Thinking Ahead: Exercise Post Baby

Little Brother is due to arrive any day now, and while I have loved most moments of pregnancy this time around, I’m VERY ready to have this baby in my arms instead of my belly, and to reclaim my body as my own at least a little bit.

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The only exercise I’ve been able to do for the past nine months has been walking, and even that has fallen by the wayside as I went into preterm labor at 32 weeks and all my energy went into keeping baby in for a few weeks longer. But now I see the light at the end of the tunnel and I’m starting to look at my jogging stroller with stars in my eyes, because soon I’ll be able to hit the pavement.

Pre-pregnancy, my goal was to run a marathon in January of 2019. I gave myself a full two years to train, but one of those years has been handed over to pregnancy. Since I’ll be starting over from scratch after the holidays, I’m trying to decide if I want to keep that goal of the 2019 marathon.

My husband thinks I’m a little crazy to be considering training for such a long distance with a new baby and while breastfeeding. My fitness level when I had JC seven years ago was…well, nonexistent. I didn’t work out at all, and he was two before I discovered running. I also did not nurse him, so the whole breastfeeding thing will be new to me. When I think about all those hurdles, I wonder if maybe my husband is right, and if giving myself more time would make the experience more pleasant all around. Maybe I should make a 2019 early spring half my goal? Or focus only on shorter distances during the next 12 months? All I know is I NEED a goal, or there will be a lot of sitting around making excuses.

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So am I crazy to try and train for a marathon at this point in my life? Should I find a new fitness activity altogether for awhile, like a dance class, or a barre class, or something totally different? I want to honor my body as it heals from this round of childbirth, and I want to provide it with the energy it needs to feed baby and be healthy overall. Of course, losing the baby weight will be good–but even more so, I just want to be moving again.

Did you run while you were pregnant, or did you switch your fitness routine drastically when you were having and raising young kids–or for another reason? Did you nurse while you were running? I’d love to hear your tips. 

 

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A Bump in the Road

I’ve hit a little bump in the road of my two-year marathon training plan.

A baby bump, that is.


Big brother JC fondly refers to him as Nugget, and we are all over the moon that our newest addition will be joining us around Thanksgiving.

As we all know, a baby changes everything–and this baby is no exception. The only exercise my doctor cleared me for is walking and swimming. Now that I’m in my second trimester, I finally feel like actually doing those things. My first three months growing our little Nugget were pretty rough–in addition to my husband starting a new job and our family moving, I added morning all-day sickness and pretty intense sciatica to my list. Those days mostly seem to be behind me, and I’m excited to feel like a person again. Plus now I have a cute little belly that looks like I’m actually with child, and not just with cheeseburger.

I’m super envious of all the mamas-to-be out there that are still running daily and doing their normal fitness routines. To be honest, at first I was a little bitter. My first pregnancy with JC was rough, and I always swore that if I did it again I’d be super fit and healthy. Despite the changes I’ve made during this pregnancy, like eating healthier, my body seems to have its own ideas on what it can handle. However, Nugget is looking great and in the long run, that’s really all I care about. I’ve come to terms that me and my bump won’t be running any half marathons together and that my two -year marathon plan is on pause. However, it doesn’t mean I plan on being a slug on the couch (at least not most of the time). I’m just going to have to find my own version of healthy and fit, and I look forward to sharing it with you over the next 6 months.

Did you stay active during pregnancy? I’d love to hear your tips and tricks. 

 

 

 

Hashtags I Wish Existed

Sometimes when I’m posting on social media, I come up with a hashtag that I think is really clever, and then I realize I’m the only one who uses it. Oops.

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Here are some #hashtags I’d love to see happen:

#MomdayMonday: When moms get Mondays off because weekends are exhausting and we deserve it. And, naturally, it would go hand-in-hand with #NeverMissAMomday

#TravelToosday: When you see all the amazing #traveltuesday posts and you want to go, too.

#InstaWhine: No, not well-lit photos of reislings. Real life photos of #TantrumToddlersinTarget to make social media a little more real and a little less staged.

#InstaFit: A magical power to make that bathing suit fit in the dressing room.

#WhereMyMomsAt: Helps you connect with other moms on the playground that have the same values as you so there are no awkward “you homeschool/you feed your kid sugar/why is your kid eating sand” conversations.

#BoyMomBackUp: For when your daredevil child gets stuck in a tree/knocks his front teeth out/shaves off his own eyebrows and you JUST CAN’T anymore.

#GirlsJustWannaHaveBuns: When you walk in the mall and you smell cinnabon and before you know it, your body has acted on of it’s own accord and you’ve eaten three.

What #hashtag do you wish existed?

 

 

Virtual Runs: Yay or Nay?

My life is beginning to fall into a runner’s pattern again: maintenece runs on Tuesday and Thursdays, long runs on weekends. Training goals highlighted in my calendar. And the best part: races.

I love race day. It’s why I run. I love the energy and the comraderie at the starting line and the swells of emotion at the finish line. And since those things are so important to me, I generally don’t like virtual runs. I enjoy T-shirts and medals as much as the next girl, but the bling isn’t what drives me. 

However, there have been a couple of virtuals that have had me reconsidering my stance. Like the Hogwarts Running Club. They raise money for various charities and have virtual race themes like the Fantastic Beasts 5K and the Platform 9 3/4K. They all have adorable medals. 

I also have a hard time saying no to the virtual  runDisney Running Shorts event. I didn’t do it last year, but I just saw the announcement that it was returning for 2017. 


I think I’ll consider registering for one if we vacation at Disney this spring or summer. It might be fun to cover the miles for the virtual while at a resort. 

Another virtual race I always think about is the Celebration Half, which is run in Celebration, Florida. Their virtual goodies are always really nice–especially those raw threads T-shirts–but I’ve never pulled the trigger. 

I’d love to hear about your experiences with virtual runs–love them or hate them? Do you run them for charity? Or to keep yourself motivated between races? 

Embracing February

In January, my intention was focus. I really made an effort to be in the moment, and I think it paid off. I got a lot accomplished last month–I got a jump start on my spring cleaning, picked up a new freelance job, took a trip to Arizona with my family and went on some fun day trips with my homeschooling buddies. I hope to carry that sense of focus with me throughout the rest of the year.

But now it is a new month and time to choose a new overreaching intention. For February I picked embrace.

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2016 was a roller coaster year for me. I felt very out of control and I really wanted 2017 to be different. So far…it hasn’t been that different. But what is different is the way I’m responding to it. I’m taking ownership of the changes and trying to see challenges as things that can lead me to something exciting instead of just letting things happen to me. I’m doing my very best to embrace everything that life is throwing my way.

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What are your goals and intentions for February? How do you handle the crazy stuff life throws at you? 

Tips for Travel Wellness

The last year has seen my family and I traveling all over the United States, from our Hawaii/west coast trip last spring, to southern Florida in the fall, to our most recent: a week in Arizona. Before 2016, I would not have considered myself a traveler. 


I hadn’t been on a plane since before 9/11 when I hopped on that 10 hour flight to Oahu in April. But now that we’re packing our bags and exploring new destinations regularly, I have a few tried and true tips I wanted to share.

Bring your favorite water bottle: Most airports have filling stations, and it will save you money (and calories!) durning travel and when you reach your destination. 

Eat at the right local times: One of the things that has helped me most with jet lag is eating meals according to local time, even if I’m not that hungry.

Hit the grocery store, even if you’re staying in a hotel…I try to keep snacks where we’re staying and carry some with me to keep me from snacking on unhealthy & expensive food while I’m out being a tourist. On the last trip I kept carrots, veggie dip and cheese & crackers on hand for munchie momemts. 


…But enjoy eating out every now and then, too. Eating out is fun and relaxing. As a mom, I don’t want to prepare and clean up after every meal while I’m on vacation. When we travel, my family tries to avoid chains we can find at home and look for food unique to the area. 

Arizona has awesome Mexican food. Epic amounts of queso, anyone?

Put a white noise app on your phone. Between time changes and loud hotel neighbors, sleep can be in short supply on some vacations. I downloaded the classical album my son falls asleep to at home to help him on the road, and I can fall asleep listening to the gentle sound of rain even in the middle of the desert. 

Relax. It’s a vacation, remember? It can be easy to try and see everything when you’re in a new place. When we went to Hawaii, I knew it had the potential to be a once-in-a-lifetime trip, so I wanted to see it all, and we did. But if you ask my son what his favorite part was, he’ll be quick to tell you it was the night we all piled into bed together and watched The Wizard of Oz long past his bedtime. Pick your top must-sees and maybe a few back-ups, but take advantage of the hotel pool. Break a usually strict bedtime or screen time rule. Let yourself sit on a balcony and read for hours (that was my personal favorite this time around). 


How do you stay on track with your wellness when you travel? Where is your favorite place to travel to? 

The Strangest Thing I’ve Ever Done to Reach a Fitness Goal

I’m officially two years out from my marathon goal! It has been really fun to watch all my runner friends on social media arrive at Disney for WDW Marathon weekend and know that, in 24 months, I’ll be one of them!

But I still have a long way to go–and I’m excited to get started working my way up to marathon level. To kick things off, I did something pretty strange.

I quit the gym.

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I had been feeling a little burnt out by the classes, and I really had to drag myself there. So–despite the new year and the influx of new resolution members–I handed in my 30 day notice.

Obviously, I am not resigning myself to a slovenly life of Cheetos and Netflix (although at the end of this post-holiday week, that sounds pretty good). I am focusing on 5K training for the next few months, and have a few 5Ks on the calendar. First one up is the Hot Chocolate 5K at the end of January.

I’m really looking forward to getting out of the gym and finding some fun in my fitness this month. I’d love to know–what do you do when you feel burnt out at the gym?

Not Resolute But Intentional: How I’m Setting Myself up for Success in 2017

When I started to think about New Years Resolutions this year, I got tired very quickly.

The idea of another round of rigid rules, of “fixing” myself and then inevitably failing was just exhausting to me.

Then I realized, I don’t need to be fixed. 2016 was a long and bumpy road for me, and what I really need from 2017 is a little TLC.

This was actually a little hard for me to declare to myself. I generally love the idea of starting fresh in January. But I never seemed to settle into any rhythm or pattern over the past 12 months, so there isn’t really anything to start fresh from.

What I really need for 2017 are intentions, not resolutions. I found some prompts on Pinterest and took advantage of the first page in a book I for for Christmas called The 52 Lists Project. 


I enjoyed making the list and I feel like it is a really good guidepost for how I want my year to go. It also helped me choose my intention for January:

Focus

This month, I want aim my energy at focusing on not only on how I want my year to go, but on making sure I am present and focused in my daily tasks. It will be a challenge to try and focus on one thing at a time for me, since I tend to be a champion multi-tasker–but I think by the end of the month I’ll be a more centered and relaxed person because of it.

Are you setting resolutions this year? What are your hopes for 2017?

Are you Going Streaking?

No, I’m not changing my blog settings to NC17. But I do want to talk about streaking.

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Fitness streaking, that is.

It is popular among my people to have a run streak from Thanksgiving to New Years–pledging to run a certain mileage every day, from holiday to holiday, no exceptions.

I’ve never managed a holiday run streak–I usually fall off the proverbial treadmill mid-December when the pace gets a little too crazy or the weather gets a little too chilly. However, since I’m really trying to finish the year on a strong fitness note, I decided to commit to a fitness streak this holiday season.

After tossing around a few ideas, I’ve decided to have a “1 mile or 30 minutes” streak this holiday season. In addition to my usual workout schedule, I want to make sure I get in 1 mile or half an hour of extra activity. If I do it, I’m giving myself a prize: a new raw threads T-shirt that I’ve had my eye on for awhile.

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Are you going streaking this holiday season? Do you reward yourself with things when you hit a fitness goal?

Up The Weights

I have clearly been listening to Taylor Swift a little too much while working out, because when I sat down to write today, this little parody of “Blank Space” came out. You’ll have to sing it to yourself, because trust me–you don’t want to hear me sing! What do you listen to when you work out?

TaylorSwift

Nice to meet you, never been
Never set foot inside a gym
Machines, treadmills, ellipticals
I don’t know where to begin
Oh my God, these heavy weights
Boy, I feel so out of place
How will I ever keep pace?

New outfit, KT tape
I belong in a fitness magazine
Gonna try to change my shape
My magazine said it will be easy
So hey, show me how
I’m dying to see how you work out
Grab a water bottle and a resistance band
I’m going to work out every day—even weekends.

I’ve been working out forever
My muscles are inflamed
I’ll let you know when it’s over
If the body’s worth the pain
Got an appointment with my trainer
He’ll tell you I’m out of shape
My cardio won’t cut it
So I’ll up the weights

‘Cause I’m tired and I’m sweaty
Pushed myself way too far
My body feels like jello
May not make it to my car
Got an appointment with my trainer
He’ll tell you I’m out of shape
But I’ve got one more rep left
And I’ll up the weights

Heart rate high, pushing through
Trying to keep it inside the zone
One rep done, three more to go
Then I can think about going home
I joined the gym, it’s what I want
I prepaid for 6 months
Desperate to see the results to come

Screaming, crying, can’t do more
I can’t even lift my phone
Gonna pass out on the floor
Can somebody drag me home
Oh my God, help me please
I think I’m drunk off my protein
But I’ll come back each time I leave
‘Cause we all know I’m a chubby girl dressed like a yogi.

I’ve been working out forever
My muscles are inflamed
I’ll let you know when it’s over
If the body’s worth the pain
Got an appointment with my trainer
He’ll tell you I’m out of shape
My cardio won’t cut it
So I’ll up the weights

‘Cause I’m tired and I’m sweaty
Pushed myself way too far
My body feels like jello
May not make it to my car
Got an appointment with my trainer
He’ll tell you I’m out of shape
But I’ve got one more rep left
And I’ll up the weights

Just want to be in shape, but it’s torture
My trainer says, well, I warned you
Just want to get in shape, but it’s torture
My trainer says, well I warned you

I’ve been working out forever
My muscles are inflamed
I’ll let you know when it’s over
If the body’s worth the pain
Got an appointment with my trainer
He’ll tell you I’m out of shape
My cardio won’t cut it
So I’ll up the weights

‘Cause I’m tired and I’m sweaty
Pushed myself way too far
My body feels like jello
May not make it to my car
Got an appointment with my trainer
He’ll tell you I’m out of shape
But I’ve got one more rep left
And I’ll up the weights.