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Ask Dr. Salada – Is it safe to exercise during pregnancy?

That’s a great question and one that is asked often. It really depends on which stage of pregnancy we are discussing. Many women find that in the early stages, one of the first physical “signs” of pregnancy is a lack of endurance. Your cardio routines may seem a little harder and the resistance exercises may seem a bit more difficult. That is because the first 6 weeks of pregnancy are a very “delicate” time developmentally for the baby, so your body is trying to protect itself from getting overheated or dehydrated. If you are healthy and have had no problems getting or staying pregnant, it’s important to keep your body temperature in a normal range. Light cardio should be OK as long as the climate is not too hot. If you have had problems with pregnancy in the past, ask your obstetrician before doing any exercise in this stage of pregnancy.

During the second trimester, you will feel a little more energetic. So if all is going well with your pregnancy, feel free to push yourself a little more. By the last trimester of pregnancy, most women find that they will need to modify their routines to accommodate their routines. As your womb grows, it will be harder to keep up your usual pace and cardiovascular performance and you may feel more easily winded due the rapid growth of your baby. Many women find swimming or lower impact activities as well as strength training to be more satisfying as the pregnancy winds down. Total Gym offers a safe environment for lower impact strength training. Click here to learn more about GRAVITY training for pregnant women and appropriate Total Gym exercises.

It’s important to be active during pregnancy as research has shown this makes for easier deliveries and healthier babies and moms. Always consult your doctor about the best exercise for your particular situation and phase of pregnancy. Until next time, keep moving!

Dr. Salada is board certified in Internal Medicine and has been in practice in San Diego since 1996. She attended medical school at Wake Forest University where she received high honors in Family Practice and Internal Medicine. Her final training was obtained from Pennsylvania State University where she completed her residency in Internal Medicine.

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