7 Weeks and Step by Step

Wells is 7 weeks old today!

My little ones snuggling in bed this morning!

I did 2 mini-workouts since my last post. Both were small steps in the right direction toward my goals. Oh, and look what I got on Monday!

My Oiselle Pro Kit! (Front of top, back of briefs).

I have 2 things to say about it. First – talk about motivation to get strong and speedy again (thanks Oiselle!) Second – I still have to remember getting in shape is a process and I need to take it day by day (or really step by step)!

When I was pregnant with my first child, I had big dreams about what I might do with my running, but because I was going to be a first time mom, I had NO CLUE what to expect out of running after giving birth. Would I ever race again? Even though I ran throughout the whole pregnancy, I wondered what childbirth would do to me. I wondered if I could be fast. Could I even be faster than ever? (It turns out I could be and birthing a child didn’t have negative effects on my running.) The process took awhile though. I didn’t do my first workout until 4 months after Currie was born.

When I was pregnant with Wells, I believe it was Laura, the mastermind behind Salty Running, who told me I’d bounce back quicker with the second. She was right. I feel like my body and running are bouncing back quicker (the running is mostly coming back quicker because I realize it can and I’m not scared to do some workouts this time around). But, let me be clear, I have a LONG way to go.

Workouts HURT. They are hard. This is always true, but especially after the trauma of childbirth. My times are nothing like usual. I thoroughly enjoy, and yet am humbled on every run. My mile time trial last week was exactly what I dreamed it would be and of course I was over the moon happy. BUT… there are moments when I allow myself to really think about it and I realize it was slower than every mile I run when I race a half marathon. Of course I don’t expect to be there right now, but I get a good reality check – I still have a long, long way to go.

I did a light progression run/tempo on Sunday. It was mixed in with my longest run yet, 7.5 miles. The goal was just to pick up the pace, faster than my every day runs, each mile a bit faster. I was hoping a few of those miles would be in the low 7:xx range. (I live and do all my running in Squirrel Hill, and if you don’t know the area, let me just say it’s super hilly. With no hills, I honestly probably would have wished for some high 6:xx in there.) Turns out, no mile was faster than 7:37. I complained a bit to my husband. He made some remark like “yeah, you’ve been running a whole 3 weeks after having a child, you should really be faster”. Obviously sarcastic, thanks for the reminder, Jeff!

I did some speed yesterday (Thursday) as well. It was the same workout I used as my first workout after having my first child. (6 x min hard/min easy) It was challenging. I have no idea what my pace was, as I wasn’t wearing a GPS watch, I just know it was enjoyable in a difficult-run-type-of-way.

Before every workout, I’m reminding myself to take my running step by step. After every workout, I think of things day by day. Sure, I have long-term plans and goals and I think about them, but my running is living in the moment. I push out every little old-self comparison thought. I will take things slowly, step by step, because that’s the smart way, and the only way I will get to where I want to be.

So, here are the 7 weeks pics! I will switch over to pics of my pro kit when I get the courage to show you all my bare belly! I’m not as brave as Lauren Fleshman… yet!

7 weeks! My pics are never “high quality”, but today they were taken by an especially wild 3 year old so they are both fuzzy and lopsided. :)

Question for you:

Do you get caught up in comparing your out of shape self to your in shape self?Ā 


12 thoughts on “7 Weeks and Step by Step

  1. Love this :) I find it way too easy to get caught up in the impatience/expectations when returning to running. I’m working my way back from a long break right now and your posts have been really inspiring – and a great reminder to focus on the progression, instead of the discouraging disparity between my current fitness and race-shape. Sounds like you are having a great post-pregnancy comeback though – I’m more than a little in awe!

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  3. I am so glad to hear how far you are coming. I cannot wait to see where you go next and how the Thanksgiving race goes.

    I’m taking things day by day with my foot as well…I’m starting to compare myself to when I ran 70+ miles weekly but it’s fine. I’m not stressed about it per say but I have caught myself doing it.

  4. I don’t have any baby birthing experience, but from what I can tell you are on a great road back to your speedy self. annnnnnnd you LOOK amazing!! Considering you ran your entire pregnancy which is also amazing, I think you will be back to your super duper fast self pretty soon!

  5. Thank you for being so real….and INSPIRING!! I am pregnant with my first and pretty terrified/ nervous about what is going to happen with my body and what the whole bouncing back process will look like. I sooooo appreciate your blog posts just how real you are. Keep em coming :) And congrats on a beautiful family!! :)

    • Thanks so much! I was so clueless when I was pregnant the first time (and only a little more informed this time!) I think it’s different for everyone but I really had no idea what to expect out of my running, my body, even my mind after having my first. I think a lot of postpartum success comes from going with the flow and believing in yourself. Add in there a little bit of desire and it all works out!

  6. Things seems like working for you.. šŸ˜‰ It is possible to do a very simple abdominal crunch 2-3 weeks after you have your baby (providing you have had a regular birth and have been given an examination by a doctor). I had a C-section and had to wait at least 6 weeks.

  7. 1. Glad Jeffs sarcasm can keep you in check;) you’re a rockstar, don’t forget it!

    2. Definitely hard not to compare to previous versions of our selves…well I was in better shape for this race, or worse shape for this. I used to be able to run this pace but now I am this. I think I am way worse about that than I am comparing to others. Definitely my own worst critic.

  8. I totally get caught up comparing myself to pre-baby days…and unfortunately comparing myself to other running mama’s who are having more sucess than me! I tell myself to stop it and I’m doing a lot better, but for us competitive folks, its not easy. Its important to think like you said “step by step”. I will try to be better about that.

    • I know, it’s hard not to be competitive. Lucky for me, I rarely believe the workouts people post online. :) We only see a small part of the story when we look at what others share with the world! I just keep telling myself if I’m tired, or slow, or feeling any way that isn’t fantastic, it’s my body telling me something so I better listen. We will see how that works out!

  9. YAY for the new racing kit!! yea, total motivation right there but you should also be super motivated that you’re far ahead of yourself 7 weeks ago! and progress forward is NEVER as fast as we want, but good job keeping perspective and remembering that u’ll get back to, and faster than, the pre-baby jen. just takes time. where is that dang FF button, right? šŸ˜‰
    PS- those cuties are TOTALLY worth the slap of reality pain of getting back into shape :)

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