In my experience, I’ve found the 6-12 month post-partum window to be a great time for running. Your body is mostly recovered, baby is hopefully sleeping more, and you finally feel like a normal person again. As baby becomes more independent, you’re also more likely to feel less guilty about leaving her, and are more excited about heading out for solo runs or races. Plus you’re still reaping the benefits of the increased red blood cell count (hello natural oxygen boost!) that remains the year after pregnancy, and may have an increased pain threshold after delivering a baby.
Now at seven months post-partum, I’m feeling pretty good. I’d be feeling really good if baby were sleeping more. She still wakes up every 3-4 hours at night, and at every doctor’s appointment when I ask if I can let her cry it out, still get the response that she must be hungry since she’s little (was still over 3 lbs from doubling her birth weight at 6 months).
I weigh less than I do before I became pregnant, although it is unintentional. The combination of a decent amount of running + nursing turns me into a lean, mean, calorie burning machine! I eat plenty to compensate for the running + nursing calorie burn, and in general eat pretty healthy. Although I do eat a lot of dessert, baby’s pediatrician recommended I add more fat to my diet to make sure I’m not producing skim milk, so Blue Bell I have your number!
When my first child was around 11 months old I ran a 10 mile PR. That was quite a surprise because I was running a good amount but not really doing a lot of workouts or training specifically for the race. The same thing happened when my second child was 10 months old and I qualified for the 2016 Marathon Trials. My husband returns from his deployment next month, so I’m really hoping I can capture the magic of this post-partum window and get into real training and racing when he gets home.
I haven’t finalized any race schedule yet, but am excited to get back out there! In the meantime, I’m holding steady around 50 mpw. Over the past few months I have had several days at a time where I’ve been traveling and just haven’t been able to run, mainly because I couldn’t haul the triple stroller on our trips! Those weeks mileage was in the mid-30s to low 40s.
6/4: 6 miles on the treadmill, 7:30 down to 7:08 pace
6/5: 60 minutes w/ the triple
6/6: 61 minutes solo! My parents were visiting so I took the rare opportunity to run the trails in Weymouth Woods
6/7: I enjoyed my trail run so much yesterday I ran another 6 in Weymouth, followed by strides
6/8: 1:15 w/ the triple, broken up with stops at the library and playground
6/9: 61 minutes total; 20 w/ the triple to the park; 20 minutes of running drills/strides; 21 minutes home.
6/10: 47 minutes w/ the triple midday, it was hot!