Pregnant woman exercisingExercising during pregnancy can help relieve stress and build 
the stamina you’ll need for labor and delivery. It also helps improve your mood, increase your energy, and may help to prevent or treat gestational diabetes.

  • Be mindful of the fact that your balance might be a bit compromised as you grow, which is completely normal! Try basic balancing exercises by standing on one leg and holding your position for 30 seconds, switch legs, and repeat.
  • Lots of women continue to work with weights throughout pregnancy, although they may change it up by using lighter weights and higher reps.
  • You can modify squats by placing a ball behind your back against the wall and squatting; this will ensure proper form and will help protect your lower back.
  • As pregnancy progresses, some women are able to maintain cardiovascular fitness by using a stationary or spin bike, which can be more comfortable than other cardio equipment.
  • During the first trimester, it’s generally ok to continue to do what you did prior to the pregnancy.
  • Most importantly, check in with your doctor. Every pregnancy is different, so it’s important to follow your doc’s advice and listen to your body.
  • While many women continue to perform exercises on their backs without issue, be sure to periodically sit or stand up and move around between sets. If you feel dizzy or light-headed, slowly roll to your left side and stand up to increase circulation right away.

  • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recommends that healthy pregnant women get at least 2-1/2 hours of aerobic exercise every week.

Lisa Corsello is a fitness expert.