feel more energized in first trimester

6 Quick Ways to Feel More Energized in Your First Trimester

How to Increase Your Energy During the First Trimester

Fatigue is often the biggest first trimester complaint. It can come on so strong that it throws off your entire routine and motivation becomes non-existent. The good news is there are things you can do now to help you get through that early pregnancy fatigue. Keep reading for 6 quick ways to help you feel more energized in your first trimester!

*Disclaimer – If you are a postpartum, pregnant or have any other health conditions, make sure you always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider. Content on this blog should not be considered a substitute for professional medical advice, expertise, or treatment. Also, this post may include Amazon affiliate links which means I would earn a small commission if you decide to make a purchase through the linkYou can read my full disclaimer here.

1. Start Exercising

The first thing you can do to feel more energized in your first trimester is exercise! However, this may seem like the last thing you want to do when you are feeling fatigued. You also may be experiencing some other unpleasant first trimester symptoms, like nausea. 

There is a lot of confusion when it comes to what kind of exercise is appropriate during pregnancy, so you may just skip it all together. 

But movement is not only recommended throughout all stages of pregnancy, but it will help make your pregnancy more enjoyable too!

So, if you want to feel more energized in your first trimester, here is what you should be including in your weekly exercise routine. 

*Always check with your medical team to make sure you don’t have any contraindications that would make exercising unsafe.

Strength Training:

If you have been consistently training already you may have a strength program you are following. It’s important to keep up with strength training throughout your pregnancy or even starting gradually if this is new to you. 

Strength training in the first trimester helps to increase overall strength, increase or maintain muscles mass, and strengthen the core and pelvic floor.

If you are new to strength training start slow and as usual listen to your body. 

Changes to make when strength training while pregnant:

  • Lower the intensity. This is no longer the time to hit new personal records. One guideline would be to stay under 75% of your 1RM. 
  • Take longer rest periods in between sets or training days. 
  • Change exercise positions. As your belly grows you will not want to do prone exercises (lying on your belly). On the flip side, supine exercises (lying on your back) can also cause implications. If while supine you notice any dizziness, you will want to avoid this position. You can easily make adjustments by putting yourself on a slight incline to raise your head and chest above your belly.  

Aerobic Training:

Do some steady state low to moderate intensity cardio. Current guidelines recommend that pregnant women get 150 minutes of aerobic exercise per week. 

This may seem like a lot especially when you are feeling exhausted or haven’t been exercising consistently. You may be able to include your strength training into this recommendation if you are increasing your heart rate. 

If you are still in need of more aerobic training start slow and start with 3-5 sessions of 10 minutes of walking.  Add 5 minutes onto this every week until you meet the recommendations of 150 minutes. 

Non-Training Days: 

Performing some light activity on nontraining days will also help you feel more energized in your first trimester. This could be some light mobility and flexibility movements. You could do a yoga video or follow this stretching and mobility routine. 

Additional Tips to Help You Exercise in the First Trimester 

The key is to keep moving. Encourage yourself to exercise even on days you are feeling moderately fatigued. Increase rest periods and shorten workout lengths, if need be, but still prioritize exercise.

Find workout times that work. You may have to adjust your current workout schedule to allow yourself more rest.

If you are starting from scratch, start slow, even if it’s just 10 minutes a day of exercise. It all adds up and it will still offer you benefits!

2. Eat Balanced Meals

Another quick way to feel more energized in your first trimester is to eat balanced meals throughout the day. 

Often when we are feeling a lack of energy, it’s easy to not want to put the extra thought and energy into what we are putting into our bodies. We may gravitate towards quick energy sources or skip meals altogether. 

Though you typically don’t need additional calories in the first trimester. The quality of the calories you are eating matter for multiple reasons. 

Eating balanced meals will give you a steady stream of energy throughout the day. It will also help you build and preserve muscle, give you vital nutrients to help balance your hormones, and will ensure that you are getting enough nutrients for YOU while you grow a baby. 

What is a Balanced Meal while Pregnant?

  • Eat a serving of protein with every meal.
  • Eat a serving of fruit or vegetable with every meal.
  • Eat a serving of healthy fat with every meal.
  • Eat a whole carb source with each meal.
  • Avoid processed foods.

So how do you get motivated to incorporate these balanced meals into your day? The key is to be prepared, incorporate things you enjoy, and start small! 

How to Eat Balanced  Meals Throughout the Day:

  • Plan snacks and meals ahead of time. 
  • When grocery shopping, pick out your proteins, fruits and vegetables, and carbohydrate sources for that week. The key is to have a variety available!  
  • Avoid buying processed foods.
  • Food prep protein sources. Clean and cut fruits and vegetables.
  • Pick snacks that are easy to grab and go.

3. Get Sunlight

Another way to get more energy in your first trimester is as simple as stepping outside! 

Sunlight helps set your circadian rhythm (your inner sleep clock). When natural light hits your skin it increases the hormone serotonin, which signals your body to be awake and alert. It also decreases melatonin, which helps you sleep.

Spending time in natural light will make you feel calmer, focused, and boost your mood. It also will help with setting your circadian rhythm which will aid in a deeper sleep.

So how much time should you spend in natural light to feel energized? Aim for a minimum of 5-10 minutes of natural sunlight. If you can get more, then do it!

Even stepping outside and exposing your eyes to two minutes of sunlight first thing in the morning will help set your rhythm. 

If you can’t make it outside, you can soak in the light by a window, but you will want to do this for closer to 30 minutes. 

The best times to get benefits of sunlight are first thing in the morning upon waking, around 8-10am and midday sunlight around 12pm. Be careful of the sun’s rays later in the day however and make sure to properly protect your skin. 

Woman exercising in sunlight

Ways to Get More Sunlight to Boost Energy while Pregnant:

  • Make it a part of your morning routine to step outside.
  • Keep shades and curtains open.
  • Do your workout outside.
  • Take your meals outside.
  • If you can’t make it outside, sit by a window that gets a lot of light.
  • Prioritize getting more sunlight in the winter months by getting out of the house!  

4. Stay Hydrated

The first thing you should do if you are feeling exhausted is drink some water.

Staying hydrated has many benefits including increased mood and concentration, and helping you feel more energized. Being dehydrated can make your heart work harder to pump oxygen to the rest of your body causing you to feel more tired and sluggish. 

Adequate hydration is even more crucial during pregnancy. During pregnancy, water is essential in helping form amniotic fluid, producing extra blood, building new tissue, carrying nutrients, reducing swelling, improving digestion, and flushing out toxins.

How Much Water to Stay Hydrated?

Aim for half your bodyweight in ounces of water a day (and even more if you are exercising or breastfeeding). You can also check the color of your urine. It should be colorless or light yellow, not dark yellow or brown.

Tips to Stay Hydrated:

  • Buy yourself a large water bottle.  
  • Eat more fruits and vegetables.
  • Always keep fresh water by you. Take it with you to work, to the gym, in the car, or shopping. 
  • Set times on your phone every hour to remind you to drink.
  • Fill up the night before or place the bottle by the fridge so you remember first thing in the morning. 

5. Listen to Upbeat Music

Another quick way to boost energy in the first trimester is by listening to upbeat music! 

Not only does listening to your favorite songs release dopamine, the feel-good hormone, but songs that are upbeat with fast tempos can also help energize you. 

So, make a playlist or have a pandora station ready for when you are feeling fatigued and let it play. Extra bonus points if you get up and dance!

When to Listen to Upbeat Music:

  • Driving in the car.
  • While working out.
  • Having a dance party with the kids.
  • While making dinner.
  • Getting ready in the morning.

6. Rest When You Can!

The last quick way to feel more energized while in the first trimester is to rest when you can.

It’s a no brainer that sleeping will be a quick way to feel energized, but let’s be honest, as moms we no longer have that luxury.

Focusing on just resting, rather than sleeping, is more obtainable and still beneficial.

Rest can be achieved in different ways such as sensory stimulation rest or choosing to actively rest by doing a rejuvenating yoga class. Silencing your phone or choosing to read a book instead of scrolling social media is a good way to practice sensory rest. 

Ways to Feel More Energized in Your First Trimester Conclusion

The first trimester comes with a whirlwind of emotions, symptoms, and adjustments. One of those being constantly feeling fatigued. Luckily there are things you can implement everyday to make you feel healthier, happier, and more energized! 

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6 Quick Ways to Feel More Energized in Your First Trimester