Pregnancy is such an exciting time, but every day is different, and it can be challenging to feel your best when your body is going through so many changes. Fitness has always been a great way to keep energy levels up and confidence at its highest, so I designed five unique prenatal exercises to interval train at a level appropriate for mommies-to-be. You’ll find the first two here. Check in soon for the other three.
In this fun and effective workout, you’ll alternate between cardio and sculpting moves to provide a complete body toning. It’s designed to keep you strong and fit during your pregnancy as well as to prepare your body for motherhood.
You’ll need a chair and a set of free weights, at least 5 lbs. Repeat these moves two to three times through, depending on your time and energy level.
1. Car Seat Pulls (sculpts & strengthens the back & core): Keep your back strong as you prepare to repeatedly move your baby’s car seat from the stroller to the back seat. Face your chair with your feet at least shoulder width apart (your stance will become wider as your baby grows), and hinge forward at the hips with a flat back. Place one hand on the seat of the chair. (If you have wrist pain or the surface of your chair does not feel supportive enough, feel free to hold a free weight in the supporting hand as well.) Use the other arm, to row back, as if you are pulling the car seat out from its holder. Lengthen the arm back down and repeat for 30 seconds. I encourage keeping the core activated by thinking of hugging your baby close to your spine. If you are comfortable, feel free to walk your feet out into a plank and perform the exercise here as well. Take a 15 second break before repeating for 30 seconds on the other side.
2. Peek-a-Boo: (cardiovascular training & sculpts inner thighs): Who’s baby doesn’t enjoy a good round of Peek-a-Boo? Before you know it, you’ll be hiding behind cribs and rocking chairs to engage your little one. No need to be huffing and puffing over a silly game, right? Practice with my choreographed game of Peek-a-Boo!
Part 1: Stand behind your chair and with your hands on your belly (your baby), march or jog in place for a count of eight.
Part 2: Place your hands on the chair and with your hips rotated out, step out to the right and sit into a plie squat. Then step back together and repeat by stepping out to the left. If you are comfortable, feel free to slide both feet apart into your squat and then back together. Use the chair to help support you.
Remember to always listen to your body. Remember to use the chair as your hiding place, and get low before you come back to your march or jog with a big, “Peek-a-BOO!”
More to come…
Visit http://www.sarahaley.com/ to read more and purchase Expecting More, the entire 2 disc, 6 workout program with a calendar to guide you through all three trimesters.
Sara Haley is a certified trainer and instructor through the American Council on Exercise (ACE) and the Aerobics and Fitness Association of America (AFAA), as well as a member of the American Pregnancy Association (APA). Specializing in prenatal fitness, functional training and dance methodology, Sara has over twenty years of dance and fitness training, and has been a Reebok Global Master Trainer since 2008.