If you are a new Mum and are super keen to lace up the joggers and head for a jog, take the time to ask whether your body is truly ready. You may be 6 weeks after labour, your OB may have given you the green light, but what about your leg strength, your pelvic floor health and your fitness? Are you really ready to go running?
There are many considerations before lacing up the shoes and heading out for your first runs. These include:
👉 your birth outcomes
👉 your leg and hip strength
👉 your pelvic floor health, strength and endurance
👉 your hormones ( are you still breastfeeding?)
👉 your support of your pelvis and spine (integrity of your inner core strength)
👉 your pre-natal and pregnancy exercise types and levels
👉 your body type.
Moore et al (2021) published a study with tests as guidelines for strength required for running. Here are the tests for your pelvic floor recovery and strength after pregnancy and birth. You can try them at home if you think you're near to these measures.
✅can you achieve 10 quick on/off ( or lift up/drop down) contractions?
✅can you hold 10 maximum pelvic floor contractions for 6 seconds, each all being equal?
✅can you hold a gentle contraction for a full minute, continuing your breath? ( 30% contraction effort)
These tests are no means exhaustive. There are many other tests assessing strength, balance, running specific and pelvic floor muscle control.
See our other recent posts for more running preparation advice for new Mums.
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