My fitness during pregnancy has been scaled back a lot, to be honest to mostly walking and yoga, but I really miss circuit and weights training. To combat this, I’ve put together this ante-natal leg and butt workout, particularly for those pregnant women in their second or third trimester. I’m 34 weeks at present and would say this is something that I could do the day after a rest day. However this will differ for each person, depending on your fitness levels prior to pregnancy. So adjust the exercises to suit your needs (e.g. body weight v weighted or reduce the repetitions) and check with your doctor if you’re unsure what you can do. It’s very important to listen to your body for warning signs (such as overheating, nausea, light-headedness or fainting) that will tell you you need to reduce the intensity of your workout.
This post is sponsored by Infinite Fitness and Supplements
Step ups (1 minute)
Step up onto a bench, driving your leg up to 90 degrees as you step up. Lower your leg slowly to the ground, change feet and step up again. Repeat this for 1 minute. If your balance isn’t great now you’re pregnant then don’t drive the leg up just step up onto the box.
Squats (3 x 20)
Assume standing set up posture with wide foot position (at least shoulder width apart) and toes turned out. Roll the shoulders back and down from the ears, finding a neutral spine to protect your lower back. Put your hands together thumbs facing upward with your elbows near your body. If you wish to add a dumbbell to make this slightly harder hold it between your hands, keeping the elbows close to your body (you can find dumbbells to suit your fitness levels from our friends at Infinite Fitness and Supplements). Unlock the knees and allow them to move forwards as the hips move backwards keeping the knees inline with feet. Keep your chest upright and spine straight as your hips move backward. Go as low as you can maintaining good form (usually you aim for hips in line with knees, but for me at the moment this is as far as I can comfortably go for than many reps). Drive through the heels, utilising the buttocks and stand back up straight. Repeat 3 sets, 20 times.
Standing Hip Abductions with theraband (15 steps each side x 2)
Tie the theraband just above your knees or ankles and then side step 15 times each side for 2 sets. If you’re able to, stay in a squat whilst you side step. This works your glutes, quads and hamstrings.
Kettle Bell Snatch (3 x 8)
From a squat position, engage your core and glutes lifting the kettlebell up and to behind your shoulder; then fully extend the weight above your head (elbow in line with shoulder but do not lock your elbow in at the top) and bring it down to the shoulder then squatting to place it on the ground again ready to repeat the exercise. If you need to place your hand on your thigh for balance (as I have above) be careful not to place any weight on it as this will use the wrong muscles and you might injure yourself. If you don’t need help with your balance, place your arm outstretch behind your thigh. Repeat 3 sets of 8 reps.
Wall sits (3 x 45 seconds)
The best thing about wall sits is you can do it anywhere there’s a wall to lean on! That makes it a good one to get the blood circulating at work by getting those butt and thighs burnin’.
Walk your feet out from the wall far enough that when you slide your back down the wall your knees are at a 90 degree angle, as if you were sitting on a chair. Your knees and ankles should align. Hold the seated position for 45 seconds and repeat 3 times.
Alternate lunges (3 x 15)
Keeping your upper body straight and core engaged, step forward until both knees are at 90 degrees. Your knee should be in line with your heel (mine is slightly too far forward in this photo). Push upwards and return to feet hip width apart before you step forward and repeat with the other foot. Repeat 3 sets of 15.
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Did you try the workout? Let me know what you thought in the comments below!