Those Olympians, inspiring us every time we turn around. Luckily, we’re not just inspired from afar; today, seven-time Olympic medalist Amanda Beard shares pregnancy workout tips for the moms-to-be out there. If you’re not familiar with Amanda, she made her first Olympic appearance at age 14. After winning seven (!) Olympic medals and breaking the world record in the 200-meter breaststroke, Amanda gave birth to her son, Blaise. Beard is now a full-time mom, blogger and New York Times Best Selling Author after the release of her first memoir, In the Water They Can’t See You Cry. She’s currently pregnant with her second child, due in June. She’s planning to begin training for the 2016 Rio Olympics. Sounds exhausting—and inspiring—to us!
As a pro swimmer conditioned to daily pool and fitness training, Beard has learned to readjust her workout routine around activities that help keep her in the pool and get her body ready for baby No. 2, while not over stressing her body during pregnancy. To empower other moms-to-be to stay active and healthy throughout pregnancy, Beard has joined her sponsor Aqua Sphere to put together some tips for moderate yet effective workouts.
Tips for an Active Pregnancy
1. Stretch in the pool. Even those who do not typically prefer swimming as a sport can reap the benefits of water fitness by stretching or floating in the water to calm and soothe muscles. Doing gentle stretches in the shallow end may help relieve back pain.
2. Learn to appreciate walking. As your belly grows, it becomes more and more challenging to get a good cardio workout without feeling uncomfortable. Consider swapping running with walking. Finding time to walk can be as simple as taking your dog out for a stroll, catching up on the news via headphones while walking the block, finding a place that is visually stimulating in order to keep it fun, or walking in the pool to add low-level resistance to your body while further reducing stress on your joints.
3. Yoga at home. With a 3-year-old son and a new baby on the way, Beard understands firsthand that a trip to the gym is not always plausible. Rolling out a yoga mat at home and practicing along with a prenatal yoga DVD will allow you to move at your own pace.
“As a second-time mom, I know it can be difficult to find the right workouts in order to feel good and remain physically active while pregnant,” Amanda says. “Mixing a variety of simple, low-impact workout solutions, such as swimming, walking and yoga throughout the week, will allow you to feel great and strong throughout your pregnancy.”
We can’t wait to see Amanda bounce back and kick butt in 2016! —Erin