By Jodie Lynn
I am pregnant with my first baby and would really like to continue to exercise right up to the time of delivery, if possible. Of course, I realize I may need to slow down a little, especially during my last trimester. What should I change during this period? Are there certain running and weightlifting activities to avoid during these last few weeks?
ANSWER FROM READER:
I started running in middle school and continued through most of college. Once I got married, it seemed like it did not fit into my busy schedule so unfortunately, it was several years before I picked it up again. I was running around two miles, five days a week when I became pregnant with my first child. My OBGYN had me cut it way down during my first trimester, especially since I had never been pregnant before and needed to be monitored. Beginning at the end of my fourth month, my doctor allowed me to run a little more. I worked on it slowly and built it back up to one mile seven days a week. Each time I tried to do more, everything started hurting, then I had to take a couple of weeks off and start all over again. I did find a sports doctor who specialized in helping pregnant women find a comfortable exercise routine and he provided me with stretching regiments that helped immensely before and after running. He also taught me a few strength training routines that seemed to help my stamina. I had to switch to a new OBGYN simply because the first one refused to work with my sports physician. The new doctor had no problem keeping in contact with the sports doctor, if either one had a concern. Everything worked out well for me but each person needs to be treated for their individual situation. - Ashely A. in San Diego, CA
If you have been exercising for a while now, you are well aware of what your body can and cannot handle under normal circumstances. Of course, pregnancy adds many new variables to the mix. Either way, this is an excellent health question but needs to be addressed by a qualified medical professional for your specific situation. Sometimes, we feel that our OBGYN might be lacking when it comes to knowing what today's pregnant moms can pursue when it comes to exercising during pregnancy. Talking with a sports physician who specializes in exercising plans for pregnant women might be a helpful alternative, but as suggested above, your current doctor needs to be aware of it. The two physicians must be in communication with each other. I feel that your current doctor is the one who has monitored you and your baby up to now and knows how you are doing. Unless you have the time and money to go in a different direction, just enjoy the last trimester and exercise in moderation to ensure the best outcome for the baby and yourself.
CAN YOU HELP?
My three-year-old insists on sucking his thumb and I am scared to death it's going to be detrimental to the shape of his teeth and mouth. Any tips to help change this habit would be welcome.
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