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my growing belly :: second trimester running

February 13, 2011

This morning I went for a run. It was 38 F here today, which felt like summer after weeks of single digit temperatures. Indie and I got our running things together and quickly rushed out the door. And then just as quickly came to a slower huff and groan as I realized that not running (and barely cycling) all of the week until today (Saturday) left me less then nimble out there. We made it through our short run together and I managed to continue running with only one brief walking break after a hill. I kept telling myself that taking a week off from running definitely takes its toll and that I need to be more consistent about it again.

And then I got home and T. took my (almost) weekly belly picture and I uploaded the results. And I realized why I was huffing and puffing all along the route. Sure, the week break from excercising probably didn’t help. But I’d guess that neither does carrying this extra load around with me …

4 weeks week 16

Behold my 16 week belly. Compared to my pre-pregnancy belly (although documented here at 4 weeks when I looked essentially non-pregnant), I’m carrying quite the extra weight on my runs these days. I used to read Runner’s World religiously and they always said that dropping only as little as five pounds could help improve your speed and pace significantly. I was forever trying to drop those five extra pounds to get just a little bit faster but it never happened. I love food too much. Now, about ten pounds heavier, I’m pretty sure that I won’t be setting any PR’s anytime soon. Instead, I get to enjoy slow and leisurely runs with my dog, my baby, and my growing midsection. Actually, that’s not that bad of a trade off.

Other than become significantly slower, I can’t say that pregnancy has affected my running all that much. I feel fine while I’m out there, no new aches or pains, and I’m still managing to squeeze into my old stretchy running clothes.

Cycling has been affected even less. Because my poor bike does the work off supporting my weight, my legs just have to pedal. Just like with running, I’m conscious of keeping my heart rate below 140 (as prescribed by my midwife) and so I just pedal less vigorously than I might have before. But that’s about it in terms of changes thus far.  And as the weather has gotten nicer, I look forward to not only more outoor runs but increased bike rides all of next week as well. Happy running/riding! ~S.

17 Comments leave one →
  1. February 13, 2011 09:14

    You are awesome! Can’t wait to see your exercise stories and photos throughout your pregnancy. And congratulations on your pregnancy. Life has been rather hectic here in Australia, so I’m sorry I haven’t said it earlier.

  2. February 13, 2011 14:25

    You look adorable! Your second trimester is usually the easiest, so now with the groundhog predicting an early spring – you will hopefully get more opportunities to run and cycle!

  3. February 13, 2011 15:26

    Aw, you have such a great attitude about staying fit during your pregnancy! And you look terrific, which I’m sure is due in part to your cycling and running.

    Have a good week :-)

  4. February 13, 2011 16:16

    That is the cutest extra 10 pounds I’ve ever seen. You are such a rock star.

  5. February 13, 2011 18:32

    Fun to see your progress! I remember from when my sister was pregnant, it was fun every time we saw her getting to see her a little bit bigger, and a little bit bigger :) It’s good to give the growing bump some good love :) It’ll be great to hear more about how the rest of the pregnancy goes with staying active and whatnot.

    Glad you are getting a bit of a weather break there this week, too! Make the most of it!

    Best and warmest wishes from Portland.

  6. Erin permalink
    February 13, 2011 19:51

    I”m so jealous of your ability to run during your pregnancy! I had to stop in my first trimester (I’m at 24 weeks today) because I couldn’t keep my heart rate below 140. This week I was walking at less than 3 mph on the treadmill and I couldn’t keep it low enough. :( Oh well. Every woman is different. I sure miss it, though. Bully for you for keeping up the healthy habits! My regime these days mostly is yoga.

    • February 13, 2011 22:57

      Erin – sorry to hear that about the heart rate! But that’s awesome that you’re doing yoga! I was actually just looking up prenatal yoga classes in my town today. I plan on signing up for some classes when they’re new sessions start in a month or so. Are you doing yoga by yourself or attending a prenatal yoga class? If the latter, how do you like it? S.

      • Erin permalink
        February 14, 2011 14:18

        S: I’ve been doing yoga by myself. I’ve had a bunch of classes, so I feel pretty comfortable on my own. I”m not doing inversions or lying on my back these days — after about 20 weeks, your uterus puts pressure on a blood vessel when you lie on your back, and it can make you dizzy. I’m sure if you do a little searching online, you’ll find other guidelines, too. I think a prenatal class would be fun (my current schedule prohibits it) and a good way to meet other ladies who will have babes roughly the same age as your bambino.

        I’ve done the free 20-minute prenatal practice from and liked it a lot; I think I’m going to buy a longer session.

        In lieu of running, I figure yoga is helping me stay calm during a time of great anticipation, and my practice also is training me to breathe, which likely will be handy during labor!

  7. Jen permalink
    February 14, 2011 04:30

    Just chiming in on prenatal yoga: I am taking a class, and I love it. I don’t know enough about yoga to feel confident doing it on my own, and there are positions that can be modified to accommodate or attend to various pregnancy related situations, if your yoga teacher has the background in prenatal yoga. It’s also a place where I have a sense of community and shared experiences.

    One thing, you might see if you can drop in to any of the on going sessions rather than wait until the next one starts. It seems like especially for prenatal yoga where women are joining and leaving not by the calendar of the studio, but by their due date, it’s possible to join in the middle of a session. Or it might be, depends on the studio and instructor, I suppose.

  8. February 14, 2011 10:19

    WOW! What a beautiful belly you have! And what’s the time running! 16 weeks already?
    I have ‘to walk’ another 4 weeks, but it’s getting harder now :o(
    Hope you don’t have to cope with any troubles. Good luck!

  9. Melissa @ HerGreenLife permalink
    February 14, 2011 16:50

    I’ve gained about 10 pounds so far as well, though it must be somewhere other than my belly, because I don’t have much of a bump yet (18 weeks along).

    My bike riding this weekend definitely had me huffing and puffing — even small hills felt huge. I read somewhere that at this point in pregnancy, our hearts are working 40-50% harder just to support the pregnancy and all the changes, so I guess it makes sense that we’d really feel any extra exertion. I’m not letting that stop me though — just adjusting travel times and accepting that I’ll be pedaling along a bit more slowly :)

  10. February 14, 2011 20:36

    You look radiant! It’s so exciting to follow along with your adventures in pregnancy.

  11. February 14, 2011 21:52

    Saw this and thought of you!

    Hope all is going spectacularly well!!

    • February 14, 2011 22:49

      A – thanks so much for this! I just read it and I love the blog post! It’s just the inspiration I need :)


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