Yes you can get back in shape. In fact you can get into great shape if you are really motivated! Just make it a priority and use running/exercise as a way to stay sane (instead of sitting on the couch while sipping wine and eating.. you can do that too if your baby ever passes out but first get your workouts in).
The best investment you can make is getting a running stroller! (My personal favorite the Mountain Buggy Terrain). Then start by pushing it up steep hills when you can’t run very far yet. Don’t wait til your kid is 6 months- buy a car seat adapter then you can start as soon as you’re ready. Once you are forced to use it more than 4x a week, find friends who will come run with you and make them push it! Guys would be the best bet because they deserve to feel the sacrifices of what being a mom runner is all about. Then your reward is when you do get on your runs without the stroller, you lose about 40 pounds and pretty soon you are jogging 6:30 pace without trying. But first make sure you run with it for months to really get the training effect from pushing that thing around. It’s a great tool to do low mileage and still get in shape since you don’t have much time to do a ton of running anyways. Especially if your kid goes through a “hatred of running past 30 minutes” phase.
Make sure you don’t plan to do anything productive for at least 1 of your kids naps each day so you can nap too. That might be tough if you are a working mom. Then I’d recommend going to bed really early. If your kid does not nap much at all or goes through a really tough stage of constant crying consider that your mental toughness training which makes racing and workouts much easier.
Finding some training partners who intimidate you because of their speed and ability to almost lap you in races is also a great motivator and tool to help get you to close that gap so eventually you won’t be lapped but maybe even keep up. You’ll need a great coach (one who boasts in “Only coaching PRs”) and shows no mercy for women who cry or swear at him/her during workouts. If you really want to go for the pre-baby fitness you need to have some workouts where you come home and feel like you need to nap as much as your infant does.
And TMI for non moms (mentioned in my interview below) –
Yes you can still breastfeed and race hard. Pedialyte is a great supplement to restore all the lost electrolytes when you’re doing that and trying to run hard. I did not think that was possible until I met another really fast mom who proved that was possible by being 6th at the Olympic Trials last summer.
No I’m not going to do that til my kid is 4. (Prob stop by the end of summer!)
Here’s an interview from my latest race (and big PR!) – a must see for moms!
I booked my flight to Wisconsin this week and will head down to Iowa to race at USA’s June 20th with Joanie and the family!