I used to think that when you’re pregnant, you shouldn’t do exercise. In fact, I just got back from my first Aerobics Bumps class and on the taxi ride back I had a whole conversation with the driver about it. He was surprised that exercise is recommended during pregnancy, but it’s so important to stay active. It’s all about finding the right exercise to do.
I had always heard that when you have a child, you end up meeting lots of new people, so having only just moved to Newcastle, I knew this was the perfect time to sign up for a class. My regular exercise routine was no longer working for me, so Aerobic Bumps seemed like the perfect solution.
Staying Active During Pregnancy
I was initially worried about exercise as I wasn’t sure what I should and shouldn’t do while pregnant. My go-to has been the NHS website. There is so much information out there, so I thought it would be best to just go to what seemed like the most reliable source. Here is what they have to say:
The more active and fit you are during pregnancy, the easier it will be for you to adapt to your changing shape and weight gain. It will also help you to cope with labour and get back into shape after the birth.
Keep up your normal daily physical activity or exercise (sport, running, yoga, dancing, or even walking to the shops and back) for as long as you feel comfortable. Exercise is not dangerous for your baby – there is some evidence that active women are less likely to experience problems in later pregnancy and labour.
There are more tips and advice, so head on over to the NHS website if you want to find out more about exercise in pregnancy.
I did exactly as they said. I tried to keep up with my normal exercise routine, which I managed quite well until about the 12th or 13th week. I was doing exercise videos at home before the pregnancy and while I was never super fit, I did make sure to take things a little easier and usually just went with the modifier for the easier moves. Then, things started to get a little tougher. I was getting out of breath more easily and knew it was time to make a change.
I went online for some pregnancy workout videos and found this great one by Amy of BodyFit By Amy:
I found it to be a good pace, and while it was not as tough a workout as I’m used to, I think it was exactly what I needed. You can do it at any time during your pregnancy, as long as you are cleared by your doctor. She gives alternative options for if you want to slow things down a little, so I think it’ll be a good workout to continue to do even as I get bigger – I’m currently 16 weeks and only have a small bump! Amy has a whole playlist of prenatal workouts, and while I have only done two so far, I recommend checking them out if you are looking for some exercise to do while pregnant.
Why I Recommend Signing Up For A Class
I’m only one class in, but I definitely recommend it. Again, part of the reason I signed up was because I felt like I needed a little bit of reassurance. This is my first baby, after all, so like most new mothers, I’m a bit cautious and full of questions! Going to a class made me feel more confident that I was doing the right things and it gave me a good idea of the type of exercise I’m okay to do.
The class itself lasted an hour, but we didn’t actually exercise for the full duration. We also got a chance to talk a bit and the instructor spoke about the importance of pelvic floor exercises. While I had read about them, I hadn’t been doing them every day as I should be doing. It was good to hear it from someone who’s a mother and who has met plenty of other mums while teaching these classes.
The exercise was good – it’s a no-impact aerobic class, so it keeps you moving but you’re not jumping around or anything. It’s a nice steady pace, and there were plenty of water breaks. The instructor is lovely and she made you feel comfortable right from the start. We finished off with some stretching, and while it wasn’t a particularly tough workout, it probably felt that way more so because I’m not that far along. I’m sure as my bump starts to grow, it will start to feel tougher!
It was also lovely to meet other expectant mothers, most of who are expecting their first child. The instructor is planning to put together a private Facebook group so we can all stay in touch and have somewhere where we can just chat about things and get to know each other better. If you’re looking for a way to meet new mums and stay fit, then this is the perfect way to do it.
I look forward to doing more classes (these are once a week for 4 weeks) and will probably sign up to something else to try out something new and meet more people.
Have you ever done a prenatal exercise class or would you consider it? Tell us about your experiences in the comment below!