If you’re new to fitness activities, congratulations on making the move to build fitness into your daily routine as you head into this 40-week fun house, where the mirrors sometimes seem distorted and it can be hard to find your bearings with fitness.
When it comes to advice for those new to fitness, the Department of Health and Human Services offers a great maxim: “Start Low and Go Slow.”
Anyone who is training—whether new to exercise or a competitive veteran—must balance activity with recovery periods. It’s tempting to overdo a workout when you’ve made a new commitment to fitness, but more is not always better, and it’s key to realize that your body actually strengthens from rest between workouts.
Here are some guidelines for getting started:
- Build your program from a conservative base, such as walking on a flat treadmill before increasing the incline or walking hills.
- Your program should be based on your BMI (see earlier in this chapter) and individual fitness history. Talk to your doctor and consider working with a trainer who will personalize your workouts and keep you motivatedand accountable.
- Read Fit & Healthy Pregnancy to educate yourself on prenatal fitness so you can perceive your body’s cues regarding when to stop and when to persist witha workout.
- Diversify your workouts to include cardio sessions, flexibility, and strength training. The variety will keep you motivated and build whole-body fitness.
- Trade sodas and juices for water (flavored water and coconut water are good alternatives), and c
arry a water bottle with you throughout the day.
- Seek medical attention if you develop warning signs of dehydration (headache, dizziness, nausea, blurred vision, cramping).
Check back for another article on How to Start Exercising During Pregnancy.
Please consult your doctor before embarking on an exercise program during pregnancy.
Fit & Healthy Pregnancy dispels generations of old wives’ tales about exercise and pregnancy. Exercise during pregnancy isn’t just safe, it’s healthy for you and your baby. This modern, comprehensive guide shows active women how to stay strong and in shape before, during, and after pregnancy.