Every woman’s journey toward motherhood is unique. Every trimester of pregnancy brings about different experiences, both wondrous and sometimes less than glamorous. Generally in pregnancy, a woman’s hormones are skyrocketing and she is most healthy as her immune system changes to protect the fetus. A pregnant woman will rarely get sick and she just glows.
Then there’s the less glamorous side of morning sickness, backache, and swelling. Our bodies go through incredible changes in a very short time as we nourish and grow the little one within us. Whether or not you practiced yoga before pregnancy, prenatal yoga is an excellent way to stay fit, connect with your baby, and prepare for labor as you journey through all the ups and downs of becoming a Mama.
Today, we’ll begin with the first trimester. In the first trimester, your body is going into over drive to grow the tiny embryo, your blood volume is increasing, and your immune system is protecting the fetus, and your bloodstream is flooded with hormones. When you first become pregnant, progesterone and estrogen, hormones that are part of the normal menstrual cycle, will rise dramatically. And a new hormone, one that’s special to pregnancy, called HCG, begins to be produced. This is the hormone that home pregnancy tests will detect in your urine.
When you’re pregnant, your HCG levels will rise rapidly, doubling every few days before reaching their peak in the 1st 8 to 11 weeks. This hormone is important because high levels of it indicate that the placenta is being created. It is also the hormone that makes you feel nauseous. When you become pregnant, your thyroid hormone also increases in order to support the baby’s neurodevelopment and bone development. That is why your doctor will often measure your thyroid levels through blood work in the first trimester.
In this video I share 6 yoga poses that you can practice in your first trimester, and in the end we’ll close with a relaxation. So please listen to your body and if at any point in your practice you feel like you need to pause or repose, take child’s pose. It helps you relax, turn inwards, and reconnect to your breath.