I’m very partial to the prenatal workouts that I picked out for this pregnancy. I did a lot of research and checked out a lot of Youtube clips in order to narrow down and pick the workout DVDs that would be best for me. I wanted workouts that were challenging enough for my already-conditioned body. It seems like a lot of workouts get “dumbed down” for pregnancy, when really, most of us are told that it’s ok to do whatever you were doing pre-pregnancy (to a certain degree). I have slowed waaaaay down, but I still want to maintain some muscle tone for birth and after.
So, I wanted some real strength workouts that would still challenge me, not leave me feeling like I just did a glorified stretching routine. Even some of the mainstream pregnancy magazines print workouts that are just too effortless. There’s a time and a place for stretching and gentle workouts. I especially love the stretching ones right before bed, but I don’t appreciate these easy workouts for my everyday routine.
That being said, here are the three I picked out and have used over and over again this pregnancy. They are tried and true.
1. Tracy Anderson Pregnancy Project:
I know there is a lot of controversy, and alternately, a lot of hardcore fans, of Tracy Anderson. I sometimes incorporate her workouts into my routines, but I don’t wholeheartedly agree with her overall approach to exercise (girls get bulky with weights over 3lbs, say WHAT???) However, all that aside, I found her pregnancy workout compilation to be amazing. There are 9 DVDs, one for each month of pregnancy. This is fantastic since I tend to get bored, and each workout is tailored specifically for the nuances of each month. They’re all completely different. I may just continue doing some of these workouts even after the baby comes.
Basically, every month you’ll do a 30-45 minute workout consisting of an arm segment and a leg segment, and core is incorporated into the moves by default. You still won’t use anything larger than a 3lb weight, which was definitely enough to work my muscles. And Tracy doesn’t do her typical 50 reps per leg thing. You will do at most 20 reps per leg and 10 reps per arm.
2. 10 Minute Solution Prenatal Pilates
Occasionally Pilates videos, especially prenatal Pilates, don’t challenge me enough. This one does! Sometimes I find that I can’t finish all the reps. You can choose among 5 total 10-minute workouts, either stacking them together or doing them separately. I loved how I could tailor the length of the workout to how much time I had to exercise. And on days when I was falling apart or sick, just the flexibility segment was enough for me. There is also a bonus post-natal core workout to get your belly back into shape. I used this video when I was pregnant with Peanut and eagerly busted it out again this go-round.
3. Summer Sanders Prenatal Workout
Oh my gosh, thanks to this video, I am now in love with labor lunges! (Basically, a side-to-side lateral lunge where you stay low). And I love Summer’s personality. She’s so cute and approachable on the video. The workout is great and can be adjusted to your workout level. For example, there are a lot of moves with exercise bands. You can use thicker or thinner bands or hold them with more or less resistance to modify the exercise. There are three workouts, one for each semester. From there, you can either do the full workout or the express version, giving you plenty of options. You work the entire body in these workouts, which is just what a fit momma wants.
Have you seen theyogatreehouse.com? It has free prenatal yoga workout videos that aren’t too bad either! I found this website late in the pregnancy game, so I didn’t have a chance to preview them all, but I would also give this website a shot, if I were you:) There are quite a few non-birth-related workout routines too that I will be much obliged to try when I get the green light from my doctor.
Having this selection of workout options is paramount for keeping me interested in my daily workouts. By alternating workouts based on my energy level and mood, I was able to keep my workout schedule fresh and motivating. I bought all the videos above on Amazon. What are your favorite prenatal workouts?