Sunday, August 31, 2008

Cross Training to Recover

4 weeks post-partum: my brain is ready to run again, my stroller is ready to roll, but my body is not.

My first inclination was to throw caution to the wind and jog anyway. I've done this recovery thing 2 times before and I ran up until just couple weeks before delivery so I was feeling a little cocky until I got the rebuke. My wonderfully level-headed midwife had a very compelling argument about internal organs and connective tissues. So, since there is no strength training I know about for internal organs of the abdominal region, that seemed like advice I should heed.

Plan B: Low-impact cardio and strength training to prevent injury when I can eventually resume running. While it is obvious that my abdominal muscles are weaker post-pregnancy, my hips have been also stretched and my quads have been rested, so everything needs to get a little stronger. This is especially important since when I do start running, as I will be just a little heavier than at my athletic peak ;)

It is still probably unwise for one to begin a brand new sport at this point, but I resumed Step aerobics to target leg strength and low impact cardio. I also resumed moderate weights for upper body and core conditioning. All core exercises are approached with caution at this point since the goal is basically just to get the two side of my abs back together and to support my back.

Finally, I've been walking, of course. I'm happy to report that I'm faster than I was three weeks ago when the man with the cane passed right by me. This is also good practice for the baby to work up to running in the jogging stroller.

So, perhaps this is old-hat to me, but there is some consolation in remembering that it is new for little Francesca, so for her sake, we'll take it slow.


Anonymous said...

What a beautiful name!!! Congratulations!

StrollerFittin2 said...

After 2 very hard pregnancies and hospitalizations after my last delivery, my fitness level was null. I was finally ready to start getting back into a fitness routine and was actually introduced to a local StrollerFit mom and baby exercise class. At first I thought, oh this must be just walking, etc. Boy, was I wrong!!! It was incredible and worked every muscle group and included cardio, strength training, core work and interacting with my 2 boys.
I am now back up to running 10k's and looking to do a half-marathon in March. They have these classes across the nation and it is a great way to get back into shape and in even better shape then you were before having the baby, and the baby is with you!!!!
Check it out to see if you have one near you