Just found out you’re pregnant? Thoughts of how you can maintain your health and fitness level during pregnancy could be beginning to surface. While you can’t – and shouldn’t ever try – to prevent the changes that are taking place in your body right now, you can work with those changes, taking steps to maintain your health and fitness level.
General Tips For staying Healthy:
- Despite cravings, avoid processed or junk foods such as cookies, cake, burgers, pizzas wheat products. If craving something sweet, have some fruit instead. If craving something greasy such as fries, have some nuts or avocado
- Stay Hydrated. Drink plenty of water or herbal caffeine free tress. Avoid sodas and juices which might have additional unnecessary calories
- Fill up on vegetables
- Eat lots of lean protein/meat choices cooked using healthy cooking methods such as sautéing vs fried
- Rest enough
- If you currently workout don’t just stop unless your doctor requests you too.
Here is more info on what you should do during each trimester of pregnancy.
During the first trimester your body will slowly be growing and developing, however you won’t be seeing much of a baby belly just yet. During this time, you’ll only need a slight increase to your calorie intake, so aim for around 100-150 more calories per day.
Be sure to get a balanced mix of nutrients from fats, carbohydrates, and proteins, choosing wholesome foods as often as possible while staying away from pregnancy no-no’s including raw or undercooked meats as well as raw seafood, deli meats, soft cheese, pate, shark, swordfish, king mackerel, hot dogs and other processed meats as well as alcohol, unpasteurized milk and juice, along with smoked seafood.
Note that these no-no’s will remain in place until you have delivered.
During this time, choose easy to digest foods such as bananas, brown rice, yogurt, white fish (provided it’s cooked and is a low-mercury variety), and eggs, all of which will help combat the nausea you may experience during this time.
During the first trimester, you won’t have too many limitations on what you can do exercise wise, however note that you may suffer from increased levels of fatigue.
Aim to simply get some exercise in – even if this means going for just ten minutes at a time. Keep your strength training program and do regular cardio, just do be sure to keep your heart rate to the 70-85% max heart rate range.
During the second semester, keep a balanced diet with a few more calories added in. now you’ll want to focus on getting in plenty of vitamin D and calcium to help promote the growth of strong bones in your baby. Likewise, also be sure to keep your omega-3 fatty acid intake up.
Include foods like low fat milk, yogurt, flaxseeds, as well as omega-3 enriched eggs on a regular basis.
During the second trimester, safety is a top concern. Don’t do any exercises that could potentially risk a fall, so try and stay seated as much as possible.
Likewise, don’t introduce any new activities at this time. Stick to ones you know and feel comfortable with, focusing on simply maintaining your fitness, rather than improving it. Stop if you feel any sort of abdominal or pelvic pain or if you start feeling out of breath.
During this trimester, consider increasing your calorie intake up a little further to encourage optimal growth and development. As you do, also add in foods that are rich in vitamin K, which are needed for proper blood clotting. This will assist with the birthing process and help kickstart breastfeeding.
Good choices include frozen spinach, kale, mustard greens, beet greens, broccoli, as well as swish chard.
During the third trimester, keep things nice and easy. Go for plenty of long walks and partake in a light resistance training session designed for pregnant women. Avoid any exercises that have you in the prone position and try and stay seated as often as possible.
Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t feel quite like exercising one day – take it day by day, aiming to get exercise in whenever you can.
So there you have your trimester by trimester schedule. If you plan for a healthy pregnancy, you’ll not only feel your best, but will bounce back faster after you deliver.