pre-conception/pre-natal fitness routine when underweight? - Mothering Forums

 
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#1 of 5 Old 06-16-2008, 08:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm working on putting together an exercise routine as part of my pre-conception tune-up. I figure I'll start with a routine that I could more or less continue to use while pregnant.

However I'm also a bit underweight (5'7, 110), and I'm having very little luck finding information that addresses that factor. (Nutritionally I'm working on it, but I want to make sure that my exercise routine doesn't undermine that.)

I want to do primarily
1) core exercises
2) strength training
3) high intensity, short duration cardio

I'd especially like more information about the high intensity short duration cardio. Are there any guidelines? What are some examples that could be done without gym machines--sprinting, jump-roping? How long is short duration, how do you make sure it's high intensity, how do you make sure you're not overdoing it (especially at first)?

For the core exercises and strength training, I'm hoping to find the info I need in prenatal fitness books that I'll be checking out. If I don't I'll come back and ask here!

Incidentally, for the next two months I'm visiting my parents. There's my room and a nearby park, but no yard. When I get back home, I have the option of a gym.
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#2 of 5 Old 06-16-2008, 11:43 PM
 
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Many people have trouble conceiving when underweight. The body does desire a certain amount of fat to sustain the pregnancy and ensure healthy lactation. Other people have no problems conceiving but later end up with osteoporosis due to inadequate nutrition. This isn't to say that you can't be a very fit pregnant person, but you do need to pay attention to diet and possibly lay off the high intensity cardio. What about low intensity cardio? Is there a reason you prefer that type of exercise? What about just regular jogging or the use of a eliptical or something? Regardless of exercise, I would focus on the nutrition aspect and make sure that you getting plenty of good fats. Check out some of the Weston A Price or Nourishing Traditions stuff. I was a bit underweight for my first pregnancy and really suffered postpartum with a variety of ills after a very uneventful pregnancy. Sometimes your body just gets too depleted, kwim?

homebirthing organic mama to three crazy boys very blessed!!
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#3 of 5 Old 06-17-2008, 04:03 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm not too worried, because I'm not drastically underweight; but I want to have all factors leaning in the direction of weight gain, you know?

I'd been told and read in different sources that short duration high intensity cardio was actually the right kind when you're wanting to gain weight, that it doesn't burn that many calories but provides the benefits of cardio. Low intensity cardio on the other hand is supposed to burn more calories.

For diet, I've been implementing some good approaches, but what I haven't been doing is implementing them thoroughly, every day. Well, the same applies to the rest of my pre-conception regimen! So right now I'm all about bearing down and making sure it all does happen every day.
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#4 of 5 Old 06-17-2008, 02:06 PM
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fat is a good source of nutrients for underweights, who tend to have fast metabolisms. it's low-volumn but high calorie. just adding butter, oil, etc to a meal can make a huge difference.

interval training is relatively simple. any sort sof durations work, though no more than 30 minutes of intervals total. most people do interval cardio in 20 minute segments.

alternate fast/slow walking or sprints/walking. you can do it for distance or time duration, and the distances and durations are up to you. the idea is to just go "up and down" in intensity.
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#5 of 5 Old 06-18-2008, 04:34 AM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks!
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