Sample Prenatal Exercise Routine

Disclaimer: The workout below was designed for healthy women with normal pregnancies who have received clearance from their healthcare provider to exercise through their pregnancy. We recommend that all pregnant women download, read and complete the PARmed-X for Pregnancy form with their healthcare provider prior to beginning or continuing an exercise program. If you have not yet read the Prenatal Exercise Guidelines, you can access them here.

Instructions:

Do this exercise routine 3 days a week.  Take 1-2 rest days in between workouts.  If you have access to prenatal fitness classes, we recommend registering for two classes a week and using this routine for your third workout of the week.

Do regular intensity checks. Use at least two of the suggested intensity checks recommended on the PARmed-X for Pregnancy.

Start to finish this routine will approximately 45 minutes.  

What you will need:
•    resistance band
•    5lb dumbbells
•    yoga mat

Warm-Up (10 minutes)

Prepare your body and avoid injuries with a thorough warm-up.  Walk briskly for 7 minutes.  Be mindful about your posture and lightly engage your deep core muscles.  Choose a long stride and swing your arms.  Follow this with 10 wide leg squats, 10 hip width squats, and 10 lunges per leg.

Workout (20-25 minutes)

This workout combines muscular endurance and cardio vascular exercise so that you can work smarter not longer.

10-16 Rows with resistance band
10-16 squats
Repeat

Step up and down or walk briskly for 2 minutes.  Check your intensity.  Can you talk?  How do you feel?

10-16 bicep curls with resistance band
10-16 alternating reverse lunges
Repeat

Step up and down or walk briskly for 2 minutes.

10-16 tricep kicks backs with dumbbells.
10-16 plie squats
Repeat

Step up and down or walk briskly for 2 minutes.

10-16 lateral (out to the sides) shoulder raises with dumbbells
16 walking lunges

If you have time, continue on with a brisk power walk until you reach 30 minutes.

Cool Down (5 minutes)

It is time to get your body temperate and heart rate back to normal.  Go for a light 5 minute walk.

Core Work (5 minutes)

1. Squat + Pelvic Floor

Standing with feet hip width apart or wider, engage your pelvic floor, squat down, release your pelvic floor.  Did you feel it release?  Try this 5 more times.

Let’s try it in the other direction.  Squat down. At the bottom on the squat engage your pelvic floor.  Come back to standing and release your pelvic floor at the top.  Did you feel it release?  Try this 5 more times.

Which of the above felt more natural for you?  

2. Easy Sitting+ Pelvic Floor + Baby Hug

Sit cross legged on your mat.  Now separate your legs so that they are not on top of each other.  This is easy sitting.  

Inhale to prepare.  As you exhale, slowly engage your pelvic floor through your full exhale. Some cues that might work for you: squeezing and lifting your pee muscles or sucking a milk shake through a straw. Try this 5 more times.  

Let’s add in the baby hug.  Inhale to prepare.  As you exhale, slowly engage your pelvic floor and hug your baby up and in with your abdominal muscles. These are your transverses abdominal muscles and they help to support your back through pregnancy.  Do this 9 more times.

Stretch (5 minutes)

Hold each stretch for about 30 seconds.  Listen to your body. Safety note: If you are 16 weeks or more pregnant, please avoid stretching flat on your back.

Be sure to stretch all major muscle groups, paying special attention to stretching the chest, fronts of your shoulders and lower back.  

This post was written and sponsored by Fit 4 Two®.  Click here to Try a FREEPrenatal Fitness class in your Community.

Check out the Pregnancy & Exercise Awareness Blog for information and motivation.