This photo is most definitely not me. Whoever it is, good for you!
I am currently 39 weeks pregnant and stopped running somewhere between 20 and 24 weeks.
From what I gather, every woman is going to be different. Some runners will run well past 6 months, some I've heard have to force themselves to stop at 3.
What I've learned during my first pregnancy is to become highly tuned to your body and then just listen to it. At a certain point, running just didn't feel right to me. I couldn't even explain what that meant, but it just didn't. So I simply stopped.
I didn't have any crazy pains or the Round Ligament feeling stuff people talk about. I didn't have one horrible run that made me start crying about not running for another 30 plus weeks. I just reached a comfortable stopping point. And then stopped.
In this way, not doing something I am used to doing (and very much enjoy doing) hasn't been so bad. Once running didn't feel quite "right", I found that I really enjoyed spending time on the Elliptical at the gym and taking long walks around the large cemetery by our house. I have pushed myself to keep exercising, (sometimes it's easy to make excuses and just be a pregnant lady on a couch) but after that initial "push," I never pushed my physical limits much further but rather got into a comfortable state of moving. I just did what felt "right."
I believe what has been key in getting through some major changes is focusing on what I can do, rather than what I can't. After all, something is now very important to me - this boy or girl growing inside me. This small human now is now in charge and I have to listen.
I will run soon enough. For now, when my husband runs out the door on a sunny Saturday morning for a leisurely 7 mile loop around town, a loop we've done together many times before, I'll smile and wave him off, remaining content that I am listening to my body and doing what feels good at that moment in time.
And now that I'm at 39 weeks, my body is pretty much telling me to stay put. No more long walks or gym time.
In an effort to get "back on the horse" post pregnancy, I've already picked a few road races that I can work toward.
And who knows, maybe my body will enjoy other new and fun physical challenges post pregnancy. I guess I'll just have to wait and see.
I'm Kim. I like to work hard but not enough to stop having fun and enjoying life. I hope I never stop learning and exploring. Other people inspire me to be and do better every day. Read on for reflections on work and play.