Monday, November 11, 2013

Exercise during pregnancy

Those who know me or follow me on Facebook or this blog know how much I have worked out even being pregnant. I am due in 4 days and still did Les Mills Combat 30 min Kick starter this morning with weighted gloves. I found it important to work out not only for me and my sanity but for my little one. I can almost guarantee my weight would be much much higher than it is as of now. Honestly I still gained WAYYY more than I ever expected too. Not sure where it is but it is a lot. I do not look it, but I am definitely heavier than I had ever expected to become while pregnant. I feel like me exercising has me ready for the delivery of my child, it definitely has helped him sleep at night while I sleep (which is one thing they say happens if moms work out) and now I see that it boosts his brain activity as well!  I always said I was teaching him to be an athlete but I had no idea that I also was helping his brain activity.  Was it hard to work out some mornings?  Sure, especially the first trimester. I was so tired, but I made myself get up and work out, and by doing so it gave me energy to get through most of the day. My work out was done before the nausea set in and I was able to continue my high intensity work outs that I had been doing pre-pregnancy because I NEVER stopped. Had I stopped, I may not have been able to do them during the 2nd and 3rd trimesters when I did feel amazing. Now when I hit the 3rd trimester I had to make some adjustments for my belly. I could not do as much jumping, and had to back off the cardio a tad to keep my heart rate from getting too high. As with Insanity, T25, Les Mills Combat and especially running, my heart rate would get up over 170. I tried to keep it under 160 if possible and honestly found I was able to keep it around `150-155 with just a peak of going higher, which was all okay-ed by my doctor. Since I was used to my heart rate being that high, I was still able to breath fine, so nothing effected the baby.

So my morale of this blog post is work out before you get pregnant, keep it up, do not stop once you become pregnant and know that you are doing good stuff for not only you but your baby too!  Take it from me, 39 weeks and 4 days pregnant and still rocking the work outs!  It can be done! You just have to want to do it! Here are some first trimester work out tips:

By Shazia Mehmood Siddique, M.D.
For women who are pregnant, as little as 20 minutes of exercise three times per week can advance a newborn's brain activity, according to a new study.
Researchers at the University of Montreal presented these findings at the Neuroscience 2013 conference in San Diego on Sunday, providing moms-to-be with even more reasons to make exercise a priority.
In their study, the researchers randomly assigned 60 women to two groups: women who were provided with an exercise regimen, and those who were not. The women kept daily logs of exercise, and pedometers and accelerometers allowed researchers to keep track of the women's level of activity. Once the babies were born, the researchers recorded their brain activity levels at 8 to 12 days of life. They found that the babies of mothers who exercised had brains that were more fully developed.
Current recommendations by the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologists urge moderate exercise, about 30 minutes almost daily, during pregnancy. The guidelines are based on findings that moderate exercise can improve back aches, prevent pregnancy-associated diabetes and improve sleep.
This paper is the first of its kind to study the impact of exercise on the newborn, said study researcher Élise Labonté-LeMoyne of the University of Montreal.
"We measured directly the brain activity," Labonté-LeMoyne said. "So it's not a behavioral test or neuropsychologic test, it's really specifically the brain that we were looking at." She added that the measurement of electrical brain activity is "the most indicative way to measure a newborn's cognitive status."
Women's health experts not involved with the research said it provides yet another important reason for pregnant women to stay active.
"We know that aerobic exercise has an immediate result of increasing mitochondrial activity in the brain, but this study shows that this effect may in fact 'cross the placenta' and benefit the fetal brain as well," said ABC News senior medical contributor Dr. Jennifer Ashton, who is also a board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist. "More studies with larger numbers are needed and we also need to follow these fetuses through early life to see if these effects result in higher aptitude or accelerated development down the road."
"This is yet another study showing the importance of staying active in pregnancy," said ABC News medical contributor Dr. Jacques Moritz, a board-certified ObGyn at St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital in New York. "And now another reason to exercise would be possibly to even make your baby smarter."
Doctor's Take:
In decades past, the conventional wisdom has been that resting during pregnancy was important for the baby's safety. This, unfortunately, is a misconception that is occasionally still seen today. Now, however, we know that regular exercise can be beneficial to women's health in various ways - including improvements in mood and energy during pregnancy. With this new study, there is even stronger incentive to exercise for your baby's health, too.
Before engaging in strenuous physical activity during pregnancy, or if you have a complicated pregnancy, talk to your doctor first. But setting daily goals for 30 minutes of exercise is an important and great start to your pregnancy and to your baby's life.

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Have a very fit day!

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