It’s funny looking back I can already see how my views on running are changing during pregnancy. You see, I always told myself when the day came that I got pregnant that I would without a doubt continue running. It can’t be that different right?
Oh how wrong I was. Running is still something I love to do but when your body feels completely different than it ever has before, it can become increasingly more difficult to keep that positive outlook and vibe through it all.
This isn’t everyones experience. Some women are able to keep up the intensity, pace, and distances they ran pre-pregnancy even after they get pregnant but that wasn’t the case for me. Even though it’s only been 19 weeks and I still have just over half to go, I know that it won’t get any easier. Today I wanted to share a little bit about what I’ve learned so far when it comes to running during pregnancy.
I’ve learned over the years that we never stop learning new things about running.
Pace DOESN’T Always Matter
As the girl who worked for a year to qualify for Boston and continually pushed myself to get faster and faster afterwards this was really hard for me. I wanted to keep the pace I was holding prior to getting pregnant, but it was the first and most obvious change even if I didn’t know it at first. I had to listen to my body and for the next 9 months pace has completely gone out the window. There is a time for me for me to focus on pace, and a time for me to simply focus on staying active and keeping a base. Just like with life – you will go through different phases when it comes to running.
Overall Awareness of My Body
I used to think I was listening to my body. I used to think I knew what it needed, but after pregnancy I have really learned to listen to it. It’s amazing the signs it will give us if we really sit back and listen. Pregnancy has made me more aware of my body when it comes to running. I start every run really slow, slower than I’ve gone in years. I don’t pick up the pace at all until I know my body is 100% and sometimes that doesn’t even happen. Awareness of my body and its warning signs it gives I know will continue to be beneficial post-baby.
You Don’t “Lose” it THAT Fast
Yes, I’ll admit that since I became pregnant I have lost my speed. I will have to work on that later to get it back, but one thing I was surprised at is you don’t lose your ability to run distances in a short amount of time. One of my biggest goals right now is to maintain a base for as long as I can. I took the first 5-6 weeks off after finding out I was pregnant and I had a feeling I’d be starting from scratch. I was surprised how quickly my body came back to the distance. I went slow and slowly increased my mileage, but my body has responded well to the returning mileage though it’s still not where I was during training and I don’t expect it to be.
Running Will ALWAYS be there For You
There are a lot of changing things in life. We go through different events that take us away from running, change our running, or make us change our running. Life is going to happen but in the end running will always be there for you when you are ready to come back again. Don’t force or pressure yourself on the days when you can’t. I’ve learned to look at running more as a reward than something I HAVE to do. I am blessed on the days I get to run and the more I look at it as a blessing the more joy it brings.
Pregnancy has taught me a lot about my body. It’s helped me become more accepting, forgiving, and understanding of my body. I love what it has taught me about running and how it has helped me view it.
What is something that has changed your view on running?