How much can I exercise during pregnancy?

I wanted to share my pregnancy journey as it relates to exercise and fitness so far. I’m at 22 weeks right now. I’ve been trying to stay as active as I can. For me, right now that’s normally 3 classes during the week- between yoga/pilates (which is called Cenergy at Boost Fitness), weightlifting (called Power at Boost Fitness), and Barre. I had a cold last week and took the entire week off.

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Above was back in January. If you can find me (almost middle with blue pants and pink top), you’ll see my bump for sure.

Early on in my first trimester, I was too exhausted to exercise, much less get off the couch after work. I think I took 3 weeks completely off- my guess is between weeks 7 and 10. I didn’t get morning sickness, just tired. Let me back up even further.  I think the Tufts 10K race was when I was 3 weeks pregnant, but I don’t think you’re actually pregnant at 3 weeks, haha! I remember that week I had a cold and thought it was because of the stress of the race earlier that week, and also ended up having implantation bleeding, and tested positive the week after!

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That’s the last time I ran though, hah! I normally take a winter hiatus anyway.

After around 10 weeks, I think I went back to going to yoga class 2 times a week. Then, during the Christmas holiday weekend, I went to yoga class and they ended up switching the schedule around and it was a Power class (think a mini, structured weight lifting class). We have bars and you can adjust how much weight you need. I was apprehensive about taking the class pregnant, but there were only a few of us, so I decide to just take it easy and it turned out to be a great thing and I have been going weekly since.

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Around week 17, I think I went back to taking barre classes at Pure Barre (hint, sign up for their email newsletter as my nearest location always has Valentines Day and Halloween specials- at least) and Barre3 (just opened a location in Bedford).

Here’s me there at 18 weeks.
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Right now, at 22 weeks, I’m taking beginning to take more modifications. I love that term in exercise classes. It means you aren’t doing exactly what the instructor says to do, normally it’s something less intense. In barre, I’m going about 90% of the stuff. I’ll skip a count or two… and avoid my stomach altogether, and minimize twists. While the rest of the class is on their stomach, I’ll do things on my hands and knees instead. I’m very careful on my back and I’ll probably scale back more along the way. My core just isn’t the same anymore. I think continuing to exercise will be helpful during delivery and also recovery in the 4th trimester!

My best advice is to listen to your body!  If you are feeling lazy, that is one thing, but if you are exhausted, that’s another! If something doesn’t feel right, don’t do it. Also, say something to your instructor before class and they normally can offer modifications/alerts right there and also warnings during class.

You can also look up pregnancy exercise videos on YouTube (even by trimester), but for me, it’s just not the same. Especially for something like barre, I really need someone there to make sure I’m doing it right and to also yell (encourage) at me to keep going, so I crave the class exercise. Also, having paid for each individual class in barre is also motivation to actually make it to class. Since Boost is a monthly fee, I’m not as hard pressed to make it X amount of times a week/month. But if you are able to keep moving, do it! I think it also gives me more energy! And it’s great to get out of the house!

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