Bleeding / Spotting after
exercise while pregnant

I like to believe I’m an expert at MY life. I mean if I’m not then who is? But I’ve never been pregnant before. I also haven’t bled while pregnant before, until, the eve of my 12week mark. Spotting while pregnant is a lot more common than most women are aware of. Of course it is not an ideal situation. It’s a serious situation that needs immediate medical attention. Bleeding and especially fresh red blood can be associated with miscarriage. Miscarriages also do happen, a lot more often than we think. People often say that miscarriages are more common nowadays because of the stressful and demanding lifestyles we lead. I honestly think, that our mothers and their mothers never really spoke about those types of things. We on the other hand are a generation comfortable with talking about sex, pms symptoms and our period. So it would make sense we would hear about these occurrences. I do believe that health, weight, stress and living conditions play an important role in growing healthy babies. But that being said, there are many homeless, poorly fed and intoxicated moms who bear children too. Life is ultimately in Gods hands and he knows best.

I discovered I was 5 weeks pregnant at the height of my summer fitness. I periodise my training or go through phases, as one should, you can’t just chase a peak all year. This is very different to changing your mind on what you’re doing in the gym or on the road etc. I put in the same types of work all year, for all the years. The only thing that changes is intensity and frequency. From conception of the bean I was putting in the most sessions in the gym and with my boxing coach and outdoors. My fitness was peaking and my running was pretty strong. Keep in mind I wouldn’t consider myself a runner, but high intensity bouts is my jam. Moving at speed and not for long at all. The last time I ran 21kms was 8 years ago. I’m just not interested in being on my legs for that long. I also don’t like big crowds of people and I hate taking myself so seriously. I just want to be alone and free, but little did I know my bean was living his fittest life too.

Biskop with my girls at 11 weeks pregger

Bleeding after intense training is also very common amongst non-expecting girls and women. It’s happened to me before, 7/8 years ago when my training focused on heavy power lifts. I did some crazy lifts in a session once and I bled immediately after, it was more of a fresh spotting and that was it. I knew that my body didn’t want to lift that kind of weight under that intensity, so I didn’t repeat that.

I continued running, in the mountain and smashing stairs, all the while I took it easy, running behind my girls and holding myself back. Always concerned and worried about nonsense I had read and the silly things that people have said. This is after all my first time at the rodeo. Until one Saturday I climbed Platteklip Gorge with my girls, we were about to do one of my fave express contour runs. I was so frustrated that that day my emotions got the best of me and I smashed the trail and flew down the cable car steps. ‘Flew” is an expression I use when I’m hardly touching the ground but “moering” my way lol. The wind was howling and I ran back on the road to the car at a speed. For the rest of the day I had violent cramps, I rested until the next evening. I found I had bled a large amount of old blood. I was admitted overnight to hospital. Thankfully, all praise to the Most High, baby is alive and healthy. I was spotting old blood for the next few days and I definitely felt internal trauma. I’m so used to living in pain, being bound with muscle that I have a high pain threshold and I always push through – because time heals all, right? Internal bleeding is a sign of internal trauma. Trauma to ones internal organs brought on by external activity is not very smart. Although running is not a contact activity the jarring down the mountain and the intensity I was performing at caused an internal rupture. Never to be repeated again. LOL. The only time I didn’t feel completely ill, moody, sea sick, tired and drunk for the first 11 weeks was when I was TRAINING. Some days it was all I wanted to do because it was the only thing that settled me. Even light movement on the elliptical for 20 minutes made me feel like I wasn’t in the tumble drier.

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I’ve stuck to the rest of my routine, kettlebells, light weight, body weight, skipping, fat burning cardio, boxing (no sparring of course), cables and free weights etc. I’m going to save my high intensity cardio work for November. I’m not perfect and I never said I was going to try to be. I don’t live by any books. I write my own story, and in this chapter I made a mistake. First of the many mistakes I’m still going make in the next couple of months. Mistakes that will become insignificant when I make bigger fuck ups as a parent. So what. Like I said many women do bleed… the first question the Doctors and nurses asked was if I had sexual intercourse. Apparently that is a commonly associated with bleeding in pregnancy. A family member told me that she had pushed her bed in her first pregnancy, which led to her spotting. I guess we all need to find our new physical limits and survive within that. Deal with what we have too, work with what we can and still make it look easy. Because the benefits of that snore fest that is a 60 minute cardio session on that elliptical or treadmill, far out weighs sitting on the couch moping about what you cannot do for the next few months. Adapt or die. There is middle ground in all the highlights of our lives. Don’t just stop completely because your doctor was born in the stone ages. Don’t grow a baby in fear because you heard a horrible story. The benefit of basic movement goes beyond anything terrible you can imagine.
HAPPY MOM = HAPPY BABY (rushtush:2017)

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Yours in Health & Fitness
Rush xoxo

  1. Rhodiah

    Firstly I’m glad all is well with baby and you.
    I truly agree with you on not “growing a baby in fear” I am 18 weeks today struggled for years to conceive and started gyming and eating healthy last year and found out in Jan we have a little miracle on the way. I have not really exercised since as fear got the better of me but reading this has put my mind at ease and so I have decided fitness helped me get to this point so surely it will help me through my pregnancy.
    Thanks for your honesty and positivity!!🙌🏽
    All the best with your journey to Motherhood 😘

    • CONGRATULATIONS!!! yes fitness helped you conceive, the healthy bean loves exercise!! you will know whats best thank you for sharing xxx

  2. Nooreen Agherdien

    I love how raw And honest you are in this article i can relate yo the bleeding during intercourse as that happend to me with my 1st pregnancy during my 1st trimester, on my last i started what the old ladies would say “nesting” and i just keep cleaning and moving stuff around that the sliding door actually came out at the bottom and fell ontop of me, i caught it obviously and put it back in and hurt myself, the next morning i didnt feel leka and went to the bathroom and saw blood so i called the hospital and was asked to come in, apparently the strain from the door brought on labour even though i was due the foolowing week. My daughter is 4 now,healthy extremely clever alghamdulillah. They call your first baby the experimental baby, it really is so have fun with it learn and dont let anyone else tell what the right way is and almal dai kak because there is no right well nothing you do will ever feel right but go with it lol there are no such things as the perfect mother even though u get alot of snobby women who think they know it all. Im pregnant with number 2 now and im even more lost than the 1st but i dont care as long as i have a healthy baby insha allah. My dua for you is that allah make your pregnancy easy, may he bless you with a healthy baby, may he keep you content and humble and may he guide u all the way to an easy deliverey Insha’Allah ameen.

    • Shukran so much for your duahs, and I love how you just caught the sliding door!! Its amazing how strong we are! All the best with baby number two! thank you for sharing your experiences with all the hesitant and nervous moms out there as well and thank you for reading xxx

  3. Tarryn

    Glad baby is healthy Rush!!

  4. Natasha

    ‘Don’t grow a baby in fear’. 🙌🏽

  5. Zeenat

    Hi Rushda

    I’m always reading your articles and find that you always sharing great advice to females about nutrition & fitness, I’m a Mom of 2 kids 3 year old boy and 2year old girl I gained a whopping 40 kg with my 2nd pregnancy due to not living a fit and healthy life! Boy oh boy was that a massive mistake! I stopped with training and ate healthy to a certain degree but when those cravings hit me I just gave in… but nevertheless after my baby girl was born after a year of breastfeeding I lost 10 kg but was still heavy, im 1.72 tall and always weighed58to 60kg and on my last with my pregnancy I was 106.2 kg. But now after a huge lifestyle change in a year and I lost 32.4 kg it’s a slow process but all worth it. My husband took me on a shopping spree and oh did I max that Card!

    I love the radiance and sporty look and oh the compliments of friends and family are appreciated and most of all a fit & healthy lifestyle has made me the Mom i’v always wanted to be and that’s being strong and mindful in every facet & situation that life.

    Thankyou for sharing your journey to Motherhood it’s one heck of a joy ride!

    Stay beautiful
    Sending love and light to you.😘😚

  6. Good read I actually kinda had what looked like a period on off for about week and half took easy then but back to being active, I’m glad idnt have a gynae from Stone Age as he advised continue being active, most active women as he indicated and that iknow gave much easier birth and had quick recovery, I haven’t gained much weight at all, been eating healthy literally no craving for sweet things and all is well with baby, healthy and growing well algamdullilah. I also prefer being active than cooped up eating days away, exercis and being active helps with the moods as well. So I’m all for it. Only thing not cool is the weird stares from some ladies when you still gyming

  7. Dilnawaaz

    Great article..glad your baby is well. I’m so sick of people telling Me to rest even doctors from the stone ages. I’m now 16 weeks pregnant and also just stopped doing Hiit although I miss it like hell.. Just sticking to lighter weights,light jogging and some aerobic classes but I definitely will not be resting on the couch… My first 2 kids came before 32 weeks prematurely… The Dr doesn’t have a particular reason but every one apparently is so medically educated to say my kids came early because I went to gym. I listen to my body and leave all my trust in my Allmighty …

  8. Algamdulielah all is well with you and unborn baby, i guess we can all learn from our mistakes.. and seeing thay we cannot just think of ourselves anymore, we have to consider our little human inside. Im 17 weeks pregnant as well.. spotted in first few weeks but all has been well so far, ive been having alot of rest and putting my feet up, as im experiencing a low placenta.. which i hope to be sorted soon as c-section is not the way i want to go! So im listening to my body and and looking after baby… we are 17 week pregs algams, and pass the scary stage atleast.

  9. Love you Rush. This is a fantastic post. Raw and Real. #GoMami

  10. Fierdous

    Amazing what our bodies can do, and amazing what others think our bodies can do based on their own experience. We all know our bodies and respond to it as we hear and feel the signals it sends. This is an important message, esp for ignorant people who push their opinion. I was carrying my 3 year old on my arm at times, when he was asleep or nagging, even though i was highly pregnant- because i knew my body could handle it. Others would scowl at me mouth agape, telling me put him down. So crazy. Your strength and consistency amazes me. I wish I had so much commitment. One day💓 all the best with the rest of your pregnancy in sha Allah.

  11. elmethra

    Nice post. Before my son who is 3 months now, I had another little bean. But instead of physical exertion that caused my miscarriage, mine was emotional stress & distress. It’s a long story but the day I went for my 1st checkup I was already crying. I was just deeply affected. When I finally got helped and opened up for the nurse, I began bleeding.

    I was still my super fit self and one day, about 2 weeks before, I walked quite a distance from the taxis carrying those big bags of doggy food over my shoulders 🙂 I felt strong. I experienced no pain from it & I arrived home feeling asif the Light of God himslef was beaming out of me. In a light huff and glowing.

    But intense debating over weeks with a loved one, that caused deep wounding, had me crying many nights and one night I felt a pain move across my abdomen. I cringed and went to sleep. No bleeding.

    During one night of worshipping God I saw a vision of God stretching His hand down to me and I handed my baby to Him and she sat on His knee, both of them smiling at each other. So my heartbreak was softened just knowing that He cared enough to show that vision.

    With my boy that is now 3 months, I was very careful & did almost no exercise the way I usually do. I just walked and SLEPT! I did the occasional punchbag workouts & one day i fell and landed on my bump. I can only credit the angels because I felt absolutely nothing….asif I landed on a pillow. By then my bump was the size of a hill, not yet the mountain.

    So YES. Our journeys are very individual & listening to our gut and knowing our body plays the key role. I am EXTREMELY proud of you Rushda. Like a mommy. Not like a sister. I trust your advice & definitely refer women to you.

    MUCH LOVE & God’s Light

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