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The original online UK specialist retailer in Running Buggies. Here to help you know which is the right running buggy for you & your baby from a fellow buggy running mum.

Blog articles & running buggy accessories too.

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Helpful articles, sometimes interviews and maybe even personal experiences written by us on all things buggy running related.

Filtering by Tag: Advice on returning to exercise post childcare

Breastfeeding and buggy running - The Lowdown

Wendy Rumble

Running after having a baby can be difficult enough with finding a good time to go out for a run and mustering the energy to exercise, but if you also need to consider how you will breastfeed your baby around your run then it might put you off altogether! 

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When can I return to running?

Wendy Rumble

This article is written by Sarah Crosby, a Women’s Health Physiotherapist based at Crystal Palace Physio Group in London. She has recently returned to running after the birth of her baby daughter 8 months ago. Sarah is a keen runner and triathlete.

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As a Women's Health Physiotherapist, one of the most common questions asked by post-natal women is "When can I return to running?"

This unfortunately does not have a simple answer and depends on many factors.

There are a wealth of benefits to running that we all know and love; a sense of freedom, a buzz from feel-good hormones, post baby weight loss and feeling energized and healthy.

Before resuming running, it is worth considering that your body may still be recovering from the birth of your baby.

One of the most important things to consider when returning to running is how well your pelvic floor muscles are working. Running is a high impact exercise and your pelvic floor muscles will have to contract thousands of times over a 30 minute run. Approximately 2.5 times more impact occurswhilst running in comparison to walking. Therefore, the muscles need to be strong to be able to work affectively against these forces.

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The pelvic floor are a group of muscles that sit like a hammock along the bottom of your pelvis. They support your bladder, bowel and womb. In pregnancy these muscles getstretched by the added weight of your bump. Hormones including relaxin are also produced in pregnancywhichcause the pelvic floor to become more lax.

In addition, if you have a vaginal delivery these muscles will stretch massively and approximately 80% of women will have some degree of perineal tear or need to be cut (episiotomy) to enable the delivery of your baby.

Like any muscle in your body, the pelvic floor needs to recover after an injury or stress. It is imperative to make sure these muscles are strong before you resume running.

The NHS guidelines advise women perform pelvic floor exercises 3 times a day after having a baby (even if you had a C-section). The generic advice is to do 10 x 10 seconds squeezes and 10 x 1 second squeezes. However if you have any pelvic floor problems then the research says that an individualized program is the best way to recover.

The reasons why you should wait until your pelvic floor muscles are super strong to return to running is to:

A) Avoid any leaking (stress incontinence)

B) Avoid pain in your pelvis

C) Reduce the risk of a prolapse of your pelvic organs (often felt as a heaviness or bulging down below).

These are common post-natal symptoms, if you have any of these, you should seek the help of a Women's Health Physiotherapist for treatment before you commence running.

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It is a good idea to start some lower impact exercise after having a baby before you begin running. Here are some suggestions and rough timelines to consider:

0-6 weeks: Begin pelvic floor muscle exercises as soon as possible after the birth of your baby, no matter the type of delivery that you had. As soon as you are able, start gentle walking and build up gradually to start conditioning your body gently to exercise.

6-12 weeks: You can begin doing some resistance type exercises or bodyweight exercises as long as you are symptom free! Such as squats and lunges. Incorporate your pelvic floor exercises into your resistance exercises. If you have a local Pilates class now is a good time to resume this but please do make the teacher aware that you have recently had a baby as some exercises may not yet be appropriate.

12 weeks +: Around now you might feel ready to start running but many women won’t either so please listen to your body! If you are breastfeeding then you will still be producing relaxinand these hormones can make it more challenging to return to running, as your tissues may still be more lax. Some women prefer to wait until they stop breastfeeding before they begin running.

A good way to see if your pelvic floor is ready for running is to try this quick test. Jump on the spot with a full bladder and then cough. This might sound ridiculous but if you don't leak then that's a sign your muscles are ready!

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Let's start with pointing out its recommended you wait until the manufacturers guideline state the Buggy can be used for running with, circa 6 months.  Running with a buggy will challenge you further, but it is a great way to do some exercise with your little one.  The pushing whilst running requires extra strength from your abdominals and pelvic floor.  Build up the running slowly, you could begin by alternating between walking and jogging i.e. 1 minute walk, 1 minute jog.It is likely to feel very difficult at first! Take it gently and your fitness will improve in time.

It is imperative that you keep a good running posture behind the buggy.  You will need to lean slightly forward, leading from the chest and bending at your hips.  Your shoulders should stay down and back and keep your head up!

Lastly,remember to wear a very supportive sports bra (you might want to wear two!)and a good pair of trainers, your feet may well have grown during pregnancy.

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If you have any other concerns about your body and returning to exercise after having a baby such as back pain, tummy muscle separation or other aches and pains then please consult your GP or a women’s health specialist for further advice.

Rules when investing in a secondhand running buggy (From Running Buggies.com Founder)

Wendy Rumble

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Having children puts a huge strain on the bank balance. Before I had children I didn't quite appreciate just how much. (Que the wistful reminiscing about what you used to indulge your pay packet on.) 

So I understand why people look to buy a second hand buggy. My mission is to enable more parents to have the freedom to exercise by having a running buggy, so I frequently help answer questions on this subject in my Facebook Community (Buggy Runners).  If you aren't already a member please join us!

To help you on your hunt, here are my rules for second hand Running Buggy shopping!

RULE 1: Interrogation of the Source...

It's a bit like buying a car.  Ideally you want one elderly lady owner! 😂 But seriously ask about the amount it's been used, where (trails, road, woodland, farms) to understand how much it's been battered!   Check for rust and that all the main safety features work (safety harness, brakes, suspension etc)

RULE 2: Fit for Purpose? 

There are SO many buggies out there to confuse and intimidate a sleep deprived parent.  Just because it has Sport or Jogger in the name doesn't make it suitable for running with. In a running buggy you should look for; 3 wheels, Suspension, large AIR filled tyres (minimum of 16 inch on the rear) Front wheel that fixes straight as opposed to swivel, 5 point safety harness, adjustable handlebar to prevent a sore back.

Nice to haves are; Under 14kgs in unit weight, Wrist strap (can buy as an add on), hand brake (how important this is depends on where you run), easy fold mechanism, wheels easy to remove and generous sun canopy.

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RULE 3: Where has it (the Running Buggy) been stored?

I once read a heartbreaking post about a poor Mum who bought a bargain only to receive the Buggy covered in mould.  It's often an issue in garages.  There are some fab places around the country that will give your buggy a good steam clean but it doesn't always get rid of mould so it's one to be cautious of. Here is the lowdown from a doctor.

Placing babies or young children in an item where mould spores are present can be potentially harmful because it could trigger atopic allergies and exacerbate Asthma as well as skin born fungal infections such as tinea or  ringworm”

Dr Paul Williams MBBch nMRCGP Post Grad dip sports exercise medicine. Father of two boys.
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RULE 4: Running Buggy Viewing

If you get to visit the Buggy before you buy, check the brakes work.  Often they can get muddy and rusty over time if not well maintained. 

Don't be put off by flat tyres, a new inner tube can fix them (cost of between £6-10).  (But always check inside for debris that has caused the puncture)   Do look at the tread of the tyre.  If they look bald you might want to see if you can buy replacement (kids bike tyres) or knock some money off.  

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RULE 5: Protection  

Use PayPal to protect yourself if there is an issue once the Buggy has arrived with you.

And finally...

        depending on when you get your Buggy and how often it will be used, consider if the difference in price for a new one with a warranty and no wear and tear is worth the investment.  Running buggies are in demand right now and this outstrips supply. There aren't many bargains to be had sadly but at least that means if you do buy a new one it will hold a decent resale value. 

Happy Buggy Running!

Wendy x

 

 

   

Running Buggy Video's (Single buggy & comparisons)

Wendy Rumble

Want to get more of a feel for the running buggies?  The best way is to take a look at some of our video's before you make your purchase decision.

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How to return to exercise after having a baby?

Wendy Rumble

Some things will never be the same again. But actually, just to give you hope (definitely NOT trying to be Little Miss Brag-a-lot)  I'm in better physical shape than I have ever been as an adult. I weigh a stone less and I'm more toned.  (I'm not selling crazy shakes.)  The POINT of that was to say please ignore the folks that say you will always be bigger post birth and that you won't be able to fit in exercise into your day.  

Sure being tired makes sensible eating and exercising MORE of an effort but it IS possible. My advice (as a mum of 2 kids under 4 and juggling 2 jobs) is find a sensible eating approach that works for you (mine is Joe Wicks, Body Coach recipes) ... And no I don't get royalties! 

And fit in a little exercise when you can. A little something every day, be it a mum's buggy class, a run/walk or just some pelvic floor exercises to start with. Try and remember that no matter how tired you are, if you have been up all night feeding, looking after poorly kids etc, exercise WILL make you feel more awake, happier and overall more capable of coping with the rest of your exhausting day!

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