From The Straits Times    |

Dos and don'ts of working out during your pregnancyWorking out while pregnant is a great way for moms-to-be to prepare for labor and childbirth while also staying fit. But exercising during pregnancy may take a bit of extra caution. Here’s what you need to know.

This weekend fitness blogger Fit Bottomed Girls offered up some dos and don’ts when it comes to pregnancy workouts.

Do stretch before and after each workout. You may notice that your joints are more flexible, thanks to the hormone relaxin, which helps prepare your body for the birthing process. For pregnancy-safe stretches, visit

Do drink plenty of fluids. “Staying adequately hydrated during pregnancy is hard enough,” Kellee Bryan, community manager at EveryMove, told Fit Bottomed Girls. “Add exercise to the equation, and it’s even harder.”

Do avoid overheating. “The first trimester is when the baby’s major organs begin to form, and if your core temperature gets too high, it could potentially cause problems,” writes the blog.

Don’t exercise to the point of exhaustion. If you can talk while exercising, that is a good sign that you’re on target. If you’re winded and can’t carry on a conversation, pull back the intensity.

Don’t lie flat on your back. Avoid exercises that require you to lie on your back, such as crunches, during the second and third trimester.

Don’t begin running if you weren’t a regular runner before your pregnancy. However, it is okay to run if you’ve already made a habit of it, notes both Fit Bottomed Girls and a slew of health experts. Talk to your doctor beforehand about your options.

BabyCenter, which offers comprehensive information on its website on exercising during pregnancy, also advises you to talk to your doctor about your exercise program during pregnancy to find out which activities don’t put you and your baby at risk.

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