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How much is too much?*

"My doctor said I can carry out "moderate" exercise when #ttc. What does this mean?"

I get asked this question a lot. What does "moderate" mean? If you have been a crossfit enthusiast for the last 3 years, then moderate for you is going to be different to someone that does their weekly parkrun but nothing else.

Research has shown that if you are already used to exercising and are doing less than 4 hours a week, and nothing too intense (so heart rate not too high, e.g. 4-5/10 for effort) then you are unlikely to experience any negative effects. To put it another way, a study published in Obstetrics and Gynecology, reviewed IVF results for more than 2200 women over a nine year period. They concluded that “Women who reported exercising 4 hours or more per week for 1-9 years were 40% less likely to have a live birth and were almost three times more likely to experience cycle cancellation and twice as likely to have an implantation failure or pregnancy loss than women who did not report exercise.”

The type of exercise you carry out is also worth being aware of. Avoid the high intensity and avoid twisting exercises e.g. Russian twist. Fertility medication can enlarge your ovaries so there is an increased risk of ovarian torsion (some estimates state up to a 1% risk). This can be dangerous and very painful.

It can also be a good idea to carry out gentle exercise that increase blood flow to the uterus and ovaries (and avoid activities that reduce blood flow to these areas).

For more information and support get in touch at

*this blog post is just for advice. Always follow the advice of your doctor.

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