Wednesday, September 21, 2016

FAQ #2

How many sets and reps should I do?
During pregnancy and when we are easing back into fitness, it is advised that we focus on muscular 'endurance'. Generally speaking, this is 2-3 sets of 10-16 repetitions.  But...there is more to it then that. 

Think of the 10-16 reps as a window and ask yourself these questions as you go along:

Am I breathing well?
How is my form?
Do I have any joint-associated  pain?
How many more could I do well?

You want to stop on this side of your edge.  In other words, your last rep should meet all of the above criteria.  This is not the time to push through for one more rep. The last thing a mom-to-be or a new mom needs is an injury....especially a preventable one.

You'll sometimes hear a Fit 4 Two instructor say things like "Zero to four more." or "How many more can you do well?" or "Muscle fatigue is normal.  Joint and back pain is not normal." You might notice that we look around the room as much as we count reps.  We are looking for good form and healthy breathing.  These are some of the ways that we keep you safe and help you to get to know your body.

On a related note...if you find that you can do 3 sets of 16 reps no problem...your resistance is likely too low. To be are wasting your time.  It is probably time to increase your resistance. Moms need muscles. 

FAQ #1

I had my baby 8 weeks ago, I feel great, when can I start running again? 
Running is a great exercise because it is accessible and free. It is also high impact and high intensity so we need a solid base before easing into running.

What I like to see before a new mom begins easing back into a walk-run program

1. Infant feeding is established
2. Mom is getting enough rest that she can enjoy running
3. Mom is pain and injury free
4. Mom has an assessment by a women’s health physiotherapist who will assess mom’s:
  • Alignment
  • Stability of joints
  • Rectus abdominal muscles (checking for diastasis recti)
  • Pelvic floor muscles
  • Ability to engage deep core muscles
The women's health physio can then make recommendations about if, when and how to ease into a walk-run program.

It may seem like a pain to make an appointment and go see a physio but I often see new moms who feel great, don’t have DR, feel good about their pelvic floor….go back to running but then end up with injuries due to misalignment and instabilities….or pelvic floor issues they didn’t know that they had.

Invest in yourself and honour your amazing body. Here are some women's health physiotherapy clinics you might consider in Vancouver BC.  If you live elsewhere, talk to your doctor or midwife about a referral.

Dayan Physio, Envision Physiotherapy and Treloar Physiotherapy Clinic

Safety note:
It is recommended that baby is strong enough to support a helmet before running with baby in a stroller, and that the stroller is intended for running.