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Challenge: Taking Care of YOU

Running after Pregnancy

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Were you a runner before becoming pregnant, and now that your baby is here, you want to start running again? Many new moms often end up giving up running, because they think that their bodies just can’t handle it now after all the changes they have been through. This actually couldn’t be farther from the truth. If you were a runner before pregnancy, you can get right back into it after pregnancy. You just have to do things a bit differently than you did before. Today we are going to look at some tips that will help you get back into running now that you have had your baby.

Eat with Your Baby in Mind

Are you breastfeeding? If so, and if you want to take up running again, you need to think about how, and what you are eating. When you are running, you are going to be burning a lot of calories, and your body is going to need more nutrients, especially if you are breastfeeding, because your baby needs those nutrients as well. This means that you need to make sure that you are getting all of the vitamins and other nutrients that you both need, and because you are running, you need to get extra nutrients into your system. If you are not getting enough nutrients, not only is your baby not getting necessary nutrients, you are putting your own body at risk of a number of injuries. Make sure that you are also eating lots of beef, poultry, soy products, dried fruits, whole grains, etc.

Be Prepared for Breastfeeding

Many people think that running and breastfeeding do not go together. Those people are dead wrong. But, you can’t just run without being prepared for it. Make sure that you are wearing a good quality bra, and that you pump breast milk before running. When you are finished running, make sure that you rehydrate your body. Always drink plenty of water, and if possible, try using drinks that contain electrolytes. Drinking will help you to recover what has been sweated out, and it will help you to produce new milk for your baby. Even if you are not breastfeeding, you still need to make sure that you are well-hydrated so you don’t end up tiring out easily.

Start Out Slowly

It is going to take a little to get your body back into top running condition, so you will want to start out slowly at first and build yourself back up to where you used to be. “Rather than setting a mileage goal, set aside a half an hour or so each day for exercise. Put on your running shoes, but don’t start right out running. Instead, walk for four to five minutes, and then run for a minute, and repeat,” suggests an expert from Sports And Pain Institute of New York. Keep doing this until you are running more and walking less, and in no time at all, you will be running just as much as you did before you had the baby. Just remember to listen to your body. If you are in any pain, stop running and go back to a walk. The old saying, “no pain, no gain” is not a good philosophy to follow.

Give Your Body a Break

Your body isn’t used to a lot of strenuous activity, so don’t expect it to be able to be pushed to the limits right away. Give your body a break between runs. Don’t do daily runs at first. Run every other day, and let your body rest on the off day. Your pelvic floor, and your muscles, really do need this recovery time. The day off will let your body heal itself, and you will be at less risk of running injuries.

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