Friday, April 24, 2015

Running During the 2nd and 3rd Trimesters the Second Time Around

I was working on a postpartum running update and realized I'd never published my post about the 2nd and 3rd trimester.  I wrote it a couple of days before Elise was born and with the flurry of her birth and update posts, I forgot to post it.  So here it is now.

Running while pregnant with Elise was so different than it had been with Carter.  Read about running during the 2nd and 3rd trimesters when I was pregnant with Carter here.  The 1st trimester I had a lot more energy and was running much faster than I had with Carter.  When we hit the 2nd trimester I didn't get the huge surge of energy like I had with Carter, I think mostly because my fatigue hadn't been as intense.  So running during the 2nd trimester was more similar this time around although I was running much faster this time.  I was hitting the same paces I had when I was pregnant with Carter but this time I was pushing the stroller.  Without the stroller I was able to run 9 minute per mile pace.  My races were also much faster.  I ran my fastest 2nd trimester 5k this time in 23:05, almost a minute and a half faster than my fastest 2nd trimester 5k when pregnant with Carter.

Running was also a lot more comfortable.  My hips weren't sore and I didn't feel off balance and wobbly.  Honestly, up until the very end I never felt that big and swore I wasn't waddling like I had with Carter (but I'm sure I was).  Most of my soreness was in my lower back/upper buttock.  I think it stemmed from carrying Carter around because I noticed on days when I didn't carry him as much I wasn't as sore there.  I believe I have my pregnancy with Carter to thank for being more comfortable.  All my muscles were already stretched out so I didn't feel so tight and sore.
Ready for the Jingle Bell 5k.
When I hit the 3rd trimester I expected to slow down quite a bit.  I was surprised that it never happened.  I did slow down, but not much.  My training runs were at the same pace they had been, it was my races that slowed down.  I ran my fastest 3rd trimester 5k less than a minute slower than my fastest 2nd trimester 5k in 23:54.  That race was almost a minute faster than my fastest 3rd trimester 5k with Carter.  Once I hit 34 weeks my doctor recommended I take a break from running because I was already starting to dilate and he didn't want me to go into labor prematurely.  He said if I made it to 37 weeks I could start running again, so I stopped running from 34-37 weeks.  If he'd asked me to do that with Carter I would have been slightly thankful because running was becoming so uncomfortable at that point.  With Carter I was having contractions during runs and even had so many during a run at 35 weeks that I had to stop and walk.  This time around I was bummed.  I had been feeling so good and figured when I started back at 37 weeks I would be miserable.  I mean, I didn't even make it to 37 weeks with Carter so I couldn't imagine what running at that point would feel like.  I was shocked to find I still felt really good when I started running again.  I was hitting 9:40-10:30 pace and feeling comfortable.  It wasn't until the last half mile or mile that I'd start to feel a lot of pressure in my lower pelvis and be tempted to walk.  I didn't have contractions during runs nearly as frequently as I had with Carter.  My biggest complaint would have been the pressure I felt.
Walking to the start of the last race during our pregnancy with Elise.
Overall running while pregnant with Elise was way more enjoyable than it was when I was pregnant with Carter.  I think it was most likely because my muscles were already stretched out from my previous pregnancy so I didn't have as much soreness.  I think it also helped that my body had plenty of time to recover from Carter's pregnancy before we got pregnant again.  I had read it is best for your body to have 18 months between pregnancies to recover.  We got pregnant with Elise when Carter was 19 months old, so we were right on track with that.  It was nice having been through pregnancy before and knowing what my body could handle.  I wasn't afraid to run, especially after how easy I took it during our pregnancy that ended in a miscarriage.  I knew if I took it that easy and had a miscarriage, running had nothing to do with it.   

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