I have never been much of an exerciser. I went for runs with my college roommates but that only lasted a couple weeks. I made good use of the treadmill in the basement in the last few weeks preceding my wedding. I took a Pilate class for a month just to get out of the house while my husband spent late nights at rehearsals during graduate school. I never stuck with anything I tried and I never really cared. Sure I needed to get fit and tone my pathetically weak muscles, but the motivation just wasn’t there.
That all changed when I became pregnant. I had done my research and I knew the benefits of exercise for me and my baby. I wanted a healthy pregnancy without complication and I was going to do whatever it took to achieve just that. With a clear and directed reason to exercise and someone to motivate me, I was determined to exercise throughout my pregnancy. It was slow getting started. My first trimester was challenging, inundated with fatigue and nausea, exercising regularly didn’t happen often. I was getting discouraged because for once in my life I actually wanted to exercise!
Soon enough I began my second trimester. I got my energy back and the nausea seemed to disappear overnight. I went from exercising once or twice a week to exercising five or six times a week! I didn’t love working out but I felt amazing. My muscles were getting toned, my energy was consistent, and aches and pains were minimal if not non-existent. With a regiment of prenatal cardio and strength training, my pregnancy was progressing well with no foreseeable complications.
As I entered my third trimester, I was still exercising five or six times a week. I felt great and my baby was doing great too. At 34 weeks I made the mistake of wearing heels for a few hours. The was the straw that broke the camels back or rather my back. Cardio was out! I continued my strength training exercises and saw a chiropractor. After a few adjustments my back was feeling better, but at that point my belly was beyond huge (I’m only 5’ 3”). So I tried to do a cardio workout at least once a week, strength training several times a week, and walking every day.
In the end, I delivered a healthy baby boy without any complications five days before my due date. I know that exercising really helped me achieve the pregnancy that I wanted: Healthy mommy and healthy baby! I also know that exercising is hard, but your baby is worth it, you are worth it. So get your body moving, you will be happy that you did!