Treadmill Running During Pregnancy
Running on treadmill during pregnancy can reduce a lot of the risks and dangers pregnant women has when running at second and third trimester. There is no doubt that running during the pregnancy is a great way to keep healthy. Pregnant woman should try and be active as much as possible because it will ensure a healthier pregnancy and a happier mother.
Running is one way to keep fit during the pregnancy, but running has it’s own risks and side effects on pregnant women. Here you can read about some of the risks facing running pregnant women, and find tips for healthier running and jogging.
Running on a treadmill during pregnancy or outside means you need your doctors approval. Meet your doctor and share your treadmill running program with him/her. Doctors will give different medical opinion based on the development of pregnancy, and the general fitness of the mother to be.
Not A Runner Before The Pregnancy?
If you have never run before (running 30 minutes without passing out :-)) than you better begin walking before running. Walking is a great way to avoid some pregnancy veins. Walking and leg exercise can reduce pregnancy veins because they increase the blood circulation. Prepare a walking program which includes 30 minutes a day, every day. You can choose to do out-door walking, which is great for fresh air and for the mind, or indoor walking on a trainer (treadmill) which is easier to for bad weather, or pregnant mothers who can not leave home for a 30 minute walk every day.
What Risks Face Pregnant Runners
Prevent Unusual Fatigue
Pregnant mothers feel fatigue as part of their pregnancy symptoms. The body produces hormones which relax the body, and with increased blood volume, and body changes, the pregnant woman feels wiped out. Running while pregnant requires using the body reserve energy which will leave the pregnant runner totally collapsed. When running out door, a pregnant woman may feel a ‘body shut down’, if it happens far away from home, it will require to stop running, walk or sit, to gain back energy to return home.
When a pregnant woman runs on a treadmill she has control over the pace, and can slow down, and when feeling fatigue.
Avoid Increased Heart Rate
Part of the side effects for pregnant runners is that the natural heart beat, and blood pressure rise. A combination of increased blood volume, and a heart which is pumping ‘for two’, means runners need to avoid reaching heart rates which are too high (above 145-150 per minute). One way to know you are not at the ‘high pulse rate’ is to find out whether you can keep talking while jogging. If you are panting, and can not make a conversation, than you are probably running too fast.
Even if you are not a marathon runner.. if you are pregnant, you may want to have a fitness heart beat watch or band, to monitor your heart beat while running or cycling. This heart beat running watch will count your fat burn rate too…
Some home treadmills has a pulse rate sensor at the handle, so placing the palms will show the pregnant woman whats her heart rate. You will see an award winning folding treadmill further below.
Getting a Heatstroke
One of the highest risks for running while pregnant is the risk of getting the body overheated! If the human body temperature rises over 104, the first tissues which are affected are nerve cells! Since our brain is 99% nerve cells the immediate danger for heatstroke is to the brain! Runners overheating, is one of the main causes for fatal events at marathons. Pregnant women runners should be twice as careful not to overheat.
This hazard is avoided when the pregnant woman is running on a treadmill or home trainer. The air condition can be turned ON at hot days, no direct sun light, a fan and be used to cool the room.
This is a dangerous side effect of the heatstroke. When the body temperature rises, the fluids run out through sweating. On of the symptoms of runners over heating is when they stop sweating. The fetus require higher levels of fluids, when pregnant mom is running and sweating the fluid reserves ran empty. Make sure you train with a running fluid belt ! Drink before, during and after each running session.
When running on a treadmill during pregnancy, there is no need to carry a fluid belt, or run with any bottles. The bottle can be placed at the cup holder, and the woman can drink, during the running session with no hassle.
When running outside, there are many hazards (stones, pavements, mud, glass, litter) which require a fast change in the body balance for a safe foot landing. The body has it’s own balance based on the weight natural pose of the runner. When a woman is pregnant her running balance is changed. The enlarged abdominal and the weight shifting due to the growing fetus, cause pregnant runners to trip and fall more. This is common at the second and third trimesters.
Treadmills have a wide running track, with no mud, grass, glass, broken pavement and pebbles. When pregnant you can run on a treadmill with confidence. The side bars will help you hold on if you trip over. At the park it would end in a nasty fall.
Don’t Run Too Much
Running endless miles each week mean the body will use the energy for running and not for the baby development. Studies have shown super active mothers who run and cycle in a professional level deliver smaller babies. While being active during the pregnancy is healthy, over doing it is not. Being pregnant is not the right time to prepare for a marathon.. Other studies have shown that pregnant women who have been running or exercises in high impact sports, had more miscarriage.
You can learn more with this book – Exercising Through Your Pregnancy (see pic)
Knees & Ankle Twisting
The Progesterone hormone which is produced during the pregnancy is relaxing body tissues and making them flexible and elastic. The progesterone is in charge of some of pregnancy symptoms such as the pregnancy varicose veins and heartburns. One other side effect is that main joints loosen. The knees and ankles of pregnant runners thus are at risk for splints. Getting a knee injury is a nightmare.. there are special knee supports for running women which help hold the joints in place while running. Check this Women Gel-Comfort Knee Support.