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Excercising During Pregnancy

Experts recommend working out while expecting. Learn the do's and don'ts before you hit the gym.

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-To work out or not to work out during pregnancy, that is the question. And if you're like me and you're in touch with your inner athlete, you gotta be wondering how intense could your workouts really be. Well, I gotta tell you, as my baby bump grows, so does the glares and comments from family members, friends and perfect strangers. So that's why we're here today at New York's Sports Club with this, a certified prenatal exercise specialist, Amie Hoff. -Hi. -And she's gonna tell me, is it possible to work out during pregnancy. -Is it possible? It's not only possible, it's very important. -I like to hear that. -Absolutely. -But I got to say, I've been working-- I'm 6-months pregnant,-- -And you look fabulous. -Why thank you. I've been working out to-- since day one, pretty much, and as I'm showing, people have so many comments; unsolicited advice is what I call it. Can my heartbeat go above a 140? -That's a good-- it's a yes. Can it? Yes, you can. Should it? It doesn't have to but it is allowed to. You've gotta remember, when you're pregnant you were already developing your heart rate a lot faster. -Okay. -So your blood pressure's going up naturally because of the baby. Your heart rate is-- your rest and heart rates are gonna be higher. So, it's okay that you go higher. ACOG has said 140 beats per minute is fine. -Okay. So, false, it can go over a 140. -Absolutely. -Okay. Now, I've been told that exercising can bring about preterm labor. -Very unlikely. Very unlikely. -Okay. -You know, you can listen to your body, if anything feels uncomfortable, you stop. -Okay. -But if you have a healthy body and your doctor is giving you the okay, which everybody really should check your doctor before starting any exercise program. -So, number one, check with your doctor. -Absolutely. But if you're a healthy individual, it can be very difficult. The body is very resilient, the baby is very resilient. Nothing is really gonna happen. -It's funny because it doesn't feel that way sometimes. -I know. You have a little baby there, there's somebody growing in there. -Someone told me that it was a-- that you're prone to getting more injuries during pregnancy. -Which is a possibility and that is because there is relax and release into the ligaments and into the joint, especially in the hip area because it-- -I feel it in my hip the most. -Exactly, because once you just be able to spread the hips, okay? So, yes, you are going to be a little more prone but exercise is gonna help you strengthen up your muscles and your bones to keep everything a little bit strong as we have a little bit more coordination. Let's put some gloves on. -Okay. -Because kickboxing is another thing that people are afraid to do. They are afraid people in the class are gonna give them a hard time. -They do give me a hard time, actually. -Right, but we're gonna show you the proper way to do it. -Okay. -Okay. It's this-- the most important thing is you gotta remember, even if you were to fall right now, nothing is gonna happen with the baby. -Really? -No. -Okay. -Nothings gonna happen to the baby but nobody ever wants to fall. I don't want to fall even if I'm not pregnant, right? So, you're just gonna remember that, nothing's can really happen to the baby. But if you were to take just basic punches-- let's just do those. There's no reason why you can't just basic-- -And I loved this. -You get out-- -I get the my anger out-- --the aggression-- -This is my favorite. --anger, everything. It's great. So, there-- look, there's nothing wrong with that. Do you see your body, isn't it perfect? Look at that, that's great. You're working out your heart rate, you're working up your sweat, you're building your muscles in your arms, your hips and your abs. -Okay, so that punching we say is say is good, which seems normal-- -Right. --because you're keeping steady but what about the kicking? -The kicking. Okay. Now, to do a basic kick, I want you to just squat and kick. -Okay. -Squat and kick. -Squat and kick. -Good. -Squat and kick. -Good. But really pay attention to your balance. You go girl. You're a runner before? You can run now. Again, listen to your body. Okay? -Okay. -Now, have you see one of these before? -I have not-- -Okay, these will help you. Let's just slow this down just a tiny little bit. -Okay, I got it. -Okay, and I want you to put this on. It's like a belly-bra, if you will. All right. And it's just gives you a little extra support. -I loved this. -Okay. Doesn't it make you feel a little more snug? -Yes and it releases pressure from your hips. -Exactly. And what's great is that-- -oh, I'm gonna put it on there. --you can use this through all of those, whether you wanna do your kick boxing or in step. It's fabulous. -Where can I get one of this? -I got this at Babies "R" Us. -Okay, I loved it. This is gonna just pull it up. -So let's take a little bit of a run and just gonna show your form. -Okay. -Now, you just have to remember not to go too fast. -So, if I-- just say I ran like a 7, 8 or something like that, I should take that down at least. Like, I wanna aim in a mile. -Okay. -Don't run in a mile, right? -Wow, that's pretty impressive. -That's was last summer. -okay. Let's just go nice and easy jog. How does that feel? -See, I could do that. I told you I could that. -You could, right? -Absolutely. -You're running. -So, a well-rounded exercise which you can always include weights. And I wanna make sure to keep these arms strong for baby carrying. -You got a great foundation but you wanna make sure that you maintain at because you're gonna be carrying that baby a lot. Feeding it-- you're just gonna be just carrying the baby a lot. This is important to keep your muscles strong. Also, for posture, it's gonna help you with your posture. You worked out before you do the same weights as you did prior. -And I can do lights weight just do high repetition, right? To get my heart beat up. -Exactly, and you can even-- as you get more and more pregnant that's-- as your terms go long, you can then decrease the weight, decrease the repetition. Again, listen to your body. If there's gonna be some days that you're tired, there's gonna be some days that you feel strong and you do what you can do. -Okay, I got it. -Okay, so I just want you to stand with your knees bend just a little bit, elbows right at your side, palms facing up. Okay, looking straight ahead and keeping your hand really relaxed. Go much slower, really slow. -And finally, abs. -Oh yes, the abs. -I'm so used to working my abs, it's been really hard to kind of stay away but you're saying I don't have to. -No, you need to do them. You need to work your abdomen, there's no reason not to. -If so, where are they, Amie? -There're there, there are there. I know, they're stretching but-- -Are they on top? -Yes, they're on top. Now, you got-- you noticed that you're gonna have a little bit of a spacing right in here. Okay, and it's gonna grow as the baby gets bigger. What you want to do, is if it goes any more than three fingers, you don't wanna be it-- you don't wanna do too much abdominal exercises. -Okay. -And if you're maybe two fingers or one finger and you're a little concern, I'm gonna show you right now how you can do some abs. Let's put you down right on here, the body wedge. -Okay. I'm doing some abs. This I have not done. -Okay. -Since before pregnancy. So,-- -No, abs since pregnancy, wow. -No abs since pregnancy, -Okay, so let's start with some basic crunches. -Okay. -Okay. So, what you're gonna do is I want you to hold your belly like so. And you place your hands right here and you can kind of hold yourself together. You so what I mean, so you kind of feel like a little bit more support? -Yes. -Chest up. Come back slowly and right back up again. Okay? So, you feel how that can work okay. -I do feel it. -And it doesn't feel uncomfortable, right? -No, it doesn't feel uncomfortable at all. -Amie, you have been a huge help. -I'm so glad I can help. -You make me feel less guilty about what I've been doing for the last 6-months. And you helped me focus on what I should be doing. -That's right, it's important. -So, there are excuses however we should always consult with the physician. -Absolutely. -Okay. -Doctors, yes, your senior doctor anyway. Talk to them about exercise. -And listen to your body. -The body will tell you, if you should stop working out. -There you have it.