Running Through Pregnancy And Beyond…

Running Through Pregnancy & Beyond

Running through pregnancy & beyond: 10 months postpartum

In the words of the immortal Austin Powers, I’m back, baby, yeah! And I have a baby! An actual human being! Baby K was born on February 21, 2017, 7 pounds and 7 ounces of pure magic.

Running Through Pregnancy & Beyond

At birth

The 10 months since then have been a mixture of magic and mayhem, sleepless nights and snuggles, and an attempt to find my new normal.

Running Through Pregnancy & Beyond

10 Months Old!

Running Through Pregnancy

During pregnancy and the months afterward everything non-essential fell by the wayside. I had a healthy, textbook pregnancy that included plenty of nausea, exhaustion, swollen feet, and the like. But I kept on running through it all, up until Week 38, when running became just too uncomfortable.

I wrote about running through pregnancy for Shape and Redbook:

Running Through Pregnancy & Beyond

Running at 30 weeks

The Ups and Downs of Running for Two

Or, how to run 13.1 miles during your second trimester without vomiting everywhere. Yup, running for two hasn’t always been an easy road. But it has been #worthit.

How Running During Pregnancy Prepared Me For Giving Birth

Running during pregnancy was a lot like giving birth. There were good, bad, and downright ugly moments. But pounding the pavement was worth every ~bump~ in the road.

Running Beyond Pregnancy

I got back to running when my doctor cleared me at 5.5 weeks postpartum. Yeah, that wasn’t easy. I felt like the entire contents of my pelvis were going to fall out during those first few runs. But I took it easy and stuck with it. Plus, my runs were the only time I got to myself. I relished being able to get outside on my own, no matter how difficult it might be.

I read somewhere that it takes as long to recover from having a baby as it does to build a baby—nine months. I found that to be right for me. I initially had delusions of running a fall marathon. By summer I realized that was a pie-in-the-sky dream. Just getting out for a 30-minute run was either a carefully orchestrated ballet or a strike-while-the-iron-is-hot occurrence. I stayed home with K full-time for the first seven months, and relied on a network of friends, family, and paid babysitters to squeeze in workouts. I often had to choose: nap or run. Sometimes nap won. Sometimes run won.

Running Through Pregnancy & Beyond

6 months postpartum

As a result, it’s taken me so much longer to rebuild my mileage post-baby than I thought it would—thanks to sleepless nights, pervasive exhaustion, breastfeeding a bottle-refusing baby, and, at times, limited babysitting resources. There were times I felt like I’d never get back into half-marathon or marathon shape. Then I remembered, I’ll get there: one step at a time, figuratively & literally.

To help me, I ran a benchmark 5K in April to give myself a baseline starting point. Then I ran two more 5Ks and a trail race through the summer and fall to check in on my progress. The last was a Turkey Trot during Thanksgiving weekend.

Prognosis? Positive! I feel fast and strong. Baby and I still don’t sleep as much as I’d like, but I’ve got a regular babysitter, I take naps, and I’m ready to dive back into training.

So here goes: 2018 is my comeback.

Happy New Year!


12 2017