Running On Average

Running Through Pregnancy

I am now 36 weeks into my second pregnancy (whaaa??!). I ran until 35 weeks the first time around, and plan to keep going as long as I can this time. While I don’t qualify myself as an “expert” on either pregnancy or running, I’ve definitely learned a thing or two and feel like I know enough to pass along some advice and tips that got me through these last two baby baking times. So, if you are hesitant about how it goes, fear not!, it’s not so bad.

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Tips For Running Through Pregnancy

1. Give Yourself Grace

This could probably encompass all the other tips I’m about to provide, but I want to put it here first. Whether you are a casual jogger or hardcore, daily runner, your running is going to change over these nine months. It’s not just you anymore. Even before you feel those sweet fetal movements or see the scale start to climb, there is so much happening inside that can affect your daily life and running. So as easy as it is to get frustrated that you aren’t reaching the same mileage or pace, don’t be hard on yourself during these months. If you are too tired or sore or sick to get a run in, THAT’S OKAY. Don’t beat yourself up. You are growing a tiny human inside you and that, my friend, is amazing.

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2. Get Your Doctor’s Okay

In most cases, running and exercise during pregnancy are beneficial and encouraged, but just make sure with your doctor first, please. There is no need to put the baby’s health at risk if you don’t have to.

3. Hydrate More

When I was a young girl in my early 20s, I never took water on a run under at least 10 miles. I just didn’t need it. Was it stupid? Possibly. But I survived (a fine example of “do as I say, not as I do”).

Now, if I am on the treadmill or running with the stroller, I almost ALWAYS have water with me. When I’m out on my own, I still don’t (#fail), but I do drink like it’s going out of style the rest of the day and make sure that I’ve replenished any water lost.

Even though you’ll have to pee even more (is that possible?!) it’s so important to stay hydrated for yourself and for your baby. Plus, it will boost your energy (relatively speaking… you’re still pregnant).

4. Focus on Effort

I can’t say that I’ve ditched my Garmin during pregnancy because I have a small obsession with knowing my mileage. Even when my mileage is low (30-40 miles per month), I still like to track it  so I 1) don’t get too lazy and 2) have an idea of what to expect postpartum. BUT, I have let go of running certain paces. I walk now if I need to, no shame in that game. Especially when I’m pushing Roo up a hill? Yeah, there’s no way me and my extra 25 lb. + stroller/toddler are running up a hill.

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Keep a steady effort and push yourself a little- but now isn’t the time to keeping going out of your comfort zone. Run for the joy of the run- not the numbers. You’ll still get a workout, I promise.

5. Train Safely

The other week I decided to take Roo out for a run while Dave mowed the lawn. It was an unusually hot day of 85 degrees. I knew going into the run that I would not be running the whole thing, or that if I did, it would be slow. I accepted the conditions before I took my first step.

I’m not saying to never run in the heat or to skip trails (at least not manicured trails) during your pregnancy, but be aware of your surroundings. Are you getting too hot? Slow down, walk, drink some water. On a trail? Keep an eye out for roots, uneven surfaces, and any other unexpected nature. Your gait may change, so pay attention to your footing. I’ve tripped more than once this pregnancy and had flashes of falling on my baby. Not what you want!

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You don’t have to give up running; you just have to be smart about it.

6. Listen to Your Body

If you’re tired, take a break. If you’re not recovering as fast as you once did, take more rest days. If something hurts, talk to your doctor. Like with my first pregnancy, I’ve reached the point now where I get shooting pains down the front of my pelvis during runs and you bet I chatted with my doctor about it (twice). I still have the okay to run, but I’m definitely being more cautious and realizing that my running days may be numbered and I may have to start exclusively walking soon. It does bum me out a little, but it’s worth it to not have those holy hell shooting pains and to know I’m doing what’s best for both my body and my baby.

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I’m no doctor and no running guru. I’m just a girl who loves to hit the pavement at an average pace for average mileage. But I remember being new to the pregnant runner game and looking for others who’d been through it before. So I hope this helps you, if that’s where you are.

Enjoy your pregnancy, enjoy your running, and if you’re worried at all…. talk to your doc! Smile They won’t mind (and if they do, they’re terrible and you should find someone else Winking smile)

Spring’s Rough Start- Shaking It Off

Lifestyle | March 21, 2017 | By

This was my daughter yesterday:

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And this was me:

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It was the first day of spring and I was initially excited for it. But between little miss nap-fighter, sinus pressure, and being suuuuper tired, I was feeling pretty cynical about the whole spring forward, fresh start, never miss a Monday business. I’ve been having a rough few weeks lately- ahem pregnancy hormones- and I ended up skipping the yoga class I planned on taking this morning. And eating too much chocolate. And snapping at my daughter who was so tired, but took a crap nap and was being difficult at lunch (so difficult).

But by 4:30, I finally got out for a trip to Target and a cup of coffee in me and was feeling better about life. It helped that my coffee was in this new cup that Dave and Riley surprised me with this weekend (they realized I’d been down!).

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And I decided it’s time to put on my big girl pants and handle it. Because I do want to spring forward and start fresh, especially with my current hum-drum attitude. I love winter, but this one has gotten me down and I’m ready to shake it off!

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So the plan for today is to publish a post, get some laundry done (#momlife), get organized, and go for an outside run- alone!- when Dave gets home.

Bring on the spring!

Are you spring cleaning? Fresh starting? Enjoying a nice latte or some chocolate?

Week of Workouts

Running | March 2, 2017 | By

Hey, all! We’re officially into March and with my plan to make this month one of action, here is a recap of my weekly workouts. Only two this week, because I’m battling my insides again this morning.

On Monday, I decided to try something new. I took Riley to South Hills Power Yoga for our first Mommy and Me yoga class! I was a little nervous because I had no idea what to expect and I haven’t taken a yoga class since before she was born.

Overall, the class went well. We placed our mats in a giant circle around a bin of toys and the kids could either participate with us or play with the toys and run around the empty half of the studio. Riley was the youngest of the runners; there were two babies who could only wiggle.

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The mama bear within me is apparently strong and I spent more time keeping an eye on her and making sure she was okay or not in anyone’s way than I did focusing on my yoga. I did get a pretty good workout in and had some struggles with certain poses. Going from high to low plank was a big one because my belly just kept getting in the way! We did a lot of chair and warrior poses and I can still feel it in my upper arms and shoulders!

The studio was right next to a Panera, so of course we went next door afterward for a latte. Winking smile

By the time we got home, Riley was passed out in the back seat so I think it’s safe to say all the running around wore her out!

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Tuesday morning, despite accidentally sleeping through my alarm, I managed to get up an run 3.25 miles on the treadmill. MUCH better than the two mile walk/jog I thought was going to happen going into it.

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I LOVE the feeling of a good run and taking pressure off myself during pregnancy has reignited my love of running. I’m so excited to see what I can do in July when I start postpartum running!

Monthly Mileage and March’s Call to Action

Lifestyle, Running | February 28, 2017 | By

Hello! We’ve reached the end of another month so quickly. I feel like I was just writing a recap for January!

Instead of going through all my resolutions, I’m just going to stick with my mileage. My February goal was 28 miles. I achieved…. 34.3! Look out, world, I’m ready to run an ultra!

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In all seriousness, I’m very proud of those miles. For starters, I’m still running more than I did when I was pregnant with Riley which is a huge boost, because I feel infinitely more out of shape than I did with her.

Secondly, the past two weeks have brought some challenges with my intestines and I’m not sure if they are pregnancy or ulcerative colitis related, but the discomfort/pain has made me back off running. The baby’s health is first and foremost and if I need to take some extra rest time for my body to heal, then that’s what I am going to do, no questions asked. It seems to be on the up and up, so hopefully we’ll continue that way and March will go off without a hitch.

Speaking of March, the word I am going to embrace and embody this month is:

-Action-

I’ve mentioned in previous posts that I’m a dreamer and a thinker, but I have a hard time putting plans into action. After some deep diving, I’ve realized that I’m afraid to do things wrong, that I’m not good enough to do something, or that I simply don’t know when/where/how to start. Basically I’m a perfectionist with low confidence.

But I’ve realized that by letting these doubts and uncertainties crowd my thinking, I’m missing out. On things as little as buying home décor to as big as writing.. and finishing… a novel (I have three started). In March I want to work on making myself move, getting the courage and motivation to stop thinking and planning, writing and rewriting to-do lists and just freaking DO it already.

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Who’s with me? Let’s carpe the hell out of this diem! Smile

Catching Up and Gorgeous Weather

Running | February 22, 2017 | By

I don’t know where you all live, but here in Pittsburgh the weather is unusually gorgeous. Not just for February, but for any time of year. It’s not totally cloudy and it’s warm. Mid 60s warm! The birds are chirping and I’ve been able to take my workouts outside without ten thousands layers. Hallelujah!

Let me start off with a huge apology because I haven’t posted in over a week! Of course, I have reasons/excuses, but mainly I just didn’t know what to write. I felt like I was in a rut. But I’m back and ready to go (I hope).

My stomach has started to really be wonked out the past week/two weeks. I’m not sure if it’s just the joys of pregnancy or if my ulcerative colitis is finally rearing its ugly head again (I’ve been in delightful remission since Riley was born). It made working out or even the desire to workout unappealing. I’ve been tired, my stomach’s been in pain, and on the back end…. yeah. It makes me hesitate to go outside even though the weather is beckoning me.

Let’s start with Valentine’s Day.  Dave was away on business Monday-Wednesday night, so I only got one early bird treadmill run in on Tuesday morning. 3.25 miles at a respectable (for me right now) 10:30 pace. A treadmill dance party was also included because my playlist is just so ballin.

My next workout wasn’t until Friday when I took to the streets with Riley for a midday run. This was prompted by me NEEDING to get us out of the house. We popped out 4.5 stroller miles around the neighborhood and Roo fell asleep during the last half mile.

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Sunday, my stomach really wasn’t feeling a run- or I wasn’t confident in my stomach’s ability to handle a run- so instead Dave, Riley, and I took a nice walk around the hood for 3.1 miles. It was actually really nice to take a break and just talk with Dave without worrying about housework or meal prep or chasing Riley, who was chatting contently in the stroller.

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Yesterday, I took Riley to the park for a stroller run and some time on the playground. We ran 2.15 miles out and almost back, stopped at the playground and played for about 25 minutes, then ran the final .8 miles back to the car. It was our first time on the playground and it was the best part of my run. Winking smile She was so happy and giggly, the weather was in the 50s, and life was just good. So that was another winner of a run!

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How have your workouts been lately? And how’s your weather been? I know it’s wrong for this time of year, but sometimes being wrong feels so right!