The final and concluding part of our blog concerning postpartum running looks at even more issues concerning with getting back to exercising after you have had a baby. You must listen to your own body before venturing out onto the roads once again.
During pregnancy and childbirth your body goes through many changes and it takes time for it to get back to normal. And putting extra pressure on the natural healing process can affect the long-term health of your body.
Expect Aches and Pains
Slowly building up exercising and gentle running do not be surprised if you get pains in the pelvic region of your body. These pains can be severe and go deeply into your bones, this is because your tissues and muscles around the pelvic area would have been stretched during childbirth. Expect these aches and pains to continue around six months postpartum when your pelvis returns to its old position. But if you stopped running during your pregnancy then this period may be a little longer.
As a pregnant woman you would have discovered that making milk will have made you very thirsty, and while you are still breast feeding this thirst will continue at extraordinary levels. The guidance levels for postpartum mums is to drink at least four liters of water per day. And every time you breast feed drink another half-liter and during exercise take on board even more fluids.
Expect Your Posture to be Screwed Up
Carrying a baby around for nine months your posture becomes all screwed up, you naturally alter your gait and posture to make it more comfortable for carrying the baby around. But when your baby is born your posture does not spring right back as to how it was before. Breastfeeding and bending down to attend to your baby means that there is a lot of shoulder hunching and forward flexion. To try and alleviate some of the symptoms incorporate a lot of stretching exercises into your daily exercise routine, especially those that concentrate in strengthening your core.
Expect Different Feet
The excess weight on your feet during pregnancy, together with the relaxin hormone that is caused by pregnancy can affect the size of your feet. They may be swollen and the arches may have dropped a little. So expect your favorite training shoes to be too tight at first, and you may have to go out and buy some wider ones.
Expect Running and Breastfeeding to be Difficult
Not only do you find your time very limited with a new baby, but if you are still breastfeeding then this adds an extra complication. Your running routine may change quite drastically to what it once was and expect something like this to happen.
Feed the baby, wrestle into a sports bra, have a quick sandwich and drink of water, go to the toilet one more time and finally get out onto the road. Two kilometers down the road you will find yourself hungry and thirsty and probably leaking milk as well. Take time to adjust to your new situation, it is not just running that has changed, your baby will turn your whole life upside down.