Take time out to put your feet up during pregnancy and reap the rewards of less stress.
Being pregnant can be an exciting time but between doctors’ appointments, preparing for the arrival and, of course, the growth of the bump, it can also be a time of a increased stress and anxiety.
It’s important that you take the time to rest your mind and body throughout the nine months. Whether it is a few minutes a day or just once a week, pausing to look after yourself will do wonders and make you feel like new, ready to tackle the next phase of your pregnancy.
It may seem obvious but going for a nice, gentle walk while pregnant will help stretch out any tense muscles and increase your blood flow.
If it’s a scenic walk, say along the beach or near a creek, the serenity will also be great for troubled minds.
Meditation and yoga
Quiet time to meditate or stretch your body will really allow you to clear your mind and gently work out any kinks in your body.
Trained Yogi and owner of Yoganic on Sydney’s North Shore, Melissa Knapp, promises that “yoga is a wonderful and valuable asset in pregnancy.”
“By adapting the poses, yoga can be practised throughout pregnancy and during labour,” says Knapp.
“During the first trimester, the focus is on breathing and relaxation. During the second trimester, the focus is on building strength and stamina, aligning your spine and making space within your body and finding the balance between activity and rest. During the third trimester, the focus is on using yoga to prepare you mentally, physically and spiritually for labour.
“During labour, yoga poses that make use of gravity can assist with your baby’s descent, bringing your baby into a favourable birthing position, assist with dilation of the cervix, open the pelvis and relieve pain,” said Knapp.
Swimming or bathing
Suspending your body in water will help alleviate any feelings of heaviness and allow you to rest your legs and feet. Many women love the sensation of floating or just moving around in water slowly, especially as they near the end of their pregnancy.
If you prefer the quiet of your bath at home, light some candles in the room and play soft music to make it an at-home spa experience.
The simple act of wrting in a journal can allow you to have some quiet time to reflect on your pregnancy and work out anything that might be troubling you.
Don’t make your journal a daily chore as it may soon lose its appeal, but turn to it when you feel like expressing a certain emotion or when you want to capture a signifcant milestone during your pregnancy.
A journal may also become a valued keepsake, detailing this magical life moment.
More helpful pregnancy tips
How to survive a summer pregnancy
Staying fit while pregnant
Kate-inspired maternity fashion