Will exercising help me to conceive? What is the best type of exercise for fertility? Can I continue to go running and lift heavy weights if I want to have a baby?

We all know there are so many benefits to exercise, including lowering stress levels, losing weight, building strength and boosting your happiness and mental wellbeing. But another benefit that can be seen with a regular exercise routine is improving your fertility.


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  1. Why Will Exercise Help my Fertility?
  2. What is the Best Type of Exercise for Fertility?
  3. Can I Continue Heavy Workouts if I Want to Have a Baby?
  4. Does Exercise Help with Male Fertility?
  5. More Benefits of Exercise for Pregnancy

Why Will Exercise Help My Fertility?

women squatting with kettlebells at the gym

It's been proven that being less sedentary can help with fertility and pregnancy. Women who exercise regularly can get pregnant quicker than those who don't exercise at all.

For people with a high BMI, exercising might improve your fertility because it'll help you to lose weight. This in turn will regulate your hormone levels and help your ovulation and periods to become more regular.

Exercise not only helps you to achieve a healthy weight, but it reduces stress and anxiety levels, which will also boost your fertility. Trying for a baby is a very exciting time, but it can also be stressful, especially if things are taking longer than expected. By enjoying regular exercise, you will give yourself some precious 'me time' and a healthy dose of endorphins. You can also rest assured that you're doing your body and mind a world of good, getting as healthy as possible before conceiving and growing your baby.

Remember to speak to your GP if you have been trying to get pregnant for a year or more, or if you are considered about your periods. You can also ask your GP about any concerns you have around exercise and your fertility.    

What is the Best Type of Exercise for Fertility?

a group of people exercising in a class

Exercise doesn't have to be running or hard sessions at the gym. Any activity that raises your heart rate and gets you out of breath counts as exercise. That could be gardening, playing with the kids, going for a power walk with a friend or playing team sports. This is considered moderate exercise - your heart and lungs are working harder, and you're definitely getting warmer, but you're still able to hold a conversation.

Try to choose a form of exercise that you enjoy. You'll be more likely to exercise regularly if you're doing something you love, like dancing, yoga or swimming.

Can I Continue Heavy Workouts if I Want to Have a Baby?

a pregnant woman jogging

But what if you prefer more hardcore workouts, like running long distances or lifting heavy weights? Most of the time, women who enjoy intense exercise aren't affected by infertility and can continue to exercise whilst they try to get pregnant, are pregnant and postnatally.

However, some women may be affected negatively, especially if they have a low body mass index and body fat. If your BMI is low 18.5, you could be exercising too often or too vigorously, or not eating enough calories compared to the energy you use when exercising. This can impact on your hormone levels and stop you ovulating, leading to fertility problems. If you are struggling to get pregnant and your periods are irregular, it could help to bring down your activity level and ensure you're eating the right amount of good, nutritious food.

Does Exercise Help with Male Fertility?

happy couple cycling

There isn't enough evidence to prove that over-exercising impacts on male fertility, but we do know that anyone who isn't active is more likely to be overweight or obese, and this can affect the quality of sperm. With that in mind, it's important for men on the fertility journey to have a regular exercise routine, too.

If you and your partner are on your fertility journey, why not start exercising together? Not only will it help you to get healthy, but you'll be able to destress, have fun and spend some quality time together.

More Benefits of Exercise for Pregnancy

3 pregnant women exercising

When you establish an exercise routine during your journey to conceiving a baby, you'll be more likely to continue exercising throughout pregnancy. This also offers a wealth of benefits, helping to keep you healthy during pregnancy and lowering the risk of complications. Exercise has also been proven to make your labour easier.

There are even more benefits for your baby. Exercise will boost your blood circulation and pump plenty of oxygen and nourishment to the baby. Plus, if you're active, your children are more likely to be active in future.


Before beginning any exercise or nutrition program, consult your physician, doctor or other professional. This is especially important for individuals over the age of 35 or persons with pre-existing health problems. Exercise.co.uk assumes no responsibility for personal injury or property damage sustained using our advice.

If you experience dizziness, nausea, chest pain, or any other abnormal symptoms, stop the workout at once and consult a physician or doctor immediately.