This past Sunday morning, I ran the Falmouth Road Race on beautiful Cape Cod and let me just say…it was PHENOMENAL!! The weather was perfect, not too hot, and the scenic course was breathtaking! I ran 7.1 miles (a 10K plus a little extra) in 1:13…not too bad…just under a 10:00 mile!! Not only did I run for my health but I also ran to raise money for cancer research through the Kristin Fund …what an amazing cause!
I really enjoyed this experience for so many reasons and I highly recommend it to new moms looking for a way to get back into their “pre-pregnancy” bodies. Running this race was great for my health and my figure; it was an excellent example to set for my daughter; and it supported a very worthy cause! As a personal trainer and a mom, I’m happy to offer some helpful information and training tips to get you into your running shoes and out the door!
Health & body benefits – (from About.com) Running is among the best aerobic exercises for physical conditioning of your heart and lungs. It helps ensure the efficient flow of blood and oxygen throughout the body, things that are proven to help to decrease the risk of a heart attack. Running — like other types of exercise — is a great stress-reliever and may even relieve mild depression. Many runners enjoy reaching the “runner’s high” — that euphoric, clear, and calm state they feel after a long run. Running helps you improve your fitness and stamina. As a weight-bearing exercise, running also increases bone density, which can fend off osteoporosis. I couldn’t agree more! I feel amazing after I run…sweaty, red-faced, heart pounding, lungs expanding, and a big smile on my face…aka runners high. This high will keep you filled with energy and able to take on any challenge motherhood might throw at you. Oh and PS – I am at my wedding day weight…yes, a longleanmama!
How to find time to train?? You CAN make the time by making the commitment. I trained for the race over a 6 week period…not the longest training preparation, but I have an 8 month old and not a lot of alone time! So, my goal was to get out for a 2-4 mile run at least 2x/week with the baby in the jogging stroller (I use the Bob Revolution – great ride, suspension, etc) and then get out for a longer endurance run (45-60 minutes) at least 1x/week by myself, leaving the babe with da da! I knew my pace was about a 10 minute mile and come race day, I stuck to that. I was running for a lot of things but the best time was not one of them…maybe someday, but not now…finishing and still being able to move is key! I am happy to report, 2 days later, I feel amazing and ready to start training for another race this fall (uh hem, runners high!)
Set an example!! While my daughter may only be 8 months old, she is soaking in everything I put in front of her…EVERYTHING! I exercise all the time with her and I know that she will reap the benefits. As exercise was not a big part of my growing up, it took me until I was almost 30 to get into a regular exercise regime…this little peanut of mine is learning at the youngest age not only how good and FUN exercise can be but also she is watching me set and accomplish goals!
So, get to it… sign up for a race, start training, and lead by example…win win win!