If you followed me in the early days of this blog, you may remember that swimming was one of my favourite forms of exercise. I used to go to swim training sessions twice a week, an hour at a time and> even dabbled in open water swimming and> triathlons. This was back when exercise was a hobby, and> before I turned my passion into a career. Once I started working in a gym that didn’t have a pool the time I had to swim became less and> less. Sadly I then stopped altogether about 3 years ago. However since finding out I was pregnant I have been eager to get back to it. And this week I finally did. And I loved it.
For me it is because it was something I enjoyed previously, but also something I was hopeful I could continue later into my pregnancy. I have discussed the benefits of exercising during pregnancy in a previous post which you can read here, but swimming is often considered to be one of the best options. It is considered to be a low impact option, and> offers mums to be a safe means of exercise. The water partially supports your weight, which decreases the burden on your spine and> limbs. Swimming is also considered to be both an aerobic and> strength conditioning workout. It is great for your circulation and> endurance, but also for muscle tone. And it works the big muscles in both the legs and> back. And the water should help to keep you cool which can be difficult during pregnancy.
Tips for getting started.
If you were a regular swimmer before pregnancy you should be able to keep up your usual routine. But even if not you should be OK to take up swimming and> it’s usually safe right up until the baby’s birth. But check with your doctor or midwife before jumping in. If all OK as with anything start slowly. 20 to 30 minutes of gentle swimming is enough or less if that is all you can manage. Be careful not to overexert yourself. Pay extra attention to this and> make sure you stay hydrated. The water may mask overexertion. Choose a stroke you enjoy and> which feels comfortable. You may need to avoid breast stroke if you have any pain in your hips. Alternating between strokes will give you a good all round workout.
I can’t wait to do more swimming over the coming months, will you be joining me?