Monday, June 23, 2014

Guest Post: Balancing Fitness and Motherhood

Please enjoy a great guest post from Meghan! She is a fantastic blogger in Chicago, a new mom and teacher! Check out her blog, her adorable little girl, and follow her journey toward running her first marathon in Chicago!!!

Hi everyone!  I'm Meghan from The Perfect Compilation Tape.  While Kristin is off snuggling her adorable little man, she asked if I would share some thoughts with you about my new role as a "running mama".  I thought it was a fantastic idea, and I am happy to share my experiences as a new mom and runner.

A little backstory:  I don't remember when/how I started reading "Mrs. Miller's Miles", but I remember thinking how much Kristin and I had in common.  We are both teachers, we both run, and she happens to live in a city I am obsessed with!  And luckily, because I visit NYC so often, we were able to meet up a few summers back!


Anywho, I am currently a new mama to my adorable 7 month old, Layla.  And as a working mama who loves to run, it has definitely taken me a few months to find my footing (pun intended) when it comes to balancing running and motherhood.  A few things I've learned?

It was my slowest half ever - but I did it! And, I had the best support team in Mike & Layla:) 
(Layla and I, post half-marathon.  I ran my first half when Layla was 6 months old.)

 * Make it convenient.  Since I work full-time, and I knew that I wanted to train for a half-marathon (after getting the "all clear" from my doctor), I figured my workouts would have to be convenient - at home, while the baby was napping.  I did most of my running outside, in my neighborhood - this way, I was close to home.  However, when I found out that a co-worker was looking to get rid of a gently used treadmill for a very reasonable price, I jumped at the chance!  Now, it's SO nice to be able to just head down the basement to squeeze in my runs.

* Be flexible.  Babies are the most unpredictable little creatures in the world.  Early on, when we were still trying to figure out Layla's sleep patterns, I tried to fit in my running when I could.  If I woke up in the morning and she was still sleeping, I ran.  If I returned from work and she was still napping, I ran.  I basically fit my workouts in around her schedule.  I didn't want to miss out on opportunities to spend time with her while she is awake.

* Bring baby along!  On the weekends, I love to take Layla out in the BOB (I have the Revolution model) for runs - and now that she's older, she loves it too!  Personally, I cannot stand more than 4 miles pushing a stroller, so figure out what works best for you.

* Get plenty of support:)  As a new mom who also breast feeds, I had to make sure I had proper support, which was never a problem before.  So, invest in some nice sports bras.  I have recently become a fan of Moving Comfort myself.

* Share your training schedule with your spouse.  Mike and I decided that Sundays were the best days for my long runs - he doesn't have to work, and while I am out for my run, he takes Layla out to breakfast.   It's what works for us, and I am lucky he is so supportive of helping me reach my goals.

Anyway, I hope some of those tips help!  Regardless of how often I get to run, how fast, how long - I am just really proud of the fact that I am doing this for not only myself, but my daughter as well.  Thanks for reading!

Thank you, Meghan, for these amazing tips!!! I'm so glad we found each others blogs!!!

How about you? Do you have any tips for first time moms? What is your comeback go to motivation? TELL ME ABOUT IT!
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