At some point during recent history it was decided that pregnant women were fragile, well at least in North America and other “industrialized” countries. This lead to women not exerting themselves the entire 9 -10 months of pregnancy. Then after all the atrophy labor began and kicked their asses. I imagine it is like not running for 9-10 months and then going out and running a marathon.
Preparation For Labor
Later some people made the realization that since labor and giving birth were very physically strenuous activities, maybe it was good for pregnant women to get some activity. Scientific studies were done and now it is widely accepted that some exercise is good for pregnant women. Those that actually follow/ study or have experienced childbirth believe that exercise prepared them for labor and made their labor shorter. Looking at nature, animal giving birth, human anatomy and physiology it all makes common sense. In order to prepare for my labor I have made it a very important point to keep exercising.
Luckily we live in Southern Florida so we are able to go for a walk most everyday. 6 days of each week we have beenwalking 3 miles. Strangely walking feels very comfortable while I have a hard time finding a comfortable sitting position on the couch.
I have also been doing pre natal yoga most days. It takes some effort most days. Poses are geared towards working the back and legs while involving various labor poses while mixing in some kegels. For a few weeks it was quite hard to do the pre natal yoga because I always felt so full. I had been advised to eat more and get more protein which was difficult with the baby higher in my abdomen and feeling like the head was resting on my stomach. About a week ago the baby turned and is now head down. This makes eating a lot easier. Especially during the downward facing dog pose I no longer feel as if my last snack is trying to come up the back of my throat.
We have also done some swimming during this pregnancy. Since I was a competitive swimmer in junior high and high school I never feel like swimming for half an hour is a workout since I used to be in the pool 3-4 hours a day. It doesn’t matter that for me it may not be the best aerobic activity because after swimming I feel so great. I feel so light and like I have so much more room in my abdomen.
Doing activities where you don’t notice the bowling ball in your abdomen, I would highly recommend.