Going through a pregnancy is one of the most fruitful and fulfilling experiences you can have. Knowing that a new life grows and develops, and it’s your job to protect and nurture it,is something you can’t quite put into words. But pregnancy can also be a rollercoaster. Between the hormonal fluctuations, mood swings, nausea, going to the bathroom every five minutes, and weighing more with each passing week, it can be challenging.
Amidst all of it, exercise might be the last thing on your mind. But do you know what? Regular physical activity is incredibly beneficial during pregnancy. Below, we’ll go over the six most prominent benefits it offers.
Let’s dive into it.
1. It Boosts Your Mood
Each pregnancy comes with its fair share of worries and small issues. Many women have periods where they feel anxious and even depressed. The hormonal fluctuations often amplify these effects, which can make for a challenging experience. The great news is that regular exercise is well-documented to help boost our mood, improve our outlook, and lower our anxiety and depression risks. As we do physical activities such as exercise, the body produces and releases opioid hormones called endorphins. These hormones primarily work to suppress pain but also bring about a sense of well-being and euphoria. If you’ve ever gone for a jog and felt like you were on top of the world afterward, that’s the well-known runner’s high and occurs precisely thanks to these hormones.
The result is fantastic: With as little as twenty minutes of structured exercise, you can boost your mood for many hours.
2. It Makes Your Everyday Life Easier
Each pregnancy comes with its fair share of challenges, and one of them is the natural weight gain that occurs. While some women only gain a few pounds during their pregnancy, most gain more. The direct result is obvious: Weighing more reduces your mobility and makes it more challenging to move around before getting tired. This can interfere with your daily life and work (should you choose to work for the first few months of pregnancy).
The great news is, exercise helps maintain a high quality of life because of two things: First, the caloric burn helps prevent too much unwanted weight gain. As a result, you can maintain a slimmer appearance and not have to deal with weight-related issues. Second, exercise strengthens your muscles, making them better able to work efficiently and help you move around.
These benefits become more pronounced as the pregnancy progresses and the baby grows. So, it’s a good idea to start an exercise plan early on.
3. It Helps Prevent too Much Unwanted Weight Gain
As we mentioned in the previous point, regular exercise prevents too much unwanted weight gain. Sure, each pregnancy comes with its fair share of weight gain, but it doesn’t need to be drastic. Even small amounts of physical activity burn calories, which add up over the weeks and months. For reference, if you burn a mere 200 calories from exercise each day, that adds up to 1,400 in a week. With some nutritional mindfulness, that can help prevent you from gaining too much weight.
4. It May Help Regulate Your Appetite
Research finds an interesting relationship between regular physical activity and appetite. According to some studies, leading a sedentary lifestyle often leads to a dysregulation of appetite and hunger signals. As a result, folks lose their natural ability to understand when they are hungry and when they should put the fork down. Exercise is incredibly beneficial because it seems to help regulate these signals, and we get better at interpreting hunger and satiety. As a result, our caloric intake normalizes, and we become much better able to maintain a healthy body weight.
This is even more important during pregnancy because many women find themselves overeating and having a tough time resisting tempting foods.
5. It Can Ease Back Pain
Back pain tends to become increasingly common as the pregnancy progresses. Most notably, carrying extra weight can put undue stress on the back, which leads to unpleasant aches and cramps.
The great news is, regular exercise can help prevent this from happening for two reasons. First, as we discussed, regular exercise helps prevent too much unwanted weight gain. Even small and seemingly insignificant workouts can add up the caloric burn, resulting in less weight gain throughout the pregnancy.
Second, exercise, particularly resistance training, is excellent for building muscle mass and getting stronger. As a result, you become better able to carry the baby around without ever experiencing adverse effects like cramps and back pain. Weight training exercises like squats are fantastic because they strengthen your lower body. You can also include resistance band, dumbbell, and some barbell movements like rows, chest flyes, and overhead presses.
6. You Don’t Have to Go to a Gym
Let’s face it:
The gym can be a fantastic place to have effective workouts, but it can also lead to anxiety-ridden experiences. This effect is further amplified during pregnancy when you feel more self-conscious about your body.
The great news is, you don’t need a gym to reap all of exercise’s benefits. The truth is, you can get yourself some home workout equipment and have great sessions without having to leave your house. Dumbbells, kettlebells, some weight plates, and smaller barbells are all fantastic tools. You can also get yourself a piece of cardio equipment or a set of resistance bands.
Plus, by investing some money, you will be more likely to exercise consistently because you won’t want it to go to waste. If you’re interested in premium fitness equipment (and maybe even a good training plan), head over to our site and check out what we have to offer.
To Sum It Up!
Regular exercise is terrific for everyone, especially if you’re pregnant. The benefits it offers impact every area of our lives. We become stronger, healthier, happier, and more capable. Resistance training is also beneficial during pregnancy because it helps you maintain your weight, become stronger, and carry out your term with ease. Plus, it allows you to train at home if that’s what you prefer.