Pregnancy is a magical time, full of blessings and amazement at what your body can do while growing a human inside of it. It also is a time full of unsolicited advice, old wives’ tales, and the inevitable self-diagnosis from Dr. Google.
We are here to clear up some of the misconceptions about what it means to have a healthy and fit pregnancy. Most are centered around two topics: exercise and nutrition.
***The information presented is for informational purposes only and should not be relied on as a substitute for medical advice. Please consult your doctor to make the best choices for you and your baby.
Fit Pregnancy Misconception #1: You Can’t Work Out While Pregnant
Maintaining a healthy weight is essential to overall health and wellness, but it becomes vital when a woman is pregnant or planning to conceive. A common misconception is that working out during pregnancy will put the baby at risk.
Pregnancy is an ideal time for maintaining or adopting a healthy lifestyle! According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, “women who begin their pregnancy with a healthy lifestyle (eg, exercise, good nutrition, nonsmoking) should be encouraged to maintain those healthy habits. Women who do not have healthy lifestyles should be encouraged to view the prepregnancy period and pregnancy as opportunities to embrace healthier routines.”
Previous guidance had recommended that women NOT START a new nutrition or fitness program during pregnancy. The updated recommendation now confirms what many moms-to-be have already known to be the best plan of action for their health and the health of their unborn child.
Be sure to listen to cues from your body if you need to make adjustments or modifications as your pregnancy progresses, but keep exercise in your daily routine and feel free to try out a variety of options to keep it exciting. (Psst – check out our Digital Studio in the app or client portal for dozens of different exercise videos from yoga and Pilates to HIIT and cycling to resistance training with bands.)
Fit Pregnancy Misconception #2: You’re Eating for Two
Women have long been told that they need to increase calories while pregnant because they’re “eating for two.” The truth is, it’s dangerous to eat twice as much—think of it as eating twice as healthy! Focusing on whole-food nutrition along with a safe exercise routine can actually reduce the risk of disorders and common pregnancy ailments, including gestational diabetes.
Recommendations vary, but on average, an expectant mama may consume anywhere from 0–300 additional calories per day during her first trimester and up to 300–450 calories per day in the second and third trimesters. Please consult your doctor to determine what is best for you. You may need more or less depending on your health history and unique circumstances.
To give you a better idea of what this kind of calorie consumption actually looks like, we’ve put together a list of foods based on calorie count!
100 calories is equivalent to:
1 large apple
2 cups strawberries
1 cup blueberries
300 calories is equivalent to:
1 cup plain oatmeal
about 4 slices thick-cut bacon
1 large avocado
2 servings almond crackers
1 1/2 servings peanut butter
It’s common for pregnant women to feel like they should eat whatever sounds good in the moment or when a junk food craving hits. The problem is, we tend to underestimate how many calories those little snacks actually contain. Here’s a little more food for thought…
1 ounce plain potato chips = 152 calories
Medium fries = 365 calories
One chocolate bar = 406 calories
Big Mac = 563 calories
Slice of cheese pizza (Costco food court) = 760 calories
Just one extra slice of pizza can be double what you actually need (or more!) with very little nutrition to go along with those calories. Stick to whole, nutritious foods as much as possible!
Pregnancy the FASTer Way
Are you ready to feel healthy and fit through your pregnancy? The FASTer Way to Fat Loss is the answer! Overall, pregnant women can go through the FASTer Way with great success, especially in our very special Labor Day round starting September 7! This round will address the changing needs of prenatal and postnatal women. We just suggest a few small adjustments to our regular FASTer Way program.
Carb Cycling While Pregnant
During pregnancy, the normal FASTer Way food cycle needs to be altered a bit. This can be easily obtained by adding in extra nutrients and macros to your meal plan.
As your baby develops, he/she will need a ton of calories to grow and flourish! Regular macro days and modified low carb days are fine as long as you are being intentional with how you feel. Modified low carb days should include 100-300 net grams of carbs as opposed to the usual 50. Some women feel great with 100 net grams, while others do better with more. Listen to your body and adjust to your needs!
Intermittent Fasting While Pregnant
Most women will have no trouble with intermittent fasting during pregnancy. However, it is extremely important that enough calories are consumed every day, even if that means lengthening the eating window a bit. Under-eating has serious consequences when not pregnant, so it is critical that pregnant women are consuming all of their nutritious and healthy whole foods each day.
Fit Pregnancy Modifications
Here are a few other modifications recommended through the FASTer Way Fit Pregnancy program:
Increase low carb days to 100-300 net grams of carbs.
Be very mindful of hitting macros daily as under-eating is a big concern—the consequences will not only affect you but baby as well.
Uncomplicated pregnancies may continue or begin an exercise regimen (see above for safe exercises promoted by the ACOG).
Modify exercises as needed and be especially mindful of overhead lifts and ab work.
Do not engage in 24-hour fasts.
Lengthen the feeding window if necessary.
Routinely attend your doctor’s appointments.
***Before committing to the FASTer Way Fit Pregnancy program, be sure to consult with your doctor to make sure you are cleared for exercise and our recommended nutrition strategies.
Ready to implement a healthy lifestyle during your pregnancy and beyond? Then join us for our special Labor Day round, exclusively for pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum women! You’ll receive all the science-backed strategies that have served more than 150,000 clients, PLUS the support and accountability from Certified Coaches and women just like you—all for $150 (that’s 25% off the regular price)!
Register today for immediate access to our app before our Labor Day programming begins on Monday, September 7!
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