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2008 Views 10 Replies Latest reply: Aug 13, 2007 10:45 PM by jme76
jme76 Rookie 17 posts since
Jul 11, 2007
Currently Being Moderated

Aug 6, 2007 9:37 PM

Any pregnant runners out there?


I am about 6 wks along and trying to keep running. I ran 25-30mpw before I got pregnant, and did some HM's. Anyway, from everything that I've read, it is okay to continue as long as I take it easy and don't overheat. I'd really like to hear from some ladies out there about your personal experiences. I am completely exhausted and nauseated alot, and it seems to be getting worse each day. Running really wipes me out for the rest of the day. I know I'll feel better after the first trimester, so I want to keep running just maintain my fitness level. Okay, here are my questions:

1. How did/do you compensate? (i.e. ran slower, fewer miles)
2. How did/do you feel while running?
3. Any tips to help me get through this?


  • CandidGirl Rookie 5 posts since
    Aug 6, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Aug 6, 2007 10:05 PM (in response to jme76)
    Re: Any pregnant runners out there?

    I was not able to run through my last pregnancy because I would black out within a block or two no matter how slow I went. That started before I even knew I was pregnant!

    I think the most important thing is to listen to your own body. If you are tired, cut back. Cut back as much as you need to. Don't worry about anyone else's experience. I was smug with my first baby -- kept my weight down and exercised regularly. With my second, I was ravenously hungry all of the time and would get dizzy with any exertion. Because of some conditions that weren't diagnosed until the second trimester, it turns out that if I would have pushed myself, I would probably have lost the baby.

    I'm not telling you this to scare you, but so that you feel comfortable cutting back if that's what YOUR body tells you to do, even if a hundred people post here saying that they ran until the day they delivered.

    On a positive note, after delivery, I have come back to my pre-pregnancy fitness level much faster than I thought possible!

  • rochey Rookie 186 posts since
    Dec 14, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    2. Aug 7, 2007 8:51 AM (in response to jme76)
    Re: Any pregnant runners out there?

    Congrats!  Just like oddmountain said, you just need to listen to your body.  I ran throughout my entire pregnancy, but when I felt discomfort, I slowed down or stopped altogether.  As it got hotter, I drank more, ran slower, and stayed as cool as possible. 

    I don't know if you're a swimmer, but I also augmented my running with swimming. It was great exercise and I experienced no swelling during my pregnancy.


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  • RunZRun Rookie 54 posts since
    Dec 14, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    3. Aug 7, 2007 12:03 PM (in response to jme76)
    Re: Any pregnant runners out there?

    Congratulations to you !

    I didn't even know then but I may have been 4-5 weeks pregnant when I did a 10 miler and felt great.

    My doctor said I could, so I went spinning, ran, swam and did yoga the first three months. There wasn't anything that I started new though.

    I felt great, but after 3 months I was not gaining any weight so my doctor asked me to stop and put me on a icecream, cookies and burger diet. Then I got gestational diabetes. So the the iceream and the cookies were gone. Now I was on a walking, swimming, yoga and burger(without fries) diet.

    So I was walking and doing yoga up until the very end.

    My advice would be talk to your doctor. Most of my 'experienced' friends told me to be careful the first three months. So I did all those activities only less intensely, dranks 3 liters(96OZ?)of water everyday and didn't start anything new.

    I am not a skinny person but I gained only 17 pounds, lost 2 by the time baby was born, lost all my pregnancy weight by 6 weeks after the birth.

    Take care, stay healthy and most importantly listen to your body.

  • thermalgal Rookie 1 posts since
    Oct 1, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    4. Aug 7, 2007 12:38 PM (in response to jme76)
    Re: Any pregnant runners out there?

    I was training for a HM when I found out I was pregnant.  After my doctor gave me the okay I ran it (very slowly, but I finished it) at about 6 weeks.  I tried to run after that, but with the combination of no goal to train for and the heat (I wilt normal, so I'm even worse now), I only ran maybe two times in the following three months. 

    I just got a friend's treadmill setup in my basement so I can remain cool so I'm back to slowly running with lots of walking breaks (I'm currently 20 weeks).  I try to maintain a running schedule, but if I feel exhausted (like yesterday), I skip the run and just relax.  During the run, I continue to listen to my body and end early if I need to.  I'm not training for anything, I just want to maintain some level of fitness.

  • jamjat Rookie 58 posts since
    Jul 16, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    6. Aug 8, 2007 7:28 AM (in response to jme76)
    Re: Any pregnant runners out there?

    If you feel so rotten that you feel like you should switch to walking, then you should switch to walking, rather than just cutting back from 5 to 3 miles.  After your first trimester you will probably start to feel better and you can run again if your body feels like it.  You really want to listen to your body - it will tell you what it needs.  I've had 5 pregnancies - 2 ending in babies, 3 in miscarriages, and my body definitely told me what was going on before the doctors did every time.  The only one I felt well enough to exercise during was my last, which gave me my younger daughter.  If you feel rotten, lie on the couch!

  • anneliz36 Rookie 21 posts since
    Oct 16, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    7. Aug 8, 2007 8:15 AM (in response to jme76)
    Re: Any pregnant runners out there?

    Hi jme76,

    Woohoo!!! Another pregnant runner! !|src=|border=0!

    This is my second pregnancy. For my first pregnancy, I quit running with my first at 8 weeks and by then I had been mostly walking. I hate walking and even that exhausted me and I ended up doing practically no exercise during the pregnancy. I also gained 65 lbs (which took me 15-16 months to lose) and had horrible symptoms throughout the pregnancy, like back and hip pain, and just felt generally terrible.

    This time I was determined to do things differently. I read a book called Exercising through your Pregnancy by James F. Clapp, which actually sites actual medical studies done on runners and others who were intensively exercising during pregnancy with very positive outcomes. It was recommended to my by other pregnant runners. I also read as many medical studies as I could find and there was absolutely no indication that running or exercising did anythin but benefit mom and baby. The research does not show higher incidents of miscarriage or any other sort of negative pregnancy outcome.

    Even after reading all of this and knowing the facts, it is hard because there is so much bad information on generic websites that tells you to severely cut back on your routine and some random people look at you like you're nuts when you tell them you are still running.

    Anyway, this pregnancy, I started feeling pretty horrible, same as before at 5-6 weeks. I was really nauseous, tired, and did NOT feel like running. I stuck to it this time though and am very glad I did. The days I ran, the morning sickness was much better after a mile or two. I was able to keep my mileage at 20-25 miles per week. I did a couple of half marathons, one at 8 weeks and one at 12 weeks. I went slowly, took walk breaks when needed, and was willing to drop out if I felt like I was getting exhausted or like it was too much.

    It has been a weird experience running through pregnancy.  There are days and weeks where I've felt totally great and then some days when it's a struggle to just get out the door and do anything.  I actually ended up increasing to 30 miles per week in the 2nd trimester because I felt so great and it was easy.  Now I'm about to hit the 3rd trimester and it's getting hard again.  I feel heavy.  Well, I AM heavy     And I am tired and unmotivated.  BUT there are still some good run days and I'm really proud that I've been able to stick to it.  My weight gain is still above average.  Apparently, my metabolism stops when I'm pregnant (which is unusual) but I should gain 35-45 by the time it's all over.  I FEEL a million times better, which I accredit to the running.  The aches and pains, sleep, mood, everything is better.  When I've tried to slack off, I feel worse instead of better, so I will keep going as long as I can.

    I cut my mileage the past 2 weeks because I felt tired and sick, but it's made things worse.  This week I've increased my mileage again (should hit 20-25) and it seems to be helping.  I want to stay at 30 mpw as long as I can because for me 25-30 miles a week, which is also what I was running before pregnancy, seems to be ideal.  During the first trimester, my pace was about the same, sometimes faster, sometimes slower, as my normal pace.  I just went at a speed that was comfortable and ran at a speed that I could still talk.  Now, I am SLOW!!!  I found out it is actually possible to run 15 min miles.     I also take walk breaks now when needed.  It's very warm where I live though.  On cooler days, I am slow, but more of a regular running pace slow. 

    My experience is that pregnancy running is very inconsistent. There are good days and bad days. Your body tells you when to slow down and I think you modify your routine naturally. No matter how I felt, I went out there and ran this time. After I started running, if I didn't feel good, I stopped and walked, or ran slower or shorter than planned. Usually what happened though is after I ran a mile or two, I felt much better and it became easier to run. After I finished, I felt a million times better, which lasted the rest of the day.

    One thing I would suggest, since you mentioned that running wiped you out for the rest of the day, is to try to do shorter distance 2x a day. That's how I get through the difficult weeks and it seems to work out pretty well. I would do a 4 mile run in the morning and a 2 mile run at night. Splitting the distance seemed to help a lot and it also made it less intimidating to get out there. Your plan of cutting down your mileage temporarily sounds like a great plan too. I'd just kind of experiment until you find what works for you.

    Just a final note, the Runner's World website has a discussion forum under women where the pregnant runners post how things are going every day. I don't post there often, but love reading how everyone is doing. They also exchange a lot of information on how running and exercising during pregnancy is going for them, which I found motivating and helpful.

    I'm sorry I've written a book here, but I know it can be hard to find information and I've always enjoyed hearing about other's experiences you are.

    Best of luck to you and CONGRATULATIONS!!!  

  • CandidGirl Rookie 5 posts since
    Aug 6, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    8. Aug 8, 2007 8:15 AM (in response to jme76)
    Re: Any pregnant runners out there?

    For both of mine, the first trimester ended up being about getting as much sleep as I could shoehorn into my day, but after that I had more energy. I would fall asleep in the middle of conversations. Once, I was clearing the dishes, sat down for a rest at the table, and fell asleep there!

    You can't go into pregnancy, delivery or child rearing with any expectations, I've found. Ninety percent of it is reacting to surprises. If you feel tired, you need to rest more, no matter what your previous intentions.

  • anneliz36 Rookie 21 posts since
    Oct 16, 2007
    Currently Being Moderated
    9. Aug 8, 2007 8:17 AM (in response to jme76)
    Re: Any pregnant runners out there?

    Oh! And one other thing...NAPS!!!  They make a world of difference!  

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