Saturday, January 17, 2009

Running while pregnant - a good study

I'm off to run the Pacifica 21k today and I needed an extra bit of validation that yes, running is OK when pregnant and no, I'm not doing anything to harm my babies.

Here's a good article on Running and Pregnancy from
The article opens with a study done in 1990 on a group of 29.1 year old pregnant women (my age exactly). The women averaged 24.8 miles per week the 3-months leading up to pregnancy and 80.3% of them went on to have natural births (versus C-sections) with 7+lb babies.

Best practices:
  1. Stretch (something I'm not so used to doing but need to do)
  2. Listen to your body - if you feel Braxton Hicks contractions (rhythmic tightening of the lower abdomen) stop and walk
  3. Schedule runs times when least tired (never for me) and run to get over the nausea (never for me)
  4. Let yourself stop and walk
There are a lot of conflicting pieces on races. I like this quote from Run the Planet:
"A race or two can be exciting and stimulating but only if it is approached with the idea that it will be no more than a slightly-faster-than-usual run with a lot of friends. Moderation is the name of the game. A pregnant runner should not participate if it is a very hot day, or if she tends to be compulsive and knows that she may not be able to hold herself to a reasonable pace. Developing a relaxed attitude can be quite a learning experience."

Off I go to stretch, drink water, run/walk/job, and enjoy a fun run (I'm not even calling it a race).

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