It’s an exciting and challenging time when you are expecting. While you might not feel like hitting the gym full force with your growing belly, exercise during pregnancy can be a health boost for expecting moms. From shorter labor times, to helping you get a good night’s sleep; regular exercise during pregnancy offers a host of benefits for you and your baby.

Some moms-to-be may be confused by this… wait, aren’t I supposed to move less now that I’m pregnant? And while it’s true that in the past, pregnant women were warned against exerting themselves, things have changed since then. Exercise during pregnancy is actually encouraged by doctors to help maintain your health now and during delivery.

You might be thinking there’s no way you have the time to exercise when pregnant, especially while working and chasing other kiddos. But research shows that even short intervals of exercise can be just as effective. Many moms have raved about this 10 Minute Solution pregnancy workout.

Let’s take a closer look at some of the reasons why exercise during pregnancy is such a win for you and your baby.

Benefits Of Exercise During Pregnancy

Reduced Risk of Complications:

Engaging in moderate fitness activities, as little as four times a week, can reduce the risk for gestational diabetes by as much as 27% and lower the risk of unplanned C-sections. Pregnant exercisers are also less likely to have macrosomic babies, i.e. babies weighing more than 9 pounds at birth. As you can imagine, this can make your final trimester and delivery a little easier.

Smooth Delivery and Recovery:

Thanks in part to helping moms maintain strength and muscle tone, women who exercise during pregnancy tend to have shorter labor and recovery times than non-exercisers. Keeping muscles toned can also reduce pregnancy-related aches and pains. Plus, let’s be honest, giving birth requires strength and stamina. Both of these qualities are enhanced by exercise. reports that prenatal water aerobics regulars were 58% less likely to request pain medication during labor than non-exercisers.  An added bonus?  A shorter post-labor recovery time will allow you to bond and play with your baby sooner, so it’s a definite win-win.

One great way to tone your muscles while helping your baby get in good position for delivery is to utilize a fitness stability ball. 

Benefits of exercise during pregnancy
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Improved Mood and Low Fatigue:

Women are more susceptible to depression during pregnancy. It is estimated that nearly 50% of all pregnant women go through some form of depression or anxiety while expecting, which can adversely affect your baby’s health. Research indicates that exercise during pregnancy allows your body to release relaxing endorphins that can boost your mood. This may help stave off some of the signs of depression.

Furthermore, a basic activity like walking or prenatal yoga can give you an energy boost. Getting in a little physical activity makes you feel more active and awake. It may help reduce pregnancy fatigue.

Additional Benefits:

If the benefits listed above weren’t enough to get you up and moving, there’s more. Women who exercise during pregnancy report other advantages including reduced back pain, less constipation, reduced leg swelling, and less weight gain. Plus, you might make some new mommy friends in your prenatal class that become part of your support system after the baby is born, which is a real blessing to have.

One important note – Before beginning any exercise program, even one specifically designed for pregnancy, get your doctor’s approval first. A number of risk factors may contraindicate certain exercises and require you to take it a little easier. Your doctor can work with you to help you decide which activities are right for you and your individual pregnancy. This way you can enjoy the many benefits of exercise during pregnancy, safely.