Running for Two
Are trail running and pregnancy compatible?
Debbie Livingston has run the grueling Greylock Trail Half-Marathon in Adams, Massachusetts, eight times. ...
Photo by Bigstockphoto.com
Debbie Livingston has run the grueling Greylock Trail Half-Marathon in Adams, Massachusetts, eight times. The last time she ran it, she was seven months pregnant. At mile eight, she passed a male runner, who said, "My ego just dropped about five notches."
"I had a streak going there," says Livingston. "I couldn't not run it." That's how a lot of runners feel about their sport—it's difficult to imagine not doing it, no matter what comes up. And if what comes up is a perfectly normal, healthy thing like pregnancy, is there any reason to stop running?
As many curious, conscientious runners discover, there's not a lot of scientific literature out there about the effects of running on pregnancy. What there is, though, suggests that it's not a bad idea. Anecdotal evidence from running moms-to-be supports that theory too.
When Livingston bounded up Greylock in 90-degree heat last summer, 20 pounds heavier and about 45 minutes slower than she was at her peak, she remembers, "The women were all like, `You go!' But the guys said, `Are you sure you should be doing this?'"