Kristina Martemucci, a personal trainer in Binghamton, NY, deadlifting while pregnant.

Heading into week 15 things started to look up. I began to think there was a light at the end of the tunnel. Morning sickness (or rather all day sickness) had magically disappeared and I was feeling eager to do a little more in the gym. This was an opportunity for me to take back some control over my body and start feeling strong again. I made the decision to have someone else create a program for me that would take me through to my delivery date. I wanted another perspective and let’s face it; I was tired and just wanted someone else to do the programming work for me.

I was able to jump back into an exercise routine with just a few minor adjustments at first, working at roughly 80% of my max effort on all the main lifts. The program was structured for four days a week incorporating a main lift on each day, day 5 was cardio of my choice. The exercises themselves remained the same as pre-pregnancy with just a few tweaks here and there to accommodate for my growing mid-section. Prone positions were out relatively soon and supine positions stopped around 20 weeks. It was important to keep certain things in check, my heart rate was spiking a lot easier than it ever had before and had to really concentrate on form to accommodate for the ligament laxity. I kept a journal and documented each of my training sessions to help me stay on track and keep focused. Appetite increased but was relatively relaxed with my calorie intake, weight was starting to come on but I tried to not focus too much on that and just kept my body moving. Some days were much harder than others but again, I just tried to plow through those tough days where I just wasn’t feeling it knowing that tomorrow may feel better. Typically it did!

Lifting during these months brought a lot into perspective and was very humbling to a degree. Different than any other training program, the further along I went, the less I could do. All for good reason though. I was staying strong, keeping as much muscle as possible and studies now show that exercising while pregnant helps to lower babies heart rate and improve their cardiovascular health once they are born. That in itself made it worth it.

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