Accolades for Exercise in the 1st Trimester

Did you know that the SOGC recommends that all healthy women with uncomplicated pregnancies do both cardio and muscular conditioning exercises throughout each trimester?  It’s true! You can read their guidelines here.

So let’s talk about the benefits of exercise during the first trimester.

More energy
Many women report feeling extra fatigued during the first trimester.  No wonder! So much is happening during these 12 weeks.  During the first trimester, your baby grows faster than at any other time. By 12 weeks, your baby's bones, muscles and all the organs of the body have formed. All that embryonic development is taxing on mom’s body.

Here’s the good news: Many women find that exercise actually increases their energy. This is even more so if the exercise is outdoors and/or with others.  Try going for a light to moderate walk outside and test the waters.  How does it make you feel? If you find your energy improving, then take it up a notch to a brisk walk.
 
Less Nausea
Ok.  So we understand that there is nausea….and there is NAUSEA.  We are not suggesting you head out for a power walk with your barf bucket.   But lets say you have light nausea.  You might find that exercise helps to prevent, reduce and even curb the nausea all together.

Prepare your body
Though you may have been feeling tired and or nauseous, the major physical changes of pregnancy are yet to come.   Maintaining or gently improving your fitness levels now, will help you better deal with postural changes and muscular imbalances of the 2nd and 3rd trimester. 

Stress management
When do I tell my boss? What if I have a miscarriage? Where am I going to put a baby in my 600 square foot condo?  Confirmation of pregnancy, planned or not, can be a very stressful time.  Many women keep their pregnancies private for the first 3 months.  This means they often have to cope with this stress on their own.  Exercise is a proven stress buster.  Even more so if exercising with a like group or exercising outdoors.  

Safety First
Ready to get moving? Awesome.  Please be sure to listen to your body and talk to your healthcare provider before resuming or beginning a fitness program.  We also recommend reviewing the guidelines for exercise during pregnancy.