Running a Year Postpartum

My son is one.

This is crazy to me.  It’s incredible to watch a tiny human transform so much.  Likewise, it’s pretty incredible to watch what your relationships go through, and see yourself transform as well.

I was very fortunate to be able to pick up running pretty quickly after Jules was born.  It was of course my plan to do so, but we all know how much control we have over things like that.

running is a privledge

I started going on 1+ miles walks within a couple of day, gradually adding distance, and was running again by four weeks postpartum.  This is not something that I would recommend to everyone.  It was early, but I was very active during my pregnancy and had the support of my doctor.  Now those first runs were short and included a lot of walk breaks, but hey, my feet were simultaneously off of the ground often enough.

There are a lot of things that have worked out well for me to get back into running so quickly.  My husband is amazing.  I go trail running with a group of incredible people on Mondays.  Before I was cleared to run he would come out with me and walk so that I could still socialize at the beginning.  When I did start running, before the babe would take a bottle, my husband still came out to walk around so that I could feed the baby if needed after the run (it’s a bit of a drive to these trails).  I have an amazing support group of runners that will ask me where I am if I try to disappear, and an amazing new running store opened up in Kansas City called Run816 with incredible group runs for added support.  They started offering track speed work sessions that I began going to.  I’d never done that before and was really intimidated by it.  It is such a friendly approachable group, I’ve really enjoyed adding these into my workouts.

It’s taken a lot of time and adjustment to work running into our family, but it has been incredibly worthwhile.  I am sure that I am a better mother and wife for it, and an all around generally more tolerable human being.  I am also quite certainly a better runner.  I can’t just go on long runs whenever and take as much time as I want.  I have to be more thoughtful about the time that I’m taking to train, and am much stronger for it.  Also, running with a stroller = harder miles, and I hike a lot with Jules.  I will tell you, hiking with a child on your back is the best cross training.  Hiking also gets the baby outside, and he loves it.

running with jules bentonville

I spend a lot of time looking at and talking about my beautiful [and of course very advanced and gifted 8-)] baby.  Looking back at my running this rolling year has been pretty incredible.  I’m extremely proud of what I’ve accomplished.

I ran my first sub two hour half marathon.  I completed Hospital Hill in 1:55.  I set a 50k PR of 6:24 (that includes stopping to breastfeed between loops).  I ran two road marathons in two weeks.  I set a marathon PR of 4:05.  This was particularly fun because I ran them as training runs.  I primarily run trails, so I hadn’t done a road marathon since 2012 when I first started running.  I ran my first 100k in 14:44.  I’ve logged 1,080 miles since he was born.  I’ve also run some hard and frustrating miles, and dropped short of some goals, but that’s part of what’s so great about running.  There are no guarantees.

I’m moving forward again, setting new goals.  I am running on Run816’s team, something I’m very proud to support.  I have a 50 miler in April, and am signed up for my first 100 miler in September.  I believe I am ready for that challenge, but I also respect that distance.  I’ve just hired a coach for the first time to help me get there.   I’m excited to see where these next steps take my running, but also our family.

snow running

 

 

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