How Pregnancy Has Changed My Workout — And Mindset.

Fitness Model Amanda Butler shares her tips for exercising safely while pregnant.

By Amanda Butler

My mom says that as soon as I could walk, I was in constant motion. There was no slowing me down. I started dancing at the age of three. Then it was T-ball and soccer, then gymnastics, volleyball, basketball and track. I grew up in Hastings, Nebraska, a small town where you can do it all. In college, I narrowed my focus to dance (my one true passion), which led to an incredible dancing career, performing on cruise ships. But after sailing the seas for three years, I knew it was time to plant my roots. I moved to New York, where I became a fitness model and personal trainer. I now work as a private personal trainer and instructor at Fhitting Room—and I’m about to become a mom for the first time. 


Prior to becoming pregnant my workout regimen was based on strength training four times a week and cardio sessions one to two times a week. I love strength training because not only does it help prevent osteoporosis down the road, but I love to see the muscle definition I can create and how it makes me feel.



When I found out I was pregnant, I felt nauseous and excited but also nervous: I was now responsible for the growth and development of a human being, my child. How would I continue my workouts while also safeguarding my child? I decided to get my prenatal certification so I could learn how to modify my workouts but keep training.



After getting clearance from my doctor, I was right back in the gym. On the days that I felt too nauseous and too tired, I listened to my body and rested. I found that chewing on mint gum helped ease the nausea and that post workout I felt better. I had more energy and mentally felt better about myself on the days I did make it to the gym. I am now in my second trimester and am feeling even better. 



Whether you’re like me and fitness is a big part of your life or you are a novice just starting out, strength training during your pregnancy has tremendous benefits. Always get a doctor’s approval fist but strength training is not only safe for many women, but one of the best ways to help minimize those aches and pains that come along with pregnancy. During pregnancy, women’s bodies go through a lot of changes including the loosening of joints so it’s very important to perform controlled movements and understand the normal range of motion. This is where I would highly recommend working with a certified pre/postnatal trainer for a few sessions if you can afford it. They understand all the changes happening in your body and can safely guide you through a workout keeping you happy and fit! 



 Amanda Butler’s Tips for Working Out Safely While Pregnant


1.     If you are not used to using free weights, use weight machines, as they are geared to help you control your range of motion (however avoid using any machines that have a pad that presses against your belly).

2.     Stay hydrated.

3.     After your first trimester avoid any exercises that have you laying on your back or stomach as you need to keep the heart above the uterus. 



Make the most of this relationship.