Alternatives to running during pregnancy

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Alternatives to running during pregnancy

Let me start out this post by clearing some things up regarding running during pregnancy. Running during pregnancy is not in and of itself a “good” or “bad” type of exercise. It’s safe, appropriate and a good choice for some and unsafe or not recommended for others. Like many things during pregnancy, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all guideline when it comes to running. Figuring out whether running during pregnancy is right for you can’t be done through a blog post or an article posted on the internet. The best way to proceed if you’re unsure is to talk with your doctor/midwife AND with a qualified prenatal exercise specialist.

With that out of the way, let’s get to the meat of the post.

Many women enjoy running pre-pregnancy, continue after conceiving and then at some point during pregnancy stop running. Often, these moms have a hard time finding alternative pregnancy appropriate exercises at their fitness level. Their comments are usually some variation of: I can’t get a good workout when I just walk, do prenatal exercise videos or take a prenatal yoga class.

I can definitely empathize. Prior to becoming pregnant, I enjoyed high intensity exercise, running included. I loved sweating and pushing my body to new limits. Early on in my pregnancy, the kinds of activities I enjoyed before becoming pregnant stopped feeling comfortable. The prenatal exercise specialist inside of me told me to pay attention to what my body was telling me. This is an invaluable prenatal exercise tip and one that I repeat over and over again to clients and pregnant friends.

So what are some alternatives to running during pregnancy? Here are some ideas that have worked for my clients and that I also personally love:

Stairs: If you don’t know already, stairs provide a great and challenging workout. And all you have to do is walk up and down. No running necessary. If you need some variety try adding side steps, if you’re able to keep your balance.

alternatives to running during pregnancy

Hill Walks: Hills are also a great alternative. If you’re up for it and you have a high fitness level, find a hill or set of hills with a challenging incline instead of bunny slopes.

Hill - alternatives to running during pregnancy

Water Jogging: If running on land isn’t comfortable, try jogging in the pool. Being submerged in water has a lower impact on your body while still giving you a great workout. Try jogging in place and across the pool.

alternatives to running during pregnancy

As I said earlier, listen to your body and do what feels right for you. These are simply suggestions and won’t work for every pregnant mom. For more options, try our indoor cardio workout and check out our Mom Workouts page.

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