Thinking of getting back to running post pregnancy? Great idea!
Running is a great form of cardio. Nothing gets your heart and lungs pumping like a run, not to mention the burning legs. Exercise in general is great for muscle development, bone density and healthy arteries. There are also the psychological benefits to consider. If you are a runner, you know what I mean about the runner’s high. Nothing beats that rush of endorphins. It can be very therapeutic and exactly what you need for a little “me” time, away from your new job as a mum.
But before pulling on the tights and tying up the laces, there is a few things to consider.
1. Time to recover
Over a 6 week period, your uterus begins shrinking to its original size, the body is repairing any trauma caused during your pregnancy and delivery, your pelvic floor is coming out of shock and the laxity throughout your body is returning to normal. It doesn’t happen overnight and you need to give yourself time. Just like after any major surgery, rest and relaxation is a must.
2. Your pelvic floor isn’t at its best
Your pelvic floor has been holding up a baby for 9 months, it’s a little tired and it’s also a little stretched. At this stage if you start stressing it out you might cause some long term problems. The muscles of your pelvic floor need to regain strength to provide adequate support to your organs before you start jumping up and down again.
If you have concerns give us a call today on 85448484 we can provide a non-invasive assessment for your core and pelvic floor.
Running is very beneficial and I would never discourage anyone from getting out there. So it’s important to prepare your body. Try these tips to get you back running faster and healthier.
Do your Pelvic Floor Exercise!
Start simple. Just try to turn it on and off regularly through the day. Use cues such as “stopping the flow whilst weeing” or “sucking in a thick shake through a straw.”
Once you have mastered that, start a strength program. Lying on your back with your knees bent, build to a maximal squeeze and hold. Start with 10 x 4 sec hold with a 3-4 sec rest between each hold, every night and build the amount of time you can hold each week. If you need guidance seek out a women’s health physiotherapist (we have two!).
Don’t start with a marathon, start with a walk/jog. You will have lost a bit of fitness and all your energy has been going into repairing your body post delivery, so your body isn’t prepared for a dive into the deep end. Don’t be hard on yourself, it’s an amazing effort that you have even started running, so start small!
Bree Jones (Womens health physiotherapist and keen runner!)