Being pregnant requires as much energy as being an endurance athlete (yes, really)
Anyone who has ever grown a baby will know it sure does take it out of you.
And really – it is no wonder. You are literally growing an entire human from start to birth – and to say this really is a bit of a super-woman task is a bit of an understatement, tbh.
And guys – if you have ever felt like you weren't getting the claps you deserve for your baby-growing efforts, please feel free to show them this:
According to a new study, pregnant women use almost as much energy as an endurance athlete.
Yep, it's true. In the study, published this week in Science Advances, scientists found that the maximum energy expenditure among endurance athletes was only slightly higher than metabolic rates women sustain during pregnancy. The study would that the cap of physical endurance was 2.5 times the body’s resting metabolic rate, which is about 4,000 calories burnt a day for most people.
Feeling like super-woman yet?
In fact, according to the researchers, beyond that point, human bodies are unable to digest, absorb and process enough calories in the long term. When a woman is pregnant, her energy use peaks at 2.2 the resting metabolic rate, which is pretty close to the limit. To measure the rate, the scientists studied runners taking part in the Race Across America. They ran 3,080 miles between California and Washington over the course of 140 days – that’s six marathons a week.
Before the race, they recorded the resting metabolic rate and then continued to take it throughout the race. As the race went on, it became harder for the participants to burn the calories.
One of the authors, Dr Herman Pontzer, from Duke University, told BBC News: ‘You can do really intense stuff for a couple of days, but if you want to last longer then you have to dial it back.’
Well, guys – how does nine months of this sound? Really, fecking hard? Yp. Which is why every pregnant mama needs to be celebrated and looked after like the star she is!