I always pictured my pregnancy involving endless yoga classes and self practice, but found myself surprised by how different this journey actually was, and how much I surrendered to my body and it’s wants and needs throughout the different trimesters.
The first trimester, is as everyone describes - EXHAUSTING! I’ve never experienced fatigue like it, and teaching 2-4 classes a day I found I didn’t have energy for anything other than that.
There was also that niggle in the back of my mind that you shouldn’t exercise in the first trimester, something you often hear, but personally I do think gentle low impact exercise is fine, especially if you are already used to it, it can also help to alleviate some of those uncomfortable first trimester symptoms such as bloating, constipation, headaches and to an extent fatigue.
But, your body will know what’s best for you - if you just want to sit on the sofa, nap and binge watch Selling Sunsets, then that is exactly what you should do!
The second trimester arrived with a new found energy and motivation to move my body, but it also came with some mild sciatica, which was sadly made a lot worse by yoga.
Desperate to get back into some form of an exercise routine I entered my Pilates and Barre Era (which I can happily say has stuck with me since). Having always opted for a yoga classes over anything else I’ve never fully appreciated how amazing these forms of exercise are and how incredible they can be during pregnancy, building strength in a low impact and controlled way, leaving you feeling strong and energised.
I had also developed a keen interest in cold water swimming pre pregnancy, and had been too nervous to carry on with it once I found out I was pregnant, the second trimester was the perfect chance to start swimming again (albeit in warmer water).
If you are someone who loves cardio, and regularly went for runs before pregnancy then it’s of course perfectly fine to carry on with it during pregnancy, but for me my running passion faded out after a 2 year stint back in 2018 so I personally didn’t run or do much other cardio during pregnancy, and found swimming the perfect form of cardio for me.
Swimming is also magical in pregnancy by giving you a well needed chance to feel weightless, taking pressure out of your joints, lengthening and stretching out sore muscles whilst strengthening and toning them at the same time.
The third trimester arrived with a bang along with my passion for Prenatal Yoga.
My sciatica disappeared almost over night towards the end of my second trimester, and with a now increasingly growing bump and craving for calm, my love for yoga returned and my appreciation for it took on a whole new form.
The mindfulness of movement, the meditative element of breathwork, being with other mums/mums to be and sharing our different symptoms, supporting each other and sharing our pregnancy excitement and nerves, it was as if I’d really found my tribe.
Between teaching Prenatal Yoga and attending regular classes I discovered a few approach to yoga, one that felt even more meaningful that any form I’d practiced before.
Knowing just how much the body benefits from the gentle, nourishing movement Pregnancy Yoga creates, and how much your mind needs that time to be present, away from racing thoughts or possible anxieties, I looked forward to each class so much and that is one of the many reasons I LOVE teaching Prenatal Yoga now.