It seems like a simple activity that we should all be able to do right? It is cheap, can be done at any time, and doesn’t take any equipment other than shoes.
Most women that I work with feel really frustrated when it comes to running because just doesn’t feel good. They leak, they have back, hip, pelvic and/or leg pain, or it just feels awful on their bodies.
Lots of Mamas I meet love running and want to return to running races or plan a getaway for a destination race. Some just want to get out for a run a couple of times a week for fitness and for the mental break. Many want to run with their kids and not be stuck on the sidelines watching as their kids grow.
The most common strategy that I see women take with running is to take it slow. They start with a slow 20-30 minute jog around the block with plans to work their way up to longer or faster runs.
And I totally understand why! I made the same mistake myself nearly 9 years ago when I returned to running after my first baby Avery was born.
This approach misses a few KEY strategies though, which is why many women find it hard to get past this distance or they quit all together.
- It doesn’t consider the pelvic floor. As with any exercise, we need a base amount of strength to perform the exercise effectively. And it goes beyond Kegals here! There are certain types of pelvic floor exercises that are specific to the type of strength needed for running.
- It doesn’t consider the strength required to run. Running is essentially single leg bounding for up to 180 times a minute! That requires a lot of strength from certain muscle groups in the hips and feet that may not be getting stronger in your standard full body workout of squats, lunges, etc.
- Most women literally stand and run in an alignment and posture that doesn’t support their bladder (thus, leaking) and doesn’t access some of the strongest and most important muscles for running (hello glutes!).
If you have been working on some easy jogs but are still getting leaking, pain or just not making progress, you might want to change up your running plan! I prefer women start with shorter, faster bursts of running paired with longer rest periods for their pelvic floors to recover in between. Hills vs flat, grass vs sidewalk, types of shoes, stride length and speed are also other variables that can be tweaked and create major change for many female runners.
Want some help? If you have any questions, or to check for any upcoming workshops find us at www.corelove.ca.
You definitely don’t need to run to be strong. There are many ways to train. But we want Mamas to feel strong enough to do whatever they want and not feel limited by their Mom-Bod. Mama, you are stronger than you think!
Hey Mama! Becoming a mom has been amazing, challenging, and life changing for me. Growing, birthing and raising small humans is important and intense work and we need to respect and honour our bodies as they do that work. During pregnancy and postpartum your body is unique and has different needs than other times during your life. I can help you learn what your body needs during these special times.
I am a mom of three. I have a Bachelors of Physical Education and Bachelors of Education. I have taken pre and post natal, core restoration and pelvic floor specialization courses through the MuTu® System, Burrel Education, Hypopressives Canada, Fit 4 Two and Julie Weibe, PT. As an athlete (CIS University Hockey) and lover of movement, I am passionate about helping women feel good, strong and healthy.
Kaye Burrows, Core Love
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