Your baby is here, you feel amazing, and you're itching to get back to running as soon as possible. And that’s great! But before you reach for the trail shoes, it is important to pause and evaluate whether your body is truly ready. Running is high-impact. Even if you feel fine, your pelvic floor, amongst other things, may not have regained the strength to handle it. Furthermore, postnatal healing is affected by things like breastfeeding, how you delivered, hormones, personal health status, and so much more. So, whilst some women will be good to go 12 weeks after delivering, others might have a much longer wait.
As a pelvic health physiotherapist, I frequently meet women seeking help for injuries caused by running too soon postpartum or escalating their training too quickly. They always tell me that they wish they had known the risks beforehand, as they might have avoided their present discomfort. I do not seek to deter you from your sport; on the contrary, my aim in writing this article is to introduce you to some of the things you need to consider so that you can set yourself up for a safer return to running. Careful monitoring of your recovery and well-planned preparation for impact training is essential.