Disclaimer: I am not a doctor, midwife or nurse. The information expressed in the series “Running Pregnant – By JBRobinBog For CMIYC” should not be taken as medical advice. Please consult your doctor before running during pregnancy and postpartum.
The first trimester of pregnancy was filled with strange body changes, tiredness and the realization of being pregnant, getting over the sock and stresses of what was to come. All in all during my second trimester I have experienced my pregnancy with much more enthusiasm and excitement.
In the beginning of the second trimester I expected to feel better in a flash, which I did, for a whole week, in which I attempted and completer a 21 km race. After that my body took a dip again struggling to recover and to get back on track. You can read about that here: CLICK HERE!
By week 18 things started to look good, I ran a total of 253km during my second trimester and I have to say it was n pushed every month to get to the 100Km per month. That was the goal I set for myself, to do a 100Km per month. But in December I fell short after getting sick and having to sit out for 3 weeks.
I had 2 little incidents during my second trimester that made it clear once again that looking after your body while pregnant is very important.Just adding that non of the incidents had anything to do with running, so sorry haters you had calm down and stop pointing fingers.
First: I ended up getting Gastro while on holiday, remember to make double sure with what you eat and drink, if your not sure about the water, rather buy than drink from the tap. Your nutrition is very important , not just for you and Baby, but also for your training and daily tasks. Without it you’ll just feel shitty and weak. Second: I got a urinary track infection – bu more about that later.
Your second trimester is the best they say. I’ll only be able to confirm this after the entire pregnancy though, but to be honest it was great. My energy was really back, sleeping, eating, morning sickness and running was definitely easier as I had figured out my ‘rhythm’ so to say.
Below you can have a read how I would describe my Second trimester whilst running.
Yes Wee, and even though your say that sentence fast it’s not the same feeling as sitting on a swing, Instead it is constantly having to visit the bathroom. I found that it was really bad in the first trimester and then settled down later n the second trimester. When your pregnant the blood flow to your kidneys increases by up to 35 to 60%. The extra blood flow makes your kidneys produce up to 25% more urine soon after conception. This increased urine production peaks by about 9 to 16 weeks of the pregnancy, but is said to decrease again in later weeks of pregnancy.
Whilst running my bladder control has gotten allot better in the second trimester, I made a point to not drink anything at least and hour before I had a run scheduled and I found that drinking anything apart from water made me wee allot more. Especially coffee, Caffeine weakens the pelvic floor and will add to oopsies whilst running or even in general.
I found myself having to go to the bathroom quite often in the beginning of my second trimester and then when I get there, there’s nothing or hardly a drop! My body was changing I thought and brushed it off as a simple annoyance that comes with Pregnancy. Apart from pregnancy, frequent urination can be caused by other factors including urinary tract infections. This is what happened to me, I ended up getting a urinary tract infection. Be sure to stay alert of these things as having a urinary tract infection during pregnancy is not good.I ended up getting really bad headaches and very bad nausea, the doctor reassured me it would go away with the medicine she gave.
This is how I countered the Wee dilemma:
- Don’t drink any fluids 60min before a schedules run
- Stick to water rather that other caffeinated hot or cold drinks
- Still have a back up bathroom on route of your run to be safe.
- But don’t stop drinking water for fear of the Wee. Its important to stay Hydrated.
No Pregnancy is the same. All bodies react diffidently – some baby bumps grow fast and others slower. I personally felt like my Belly was popping really fast and this definitely felt weird during my running.
Looking at my pictures in the first post I can’t see too big a difference in my bump, compared to the one I’m sporting now.
After running a 21km my body definitely protested and I got myself a belly support band from Carriwell a product sold here in SA at most pharmacies and baby stores. It helped allot and it gave me just that extra less jiggle, if that makes any sense. The band helped during my runs. But unfortunately there was two issues I had with the band. One: my tights just refused to stay up. The two fabrics were just to slippery against each other. Two:The band was too tight around my lower abdomen when I ran, this caused pressure onto my bladder as it became full, causing leakage. What I did was wear the band upside down to decrease this. I just want to say that I did buy the band in the right size, so that was not the issue.
I wore the belt during all my runs and at one Race it was very hot and I felt so uncomfortable, last minute I decided to take the band off. During the race I felt fine but afterwards my back was killing me, I hadn’t realized how much my body had gotten used to the band and that removing it was actually a mistake. So the band might not have been wonderful for my bladder but worked for my back.
Otherwise it is still a great product, just maybe not for running. I still wear it under my everyday clothing for extra support, it makes me feel much more comfortable when wearing tight fitting tops.
Then I got a message from a fellow runner. She explained to me that she had run up until 3 days before her son was born, all with the help of these two running support belts she had. I had seen them before but they were completely out of my budget and at the time I was not sure how much I would need them. She was so kind as to donate her Belts to me and to this day I cannot be more thankful. They are amazing! Amazing , Amazing!
Unfortunately they don’t have any branding on them so I’m not sure where she got them – she mentioned that they could possibly be from Carriwell but that she’d had them for so long, she’s not sure. This band changed my running and I think its going to become a big assent in my third trimester. Stay tuned for the next post after this one about Support belts.
This is how I countered belly and back pain:
- Invest in a good running belt
Weight gain + Balance issues
At about 24 weeks I had gained a total of 10Kg. My starting weight was 55kg and I had now gone up to 65kg. At first my Belly was only growing forward, I had noticed some extra weight on my thighs and then later started to get a little rounder at my love handles as my belly was getting bigger. Not that I had a issue with the weight gain anymore. It was also as if my body had thrown off water as my belly was less ‘Puffy’ if that makes any sense so you could see more definition, haha whatever definition was left…
The only thing I realized with the extra weight was that while running my legs were working considerably harder. Thinking back now, its a kinda ‘DUH’ Moment. The extra weight and bump changes the way I moved when Running. My gait was changing and as a result old injuries and other things were starting to peek out their heads.
– ITB coming back: this was probably due to my hip movement changing and my tummy muscles not giving as much support towards my hips and over all balance.
– Stiff calves and Shin pain: this was definitely due to the extra weight. Unfortunately a good stretch is all that could be done here. Along with some strength exercises.
I was then running with my ASICS FuseX Lytes, I love these shoes and it was sad to think that they were not giving me the necessary support any more. I switched to my ASICS Fuji Attack Trail running shoes as they were the only Running shoes I had that could give me the best support for the changes.
I’m now running with my new ASICS Dynamis as the ASICS Fuji Attack’s are a little heavy, adding to the weight for my poor legs. ASICS Dynamis features FlyteFoam™, with their premium midsole, along with BOA lacing and DynaPanel for cushioning, a very snug fit and I must say reliable support. Its a very comfortable shoe and I have had no problem running with them sofar. The shoe is for a neutral to over pronation, giving me the extra needed support. The BOA Lacing also makes it very easy for me to tie my shoes properly without the hassle of my belly getting in the way, which is perfect.
How I counter they weight gain:
- Unfortunately you can’t really stop gaining weight, but keep to a good diet and stay hydrated
- have a look at your shoe support if aches and pain become apparent the weight might be changing your gait
- Do a few extra squats and calve raises. Remember to keep doing your additional weight training to help your body adapt to the changes
Dehydration and Electrolytes
So I started realizing that when I drank water after a good run, I would end up having less bathroom visits even if I kept drinking water. I’m not a doctor and I’m not sure if this is a possibility, but it make sense to me that I might have been somewhat dehydrated after a run or just a little more than usual. So I would ensure that I had plenty of water after each run and also stay away from caffeinated drinks. Caffeine will dehydrate you.
I also got myself a few sachets of Re-hydrate. I would have one every now and then when I would feel sluggish and weak. The running can not only take the fluids out of you but also some necessary electrolytes. When you sweat you loose fluids and electrolytes, so this actually counts for any exercise you end up doing. Be sure to follow the instructions on the back on how to prep the Re-hydrate, if you make it too concentrated it can be a little tough on your body.
This is how I counter Dehydration:
- Ensue to drink allot of water after a run.
- Get some Re-hydrate to help replace lost fluids and electrolytes
Braxton Hicks contractions
The term originated in 1872 when an English doctor named John Braxton Hicks described the contractions that occur before real labor. Braxton Hicks contractions can begin as early as the second trimester. However, they are most commonly experienced in the third trimester. When this happens, the muscles of the uterus tighten for approximately 30 to 60 seconds, and sometimes as long as two minutes.
Braxton Hicks are also called “practice contractions” because they are a preparation for the real event and allow the opportunity to practice the breathing exercises taught in childbirth classes. I found that I started to get braxton hicks contractions whilst running. The doctor said it could be a sigh that my uterus is getting annoyed for lack of better explanation, and that I should consider maybe lessening my distances I run at a time. Braxston hicks should be painless and its really just a weird feeling of your tummy muscles tightening.
How I counter Braxston hicks:
- I now see them as warning sign that I need to take a break. I found that when I move too much or have a active day its a way for my body to say- ‘please chill out!’
- Run shorter distances. I found that every time I get to 8km my tummy contracts, so I now opt to do less than 8km at a time. Very boring since I love the longer distances but unfortunately it has to be done.
- How much is allot? If you feel like your getting them really regularly, discuss it with your doctor, its always hard to know when something is happening allot or normal if you’ve never experienced it before, and I have to say it is a REALLY weird feeling!
As I move into my Third Trimester now I can feel things getting harder, especially after taking a sick break for 3 weeks. My plan now is to stay fit in whichever way is comfortable, My belly s getting nice and big and I can feel things becoming harder. I’m going to mix up my running with some Swimming maybe once or twice a week, I just need to find a swimming cap to go over these dreads!
Let me know if you have any questions or experienced something differently, would love to hear what you have to say, Maybe I left something out that you have a question about!
Follow me here and on JBRobinblog.com on what the Third trimester is like!