Monthly Archives: July 2017

12 Reasons Not to Work Out During Pregnancy

Doctors agree, exercise during pregnancy is safe and recommended for most women. Ideally, fitness and health are solid components of your life before you get pregnant. But, it is never too late to create healthy habits and lifestyle choices.

If you are just getting started with exercise now that you are pregnant or if you have been working towards a weight loss goal before you got pregnant there will be some changes to your exercise goals.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists considers the following nine conditions absolute contraindications to exercise during pregnancy. A contraindication is a situation which makes a particular treatment or procedure absolutely inadvisable. Basically, the danger or a serious health risk or even death for mother and or baby is greater than the benefit the exercise has the potential to provide for both mother and baby. Read the whole article for all 12 Reasons NOT to Work Out During Pregnancy.

9 Reasons Not to Work Out During Pregnancy

  • Heart Disease - If you are at risk for heart attack or stroke or other cardiovascular conditions your doctor will advise you not to workout during pregnancy.
  • Incompetent Cervix - this is where the cervix becomes weak, dilating early and leading to miscarriage or preterm labor.
  • Multiple Gestation at Risk for Premature Labor - There is always more risk involved with multiple gestations and even if everything looks great your doctor may still advise you not to exercise and obviously increasing your risk of delivering too early is ill advised.
  • Persistent Second or Thirds Trimester Vaginal Bleeding - Placental abruption and labor will both cause pain and bleeding but the complications and risks are too varied and something to have checked by a doctor especially with regards to exercise.
  • Placenta Previa - when the placenta covers the cervix; this also causes bleeding during the second half of pregnancy and exercise is not safe.
  • Preeclampsia or Pregnancy-induced Hypertension - High blood pressure is a serious condition with the potential for death for both mother and baby, and exercise will create more unnecessary risk for both.
  • Preterm Labor During the Current Pregnancy - Regular contractions with changes in the cervix putting the mother at risk of delivering before 37 weeks which should be avoided and exercise would not help the condition but only create more danger of delivering too soon.
  • Preterm Ruptured Membranes - Your baby is at significant risk of distress and you are likely to go into labor soon after your water breaks and even if just a little bit of water is leaking your baby is at risk of infections; it is not the time to get a workout.
  • Restrictive Lung Disease - When you have inadequate ventilation or oxygen, with exercise on top of that you will be putting too much stress on not just your own lungs but your baby will not get the necessary oxygen in the blood which is seriously detrimental.

3 More Reasons Not to Work Out During Pregnancy

  • Sleep Deprived - our health suffers, we become injury prone, our judgment lacks, simply make a rule that if baby (or anything) kept you up last night don't exercise until you feel rested otherwise you will do more damage than good.
  • Sick - of course use your best judgment here (if it hasn't been impacted by a lack of sleep!) A running nose may be no big deal but if you have pain or are expelling bodily fluids it is best to rest and get better before taking on some exercise during pregnancy.
  • Too Hot - Keeping your temperature at a normal range during pregnancy is not just for your comfort but for you and your baby's health. Especially during the first trimester the risk of the baby developing defects of the central nervous system.12 Reasons NOT to Work Out During Pregnancy

As always use your best judgment. Some people don't need any reasons not to exercise during pregnancy and choose not to as a personal preference (your body really is doing a lot of work already!) and some ladies will still try to work out even if they tick all 12 boxes for 12 Reasons NOT to Work Out During Pregnancy Talk to your doctor if you have any concerns and make sure your OB knows your plans to exercise so they can make sure you are healthy. Even if Doc says you are healthy for exercise consider your fitness level before starting and don't start with hardcore workouts or attempt any activities which put you at risk of falls even if you are experienced in those activities. You also may be thinking that because you are in your first trimester and more mobile and don't even look pregnant that you can get away with riskier activities. This is far from true and in many circumstances, the first trimester holds more risks to your growing baby than the second or third, just remember risk is never worth you or your baby's well being.

When I was pregnant with my first and third child I couldn't run. In fact, it felt like both my girl's skulls were grinding against my pelvic bone and the urgency to evacuate my bladder was always more significant than the actual output. I admittedly did not exercise with my first child but with my third, I taught prenatal/postnatal water aerobics and was able to maintain until the week before I delivered. With my second child, I was able to run during the second and third trimester and felt good doing it until the last two or three weeks before I delivered him.

While history reflects a different opinion in most; now doctors and professionals and even mothers recommend exercise appropriate for you and your comfort level during your pregnancy as long as there is no risk to you and your baby. And if you don't exercise during pregnancy for any reason, there is always after you deliver to get fit and healthy for you and your family.

Let me know what you think; exercise or "Naw my body is already working super hard so it is time to prop up the feet for 9 months every time life allows."


Best Health!




Berk, Bonnie; Motherwell Maternity Fitness Plan; 2005

Brin, Lindsay; How to Exercise When You're Expecting; 2011

If you run in Houston you know or at least have heard of Terry Hershey Park Running Trail of the Houston Area which consists of a magnificent 500 acres that stretch along northwest Houston. So many Houston runners make this their go-to trail, and it makes sense: with it's towering trees and the babbling buffalo bayou you almost forget I-10 is a stone's throw away at times.Terry Hershey Park of the Houston Area








Explore Terry Hershey Park Running Trail of the Houston Area

While I love getting out for a run I feel even more passionate about getting out on trails that are tree covered especially when it is the middle of Summer and the temperature is in the 90's with a heat index of another 10 degrees due to humidity. Terry Hershey Park Running Trail of the Houston Area is such a great place to meet friends for a run, and of course, it has the necessary amenities for the kids like playgrounds and picnic areas.

Terry Hershey Park Running Trail



















With so many trails in the Bayou City, how do Houstonians choose? Some prefer proximity and convenience, some require a particular trail material, gravel or asphalt, some people just don't want their car to be broken into, others want a view of the scantily clad. This trail meets my personal standards for comfort and safety while running a trail with my children. Check out the

Terry Hershey Park Running Trail Rubric:

1 low quality 2 average quality 3 best quality Score
cost expensive, charge per individual small fee free  3
trail length requires laps to get adequate workout 1 mile minimum loop of manageable length, 1 mile minimum  3
trail material broken sidewalk cement, grass gravel, dirt, sand paved with large wheels in mind (cement, road material, etc)  3
trail width hardly large enough for single single but easy to pass double wide, easy to pass, side by side  3
bugs doused in bug repellent and still leave itchy, mouth closed breathing carry bug spray, could get on with out it, possibly leave with a couple of bug bites like being indoors, a pretty butterfly would be a treat  3
view grimy, no greenery, no tree cover from sun and wind, no visual appeal in the distance or directly near by visual appeal either in the distance or directly near by, some greenery, some tree cover from sun and wind visual appeal both in the distance and near by, green, seasonal foliage, tree cover from sun and wind 3
crowd (quantity) too many people to maneuver as desired some passing required but doable comfortably populated  2
crowd (culture) hobo community directly off path, rude or abrasive individuals people keep to their self, not negative and not positive interactions with individuals friendly individuals on and off the trail, smiles of encouragement, helpful if needed  2
cleanliness nearly hazardous due to trash, very appealing aesthetically, unpleasant smell trash here and there, minimal impact to aesthetics spotless, clean 3
safety not getting out of the car, too dangerous share trail with bikers, some risk due to wildlife, surprise dark and scary and secluded tunnel or bridge, poor upkeep of trail material or signs minimal risks, visible security/police, well maintained trail material and signs 2
parking sparsely spots available in trail lot, street parking, may have to hike to trail, charge to park adequate parking in trail lot, some hike required to get to trail adequate parking in trail lot, no hike to trail 3
amenities not encouraging the hanging out in any way limited water, limits to any desired amenity toilets, benches, workout section, water  3

Terry Hershey Park Running Trail of the Houston Area overall score is a: 33 which means I will be back to visit the Terry Hershey Park and Running Trail. Since I know many people are too busy to read a detailed rubric itemizing and scoring each characteristic I personally find desirable in a running trail I provide the following summary of the Trail Running Rubric.

12 Reasons to Run Terry Hershey Park Running Trail of the Houston Area:

  1. Free to park free to enter, need I say more?
  2. Trail length is an adequate distance to get a legitimate workout, run out half the distance you care to run and then turn around.
  3. The trail material is a firm asphalt/ cement surface, which some may complain damages the joints, but for me running on loose sand or gravel causes my joints to twist when my foot pushes off and if it is dry conditions I end up sucking in dirt which is kicked up into the air giving me an asthma attack so for me I strongly prefer the trail material at Terry Hershey Park Running Trail of the Houston Area.
  4. The trail width is adequate for my double stroller to pass oncoming runners who are also double stacked.
  5.  Yes, of course, there are bugs, but none chased me aggressively, none ate me, and I didn't choke on any swarms. So good in my book. We did stop on the side of the trail and found ourselves in an ant bed, which required some evasive maneuvers but the kids and I came out bite free.
  6.  Great view. This is subjective no doubt, but for me, I like to see water (trail runs parallel to Buffalo Bayou), I like to see trees, I like to feel the shade of the trees, I like to have some hills for a sprint challenge but they are also a nice change of scenery in this coastal prairie.
  7.  Not too many people and not too few. Sometimes seclusion can be as much a hazard as too many people.
  8. The culture of the trail made me feel safe and comfortable. I didn't see people shooting up or passed out under bridges. People kept to themselves and respectfully scooched over when needed.
  9.  The park and trail both clean, I didn't see trash or graffiti on the trail as far as I made it. I saw trash cans in the park and on the trail.
  10.  Safe park and trail, as far as the trail being maintained. I felt reasonably safe with the crowd. There are bikers so caution is necessary and of course, the chance of some man eating alligator crawling out of the bayou is always on my mind in the Bayou City. The trail was closed at the Eldridge lot due to high water. Some of the reviews I read said the trail does get flooded with even small amounts of rain fall, I suggest following signs and warnings posted. Use common sense as conditions on the trail can change from day to day or even hour to hour.
  11. Parking is found in various places around the Terry Hershey Trail and I always choose a place that has close proximity to a bathroom. It is free to park, and in a lot which had pleanty of spots, I saw a couple of other places to park along the trail.
  12. Amenities are comfortable and maintained. Bathrooms with plumbing, water fountains, benches, gazeebo, picknic tables, playground. Not all parts of the trail have direct access to these creature comforts. I suggest parking at the park on Memorial Dr. for direct access to these things. You will find water, trashes, a shower (I dont know why) toilets and benches along the trail as well.

You should check out Terry Hershey Park Running Trail of the Houston Area and let me know what you think. This is one of those trails I suggest during the Summer months since the sun can get intense and decrease motivation to get out and exercise. Hope it suits you and your trail running needs here in the Houston area.

Happy (Running) Trails!