Staying motivated to exercise can feel like a major challenge at the best of times. Add in pregnancy fatigue, morning sickness, a growing belly, and hormones, and you might need a little bit of willpower to keep your mojo when it comes to pregnancy exercise. We hear you, mama!
Getting exercise during pregnancy can reap big benefits for both you and your baby - not only does exercise benefit your physical needs, but your emotional needs too! Check them out below:
Physiological benefits of exercise
- Improved cardiovascular and muscular fitness and strength
- Improved posture
- Improved circulation
- Reduced back and pelvic pain
- Reduced constipation, bloating and swelling
- Decreased risk of pregnancy complications such as pre-eclampsia and pregnancy-induced hypertension
Psychological benefits of exercise during pregnancy
- Increased energy levels
- Improved sleep and management of insomnia
- Improved self-esteem
- Reduced stress
- Reduced risk of anxiety and depression
So we know exercise is great for us, but what about motivation?
If your willpower is failing you, try these tips to keep you motivated and moving with your workouts:
- Remind yourself of your ‘why’
Why are you doing this? Reread your goals. Make them big, make them bold, and make them stand out! Set daily reminders on your phone, stick them to your mirror, keep reminding yourself why you started this journey and what it is you want to achieve. If you haven’t created your goals yet, there’s no better time than right now. Here’s how to set SMART fitness goals.
- Think of pregnancy exercise as an energy booster
While it can be draining even thinking about working out when pregnant, the reality is, exercise actually gives us more energy. So look at your pregnancy workout as something that gives (rather than takes!) energy - it can help inspire you to get moving!
- Find an environment that works for you
You don’t have to be in a sweaty gym to exercise. You can move your body wherever you feel comfortable - in your garden, at the park, or in the pool!
- Try something new
This is a great time to try new things. Lifting heavy weights when you’re pregnant isn’t recommended, instead you’ll need to modify your workouts or find a low-impact exercise. Why not hit the pool instead? Pregnancy is a great time to start a swimming routine - it's low-impact resistance, meditative, and can help relieve some of the baby bump pressure.
- Treat yourself to new gear
You need to be comfortable when exercising - comfort is key! Invest in a few key maternity workout pieces that support your breasts and belly without any pinching or binding.
- Work out with people you love
What’s a better pick me up than your go-to girl? Having someone like your bestie to hold you accountable or join you for workouts could be the driving force you need. If you have other children, incorporate them into your pregnancy workouts to make exercising more fun. When there’s someone relying on you to your workout, you’re much more likely to do it.
- Find the right workouts
Exercise doesn’t have to be strenuous to be beneficial — and any physical activity is better than none. Your body is going through a lot and you don’t want to put yourself, or baby, at risk. So it’s important to find workouts that have low-impact resistance and/or exercise modifications. To keep you moving safely throughout all stages of your pregnancy, we’re proud to announce the arrival of THE BOD Prenatal Training Programs.
Available in TWO levels, depending on your fitness level, these 6-week training guides are here to help you maintain strength, confidence, health and fitness, and are designed to keep you active and safe through each trimester with full-body workouts incorporating low-impact and modified exercises, plus pelvic floor, activation and stretching guides. We want you and bubs to be your healthiest, happiest and strongest selves throughout this exciting chapter in life so we’ve packed these training plans with expert tips and tricks to ensure the best for you and your little one, plus options to work out at home, in the gym - or both!
Remember, before beginning a new exercise program while pregnant, it’s important to have full clearance from your doctor or medical professional that takes into consideration your individual circumstances.
Read our article here for some key points to remember when exercising throughout pregnancy.