about me

    Emily Malone

    culinary arts grad. nutrition facts lover. vegetarian chef. marathon runner. country music maniac. failed dog trainer. barre fanatic. loving mama.

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    What’s Cooking?

    Personal Bests

    5K - 23:28

    10K - 52:35

    15K - 1:38:14

    1/2 Marathon - 1:57:39

    Marathon - 3:50:58

    A Look Back.



My First Postpartum Run.

Sunday morning I slept in late, fed Cullen, and then set him in his bed to do his morning routine of kicking his legs and staring out the window.  Since he seemed generally content and Casey was at home too, I felt like it was the perfect opportunity to finally test out the treadmill with my running shoes.

It felt strange to pull out my old workout gear that hasn’t fit me in many many months.  I didn’t actually have a plan or strategy lined out, but just figured I’d do what felt best.  I started out by walking at a 3.5mph pace for about 5 minutes as a warm-up.  For some reason as I watched my 5 minutes tick down, I felt really nervous.

In my pre-baby days, my warm-up jog pace has always been a 10:00/mile (or 6mph on the treadmill).  I decided to start out at 5mph just to see how it felt.  Initial thoughts:  Oh my god my boobs.  Oh my god my uterus.  This feels really strange.

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As it was, even running at 5mph had me feeling pretty rusty, so I kept it at that pace for 5 minutes.  I continued to alternate walking and jogging (between 5 and 6 mph) for 25 minutes and then called it quits.  A few thoughts now that my first “run” is behind me…

Boobs:  Wow, I have never had this problem before.  I fed Cullen and pumped right before running, so I knew my chest was as empty as possible, but I still felt like I had to bouncy grapefruits attached to me.  I definitely need to get better sports bras or consider wearing two at a time.

Lungs:  I was amazed at how horrible my lungs felt – I have absolutely NO endurance anymore.  My lungs felt scratchy and were burning from the minute I started running.  It felt like I was out for a winter run in the cold, not in my toasty basement.

Legs:  STRONG!  This doesn’t surprise me too much though.  By the end of my pregnancy, I was up around 34 pounds, most of which was concentrated in my midsection.  For nine months I did what felt best to me – lots and lots of walking, even up until the very end.  I walked the three mile loop at Greenlake the day before I went into labor, and tackled the hills of Fremont on a daily basis.  Carting around that giant bowling ball of a belly definitely helped strengthen my quads, and I’m hoping that will help me bounce back a little faster.

Mid-section:  I wouldn’t call it pain, but I felt a lot of pressure in my lower abdomen as soon as I started picking up my pace.  Not to be overly graphic, but I sort of felt like my insides were all jiggling around and threatening to fall out.  It was uncomfortable, but not painful.  I assume everything inside of me is still working it’s way back together again.  Considering I had a giant baby in there for quite a while, it might take more time than I imagined.

Pace:  SLOW.  I have to admit, it was pretty humbling.  I didn’t think I was going to be a rock star runner after taking so much time off, but I was surprised at just how rough it felt to be back on the treadmill.  I definitely feel like I am starting from scratch!  I’m trying to tell myself it will be a good learning opportunity.

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Overall thoughts?  It was tough, and I only went a little over 2 miles (combo of walking and running)!  I have a loooong way to go, but I know it will come in time. 

Trust me, I realize I just had a baby and that my body just went through a crazy long and intense labor.  I’m actually really proud of where I am at just six weeks postpartum.  With that said, it SUCKS to start over at something that I used to do pretty well.

About halfway through my run, I also realized how nice it was to have a few minutes to myself.  Since I just started pumping this weekend, I haven’t been able to leave Cullen yet.  At ALL.  Don’t get me wrong, I love my baby more than I can ever express, but at the same time, it was pretty great to have 30 uninterrupted minutes to just get lost in my own thoughts.  It was also nice to listen to loud music full of swear words and not feel guilty about it.  :)

And when my run was over, I came back upstairs to find all my favorite boys waiting for me, and returned to life as a mom.

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Casey had even made me a delicious breakfast smoothie!

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I don’t have a plan or schedule for workouts yet, and I’m going to play it by ear for the first few weeks.  My hope is to be able to carve out a small block of time every other morning before Casey goes to work.  I’m glad that my first run is in the books, and even though it wasn’t as great as I’d hoped, it gives me that much more motivation to get back on the treadmill tomorrow.

Don’t forget – today is the LAST day to enter the Recipage giveaway for a free iPad2!  Take the short Recipage survey for your chance to win!

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131 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Chase - the CHASE project     at 10:38 am

Do you have your sights set on a race to mark your return??? :)

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Amber K     at 10:49 am

Way to go for getting back in there! It is definitely going to take time to work back up to where you were before baby and before your accident. But just stretching your legs must feel great.

[Reply]

Jessica @ The Process of Healing     at 12:22 pm

Congrats Emily! While I’ve never had a baby, I sort of know how you feel. I’m just NOW getting back into running from an injury that happened 2 years ago. And it is VERY humbling to huff and puff and struggle through 2 miles but you have to start somewhere! I look at it is falling in love with running all over again… setting new PDR’s (well, since 2 years ago) and accomplishing new goals!

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Monica     at 2:00 pm

Good for you Emily! That is fantastic! Enjoy getting back to your you time! :)

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Maria     at 4:30 pm

Congrats! My baby is now 9 weeks old, and I’ve been working out since my 6-week check up. I am now up to a little over 5 miles on my runs. I think I could go longer but it becomes a question of having enough time at this point. You will get into a schedule soon enough, but my recommendation is to just be dressed and ready in your workout clothes and as soon as your son goes down for a nap , jump on the treadmill. Their naps are so unpredictable that too often i have thought, ‘oh, she’s napping…i’ll do a few things and then get to my workout’ and then she wakes up before I have time to start my run on the treadmill. It is a challenge and you sacrifice your own time to rest, but it feels so good to feel back in shape! I also recommend working on core every other day because that helps with the running. I’ve been doing a few workout videos that have helped motivate me to keep doing crunches. Those are tough! Keep up the great work!

[Reply]

Alicia F.     at 4:39 pm

Way to go girl! :-) Love reading all your blog updates, very inspiring!

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Kimliveshealthy     at 5:56 pm

Congratulations Emily – you took the first step and I’m sure in no time you’ll be back to your former endurance levels. And thank you for the physical details – no one ever wants to talk about what really goes on with a postpartum body, and for an active woman who’s hoping to get pregnant soon, I am so curious!

[Reply]

Emily     at 6:50 pm

boobs are still my biggest issue 6 months later! I had such small boobs before I got pregnant so I guess I just don’t know how to handle these things now haha I usually wear a good sports bra and either a tight tank top (preferably one with a built in bra) or double up on the sports bras but it still takes a little getting used to when I pick up my pace :-P

[Reply]

Sarah     at 7:53 pm

Congrats on your first run!

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Christie F     at 11:05 pm

I know you aren’t a bustier girl by nature, but check out Enell for your sports bra. Enell.com I am a really busty girl and the grapefruits bouncing is totally how it feels all the time for me. I bought Enell on a recommendation and while it’s not the sexiest sports bra in the world, it REALLY does stop bouncy booby syndrome.

It goes from sizes 32C and up, so don’t be afraid to check it out.

[Reply]

Melody     at 11:18 pm

I’m commenting for the very first time.

2 miles may seem like a short distance to you or others. Though I’m not going to tell people this woman here is world’s most brilliant runner because she finished 2 miles, but I’d be sure to tell people how brave this proud mother is to have encountered so many challenges in life and how delightful she is to be able to form a such an adorable and happy family.

Back then, you may think excelling in running is your utmost goal but I think, upon reaching certain stages in life, you will realise life is not just about running now that you have delivered such an amazing boy. Of course I’m not saying you should give up your passion or whatsoever, what I’m really trying to say here is, you have a lovely family and many beautiful people around you, so try not to be too hard on yourself on running ’cause simply having the desire to pick up running again, makes you a hero.

[Reply]

Charlie- The Runner Beans     at 2:42 am

Congratulations, that is so impressive. Must remind you a little of what it was like fitness wise when you first started running years ago! Really recommend shock absorber sports bras to feel safe and secure- they are the best I have found as I used to have to wear 2 sports bras- not so comfy in summer!

[Reply]

Faith     at 7:32 am

First, you are a rock-star for running at 6 weeks! I [sort of] know what you mean about the frustration of starting from scratch again and building up endurance and fitness. I haven’t had a baby but I was very sick last summer for over two months and getting moving again was a slow process. At first I was really frustrated then I started to appreciate that a good run for me at that point was 2-3 miles, instead of the 5-6 that I need to feel like I worked hard when I’m in shape. Does that make sense? Where you are at now, a 2 mile run is equal to what a 6 mile run was when you were in shape!

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Nathalie     at 11:25 am

I just have to say: You ARE a running rock star!!! xxx

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Postpartum Workouts: Round Two | Daily Garnish     at 10:33 pm

[…] in the week, I shared my first attempt at postpartum running.  Your comments helped me realize that I’m definitely not alone in feeling slightly […]

Dana @ the Big Fat Skinny     at 4:49 am

Thanks for being so honest about how you’ve felt postpartum. It definitely helps to read this, knowing what great shape you were in before and what wonderful care you took of yourself during your pregnancy, and still what a struggle it can be to come back! Pregenancy is TOUGH on our bodies. I’m glad to have an honest voice like yours to share your experience as I go through it this time and try not to put too much pressure on myself. Great job! Keep it up!

[Reply]

Ashley @ Coffee Cake and Cardio     at 11:29 am

I know I’m a few days late, but you’re a rockstar!! Great job on your run.

[Reply]

Week 7: Growing Up Fast. | Daily Garnish     at 12:36 pm

[…] already talked a lot about me this week, so you don’t need much of a postpartum update.  I feel so lucky to have the […]

G     at 1:24 am

what do you include in your smoothies they look great. i couldnt seem to find any in the reciepe section?

[Reply]

Emily Malone Reply:

I don’t usually do recipes for smoothies, but they are just frozen fruit, almond milk, spinach, and protein powder. Nothing fancy!

[Reply]

Seven Weeks Old and Growing Up Fast! | Babys First Year Blog     at 8:45 pm

[…] already talked a lot about me this week, so you don’t need much of a postpartum update.  I feel so lucky to have the support […]

Daily Garnish » Blog Archive » On Motivation.     at 5:29 pm

[…] waited about seven weeks to start running again, and it was a slow start.  I jogged here and there, but I wasn’t physically comfortable for […]

Emily     at 2:16 am

Wow! I thought I was the only one who felt that lower abdominal discomfort. It does seriously feel like your insides are going to fall out lol good read! Thank you :) and keep up the good work

[Reply]

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