You often hear “check in with your doctor before beginning an exercise program”. This is especially true if you’re pregnant. If you’ve always been a runner, you’re probably okay to continue running while pregnant. But it’s still best to check in with your doctor just to make sure. Everyone is different. Now is the most important time to listen to your body and your doctor.
Pregnancy not time to start running
According to Julie Tupler, founder of Maternal Fitness, pregnancy isn’t the time to start a running routine. When the baby’s major organs are forming in the first trimester, overheating can become a real problem. Instead, she recommends strengthening your abdominal muscles for labor.
Drinking lots of water before, during and after a run is important even if you’re not pregnant. But much more important if you are. If you become dehydrated it can decrease blood flow to the uterus and bring on premature contractions. Yes, it does mean more frequent restroom stops, but it’s much better than becoming dehydrated.
Run on flat surfaces to avoid losing your balance. Make sure you’re not out running in an isolated area just in case you have an emergency. Carry a cell phone with you just in case there are any unexpected emergencies. Let someone know where you’re going and how long you plan to be gone. Even better, try to run with a partner. This is the safest way in case you run into any trouble.
Listen to your body
The best thing is to make sure you listen to what your body tells you. Anyone who has been a competitive athlete before may try to push beyond their limits. Now isn’t the time. Don’t push beyond exhaustion. Running while pregnant will be harder. Just expect it. Speed walking is just as good for exercise and may be a safer way, especially the further along you get in your pregnancy.