Archive | 7:44 am

Pregnancy Workouts

2 Dec

Working out while pregnant is a must do in my book.  As long as you are medically fit to do so and get doctor’s clearance that is.  I think a lot of woman use growing a baby as an excuse no to stay physically fit themselves when in reality, pregnancy is a major reason to get strong and fit. 

Not only is working out while pregnant good for your body, it is also good for your mind.  I’ve noticed that the further along in pregnancy I’ve gotten the more I’ve cherished my “me time” in the gym and have used the time to de-stress from all the stresses pregnancy can bring (like thinking about pushing out a baby)!

So, I wanted to touch on what I’ve done for exercise during the first second and third trimester so far.

First Trimester


This trimester, when I wasn’t suffering endlessly from morning sickness, I stuck with my pre pregnancy workouts.  I was lifting heavy weights, running high intensity intervals and doing lots of steady state cardio.  I tired to keep up with my usual routine.  Around week 12 (2 weeks before the second trimester) I had to decrease my running speed on the treadmill to keep my heart rate in check.  When I spoke with my doctors they told me to keep my heart rate between 135 and 154bpm.  This wasn’t going to happen for me.  I decided what was best for me was to keep my heart rate below 170bpm.  I based this on my pre and post natal exercise education and my own personal fitness level.

*My recommendation is to talk with your doctor or midwife about what is best for your own situation.  I do not recommend anyone working out while pregnant and allowing their heart rate to get to 170bpm unless it is medically cleared by your doctor*

My workouts first trimester looked like this:

  • Cardio 45+ minutes
  • Strength- Heavy lifting plus intervals
  • Cardio 45+ minutes
  • Strength- Heavy lifting plus intervals
  • Cardio- 45+ minutes

In addition, I tried to get in three prenatal yoga sessions


Second Trimester

2011-10-12 07.05.15

This trimester I had to slow down my workouts a lot by week 20.  I stopped running intervals right away (at 14 weeks), I stopped running all together this  (couldn’t stand my bump bouncing up and down) and really had to keep an eye on my heart rate.  I tried to average 5 workouts a week and stick with getting in three weekly prenatal yoga sessions.  I traded in running for incline walking.  I love incline walking to a song and then walking for another song on my iPod.  It makes time go quickly for me.  I also started doing a lot more elliptical this trimester as walking was bringing on lots of Braxton hicks contractions and was also pretty uncomfortable on my ligaments.  Here is what I did for most of my second trimester:

  • Cardio 45+ minutes
  • Strength- Back, Arms, Core
  • Cardio 45+ minutes
  • Strength-  Legs, Pecs, Shoulders
  • Cardio 45 + minutes

*My strength days I would change up but typically they were split like the following.*

Third Trimester

2011-11-23 07.06.52

So far third trimester workouts have been going great.  I am still trying to get in 5 workouts a week and plan to do so until I get to tired (or too big) to keep them up.  So far so good though!  : )  I’m also still getting in three prenatal yoga sessions each week, as they really help with my lower back pain and stretching out my hips.  I think all the yoga is going to be really beneficial during labor not to mention I love meditating at the end of each session and just take a minute to focus on my breathing.

Here is what my workouts have looked like so far in the third trimester:

  • Cardio- 45+ minutes
  • Strength-  Upper body with lots of cardio bursts
  • Cardio-  45+ minutes
  • Strength-  Lower body with lots of cardio bursts
  • Cardio- 45+ minutes

I’m not too worried with changing up my routine during pregnancy, I’m more concerned with keeping active and keeping my muscles from losing both their tone and muscle mass. 

In addition, I’ve been trying to walk the dog 5 times a week anywhere form one mile to 3 miles.  I have to take it easy since we live in a very hilly area but I don’t think the dog minds.  : )


*This post was to inform you about the choices I’ve made personally. It is not meant to be a guide to exercising when you are pregnant. Please consult with your doctor before starting a new exercise program, especially when you are pregnant.*


The makeup less awful pic has returned!  I was in my workout clothes though, so it seemed fitting!




  • Did you workout while you were pregnant or do you plan too?
  • Are you a yoga fan?  Do you find it helpful in de stressing?
  • When did you find your energy fading during pregnancy, if at all?