Pregnant Workout!

16-Dec-2013 Contributed by: Teresa Palmer
Hello fellow YZL-ers!

So I thought I'd write about my pregnancy work out! I've always heard of labor described as similar to "running a marathon" so I knew that one of the most important aspects of my pregnancy would be maintaining my fitness level. I've been pretty active over the last 5 years and didn't want to let pregnancy be an excuse to stop my workouts. I also downloaded "Exercising Through Pregnancy" by James Clapp and Catherine Cram which talked about certain myths in pregnancy exercise and how being told to "slow down" doesn't mean "stop altogether" 

After reading this ebook I understood that the old belief of keeping your heart rate below 140 bpm was both a dated and conservative idea that needn't apply to women who were used to having a much higher heart rate during exercise. There are however certain things that I knew I would have to change, for instance I knew I couldn't participate in hot yoga. Our babies are already a few degrees warmer than us whilst in our tummies so it's important not to put strain on their little bodies by overheating ourselves and them. Here is what I have been doing-

First trimester
I really listened to my body during this first and very important trimester. I didn't have any morning sickness but I was shooting films back to back and felt very tired. I decided to start prenatal yoga early and attended my first class at 6 weeks. 
For those who don't know what to expect in prenatal yoga, it's basically a much slower version of a regular yoga class. It emphasizes bonding with the little spirit within you and makes amendments for certain yoga postures which don't serve us during pregnancy (I.e twisting inwards and inversions etc) the teachers also really prep you for labor and how dealing with the intensity of labor through yoga poses and deep breathing (Ujjayi breath) whilst during your birthing day will be really helpful in finding more comfort. For me since I'm planning a drug-free natural water birth at home I know that what I learn in my prenatal yoga will be incredibly beneficial in preparing me for this incredible day.
So first trimester I attended prenatal yoga 2 x week and continued my regular Pilates classes 2 x week. I also took a lot of naps on the weekends!

Second and third trimesters
I got a lot of my energy back during these last two trimesters and now at 30 weeks I'm feeling great. I have started hiking as well as continuing my prenatal yoga. I try to hike for 1.5/2 hrs once or twice a week, prenatal yoga 2x per week and I also go to the gym 2-3x per week. Out of everything I've been doing, my gym workout has been my favorite physical activity each week. I wear a heart rate monitor and try to keep my hr below 170 bpm which means I can still talk whilst working out. 

This is my current gym routine-

1. Stair master on level 5 (5-10mins about 40 flights of stairs)
2. If I only do 5 mins on stair master then I do 5 mins on the row machine.
3. Treadmill on 4mph for 4 mins and slow jog on 6mph for 1 minute. Do this 4 times. (Total 20 mins)
4. Elliptical on level 8 (15 mins)
5. 3 sets of 20 squats, 12 reps dead weight lifts with 40lb weight, 12 reps of 5lbs dumbells, 12 reps of suspended TRX push ups, 12 reps of resistance bands for the triceps (15-20 mins total) 

TOTAL TIME: 1 hour

Lastly the most important thing is LISTEN TO YOUR BODY. If you need to skip working out for the day then do it, if you need a sleep then take a nap. Keep really well hydrated whilst working out and don't push yourself too hard. You should be going about 70% of your usual workout routine. Eat plentiful meals, every few hours and remember that you are not eating for two just yourself and a tiny little being inside of you so you don't need to up your calories any more than an extra 100 per day in the first trimester and 300 per day in the second and 500 per day in the third trimester. Every pregnancy is different but just remember your thoughts, actions and choices that you make during pregnancy will in turn affect your little darling. Be healthy, active and happy and most importantly ENJOY YOUR PREGNANCY!! 

Instagram: tez_palmer
Twitter: @tez_palmer
And @yourzenlife

Teresa Palmer is a soon-to-be earth mama, wife, stepmom, healthy body image advocate, spiritual warrior, actress, writer, producer, director, philanthropist and co-creator of wellness site 
Health, Exercise, Pregnancy
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