You’ve entered the last trimester and tiredness can be starting to kick in again, making you feel like you’ve gone back to trimester 1! Time to really listen to your body and take easy steps to staying active ready for labour.
It seems scary to be in the 3rd trimester and I have definitely seen some big changes in my body and general state of mind! What once used to be a quick trip to the supermarket for general bits and bobs, has now turned into standing in an aisle and wondering what I have actually gone in the store to buy! Generally I come out without anything I actually needed and have then had to make several more trips back! It’s been an exciting time though and waiting for the new arrival seems ever more real as each day goes by.
My exercise has stayed on track and I feel comforted in the fact I still feel strong and healthy, even with the ever growing bump! Let’s hope it all becomes worth it when I go into labour. Of course I’ll keep you posted on events.
So if you wanting to know what I’ve been up to in this trimester take a look below at my exercise programme.
Exercise programme for trimester 3
Warm-up (should always last 10 minutes and include dynamic stretches). You may also find you need a chair for support, especially in the last few weeks.
I took all the high impact stuff out towards the end of trimester 2, and stuck with simple walks to warm the muscles. Keeping your heart rate steady and ensuring you can still talk comfortably throughout are so important!
Dynamic stretches, similar to before, included:
Arm circles, squats with overhead reach, alternating calf stretches using a chair or wall for support, butt kicks, etc.
As I found some days I was more tired than others, I didn’t do any more than 30 mins. This sometimes was a nice walk around the woods or routes I had marked out, knowing how long they took me. Plus it’s always nicer if you can rope in your friends of partner to keep you company. Also not a bad idea if you really are nearing the end of your pregnancy. This is no time for long solo trips where labour could be saying ‘hello’ at any point!
If you’re still enjoying the gym then take a walk (to an intensity that is manageable) on the treadmill. Just keep things nice and easy and definitely low impact by this point.
If you’ve kept up your resistance work all the way through your pregnancy, then there’s no need to stop now. Think about making another reduction of 5-10% in your load and listen to your body. Remember, keeping strong now could make all the difference in both labour and your recovery afterwards.
Each exercise I did was no more than 1-2 sets and 12-15 reps per set. Again if you can only manage 8 reps and 1 set, then this is fine. Anything is better than nothing and if I haven’t said it before then I’ll say it again LISTEN TO YOUR BODY!
REMEMBER: As before, we are not looking for any improvements in muscular strength or gain. This is about MAINTAINING our fitness.
Some of the exercises I used were:
Lower body – Squats, Lunges and Calf raises, all with no weights and I used a chair for support when needed.
Upper body – seated chest press, wide standing lat pulls with a dynaband (you may find this easier seated), single arm dumbbell row, seated dumbbell shoulder press and seated bicep curls. I used my stability ball wherever possible as this would allow my core to stay constantly activated.
So there’s no lying on our backs for core work now! I made sure that my focus was on my TVA, as before, and again this helped to stabilise the spine. So far I have no rectus diastasis, so it’s good to know all my core work has paid off!
Some of the exercises I used for this section were:
- foot lifts on a stability ball.
- 4 point kneeling arm/leg extensions.
- side lying pelvic tilts
- Again I practiced abdominal hollowing to really work the TVA.
I did 1-2 sets of each with 12-15 reps.
- Seated or standing pelvic tilts – everywhere and anywhere!
- Fast and slow contraction pelvic floor exercises
Cool down (should always last 5-10 minutes and include static stretches)
I would take a little walk for 5 minutes, just to get rid of any toxins and ensure my body had cooled down appropriately.
- Seated abductor stretch
- Standing calf stretch – supported
- Standing hamstring stretch – supported
- Standing quadriceps stretch – supported
- Seated lat stretch
- Seated chest stretch
- Standing hip flexor stretch – supported
Generally my balance has been really good in my pregnancy, but if you find you wobble then simply perform the exercises seated or supported by a wall.
Remember to talk to your GP for approval to start an exercise programme and keep your heart rate at a point where you can still talk comfortably.
This programme is for pregnant ladies who were already active going into their pregnancies.
For more information or guidance on your amazing journey, then why not try one of the pre/post natal exercise packages or a couple of one off personal training sessions. Contact Anna at firstname.lastname@example.org or 07557 375769
There are plenty of blogs for pregnancy – just check out the blog section on the website.