Running and Pregnancy: Part 2

About 12 weeks ago, I wrote about my experiences with running through the first half of this pregnancy. Everything was going well up until about 25 weeks, when I decided to stop running.

It was not an easy decision, and in the beginning I pretty much felt like a total failure (which I mentioned in a few posts around that time.) How did I go from running the BOSTON MARATHON at 20 weeks to not running at all just 5 weeks later? I listened to my body (even though I didn’t want to). I’m well aware that some women run right up until the day they give birth. Some stop running as soon as they find out they’re pregnant. I’ve come to terms with the fact that my back and pelvis just hurt way too much to keep running – the discomfort wasn’t worth it.

That doesn’t mean it’s been easy to trade workout scenery like this:

for this slightly less picturesque view:

but I’m just happy I’m still getting regular exercise.

Since I’ve traded the trail around the lake for the bike, elliptical, weights, and pool, my routine has usually included 30-45 minutes of cardio plus about 20 minutes of weights. I am lifting fairly light weights, and I’ve had to modify some things (because I’m not supposed to do anything that involves being flat on my back, things like bench press are out). I generally pick 2 or 3 muscle groups and do 1 or 2 exercises for each, 3 sets of 12 reps. (For example, yesterday I did leg presses, lat pulldowns, tricep pushdowns, and seated rows).

My goals for working out have changed. I used to go to the gym for either HIIT or an easy cross-training workout on days I didn’t run, but now I’m just trying to keep my sanity. Even though I don’t feel like I’m in amazing shape at all, I definitely feel like keeping up with an exercise routine has made this pregnancy easier. There are some days that are a lot tougher than others, and I’ve been careful not to overdo it, but keeping up with my workouts, even if they aren’t running, has kept me feeling strong and healthy.


9 Responses to “Running and Pregnancy: Part 2”

  1. 1 The Waspy Redhead June 25, 2011 at 11:30 am

    I know you must be bummed to stop, but sounds like you did the right thing and are in tune with what your baby wants. I’m feeling motivated to get up off the couch now- thanks for that.

  2. 2 Kate June 25, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    I’ve added in the gym to my runs. Since I can’t go as fast I’ve been supplementing additional miles on the treadmill and throwing in some weights. Flat presses are out, but you can still do inline.

  3. 3 courtney (pancakes and postcards) June 26, 2011 at 7:38 pm

    I love the picture contrast. I’ve felt the EXACT SAME WAY staring at the wall of the gym on the cursed elliptical the last couple of weeks! But luckily, this too shall pass 🙂

  4. 4 Adj June 27, 2011 at 6:10 am

    Have you thought about trying the Cross Fit Mom workout? I haven’t done it myself, but Katie over at YesIWantCake did it all through her pregnancy and seemed to have a great experience with it. (Her newborn kiddo is also friggin adorable, btw.)

    Best of luck!!

  5. 5 Michelle @ Crazy*Running*Legs June 27, 2011 at 12:29 pm

    I think it’s awesome that you ran as long as you did – especially a marathon! I ran until 20 weeks with my son (didn’t even attempt it with my daughter) and even then it was just a few miles before I switched to another machine.

    I *really* fell in love with spinning when I was pregnant. I could still get those endorphins that I get when I’m running stressing my body out – and ultimately when you are carrying extra weight and twice as much blood it’s all about doing the best you can do! Great job staying healthy 🙂

  6. 6 Beth June 27, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    It was great to meet you yesterday! I think it’s amazing that you ran Boston while pregnant, and props to you for listening to your body and doing what is just right for you right now.

  7. 7 Krysten June 27, 2011 at 4:12 pm

    I personally love that you brought your camera with you to the gym (and even on the elliptical machine WHILE WORKING OUT). You ran for as long as you could, and I hope you are proud of yourself for all that you have done (and all you continue to do) while carrying baby Abigail. You are a stud and an inspiration.

  8. 8 Joanne June 28, 2011 at 5:24 am

    I ended up not being able to run the first month after Boston and yeah it was super frustrating to think I’d run 26.2 just a few weeks before and then couldn’t run 10 feet! But at least you have a good excuse! And it’s better to take care of your body now and be able to run later than try to run now and damage yourself for WEEKS and WEEKS. Love your attitude girl!

  9. 9 Jacqueline June 28, 2011 at 9:00 am

    Thanks for sharing with us! You are doing great and are so inspiring! Keep it up!

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