My app PregnancyFit 250 is live on the apple App store!

I can’t believe it – after months of hard work writing and developing the app it is now live for everyone to buy around the world! I wrote the app to be a useful tool for women in pregnancy; not just about exercise (although there are tons of tips about exercise!) but also about making sure you are getting all the right elements in your diet, you know what is going on with your (often strange) body and are mentally and practically prepared for the challenges ahead. I hope you like it and share it with your friends. More detail below…..

All the information you need for a fit, healthy pregnancy.

This pregnancy app gives you a daily tip, fact or snippet covering EVERYTHING you need to know about exercise, diet, staying sane, lifestyle and your body during pregnancy. You can view one a day, read them all in one go, search for something you are interested in or browse by category. Most tips are related to that point of your pregnancy, some are just plain interesting!

Includes:

  • what types of exercise are safe during pregnancy, including classes, types, equipment and how much you can do safely
  • exercise ideas
  • what you should and shouldn’t eat
  • common ailments and advice
  • what to expect from your changing body
  • lifestyle tips
  • recommendations for health, fitness and nutrition
  • postnatal advice
  • ideas to calm your mind
  • tips about labour and birth
  • practical tips
  • five myths busted

Tips are divided into five categories:

  • Body and common ailments
  • Exercise and fitness
  • Diet and nutrition
  • Headspace and wellbeing
  • Lifestyle and practical

You can read what a Midwife of 20 years said and see some example tips on the app page.

Inspired to cycle by the Olympic women? Great for pregnancy!

 I have just been reading this article in the Telegraph: Victoria Pendleton inspires British women to get in the saddle

It s great news that women have been encouraged to get on their bikes after watching our fabulous UK women in the velodrome! Contrary to popular belief cycling won’t give you huge thighs (unless you train them to get huge a la Chris Hoy!) In fact cycling will give you great tone in your legs if you do it regularly as it works all the main muscles groups including your quads (front thighs), calfs and glutes (for a peachy bottom – look at Victoria’s!)

If you cycle regularly you will burn calories (and lose weight if that is your goal – maybe as a new mum), improve your cardiovascular fitness, increase your muscles strength and tone and feel fantastic – plus all that fresh air will do you the world of good!

Cycling is a great exercise for pregnancy as your body weight is supported. If you haven’t cycled before then check with your GP or midwife that your pregnancy is low risk, but if you love cycling there is no need to stop. You control the pace and choose the route to suit your stage of pregnancy. You may want to switch to a static bike in the last couple of months if you start to feel unstable (your centre of gravity won’t be what you are used to!) or switch to another activity which isn’t so up close and personal with your (maybe suffering) ladies bits. However, if you cycle to work you’ll probably want to keep going as long as possible to save on bus fares!

The the CTC – the national cyclists’ organisation – gives some great advice:

“Obviously you should minimise the risk of falling off: cut down on those off-road descents and don’t race-train in a pack. Be vigilant about avoiding dehydration and be aware that your joints will be a bit more elastic due to changes in collagen, so take note of any joint pain.

Some general hints include:

  • Accommodate a big belly by raising the handlebars and perhaps temporarily fitting a taller stem.
  • If changes in posture are a pain in the butt, try a wider, more padded saddle.
  • In the later stages, be aware that your heart and lungs are working harder than usual. If you’re too out of breath to talk, slow down.
  • You may need to fit lower gears to the bike, or walk the hills.
  • Use well-padded gloves and shift your hand positions frequently, as you’ll be resting more weight on your wrists.”

In summary – there are so many benefits to staying fit and healthy in pregnancy including more endurance and energy for labour and birth. If you can keep yourself active and mobile you will feels loads better. Just always remember to listen to your body and stop if anything doesn’t feel right. Apart from that – on yer bike!!

ALWAYS WEAR A HELMET. NO EXCUSES. SHOULD BE LAW.

Trying to concieve? Get to a healthy weight

Obese women who are trying to conceive should try dieting before immediately turning to IVF treatment as women who lost weight were three times more likely to fall pregnant, a study has found. You can read more in this article from the telegraph

This is only a small study, but the message is clear. Get to a healthy weight, eat well and take regular exercise and you are much more likely to get pregnant. You body needs to be in tip-top condition if it is going to nurture your baby for nine months and being obese means that you are going to be pre-disposed to medical problems for you and your growing baby. Think of pregnancy as a trigger event to change your life in a positive way. It is a challenge, but well worth it!

Research published in the official journal of the American College of Sports Medicine

Here is more evidence that exercise and a healthy diet during pregnancy are beneficial to both mum and baby.

Click here to view the article

In summary: Low or moderate exercise and healthy eating habits markedly decrease the likelihood of excessive gestational weight gain, according to research published in the official journal of the American College of Sports Medicine. This study, in the August edition of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise®, demonstrates that a prenatal Nutrition and Exercise Lifestyle Intervention Program, called the NELIP, was successful in preventing excessive gestational weight gain and reducing postpartum weight retention in women who were of normal weight prior to pregnancy.

A quote from the study:

“Women benefit greatly from being active throughout their pregnancies and physical activity is strongly recommended by professional organizations. However, most pregnant women remain inactive and this may be contributing to excessive gestational weight gain, which is associated with an increased risk for future obesity in both the mother and offspring,” said lead author Stephanie-May Ruchat, Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Western Ontario. “Myths about nutrition in pregnancy can also be misleading. For example, mothers-to-be should be warned that ‘eating for two’ does not mean they need to eat twice as much but that they should eat twice as healthy. An increase of only 200 to 500 kilocalories per day in the second and third trimester is recommended, depending on the body mass index of the women prior to pregnancy (the heavier the woman is, the fewer extra calories per day she will need during pregnancy).”

Evidence is growing all the time. I hope this ever growing bank of positive research can start to give women across the world confidence and motivation to stay fit and healthy and not gain too much excess weight during pregnancy.