Getting fit before becoming pregnant and staying active during pregnancy helps women to regain their fitness and figure faster after their babies are born.
Pregnancy is known to put stress on many parts of the body, including heart, lungs, muscles and joints. David DeGroot at the Martin Army Community Hospital in Georgia studied the impact of pregnancy on 460 women who became pregnant while in the military.
Despite their high levels of fitness before becoming pregnant, many struggled to regain their fitness levels and one year after giving birth only 30 per cent were able to reach the level they had pre-pregnancy.
In the general population, lifestyle factors such as disrupted sleep and lack of time to exercise can be as impactful as the physical changes during pregnancy.
Wendy Brown at the University of Queensland in Australia recommends up to 5 hours of moderate intensity or 2.5 hours of vigorous activity per week plus regular muscle strengthening exercises for as long as possible while pregnant (with the Doctors permission) and says “Women sometimes worry that vigorous exercise might harm their baby but we found that you can basically carry on doing anything that you want to do as long as it is comfortable”
Ingrid Christianson broke the world record in the London Marathon just 12 weeks after giving birth in a time that lasted for some 12 years before it was broken!
Note : Gymophobics Instructors will prescribe a suitable level of exercise and support members throughout their pregnancy.