Since we returned from our New Zealand honeymoon in February, I’ve been trying to do at least two full-body workouts per week, plus some form of prenatal yoga at least once a week. My body definitely feels less achy when I maintain this routine, so even though sometimes I feel so exhausted I’d rather just crash on the couch, I try to do at least 15 minutes of something a few times a week.
It’s well known there are so many benefits to exercising throughout pregnancy, and if you were quite active before getting pregnant you can still continue your workout regime with some modifications to keep your body and baby safe. Since I cut out all exercise aside from yoga and walking before getting pregnant, my prenatal workout routine (shared below) is rather light compared to what it used to be, and that’s okay.
I’ve noticed as my belly gets bigger I need to modify things a bit more (lunges aren’t feeling so great now and I’m being careful with how I engage my core as I’m noticing some ab separation already), but otherwise I’m hoping to keep this up right until delivery.
Prenatal Full Body Workout
A few tips/things to keep in mind:
- Make sure you are cleared by your doctor before doing any prenatal exercise.
- Use a wider stance (feet hip-width or slightly farther apart, toes slightly pointed outward) than before you were pregnant during standing exercises to help you stay balanced.
- Use a chair or other prop for balance if needed.
- Ensure you maintain proper form (knees not tracking over toes when bending, keep your core engaged for a nice straight back) – if you can’t, don’t do they exercise.
- Watch for ab coning.
- Obviously avoid any exercises on your stomach, crunches, and extreme twists.
I can usually do this routine in 15-20 minutes, as I kind of power through without breaks and only use 5-8 lb dumbbells so it acts as my cardio routine as well. I also usually do an extend yoga stretch at the end, making sure to hold long side-stretch poses now that baby’s feet are constantly up in my ribs (ouch).
Let me know if you try the above workout or if you have any other favourite prenatal workouts to suggest!