Muscle Loss during Pregnancy — The Bump
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Muscle Loss during Pregnancy

Does anyone know if muscle loss happens at an accelerated rate during pregnancy? I feel like I'm getting weaker already, and I'm getting DOMS more easily. Things that would not have been difficult a month ago are more challenging and leave me super sore the next day. Or is this more likely to just be caused by my taking more rest days since I've been so tired over the past few weeks? My pregnancy exhaustion set in kind of early.
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Re: Muscle Loss during Pregnancy

  • Unless you completely quit lifting/working out you won't lose muscle during pregnancy. Your body comp will most likely shift, as a woman's body is designed to store fat during pregnancy, both for the developing baby and in prep for breast feeding.
    How far along are you? Working out the first tri is hard, your body is adjusting rapidly to growing a baby, and there are many changes affecting you. One of those is increased blood volume, which can drop your BP (it does mine) and make you more tired.
    The DOMS feeling is not uncommon either- your body sends blood to the baby, meaning a possible slower recovery time for you. Just go a bit lighter on the weights and slow your cardio down a bit if you haven't ready. You'll probably find your energy increasing in the second tri, and you can make small increases to your routine at that point if you're feeling good.
    Congrats on your pregnancy!

    Mommy to R (8.23.11) and K (6.21.14).

  • Thanks! I'm only at 5 1/2 weeks, so I've only been dealing with the exhaustion for a couple of weeks. But it's definitely intense at times. The hormones are affecting my appetite and digestive rate, too (sped way up), so maybe I could stand to eat more before and after workouts.
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  • I didn't experience muscle loss per se, but did experience more soreness during my pregnancy after I lifted, etc, probably because resources were simply being drawn elsewhere to make a baby rather than recover my muscles. I had to scale back quite a bit.
  • My first trimester with both babies was a doozie. I could hardly find the energy to workout I felt like I was constantly hungover (gets a little depressing), but come second tri I was ready to get back into it and I felt better then ever. So if you have take it easy this trimester, just know you'll probably be able to build some back in 2nd tri. 

    I'm late in my 3rd tri with my second child and lifting about the same amount of weight/times per-week as I did pre-pregnancy. The only thing that has stalled out is increasing the weight, I'm just working on maintaining.  
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