When you’re expecting, being fit isn’t and shouldn’t be something that you give up! In fact, it’s important to exercise and keep yourself moving. Experts say pregnant women who keep themselves in shape have less chronic back pain, more energy, better body-image, and an easier time giving birth and getting back to their pre-pregnant body. Being fit doesn’t mean just being fit for yourself, it means being healthy for your baby. Here are 5 easy workouts that are safe to do in every trimester:
1. Elbow side Plank
Planks are a perfect exercise for pregnant women because it is an exercise that strengthens your abdominals, lower back, and shoulders. Best of all, no equipment required! Start by getting laying on your side and put weight onto the same side forearms. Your elbow should be directly beneath your shoulder and you should hold for 30-60 seconds.
2. Single-Arm row
Single-Arm row is a low impact, strengthening exercise which is ideal during pregnancy. To perform this exercise, a dumbbell, cable or resistance band is required. For a dumbbell row start with your left hand and left knee on the bench, making sure your wrist and knee are aligned under your shoulder and hip with a neutral spine. Row your arm past your ribcage so that your elbow is pointing to the ceiling. Lower the weight slowly and repeat for 10+ reps and for 2-3 sets on each side.
Walking is an exercise that many people neglect. Walking is low impact and can easily be done anywhere, anytime! Studies prove that walking is a great stress-relief, lowers blood pressure, and is optimal for weight loss. Little changes can be made to walk more. Try walking to work or if that doesn’t fit into your schedule, get up and walk around the office or even better outside for five minutes every hour.
4. Single-Arm Dumbbell Shoulder Press
Just like the Single-Arm row, a dumbbell is required for the Single-Arm Dumbbell Shoulder press. If you have an existing or previous injury to your shoulders it is best to stay away from this exercise until cleared from a health practitioner. This is another low impact, strength building exercise that you’re able to do at any trimester of pregnancy. Stand shoulder width apart, knees slightly bent. Make sure your shoulder blade is positioned down and towards the opposite shoulder before press the dumbbell over your head. This will ensure you stabilize your shoulder are target the proper muscles. Do 10 reps 3x for both sides. Stand next to a wall to prevent leaning.
5. Frog Squats
Squatting is another great exercise for pregnant women because it opens the pelvic outlet. Squatting also helps prevent back pain, tone your legs, and can help tone your glutes. To squat, stand shoulder width apart with your feet externally rotated so that you feel a stretch in your inner thighs. Slowly bend your knees, with your back straight, and with your heels remaining on the floor and sit your butt straight back and down towards the floor. Make sure your knees never go over your toes! Slowly stand back up, and repeat for 10-20 reps and for 2-3 sets.