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Kara Goucher Plans to Become Mom after Boston Marathon-Way to Go Kara!

Posted Jan 22 2009 3:57pm

While visiting Runners World yesterday I saw a post about Kara Goucher (2:25 marathon, fastest debut for an American woman) wants to become a mom after she runs the Boston Marathon.

All I have to say is, Way to go Kara, way to go! (Oh, and damn I want those abs!)

I can imagine this is a huge adjustment. You know, you don’t have the time for a while to train, you get up at all hours, you are taking care of someone else-and they are now the priority. Sick kid + up all night = Not a guaranteed next day run.

This is all true, and I would never deny this. Last night I was up from 11:30-1:30 with my daughter, who woke and could not go back to sleep. I did everything: we walked, paced, sang, laid down together, she had some milk, I told her not to be scared of the dark, and then finally she did it-she went down (not without a few tears, unfortunately!)

This morning I felt like this:

stressed

But I still got up at 5 AM (4:50 to be exact, but feet didn’t hit our icy cold floor until ten minutes later!) and did 3 miles and then worked on core, stretching and arms.

It is doable. Does it mean making adjustments? Absolutely-but that’s just part of life.

We adjust when we get a dog. We adjust when we move to a new town. We adjust when we graduate from college, when we take on a new job, when we get married.

We definitely adjust when we have kids. So, this post is my advice to Kara. Of course, I doubt she’ll ever read my words, but maybe it will help other runners who are thinking about having or who are already with child!

  1. Keep Running. Seriously, as long as your doctor gives you the okay, keep going. I did it until I was about 8 months pregnant (two weeks away from C section) with my second daughter. I didn’t run through the first pregnancy. The second was such a better pregnancy and recovery AND even though I gained the same amount of weight (40 lbs) I lost it more quickly the second time around! I think it was because I remained in shape throughout the pregnancy that this happened.
  2. Be Flexible. As runners we sometimes have those rigid personalities-you know, gotta get that run in at 5 AM tomorrow or the world will end!   Understand that as a mother, particularly when kids are in the first year, you’ll have to be flexible. There are times you will be up ALL NIGHT LONG! You won’t WANT to run 5 miles at 5 AM, so you might have to nap when the baby does and then run it after.
  3. Be Creative. Buy a jogger when the baby is old enough to ride (six months or so they recommend) and take nice jogs around the neighborhood a few times a week. Jog to a park, get out and play, do your core work and strength while playing, and then jog back to your car or to home. Get involved in running clubs with other moms in the area, or join a class for new moms that focuses on working out.

Running with a baby-and while pregnant-is doable.  While you may not feel like running for the first few months when you aren’t getting enough sleep, you should try to pick up a schedule as soon as you can. The running will give you time to reflect, and as always it is a great outlet, both physically and mentally, which is much needed when you have children! Plus you’ll get rid of those ice cream pounds much faster when your feet are pounding the pavement.

And you will find time to train. I ran a half marathon between baby #1 and number 2 and I ran a marathon one year and one month after my second daughter was born-then a second marathon 11 months later. I won’t say it was easy-peasy to train with two young tots in tow, and perhaps I was not as fast as I could have been, but that will come. Besides, who cares about making a PR when you have a little angelic babe by your side?

Go Kara! It will be the best race that you have ever run!

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