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Posted on by Bun Maternity

6 Effective Exercises that You Can Do During the Third Trimester

As your body grows and your center of balance goes, you may be wondering if you should really keep exercising. After all, is it really safe for a woman in her third trimester to continue moving normally?

The answer is yes, it is safe.

Not only is it safe, but it is actually recommended in order to ensure mama and baby are as healthy as possible, come delivery day.

There are, of course, exceptions to this rule. If, for instance, you feel intense pain when doing a particular exercise, it is probably not a good idea to continue. A quick chat with your care provider is sure to help you better understand when exercise is unsafe in pregnancy. Therefore, if you aren't sure whether or not a particular type of exercise is allowed, it is always a good idea to ask your doctor or midwife beforehand. 

So...what kinds of exercises should women in their third trimester attempt? There are actually quite a few options out there. This is especially true if you have been very physically active throughout your pregnancy, as your body is already accustomed to intense exercise. 

Today we are going to focus on a few of the most popular types of exercises for pregnant women. We will discuss why these types of exercise are ideal and help you acquire a better understanding of how they will help you and your baby achieve the healthiest status possible. 

Walking

By far the most popular exercise for expectant mamas, walking requires no special gear, can be done on your own time, and doesn't even require any training. Even if you have never been a walker before, taking up walking in your third trimester is perfectly safe as long as you are experiencing a healthy pregnancy so far.

Walking is an ideal exercise during pregnancy because it is a relatively low-impact activity that really gets your blood pumping. Women who choose to power walk will likely even break out into a sweat, a sure sign that your body is burning calories and working toward optimal weight and heart health. 

FUN TIP: Download your favorite music and create an upbeat playlist. Using an iphone arm band, bluetooth speakers, or something like your Apple watch will help with not having to hold anything so you can concentrate on your stride and arm movements. Lastly, choose a beautiful place to walk. Nature settings at the beach, a park, a lake, or even around a neighborhood with beautiful homes can be the perfect walking path to make this exercise go by quickly. 

Water Aerobics

Most mamas-to-be enjoy spending time in the water. The feeling of floating is absolutely incredible when you are carrying around so much extra weight on a daily basis. ( Floating and being in water is so relaxing there are even "float spas" in many urban city areas. )  Additionally, a skewed center of balance is completely unnoticeable when submerged in water. All of these are great reasons to choose water aerobics as a way to get moving during pregnancy.

Other benefits of this type of exercise include little to no risk of overheating, as well as an instructor to help ensure every move is carried out safely and effectively. Fun classmates are an incentive to get in some exercise are pretty great as well. 

Take time to yourself and also go to the gym pool without the class and focus on water walking the length of the pool as many times as you comfortably can. 

Dancing

Yes, you read that right! Line dancing - Zumba - Dance Aerobics—or any other type of low-impact dancing that doesn't require jumps, leaps, or turns—is a great form of exercise during pregnancy. It also makes mamas happy and feel good! The music will inspire you to get into the groove and start sweating, and the good friends made at line-dancing or other dance class sessions will keep you coming back for more. 

This is an ideal exercise for all the same reasons walking is. It is relatively low-impact and gets your blood moving to help ensure cardiovascular health and a healthy weight. However, it can be much more fun than walking if you are into the music!

FUN TIP: If you're rained or snowed in, just turn up the music in your house and just spend 30 minutes dancing and moving to get your blood flowing in the comfort of your own home. Maybe your hubby or partner will join you!

Pilates

Ideal for working large muscle groups and building strength, Pilates is a great pre-baby workout. There are so many numerous benefits to this type of exercise.  This fun group or private session activity also helps build up the core muscles and gives you a stronger connection to your pelvic floor muscles that you will need during delivery, making it a perfect addition to your workout routine. 

That said, Pilates can get a bit intense. Therefore, it is important to remember to sit out if anything becomes too challenging and causes pain or discomfort. Be sure to discuss this with your instructor before class. He or she will be able to customize your workout while you are pregnant and lead the way for you. Lastly, this exercise quickly becomes addictive with the great results and aids in postpartum body recovery, so you may just keep doing for many more months or years! 

Yoga

Another great one for strength work and toning sleek sexy muscles is yoga. Additionally, yoga can help with flexibility and focused breathing. All of these things are ideal skills to work on in the weeks leading up to labor and delivery, making yoga a wonderful choice for expectant mothers. 

Attending a yoga class in person is generally recommended over following along with videos whenever possible because the atmosphere and instructor can aid in engaging you in the moment and also assist you if needed.  Finding a prenatal yoga class is an even better option. The instructor of your class should fully understand how to safely include a pregnant woman in the session.

Stationary Cycle

If you have access to a stationary cycle, you should be putting that thing to use. Riding a bike is a great cardio workout and really helps keep you fit. However, riding a real bike during pregnancy can be quite tricky due to balance issues. Therefore, a stationary bicycle is the perfect option. 

While riding your stationary bike, consider listening to some music or watching your favorite TV show to pass the time more quickly. Before you know it, your workout will be over and you'll be feeling much more energetic. 

As stated before, exercising during pregnancy is a crucial part of keeping you and your baby healthy. Therefore, unless your care provider has stated otherwise, you are going to want to pick a few of your favorites from this list and get moving. Consult with your doctor to make sure what you can and cannot be doing. 

Not a fan of these particular types of exercise? Try to find something you do enjoy instead. However, be sure to choose an exercise of the low-impact variety, and avoid high jumps, leaps, twirls, plyometrics, or anything else that might throw you off-balance and cause harm to your or your little one or make you fall.

Keep going mama! Consistency yields results and you can do it!

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