Advice for running while pregnant
Running while pregnant is easy and a great way to enjoy a fit pregnancy, read our advice on safe prenatal running!
Running while pregnant is fantastic cardiovascular exercise that’s easy and inexpensive. Pregnancy is not the time to embark on a intensive programme of marathon training – but if you are a regular runner before you became pregnant there’s no reason not to carry on running just as long as it feels comfortable to do so. Expect to scale back as your pregnancy progresses but for anyone asking the question ‘can I run pregnant?’ the answer is ‘yes!’ ‘Scaling back’ is relative to your pre-pregnancy distances and fitness, listen to your body and enjoy the exercise level that feels right for you.
For most healthy women there’s no reason not to continue to enjoy running while pregnant!
Accept the fact that you might not run quite so often, quite so far or quite as fast as your heart is already working that extra bit harder to supply blood to your baby.
Make sure you warm up and cool down effectively. A good warm up dilates your blood vessels ensuring your muscles are well supplied with oxygen whilst at the same time raising the temperature of your muscles for optimum flexibility and increasing your heart rate to minimize stress on your heart. Warming up is even more essential when you exercise during pregnancy and you’re looking after your baby’s heartbeat as well as your own. Cooling down and stretching out allows your heart rate, blood pressure and body temperature to gently get back to normal – avoiding the light headedness than can happen if you simply stop.
FittaMamma tips for pregnant runners:
- Warm up before your run and cool down afterwards
- Don’t push yourself too hard – you should be able to hold a conversation whilst exercising during pregnancy and if you find you can’t talk, ease up, slow down or stop
- Your breasts will get bigger so make sure your wear a well-fitting maternity sports bra –
- Supportive maternity fitnesswear will keep your bump secure and lift and hold the weight, helping to avoid too much pressure on your pelvic floor as you run. The FittaMamma High Support Pregnancy Exercise Top and the Ultimate range are designed with runners in mind.
- A good pair of running shoes is advisable as you don’t want to slip, with cushioned socks for comfort – and when you reach the stage that you can’t see your feet it might be time to switch to another form of pregnancy exercise!
- Be aware that the hormone relaxin causes your ligaments to soften in preparation for the birth and the risk of injury slightly increases as your joints loosen up. It’s worth including regular strength training in your weekly routine to keep your muscles strong to avoid injury
- Very intense exercise can affect your baby’s heart rate but your body and your baby will both respond well if regular exercise is part of your normal routine. Pay attention to your baby’s movements after a run – baby should still be active too!
- Avoid over-heating – don’t run in very high temperatures and wear breathable or wicking materials to keep your body temperature below 102 degrees F
- If you are new to running or anxious about continuing to run when pregnant have a chat with your doctor or midwife before you start
- Make sure you stay hydrated (carry a water bottle) and don’t run on an empty stomach
Can I go running when pregnant?
Running while pregnant is a great cardio to include in your pregnancy workout plans. Follow these guidelines for a safe fit pregnancy!
There are plenty of reasons why people take up running and for most healthy women there’s no reason not to continue to enjoy running while pregnant!
Running improves your health
It strengthens your heart and ensures an efficient flow of blood and oxygen throughout your body. Exercise, combined with maintaining a healthy pregnancy weight gain can help to keep your blood pressure at the right levels and will improve your immune system too.
Running is good for your bones
Running and other weight bearing exercises increases bone density which helps prevent osteoporosis. Good news for pregnant runners is that those strong bones will help you to support and adapt to your weight gain in pregnancy. Even better, maintaining bone density avoids the effects of calcium lost through breast-feeding.
Explore under the power of your running shoes!
Running is a great way to expand your horizons and explore areas of your own community or new locations. Vary your route – run somewhere different! If you’re running when pregnant make sure you don’t run too far and over-exert yourself.
It requires very little equipment
All you really need is a good pair of running shoes and you can head out of the door to go for a run – anywhere, anytime. Even when you’re travelling you don’t need to take loads of kit, simply pack your shoes! If you’re planning to continue to run whilst pregnant it’s worth investing in specialist maternity running clothes that will support your bump.
It’s a great cure for stress
Any exercise during pregnancy will help alleviate stress and even mild pre-natal depression. Healthy adults who exercise regularly are generally happier! Running releases those feel good endorphins that make you feel more positive.
Join a club
Sometimes it’s good to join a club and have some company when you run, it can help with motivation and goal-setting. Finding a pregnant running buddy or joining a group of other pregnant women will help encourage you to run regularly. Remember, your goals for pregnancy exercise should be more modest and you should scale back both the distance and the intensity of your running during pregnancy. It’s more about maintaining fitness than training hard – so avoid a hard-core running club!
Running can help you maintain a healthy pregnancy weight
Many people start running to help shift a few extra pounds – it’s an efficient way to burn calories and lose weight. If you’re already a healthy weight running combined with a sensible pregnancy diet can help you to maintain it. Running can help ensure your weight gain in pregnancy is maintained at a sensible level!
Running is good for your self-esteem
All those changes to your body can have a negative effect. Running and other exercise during pregnancy improves your posture and body awareness helping you to feel good about yourself the way you look.
Check out the FittaMamma guidelines for safe exercise in pregnancy and running when pregnant – and if you have any concerns, chat to your health professional, midwife or fitness instructor.
Best maternity running clothes!
Support your bump to make running comfortable in our range of Supportive Maternity Running Tops and Maternity Exercise Leggings! The High Support Top, Ultimate Pregnancy Fitness Top and Supportive over bump support capri were all designed to withstand maximum impact for all levels for running mammas!
Running during pregnancy with Tommy
Need reassuring it is safe to run during pregnancy? We are working with Tommy’s to show how an active pregnancy is good for you and good for your baby
We are excited to be working with Tommys to help reassure active Mamma’s that exercise during pregnancy is good for you and good for your baby. If you love to get moving and still want to run during pregnancy watch this video for inspiration and reassurance that you are doing the VERY BEST for your healthy pregnancy!
Always ensure you warm up before any exercise, but it is especially important for running during pregnancy. Supporting your bump and boobs will help keep you feel comfortable and confident as you get bigger too, check out the FittaMamma range of specially designed pregnancy running clothes to see which will suit you best!
Run Mamma Run!
Don’t hang up your trainers, shop specialist supportive Maternity Running Clothes and run in style and comfort
Running in pregnancy
Active Pregnancy > Running in pregnancy