ankles, lowering until you reach a 90-degree angle. Be sure to sit back on your heels as you go down. Hold the back of a chair if you feel unbalanced while squatting. If you are new to squatting, start with fewer repetitions and gradually increase the number as you gain strength and endurance. To do squats with an exercise ball, place the ball between the base of your spine and the wall and rest lightly as you do squats. Return to starting position — repeat. Breathe in as you lower, breathe out as you return to starting position.
This article from the Healthy Guts blog goes more in depth into the health benefits of doing squats while pregnant, proper form and potential labor benefits. Click Here to Read More.
Mini Me Maternity is excited to announce our newest maternity activeware line from Zobha! These maternity tops and pants are classic and comfortable for all of your prenatal fitness activities. Whether it’s a prenatal yoga class or lunch with friends we’ve got you covered.
Which style is your favorite?
Available now in our Mini Me Maternity Shop
Pregnancy can be overwhelming. It seems like everyday there are new things you should or should not do. About.com published an excellent list of 50 Tips for a healthy pregnancy. These are basic examples of simple solutions to keep mama and baby healthy during pregnancy. Here are a few of my favorite:
- Start changing your food habits to include a healthy variety of foods.
- Exercise! Starting now will help you stay in shape during pregnancy, can lower your risk of miscarriage, and has been proven to help reduce labor complications and length.
- Educate yourself!
- Eat a new vegetable you’ve never tried.
- Check out a book on pregnancy.
- Rest when you can. Nap!
- Remember to add 300 – 500 calories a day while pregnant.
- Swimming is great in late pregnancy. It can help relieve a lot of aches and pains and makes you feel weightless.
- Take a breastfeeding class to help prepare you for the realities of breastfeeding.
- Pack your bags if you are going to a birth center or hospital. Don’t forget your insurance cards, pre-registration forms, camera, birth plan, etc.
Click Here to read the rest of the list.
Did you know that working out during pregnancy can help you when it comes time to deliver that bundle of joy you’ve been carrying for 9 months? Specifically strengthening your ab muscles and pelvic floor can help to improve your pushing abilities during labor and prevent incontinence after. These easy exercises from Fit Pregnancy can help you to strengthen those muscles now and not pee on yourself later. Click Here For Workouts.
I started doing Crossfit about a year before I became pregnant. I enjoyed the fast paced boot camp style workouts and the sense of community at our local box. When I became pregnant my doctor advised me that traditional Crossfit would likely be to strenuous on my ever growing belly. Thankfully I came across the Crossfit Mom Blog. Crossfit Moms is a great online maternity fitness resource. The blog features scaled down versions of traditional Crossfit workouts that are specifically designed for pregnant women, post-partum women, and women who are thinking about becoming pregnant. Each workout is broken into 3 categories: Advanced, Intermediate & Beginner so that you can continue to work out and scale based on your physical ability. I was able to keep up the workouts about 3 times a week through my first and second trimesters and later went to just walking in my third. If you have access to a local box or even just some weights around the house I definitely recommend checking out the workouts for yourself at CrossFit Moms.