Pregnancy doesn't have to put a stop to your running program. With a few small considerations, healthy women can continue to run all nine months of pregnancy.
But running during pregnancy can raise a series of confounding questions each expectant mother needs to face. How do you know you're ready to run? What should you wear on your runs? And how do you ensure you keep you and your baby safe?
Here are a few of the most commonly asked questions when it comes to running during pregnancy; the responses will help keep you and the little one safe as you head toward the big day.
Is It Safe to Run When I'm Pregnant?
In the past, doctors recommended for women to avoid exercise during pregnancy, thinking exertion could harm the baby. Today, doctors know that this isn't the case. Exercise can actually be very helpful through both pregnancy and the postpartum period.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now recommends for healthy women to continue to take part in moderate physical activity during and after pregnancy, stating, "If you are a healthy pregnant or postpartum woman, physical activity is good for your overall health. For example, moderate-intensity physical activity, such as brisk walking, keeps your heart and lungs healthy during and after pregnancy."
In addition, a regular running program can help you feel your best after the birth of your child. According to the CDC, "Physical activity also helps improve your mood throughout the postpartum period. After you have your baby, exercise helps maintain a healthy weight and, when combined with eating fewer calories, helps with weight loss."
Where's the Best Place to Run When I'm Pregnant?
While there aren't considerable differences between where women should run during pregnancy (as opposed to pre/post-pregnancy), Kelly Collins of RunningMomCoach.com warns that women may want to run indoors on a treadmill during this delicate time. "People can be critical when they see women running who are very pregnant, so be prepared for some looks," she says.
Collins hopes that pregnant women will be confident enough to ignore the naysayers. She tells her clients to follow current exercise guidelines. "Be secure in the fact that you're doing what's best for you and your baby," she says," and just keep on running."
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