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It's not a big surprise that your body changes when you're pregnant. For one thing, your belly gets quite large as the months go on. You get a little off-balance. Your once cute belly button now looks like a UFO landing pad and you spontaneously start leaking all over the place.
Those die-hard exercisers might be surprised to suddenly have a lot of back pain, joint pain, or muscle aches. Not only is the skin stretching and changing, so are the joints and muscles. While the uterus grows, the rest of the body has to do some subtle shifting to accommodate the growth. All of this shifting and cartilage loosening means that the fitness-buff mom-to-be is going to have to adjust to a pregnancy fitness regime. It might be okay (with doctor's permission) to stick to the regular fitness routine in the first trimester, but as the pregnancy advances, taking advantage of pregnancy fitness classes is a good idea. These are classes that are specifically designed for the changing pregnant body. You can buy pre and post pregnancy fitness classes on DVD (make great gifts for the new mother!) or sign up for classes like water aerobics with a certified trainer.
If you're not exactly a fitness freak, but you want to incorporate a little pregnancy fitness into your lifestyle, talk to your doctor about it first. Half-way through a spinning class isn't the time to discover you have extremely high blood pressure.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|