Training Martial Arts While Pregnant: Exercising Pregnant Part II

Being pregnant presents a lot of new challenges if you want to keep up the same lifestyle from your pre-pregnancy days.  Whether it is working out, working, traveling, seeing your friends or socializing, your body will dictate to what degree you can maintain the same level of business. 

I will say that having determination to be healthy and exercise regularly requires mental focus above and beyond your normal pre-pregnancy day when you just simply went out too late the night before.  
If martial arts, kickboxing or boxing is your hobby,  you do not need to give it up while experiencing a healthy prenancy.  Although you still need your doctor's permission to continue your exercise program while pregnant, I have not seen any literature that discourages exercise during a healthy pregnancy.
For home workout programs check out:

"Good nutrition is another crucial step in having a healthy baby. A fit pregnancy takes about 300 extra calories a day to maintain, and an average sized woman can expect to gain between 25-30 pounds overall. Those extra calories should be nutritious ones, however, a pregnant woman needs a balanced diet complete with protein, fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and a minimum of sweets and fats."

- Rebecca D. Williams reports in her article Exercise,
Good Food and Prenatal Care are the Keys.

Ten reasons to follow a program designed with safe and fit pregnancy exercises:

  1) Speedier recovery after delivery
  2) Increased sense of well being and self esteem
       during and after pregnancy
  3) Less leg cramps
  4) Larger placenta which in turn provides an
       increased nutrient base for the baby
  5) Decrease the risk of excessive weight gain
       caused by an increase of fat storage
  6) Stronger lower back which in turn reduces
       the risk of lower back pains
  7) Decrease the likelihood of varicose veins
  8) Reduced chances of having a Caesarean birth
  9) Higher chances of achieving labor either a
       few days earlier or on time
10) Exercise helps prepare the body for the stresses
       imposed by labor and delivery

According to a Women 's Health Advisory from the University of Michigan, regular pregnancy exercises will:

• Strengthen the muscles needed for labour
   and delivery
• Help reduce backaches, constipation, bloating
   and swelling
• Will improve posture
• Give you energy & improve your overall mood
• Lessens some of the normal discomforts
   of pregnancy
• Help you sleep better


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