If you want to stay healthy and fit throughout their pregnancy, you’re not alone. Many women are concerned about weight gain and getting out of shape during pregnancy. Although weight gain is necessary for a healthy pregnancy and baby, if you gain more weight than you need to, it can be a real challenge to lose it after delivery. Just like at any other point in life, staying in shape during pregnancy starts with being active, eating the right foods, and getting enough rest. Here are our top tips to help you stay healthy and fit throughout your pregnancy!
The key to staying active during pregnancy is to find a form of exercise that you genuinely enjoy. That way, it will be easy to stay motivated and be active right up until labor and delivery. Of course, you want to lower the intensity and length of your workouts later in pregnancy, but staying active will help you avoid excess weight gain while improving the flow of oxygen and blood to your unborn baby. There are lots of ways to keep active during pregnancy, like walking, yoga, and swimming. Whatever form of exercise you choose, make sure it’s something you truly enjoy.
Keep Your Muscles Toned
When you keep your muscles toned during pregnancy, you will bounce back more quickly after your baby is born, and you might even make your delivery a little easier. Stick to light weights and keep your sessions short, especially as your pregnancy progresses.
Invest in Some Comfy, Cute Workout Clothes
You’ll be more likely to stick to your fitness goals during your pregnancy if you have some workout clothes that are comfortable and cute. Many brands are making workout wear for pregnant women now, so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding something stylish, yet comfortable.
Ditch the Junk Food
You’ve probably heard this more times than you want to, but it really is good advice. Junk food, especially refined sugars and carbohydrates will make you gain a lot of extra weight, but they provide no nutritional value for you or your growing baby. These foods have no place in a healthy diet anyway, much less when you’re pregnant. Cut out all processed carbohydrates and sugar, including pasta, white bread, cereal, and baked goods for the duration of your pregnancy.
Why are refined carbs so bad for you? Many people don’t realize it, but your body breaks down refined carbs and turns them into sugar, which it then converts into fat. The only way to burn it off is with intense exercise, and who wants to do that when they’re pregnant? When this fat isn’t burned off, your body stores it in your adipose tissue. Unfortunately, for most women, that means it collects in hips, breasts, and belly. To make matters worse, eating junk carbs and sugar actually stops your body from using all that extra fat as fuel.
Fruit is a hidden source of fructose (a type of sugar) that can also cause fat to be stored in your body if you eat too much of it. Fructose is converted into triglycerides by the liver and then deposited into adipose tissue. Don’t worry! You don’t have to eliminate fruit entirely, but you should limit it to about two servings each day. Try to incorporate lots of nutrient-dense, green leafy veggies instead.
Eat More Healthy Fats and Protein
Not all fat is bad for you! During your pregnancy, make it a point to eat lots of healthy mono and saturated fats from sources like olive oil, coconut, oil, grass-fed butter, and avocados. Eating these healthy fats will help your body absorb crucial fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E, and K. These vitamins are necessary for the proper development of your baby, as well as your own health.
Grass fed organic meat, full-fat dairy, and free-range eggs are all good sources of quality protein that offer the essential saturated and mono fats your baby, and your body need to stay strong and healthy. These foods will also help you feel fuller longer and stabilize your blood glucose levels to help curb cravings and prevent snacking that could lead to unhealthy weight gain.
Don’t Let Yourself Get Dehydrated
We all know we should drink plenty of water each day, but did you know that staying hydrated during pregnancy can help to keep fatigue and nausea away? Do your best to drink at least two liters of water every day, and if you’re exercising, drink even more.
Take Time to Relax
Today’s lifestyle is hectic but taking time to relax and rest during pregnancy is important. Yoga and prenatal massage for expecting mothers are great ways to relax and keep stress levels low throughout pregnancy. Try to remember that your body heals while you sleep, so getting extra rest will help your body recover from all the extra work of making a healthy baby. Be sure to get a minimum of eight hours each night, and shoot for 10 whenever possible, especially during the third trimester.
Pay Attention to Your Posture
Standing up straight is especially essential when you’re pregnant. If you stand with your shoulders rolled forward and your back hunched, you’re going to put more strain on your knees, hips, and back. Standing up straight may also help get your baby into the proper position for delivery and strengthen the muscles in your pelvic floor.
Stay Off the Scale
You’ll just make yourself crazy if you’re weighing yourself constantly. Accept the fact that you’re going to gain weight during your pregnancy and focus on staying active and eating a healthy diet. Your doctor will let you know if your weight gain is unhealthy, so don’t become obsessed with the scale.
Pay Attention to What Your Body is Telling You
Every woman experiences pregnancy differently, so listen to your body and don’t overdo it. If you’re feeling tired one day, take the time to rest. If you have tons of energy another day, get a little extra exercise. Don’t ever push yourself during a workout… if there’s discomfort or pain, stop! Always talk to your doctor about what types of exercise are safe for you during your pregnancy.
These guidelines can help you stay fit and healthy during your pregnancy and even after your baby is born. Even better, you might have a faster recovery, an easier labor, and fewer aches and pains throughout!