Maybe it’s a sign of our multitasking times: Today’s expectant mothers remain on the go—exercising, performing physical work at home or on the job and having sex— almost until they give birth, researchers have found.
It’s been assumed that moms-to-be take it easier in the last three months. But a survey of 425 women found that 60 percent reported strenuous physical activity, including exercise, during the third trimester, and 62 percent reported having sex. In the two weeks before delivery, 49 percent said they’d exercised and 40 percent said they’d had sex. Even in the 48 hours before giving birth, most spent at least five hours on their feet per day; one third said they’d worked out and 17 percent had sex. (Some may have had intercourse because they believed it brings on labor, though a recent study found it doesn’t.) Doctors say there’s no obligation to slow down if you feel good. “Each pregnancy is different, as is each pregnant woman,” says study author Nathan Fox, M.D. “Unless there’s a reason not to, pregnant women should be encouraged to remain active during pregnancy.”
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