I’ve blogged about running before. I was a runner before I had my two kids, had logged in hundreds of miles, 5Ks, 10Ks, and 2 half marathons before my first child was born. I was never really an “in it to win it” kind of runner- I trained, I ran hard, and finished strong. If I had enough gas in the tank to grab a few post race snacks and freebies, I considered it a win. Now, running races after having two kids has been a total game changer for me. I want to test myself, both physically and personally. To be able to get back on my feet after carrying a baby for 9 months, and having the physical ability to blow past a former Personal Record (PR) best time is exhilarating. It’s given me back my running mojo, and you know who I have to thank for that? These guys.
Yep. These two little lovers have become the secret to my strength training. There’s no science behind my success. It’s all mom strength and a couple of mom life hacks that, thanks to the Twosome, I’ve been able to become a stronger runner and faster racer than I ever was pre-kid. And here’s why:
1.) Getting Enough Sleep. Time is limited in the morning- The only way I am able to get my morning work out in is to get up before the kids, which means I need to go to bed early to log in the sleep I need to help me train. The worst thing that can derail this scheme is TEETHING oh God the TEETHING. A night of teething guarantees a rough morning on the ‘mill, but, I get my butt on there and to my damnedest to trot out some miles.
2.) Increasing My Pace. Knowing my time is limited in the morning, and that it could be cut short at a moment’s notice (read: morning wake up diaper blow out), I began to pick up the pace of my runs. If I want to get in a 4 mile run in less time, I gotta get my butt in gear and hurry the hell up in order to make the miles before a diaper cuts me off. How about that for a Mom Hack??
3.) Running Hills and Trails. It’s easy to be speedy on a flat race course. Often times, race promoters will bill their 5K as a, “fast and flat course” which means a smooth ride, and not a lot of huffing and puffing along the way. Now, with the kids, I try to find weekend road races that start and finish at a town park, beach, or play ground, so that when a set of grandparents come to the race to watch the kids while my husband and I run, the kids will have some fun play time. It’s been my experience that most of these races seem to be in the Northwest corner of the state, which translates to HILLS, HILLS, HILLS. Man. There is nothing like a grueling hilly run to make your calves scream out, and your core to be locked down. This is a strength training WIN.
Second Place in my age group- thanks to the best trainers- Jake & Olivia!
*Photo Credit- Friends of Brodie Park*