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Returning to running: week one

17 June 2013

Things I have learned in my first week of running after having a baby:

1. Running will not make you more tired. You are already so tired that would not be possible.

2. The first run will be the best. The second and third runs will hurt a lot more so if the first run is agony it’s probably a good idea to wait a few days before attempting a second, or go for fast/hilly walk instead to get your muscles working.

3. The week that you are (sadly) stopping breastfeeding is not a good week to go running. At least not without a sports bra several sizes larger than your usual one, and a whole lot of painkillers.

4. Walking is great preparation for (or replacement for) running in the first weeks after birth, and in late pregnancy. My muscles still feel strong despite not having run for 6 months thanks to lots of walks.

5. Your running gear will be tight and your belly will wobble. You will feel like people are staring but, if they do, you can shout “I just birth to a human being, what’s your excuse?”

6. It is great that you don’t wet yourself mid-run but that doesn’t mean your pelvic floor is back to normal. Try doing some star jumps and you’ll see what I mean.

7. Don’t work too hard to fit your run in to your day. Something will probably have to be sacrificed but it shouldn’t be your sleep, your dinner or your sanity. You could eat a ready meal though, and does the baby really need a bath? She smells lovely to me.

8. Don’t try and write a blog about your running at 4am. Even if you manage not to publish a blank or half written version (sorry about that) what you do manage to write will not make sense to anyone, including you when you read it the next day.

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