I got into running in 2010 when I was starting on my own weight loss and also to have some fun while working out with friends. Over the course of the next few years, I ran many different distances, but then then life happened as it always does. My husband and I made a cross-country trip to explore another chapter in life together. Not long before, we had made peace with the fact that life would be just us two – we were told we medically were unable to conceive. Four months later, though, I found out I was pregnant. We enjoyed the entire experience of pregnancy and of welcoming our daughter into the world. I was physically active throughout, but took time off of running completely when the little one decided my bladder was the best place to sit in my belly.
After the experience of pregnancy and every physical challenge I faced with it, I promised myself I would get back into running as soon as I could. After a couple of months of rebuilding my strength, I set out for a maiden voyage – my first run in over a year.
My form isn’t what it once was.
I was tired and my body ached in random places.
I was determined to only get better.
Here are a few things I focused on.
I set a goal. I signed up for my first half marathon [in years] so that I had a goal on the horizon to work towards as a new mom.
I began working on my form. I knew I had to be forgiving of what my body just went through to take things one step at a time. After having a baby, your bones become very pliable and your joints are fragile. Up to a year after you give birth, there is still a chemical (relaxin) flowing through your body that makes you feel not as sturdy. Your hips have expanded to make way for a baby to come into the world. I got my gait analyzed to see how to correct my feet and landing. On the runs I did after that, I took time to be conscious of my form/posture to help ensure to prevent injury.
As any new mom does, I struggled with the time to run. Instead of just being able to run whenever, I now had a little human depending on me to work around. I made it a priority to plan out times for runs and be realistic about when I was able to get out by staying flexible. I asked my husband for help so that I could do my sprint intervals and speed work solo. We also found a running stroller for the little one to join me. Then, on the runs I knew I could do at a smooth and easy pace to enjoy the miles, I could have her keep me company to explore the world as I pounded the pavement.
Throughout the process of coming back to running after having a baby, I remembered one important thing: I’ve done harder things before!
About the Author
Katrina is a Runner, Girl Mom, NASM Certified Personal Trainer, AFAA + ACE Group Fitness Instructor, Master Trainer, AADE Diabetes Paraprofessional & Fitness Coach. She focuses on living life with BALANCE! Her goal is to help others turn their trials into triumph to live life to the fullest. She’s run more than eight half-marathons, one marathon and countless shorter-distance races. She’s now continuing on her new running journey running with her daughter by her side. You can check her out at: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and @KatrinaElleP on Snapchat.