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Expect the Best Pregnancy

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February 21, 2012

Is Sitting the New Smoking?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , — Elizabeth Ward @ 8:40 am

Pregnant or not, regular exercise is crucial for good health. Exercise is good, but moving more matters, as being sedentary is considered a risk factor for chronic conditions, including cancer and heart disease.

Here’s the latest on how important it is to move around throughout the day in addition to getting a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise a week - that’s at least 30 minutes on most days.

February 16, 2011

Move It, Mom!

Filed under: General Information, Nutrition During Pregnancy — Tags: , , — Elizabeth Ward @ 1:26 pm

Now that you’re pregnant, you may be wondering about how much, and what type, of exercise is right for you. Regular physical activity during pregnancy helps you gain the right amount of weight, strengthens your heart and lungs, boosts your mood, and may reduce the risk of pregnancy complications, including preeclampsia and gestational diabetes.

According to the government’s physical activity guidelines, 150 minutes a week (2 hours and 30 minutes) of moderate-intensity physical activity is safe for healthy pregnant women, preferably spread out over five days during the week.

If you were relatively inactive before you conceived, start slowly and work up to the 150 minute-a-week goal. If you’re already there, keep going, and speak with your doctor about making adjustments in your activity as pregnancy progresses. You’ll tire more easily as your due date gets closer, so be aware that the aerobic activity you’ve been doing all along may be more of a challenge for you. Now is not the time to take up a strenuous sport, or one where you risk falling, abdominal injury, or pressure changes (no sky diving!) either.

If you’re just beginning to get more physical activity, try walking, or exercise programs tailored for pregnant women, such as yoga and strength training classes.

Examples of Moderate Intensity Aerobic Activities

• Walking briskly (3 miles an hour – 20 minutes per mile – or faster, but not race-walking)

• Water aerobics

• Bicycling slower than 10 miles – 6 minutes per mile- an hour (Use a stationary bike.)

• Ballroom and line dancing

• General gardening (raking, trimming shrubs, mowing the lawn )

• Swimming

• Using hand cyclers – also known as ergometers

October 26, 2010

No time to exercise? Pick up a pumpkin!

Filed under: General Information, Weight Control, fitness — Tags: , , , — Elizabeth Ward @ 8:34 am

You don’t need a gym to work your muscles! That’s clear from this video starring personal trainer Kasie Sullivan, my friend and neighbor. It’s a great illustration of how everyday objects can do double duty, functioning as just enough weight to work your muscles, and how. Plus, Kasie’s tips are practical and doable for busy moms with little time to shape up. Enjoy and look for more from Kasie on

Have you seen my other blog at  It features tips for feeding your family healthy foods, and recipes that I prepare with my children as part of Cooking With My Kids.  Check out my interview with Liz Weiss, MS, RD, and Janice Newell Bissex, MS, RD, moms, dietitians, and co-authors of No Whine With Dinner: 150 Kid-Tested Recipes from The Meal Makeover Moms.

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