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To stay look and feel my best this pregnancy, I’ve relied heavily on pregnancy workout DVDs. As far as I’m concerned, workout DVDs are awesome. They’re like having a personal trainer right in your home, ready to work out with you whenever you’d like. And prenatal pilates and barre workouts tend to be my very favorites.
However, there are a LOT of options out there when it comes to pregnancy workout DVDs! This is both good and bad. Which ones were the best? Which would be challenging and fun, and which would be way too easy for my fitness level?
I read and read reviews on Amazon, which was helpful to some extent, but I still didn’t feel like I knew which ones I should buy. Before throwing down the cash on Beachbody’s Focus T25 last fall, for example, I really appreciated blogs like Dumbbells and Diapers and Dysfunctional Parrot that gave super in-depth reviews of not just the workout program overall but each individual DVD. Things like the runtime, calorie count, and what muscles each workout focused on were all really helpful and information for me and helped me decide that T25 was something worth investing in.
But nothing like this really seemed to exist for pregnancy DVDs. Yes, there were brief reviews on Amazon, but it was almost comical to see the wide variation in opinions there—”This workout was SO hard!” vs. “I’m pregnant, not dead!” for the exact same DVD.
So I decided to order any DVDs that looked good and then write the really detailed reviews I wish had existed a few months ago for other fit, pregnant girls like me who wanted the scoop and didn’t want to go through as much hassle as I did. So, drumroll please . . .
The 6 Best Pregnancy Workout DVDs
Here’s my list of DVDs that I loved and deemed worthy of keeping. Each one has a link to a detailed review where I tried to give as much info as possible to help you know if it’s a workout you might like too.
Where Can I Get These DVDs?
Each of these DVDs cost about $12 apiece (some a little more, some a little less). That’s nothing! Invest in yourself a bit and get a handful you can rotate through so that your workouts stay fresh and fun your entire pregnancy. Here are the links to the best prices I’ve found for each DVD if you’re interested in grabbing any or all of them for your own collection.
How Can I Best Use DVDs to Stay Fit During Pregnancy?
Raise your hand if you like pretty, printable, FREE posters and charts! Yeah, me too. I like having cute, bright-colored calendars, quotes, printables, and charts to help me stay on track as I work towards various health and fitness goals. I find best results come if I track my progress with huge check marks in my favorite color of marker or invest in some shiny gold star stickers. ?
Once I’d found my list of pregnancy workout DVDs worth keeping in my rotation, I put together a schedule for myself so that I could cycle through all the DVDs without getting bored. Here is the link to the PDF version of my FREE Pregnancy Workout Calendar. Grab it so you can print it out, hang it up, and rock a fit pregnancy right along with me.
The calendar has you working out for 45 minutes a day, 6 days a week. Two days a week you’ll focus on strengthening your upper body, two days a week you’ll focus on strengthening your lower body, two days a week are cardio days, and you’ll take one day a week to rest.
I also put together a Beginner’s Calendar. Maybe you weren’t working out consistently before pregnancy. Or maybe you simply don’t have the energy to do 45 minutes a day. That’s okay! We are all different. Listening to your body is crucial when it comes to exercise during pregnancy. This version of the calendar follows the same format as the Advanced Calendar but has you putting in 20–30 minutes a day of exercise instead. Here’s the link to the Beginner’s Calendar PDF—which is also free. Woohoo!
Buying all the DVDs this calendar requires costs about $90 total on Amazon. Yes, that’s a chunk of change, but I think it’s absolutely worth it to have challenging, fun, pregnancy-safe workouts I can rotate through without getting bored for these coming months. And, of course, if you want to buy fewer, you can write up your own calendar or use mine as a blueprint. For example, you could just do, say, Weeks 1& 2 plus Week 5 because those are the DVDs you bought, and then start back at the beginning of your own personal rotation from there.
So far following my calendar has kept my pregnancy workouts fun, fresh, and challenging. My weight gain has stayed right on track as well (I’m up a healthy 13 pounds at 22 weeks. Wahoo!). I like feeling like I’m moving in a specific direction and accomplishing something concrete rather than aimlessly shuffling through my pile of workout DVDs at random. For me, following (and then finishing!) a calendar or plan takes my workouts to a whole new level. My workouts become empowering and exciting rather than routine and mechanical.
Also: don’t despair if you don’t feel up to either workout schedule during your first trimester. I was lucky enough to feel crappy but decent for all but a miserable 2-week stretch of my first trimester. But many women (including very fit ones!) just aren’t up to exercising much in those hard early weeks. If you are one of those girls, my heart goes out to you, and I’d just remind you that these DVDs and my calendar will be right here waiting for you once you start feeling better again. Keep nibbling those saltines and hang in there!
Are there any great pregnancy DVDs I didn’t mention that I need to run out and try? Or are any of my reviews dead wrong? And what do you think of the calendars? Let me know in the comments!