How will the rising temperature affect your body now that you’re pregnant? Take a look at the answers to some common summer pregnancy questions.
Can Pregnant Women Exercise in the Summer?
Physical activity keeps your pregnant body healthy. But when the temperature and humidity levels rise, you need to take caution when exercising. Before you quit your normal workout routine (or start a new one), talk to your doctor. The decision to exercise (and how vigorously to work out) depends on several factors, such as your pre-pregnancy fitness level and your overall health.
If you plan to exercise during the summer:
- Stay hydrated. Dehydration is a major risk during pregnancy — especially in warm weather. Bring a refillable bottle of water along with you when engaging in any physical activity.
- Pay attention to the temperature. If the temperature rises to an uncomfortable level, skip your workout or talk to the doctor about modifications to make.
- Exercise early in the day. Take advantage of the cooler early morning weather to get your workout in.
- Pace yourself. Avoid vigorous or extended workouts in the summer heat.
- Stop when you need to. If you feel lightheaded, nauseous, or have a headache, stop your workout immediately and contact your doctor.
Always follow your doctor or medical provider’s advice. If you don’t get the go-ahead for summertime activity, use the time to take a break, relax, and recharge before your baby’s due date.
Can You Swim During Pregnancy?
Swimming is an ideal exercise for pregnant women. The water takes some of the pressure off your already-stressed joints, reducing injury risks and providing a low-impact way to get in some cardio activity.
Before you start a summer swimming routine:
- Talk to the doctor. Again, starting any physical activity/exercise routine requires a conversation with the medical professional first. If you plan on relaxing in the pool or lakeside, you should still discuss pregnancy-related issues to watch out for with the doctor beforehand.
- Don’t swallow pool water. Crypto is a germ found in pools (even chlorinated ones) that can cause serious GI illness — especially in pregnant women.
- Take caution in natural bodies of water. As your center pf balance changes, you may have trouble swimming in a lake, ocean, or other natural space challenging. Stay safe and avoid unnecessary risks.
- Look for a lifeguard. Whether you swim at the pool or the beach, make sure a lifeguard is always on duty.
Take caution when walking around pools and other slippery water-logged surfaces. Wearing nonslip water shoes can help to reduce the slip and fall risk on these slick surfaces.
What’s the Best Way to Stay Hydrated?
The changing balance of body fluids during pregnancy can lead to dehydration quickly. Staying hydrated is an absolute essential during pregnancy.
Whether you’re out for a walk, at the pool, or just relaxing at the park on a sunny summer day, to stay hydrated:
- Drink water often. Keep a water bottle with you during the day. This includes during indoor and outdoor activities, your workday, or any other time.
- Avoid caffeinated beverages. Coffee is already a no-no during pregnancy. Other caffeinated beverages, such as soda, can add to dehydration.
- Avoid sports drinks. While sports drinks may seem like a good way to stay hydrated, these beverages often come with unnecessary added sugar.
- Keep juice consumption to a minimum. Like sports drinks, fruit juices are also packed with sugar.
Along with drinking beverages, eating water-rich foods such as watermelon can help you to stay hydrated in the summer. Are you pregnant and in need of a new medical provider? Contact Rappahannock Women’s Health Center for more information.