Postpartum Fitness: The 12-Week Update.

I haven’t mentioned too much about my fitness routine recently, but I assure you I’ve still been moving and working.  It took me close to six solid weeks to full feel recovered from childbirth.  Now that my delivery was almost three months ago (how is that possible?) I’m feeling a lot more like my old pre-pregnant self. 

Cullen is most definitely a full time job, and since Casey works long hours and we don’t have any family here, he’s my sidekick for 95% of my days (and nights!).  Finding time to fit in workouts has been tricky, but it’s important to me, so I’m making it happen.  Casey has been really helpful in taking over baby duties so that I can squeeze in runs or even get out of the house for a yoga class.  Here’s how things are going at the 12-week mark…

Running and Marathon (?) Training

I have a training schedule in my Google Calendar, and I’m still hesitantly trying to train for the Flying Pig Marathon.  I have run this marathon three times in the past, and it’s my absolute favorite race.  My hope is to run the full marathon, but I’m also willing to be realistic that my expectations might be too high.  If I end up deciding to run a half marathon instead, I’ll likely choose a different race.  I think it would feel funny to run the half in Cincinnati, since the full marathon is so familiar to me.

So far getting back into running has been sort of slow, but a big part of that has just been finding the time for it.  Now that we’re developing more of a family schedule, it’s getting easier.  I’m running weekdays on Tuesday, Wednesdays, and Thursdays – usually shorter runs of 3 to 4 miles.  Most of these runs have been on our treadmill since I have to do them either early in the morning or late at night, when Seattle is too dark for outdoor running. 

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I do my longer runs on Saturday, and I try to do them outdoors if at all possible.  I truly HATE treadmill running, so trying to convince myself to do much more than three miles feels like torture.  I find that my runs are much stronger and much faster when I’m outside.  This past weekend, my pace was between 8:30 and 9:00 minute miles!  On the treadmill, I’m still running closer to a 10:00 minute pace.  Now that I have tested out the jogging stroller at Greenlake, I’m planning to take as many of my runs outside as possible. 

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I’m not sure that the marathon will happen, but I’m going to give it my best shot.  I’m using the basic training program from Hal Higdon that I’ve done in the past, so we’ll see how it goes.  My biggest concern is that my milk supply might drop, and if that happens I will have to readjust my goals.  Keeping my body in good shape for breastfeeding is my top priority.

Returning to Yoga

When I lived in Charlotte, yoga was a huge part of my life.  Depending on my work and school schedules, I would try to go every day.  On weekends, I would often go twice a day!  I find there to be something so calming and energizing about the yoga studio  – no cell phone, no distractions, just me focusing both my mind and body for 60 minutes of bliss.

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When I lived in Alexandria, I never found a studio that I really connected with, and sadly I let yoga drop out of my life for a bit.  Now that we’re in Seattle, there is a yoga studio on practically every corner.  I did prenatal yoga classes during my pregnancy, but I’ve been itching to get back into the more intense, heated classes. 

This past weekend, I tried out a new hot (95 degrees!) studio here with my friend Lacey.  It felt amazing to stretch and sweat again, and it reminded me how much I love incorporating yoga into my fitness routine.  It also reminded me that I am out of shape – OUCH!  I have been sore for days…

My hope is to be able to take a class once every week or two.  I know that’s not enough to make great improvements to my practice , but yoga is expensive, and that’s all I can budget right now.  It’s still a great way to relax and de-stress, and also to get out of the house for some time to myself.

Strength Training

Lifting weights and doing strength training has always been a big priority for me, and I think it’s essential for any complete workout program.  I haven’t been able to go back to my gym quite yet since I don’t have childcare, and Cullen is too young for their playroom.  Instead, I’ve been doing some great at-home workouts using the built in 15 pound weight that I lug around all day long…

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To see the rest of my at-home workouts, you can check out the 5 Exercises You Can Do (At Home!) With Your Baby over on Babble today!

So that’s how I’m doing now that I’m 12-weeks postpartum.  I’ll do more of a body/postpartum update when we get to the 3-month mark too.  I’m still getting the hang of it, but so far I’m happy with what I’ve been able to do to get back on track.

For more baby stuff, check out my guest post over on Fitnessista today!  Thanks, Gina!