A reader sent me an email the other day asking me about how long I waited to run after having Brooke and how that worked out for me. This reader is about to have her own little one and as I was writing back to her I found myself telling her that I wish I would have done it differently.
My doctor was supportive of me getting back into running pretty quickly after having Brooke just because I did have such an easy delivery/recovery and because I was running 40-50 miles per week leading up to when I gave birth. BUT I’m guessing he was supportive of me slowly easing back into running but not jumping back in full speed like I did.
I think I waited 3ish weeks to start running again (and I started running a lot of miles) and I ran my first half-marathon at 7 weeks postpartum with a time of 1:31.
I have mixed feelings about that race when I look back on it (RNR San Jose). I am proud that I could mentally push myself to get that time (it was a PR at the time) but I would never attempt something like that again so quickly after having a baby. That race was actually completely fueled by emotions, I had no business physically pushing myself so hard so soon after having Brooke. My emotions from a very hard week took complete control and I ran my heart out. Running was my way of coping with the things going on in my marriage. It was a way for me to run it all out and then move on with my day and be a good mom, put on a happy face, tell myself that everything was okay and be able to handle the things that were going on at the time. Looking back, I now know that I jumped back into running so quickly for emotional/coping reasons.
I don’t know if my high mileage so early on affected my milk supply (I lost mine around 4 months). I’m not sure if jumping back into running so quickly contributed to injuries that I had a few months later (I think it did because I had never had hip/IT Band problems until then). I do know that I was exhausted during this time and things just didn’t feel physically right. I know that I should have slowly eased back in and allowed myself more time to heal. You live and you learn right?!
My advice now that I am a little bit wiser and in a much better situation——> There is no rush. Enjoy that new little one as much as possible. Running will always be there for you when you are ready (physically and emotionally) to get back into it. Having a baby is crazy hard on your body (even if your delivery is easy). Let your body take as much time as it needs to heal before jumping back into running. OF COURSE, work with your doctor. Do what is best for you. We are all so different.
I also realize that some women may jump back into it quickly and everything is fine and great but DO what is best for you and your situation. Take the pressure off of yourself just because you think you should be running before you are actually ready to.
I just know that if I am lucky enough to get another little human that I will wait the full 6-8 (or more if needed) weeks to run again after delivery. I know I will GRADUALLY increase my mileage and speed and do exactly what my body needs during that time—> recover.
Yesterday: 9 miles @ 8:20 pace on the treadmill while watching a bunch of Katy Perry music videos on my iPad. I enjoyed it.
All of this free. It takes a lot of talent to try to fill the cup up this much while holding a 2 year old and also making her cup of froyo all at the same time.
I take this stuff seriously (or creepily).
Since it was 60 degrees outside we were able to just hang out and eat it on the curb.
And then we made the random decision to go see a movie at the $1 (even though tickets cost $1.50?!) theater.
I’ve been feeling like I need a change and since I should probably stop dying my hair every 3 weeks, I am going to try out bright red lipstick. This should be interesting.
Feel free to check out my latest article on Women’s Running about dealing with a bad race or run! HERE!
What are some mistakes that you have made in your training and what did you learn from it?!
Mom’s reading… how was it for you getting back into running after having a baby?
Who got some free Yogurtland?!
Lipstick—> yay or nay!?!