20 July 2015: Athlete mums and bones

A couple of interesting links to studies that I thought I would post as much as a reminder to me as anything. But also as interest for any other mums (or expecting mums) out there. As I returned to training and racing after the birth of my daughter I found myself suffering from 2 bony injuries. Despite training, and especially running loads remaining deliberately low it seemed that I was experiencing bone loss as a result of breastfeeding. While it is comforting to know that bone strength returns after weaning and indeed to even greater strengths than prior to pregnancy and lactation it is definitely something that I need to keep in mind on round 2. I would love to see some athlete specific studies in this area, or even some case studies - but I suspect that it is more common than realised and with more and more women returning to competitive sport post baby is likely something that becomes more widely recognised. I must admit it was not something that had occurred to me previously. As well as bone loss I do remember feeling as though I was losing more electrolytes than normal in the first 3-6 months post birth. This is nothing that I ever quantified but I definitely think that my sweat rates were higher and i do remember having some minor cramping issues that agin were uncommon for me. I would love to hear about other women's experiences as they returned to training post birth. I'm trying to learn from experience and also take on board other (sensible) info as I get back into things. Oh and yes there is lots of silly info out there too - and sometimes you have to separate fact from fiction and go with your gut. Especially when out comes to exercise post birth - listen to your body, do what feels right and don't take as truth all the advice freely given to you from all corners. 

Bone Mineral Loss During Lactation and Recovery After Weaning.

Pregnancy and Lactation Confer Reversible Bone Loss in Humans