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How Fitness Can Help You Conceive

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We all tend to think that we're in reasonably good shape, but the sad truth is that most of us aren't nearly as fit as we think we are. Making more time in your busy schedule to exercise carries a host of benefits to your overall well-being. When it comes to fitness and fertility, however, it only becomes a serious issue if you are significantly overweight.

Are Fitness and Fertility Closely Related?

The truth is that exercise and fertility don’t appear to be directly related. However, physical fitness definitely contributes to your overall health and well-being, which can only help you along your path to conception! The one instance where exercise really does affect fertility is if you are overweight.

 woman exercising in a park

Studies have shown that women with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 25 or more can have a harder time conceiving than women who are at a healthy weight, since extra body fat can disrupt your hormones. Regular exercise combined with a healthy, sensible diet can help you lose any extra weight and keep it off long-term.

It's also a good idea to get into shape before you get pregnant. Those nine months of pregnancy can really take a toll on your body, especially if you're out of shape to begin with. And besides that, exercise is very good for reducing stress, which can only be a good thing with a baby on the way!

Work Out Five Times Per Week To Improve Your Health

The idea of exercising for thirty minutes five times a week can sound crazy. Who has time for that? But it's not as difficult as it sounds! "Working out" doesn't necessarily mean going to a step aerobics class at the gym five days a week. A fifteen-minute power walk twice per day, for example, to and from work, is enough to count toward your goal, as long as you’re working hard enough to get a little out of breath. It's easier than you think to fit a few smaller workouts into your day.

Is It Possible to Exercise Too Much?

Some research has suggested that it may indeed be possible to exercise too much. Women who do high-intensity, high-impact workouts several times a week to the point of exhaustion may have trouble conceiving—but their exercise level may not be the culprit. Other factors such as diet could come into play as well. Extreme dieting and exercising can damage your body to the point where you stop menstruating, and obviously this is going to get in the way of your fertility. However, reasonable amounts of exercise will not have an adverse effect on your ability to conceive.

Have a Fit Pregnancy

While exercise and fertility are not directly related, it's still a good idea to keep yourself in good shape both before and after you conceive. There may not be any direct evidence that good fitness will help you get through labor, but it definitely can't hurt! Not to mention that staying in good shape during your pregnancy will help you get back to your pre-pregnancy body faster. With all of these reasons to stay in shape, it only makes sense to make exercise a part of your regular routine.

 
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