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Pregnant? See how your baby develops, your body changes, and what you can expect during each week of your pregnancy with the Mumsnet Pregnancy Calendar.

One for the runners!

(44 Posts)
shinglebob Fri 22-Jun-18 13:24:46

Hi all

I'm a keen runner and it was both my main form of exercise and my therapy too! I can pretty much pinpoint the day I got pregnant as when I ran earlier that week I was fine but suddenly I literally couldn't keep going and struggled round a 5k. I've tried once since and it was even worse - that's when I took my test.

I'm six weeks tomorrow, so still early days but I'm just wondering if any runners out there have experienced something similar, or whether you've been able to run still? Did you have to change your routines? I'm low on energy but also keep getting sugar lows too so, so I've been too nervous to try since. I was hoping I could still do it in the earlier part of pregnancy but maybe I'm just being stupid and should look to something else - I'd like to keep active if possible. I really miss it already!

Thanks for your thoughts smile

Rideforthehills Fri 22-Jun-18 16:32:21

Hey,

I'm a cyclist not a runner but I found in the first 12 weeks exercise was really hard work. I quickly got out of breath and felt horrendous fatigue and tiredness -I'd want to stop and just give up mid-way through a ride. I also found I'd need a good long nap after to recover!

Once I got past about 12/13 weeks it got easier again and now at 21 weeks I am doing much more exercise than I could manage when I first found out. I know its a different sport but you may find a similar pattern!

Namechange128 Fri 22-Jun-18 16:59:58

This pregnancy I'm horribly unfit but ran through my first two. For the first trimester I'd run-walk and it kept me fit enough to run more once I stopped wanting to be sick all the time! After about 20 weeks I started using a bump band thing for extra support. My doctor said that running was fine but you mustn't push yourself - he said heart rate is not a good measure, instead to measure myself by whether I could carry on a full chatty conversation. In practise this meant that I was walking uphill from quite early on but otherwise fine.
It really helps in labour apparently so is well worth it - and ignore the occasional pearl clutcher (often older women, in my experience) who takes a very British approach that a pregnant women sitting down and eating cream puffs is fine but running is dangerous. Evidence strongly suggests the opposite!

surreygirl1987 Fri 22-Jun-18 17:26:12

I struggled with running after becoming pregnant so have turned to swimming instead which I find is a great replacement.

shinglebob Fri 22-Jun-18 17:28:46

Thanks @rideforthehills, I'm sure it's a very similar thing and you've described how I feel now too. I am hoping that I have a similar experience as I'd really like to keep some form of activity up where possible. Thank you smile

shinglebob Fri 22-Jun-18 17:34:31

haha, thanks @namechange128! I'm sure you're right about people judging. Like you I've read running is still perfectly healthy for you when pregnant, and that advice about being able to chat when running is really helpful. I might try walking/running tomorrow - essentially that's what I've ended up doing the only two times I've run since being pregnant, but was still trying to run my usual pace so perhaps scaling it back is the best idea for now. Thank you!

@surreygirl1987 swimming was my other thought. I allow myself to be SO put off by all the FAFFING required both pre and post swims though! 😂 I imagine it's super relaxing though, so think I need to get over myself. Thanks lovely.

snowbrigade Fri 22-Jun-18 17:49:03

Hi there!

Great thread smile I'm a runner and currently 6+4.

I actually found out I was pregnant 4 days after running a marathon, so technically was pregnant (but pre-implementation) during the marathon. The baby's work in progress name is runnerbean and it blows my mind that we shared the marathon miles together!

After a week for marathon recovery I got back to gentle running and shorter distances.

Running still feels fine and really helps with my mild nausea that comes and goes during the day. But oh boy, I too have complete lost my pace and find running sooooo much more of an effort! I ran the marathon in 3.42 and now I cannot keep my marathon pace up for even 5k lol!

Anyways, I've just accepted that I've slowed down and have continued plodding around at a jogging speed just for the love of running and making sure I get some exercise. I now run about 4 days a week and about 40km per week.

Plan is to keep listening to my body and to keep running for as long as it feels comfortable and enjoyable.

shinglebob Fri 22-Jun-18 18:06:22

Wow @snowbrigade I love that story - and one to tell little runnerbean in the future too. Congrats on an amazing marathon time too. I think pace is the key thing, the runs I've tried to do (all not knowing I was pregnant) I dashed off as usual and was alarmed at the fact I suddenly couldn't do it any more - it was like someone had unplugged me! You've all motivated me to try a super slow run tomorrow, thank you.

polkadotjersey Fri 22-Jun-18 18:16:59

Hey! I'm currently 9+3 and ran loads before I got pregnant but haven't done hardly anything in the last five weeks since I found out. I've had no energy and just felt generally rubbish but I've started to feel better the last couple of days so I'm going to try and get out over the weekend for a few gentle miles.

Everything I've read says it's fine to keep running during pregnancy so long as you don't overdo it and let your heart rate get too high.

snowbrigade Fri 22-Jun-18 19:01:25

@shinglebob good luck tomorrow! For me accepting a slow pace has definitely been the key.

@polkadotjersey, are you thinking of trying again now that you have a bit more energy?

Great to hear of fellow pregnant runners. None of my running buddies know, they must be looking at my Strava posts and wonder why my marathon recovery is taking so long... Not planning on telling till second trimester, so really good to be able to talk about preggers running here.

Verbena87 Fri 22-Jun-18 19:15:59

Had to stop running to gain weight for IVF, but as you don’t have that problem you should be fine as long as you keep in mind the advice about keeping to conversation pace.

Would also say I felt SO TIRED (worse than having-a-newborn tired) through the first trimester so if you need to sleep, sleep. Your energy will come back further through.

Finally, be really careful about your pelvic floor when you return to running post birth; take time to rehab it (lots of kegels and gentle core work, plenty of walking) before returning to running. I went a few times early on and although I think it would have happened anyway (huuuuge baby/forceps delivery) I now have a prolapse and am having to work really hard with a physio to try and get it in good enough shape to run confortably - I do wish I’d taken it a little easier in the very early months, just in case I helped everything slip south! @pelvicfloorpatrol on instagram have loads of great information. (It’s unlikely this will happen to you, especially as you’ll be in better shape going into birth, but I remember reading loads about exercise in pregnancy and kind of ignoring post-partum recovery and thinking “right, fab, baby’s out, LET’S GO!!!”)

shinglebob Fri 22-Jun-18 22:25:25

@polkadotjersey good luck! Let us know how you get on.

@snowbrigade haha I've wondered if people have spotted I've not run since I last posted with the title along the lines of 'don't know why I can't run any more!' 🙈

Honeybee79 Fri 22-Jun-18 22:38:32

I ran throughout my first pregnancy. Took it easy in the first 12 weeks as felt so tired but did what I wanted to/what felt right. Energy levels returned and I carried on.

kirinm Fri 22-Jun-18 22:41:56

I had to stop a few weeks ago at 27 weeks due to constant bump stitch. Before that it had already been downgraded to run / walk intervals anyway.

Claireyskillz Sat 23-Jun-18 07:50:14

Yay for running mummies!!
I am a keen runner, cyclist, swimmer and occasional crossfitter . Was hitting all time PBs about a month before conceiving.
Like the others here, the first trimester I had no energy, felt so sick and tired, so not much got done!
At 16 weeks thought I ran my half marathon - not an event but it was a 10k that got out of hand! It felt great, perhaps two fingers up to the previous 12 weeks lol.
Since then, my cycling and swimming has come back with no real impact. My running however - such sore knees!! Perhaps it's my ligaments, perhaps because they are weaker ref all the time off, I don't know. I have a bump band though which at least keeps all that intact smile
I plan to do more leg strengthening before working out whether to call it quits with the running for now smile
Good luck everyone!
Oh, and burpees are a bit tricky when your belly hits the floor first grin

Rosti1981 Sat 23-Jun-18 07:58:28

I ran in my first pregnancy, including a half marathon at 20 weeks - I slowed right down and had to walk a couple of sections, but it was generally fine (I also wore a baby on board sign just to try to get people to give me a bit more space!). I was already running lots and had done a full marathon before becoming pg. I also found yoga, swimming and walking great during pregnancy and switched to these after about 24 weeks.

These days (3rd preg) there's no chance, I haven't run properly for a few years so wouldn't start now! But I think if you are already doing it then it's fine, provided you listen to your body and slow down/stop if you have to. Actually that's quite a challenge in some ways if you are the kind of runner who is used to keeping going through discomfort/pain, but I think you have to in pregnancy really.

Rosti1981 Sat 23-Jun-18 08:00:55

Actually this pregnancy I'm finding cycling easier than walking. I get nervous about coming off the bike though, even though my balance currently feels ok, I stick to v quiet roads or off road, and it feels comfortable. And it's only actually a couple of miles I do anyway!!

snowbrigade Sat 23-Jun-18 09:10:42

Those of you who've ran further into pregnancy, did you use one of the bump support bands? If so, would you recommend?

lookatthemoon Sat 23-Jun-18 15:33:24

Last pregnancy I pretty much stopped running at 5 weeks (sickness, tiredness + nerves) but I spent the time on cross trainer to keep kms up. Then when first tri was over I was able to get back running without any bother. Although I do recommend a support belt to prevent/minimise spd.

First pregnancy I swam the whole time, it was relaxing but I found I could push myself a little harder without worrying like I would if I pushed during a run. I was swimming laps right up to the night before I gave birth. It's awesome in later pregnancy.

lookatthemoon Sat 23-Jun-18 15:35:49

@snowbride There are lots of different belts around. I got mine from a physio. It wasn't pregnancy specific but tightened around the pelvis. The bump specific ones where a bit chunky to wear running.

Sunrise888 Sat 23-Jun-18 15:46:10

I was the same, I run and when I felt uncharacteristically tired I found out I was pregnant. I found running very hard on the first trimester - I got so tired so quickly and it made me nauseous. My DH thought I was exaggerating and that I would have felt fine if I hadn't known (He was just upset at losing his running partner!) I found cycling find through to the 2nd trimester and kept up spin classes as well. I swam in my 3rd trimester and haven't done much exercise since but we've just got a super running stroller so I can't wait to run as a family! Congrats and just listen to your body!

Ravenclaw87 Sat 23-Jun-18 16:36:49

I was triathlon training prior to getting pregnant.
I tried several times to go for a run from around 6-7 weeks but even slow runs with walking breaks I just felt awful. I kept trying for a few weeks but then accepted that my body was saying no.
I’m still swimming and cycling slowly on my upright Dutch bike (I’m now 21 weeks). I’m also walking and doing my regular yoga class with adaptations.

I was initially really down about it as i’d envisaged I would be some kind of super fit Mum to be still doing all my sports. However I think every person and pregnancy is different so just do what feels good. I feel much better now doing what I can manage than forcing myself out for a run that makes me feel ill.

Respect to everyone still managing to run!

gruber Sat 23-Jun-18 16:47:02

16 weeks today and still running! Second pregnancy (eldest is now 5), ran through the first 12 weeks, about 10-15k a week with an occasional week off when too shattered. Now I’m cycling more than running on my upright dutch bike (find my road bike too uncomfy with bending over for drop bars!). Still Swimming (not in sea though...)

I found I had to listen to my body very early on, my times have dropped dramatically but I am being sensible. One thing that has helped is starting to take my 5yr old to Parkrun so I do a 5k (and cycle there and back) but run at their pace, so about 40 minutes with lots of run/Walk intervals. I expect I’ll stop running sooner than I stop cycling.

gruber Sat 23-Jun-18 16:49:41

Oh, and I also did a sprint distance duathlon before finding out I was pregnant - about 4 weeks! I was determined to do it because I knew I might be pregnant later in the year, it was hard (I was exhausted!) but lovely looking back to know I completed that while growing a baby too.

shinglebob Sat 23-Jun-18 17:26:22

Ladies your stories are super helpful, thank you! So reassuring to hear that what I was feeling on my runs was normal - I was shocked at how suddenly it became a very different experience. I haven't managed to get out today for various reasons but will try a very slow one tomorrow. So excited already!

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