Q. I tried to take up running recently, only to discover that my post baby body won’t allow me to! Obviously staying hydrated is very important when running but if I drink water I end up in trouble with stress incontinence. I’ve suffered from occasional incontinence since having my first baby, but running is really exacerbating the problem. Is there anything I can do to fix this?
Yes, there’s lot of things you can do to fix this. Have you been working on your pelvic floor exercises? I recommend you practice theses as often as you can, every day. They are so easy to do and can be done anywhere! To find the correct muscles, try to stop the flow of urine when you’re in the toilet. Once you’ve established that, you need to train your pelvic floor muscles through repetition, in the same way as you would train a muscle group at the gym. Lift your pelvic floor muscles to a count of ten. Hold the muscles tight for 10 seconds. Gradually increase the time until you reach 10 seconds. Relax your muscles and rest for 10 seconds. Repeat the contractions up to 10 times. Fast contractions are also important to practice. Lift your pelvic floor muscles quickly. Hold the contraction for one second. Relax the muscles and rest for one. Repeat 50 times.
Once you’ve been practising these for a few weeks, you’ll be back feeling comfortable running in no time at all! Good luck!