One of the biggest changes I made with running during pregnancy is that I often head out without an intended mileage. I’ll have a wide range – 40-60 minutes, for example – and gauge how far I run by how I feel. Some days I feel fantastic and run almost as if I wasn’t 17 weeks pregnant. Other days, I just get out for a short run or even opt to move around my rest day.
There are several factors playing into how I feel day by day: the weather, energy levels, what I eat, and my slower recovery rate. I’m more sensitive to changes in weather pressure and allergies, so that affects the day as well. I never had sinus problems until pregnancy and now a sinus headache is a weekly occurrence.
After the previous weekend’s 10K race, I favored an easier week of running. I used the lower mileage to reincorporate more strength training.
Monday: 5 mile run & 15 min strength
Ollie and I ran five easy miles to start off our week. I wanted to run for longer, but it was unseasonably warm and humid. Neither Ollie and I are acclimated to this weather yet, so we kept it short and easy.
For the first time in weeks, I actually lifted weights. Most of my strength training for the past couple of weeks had utilized resistance bands or body weight. There is nothing wrong with that mode, but I know my body responds best to adding some heavier weight. I also know that strength training now reduces the risk of diastasis recti, pelvic floor dysfunction, and musculoskeletal pain.
I used my kettlebells (15 lbs and 25 lbs) for a circuit of single leg halos, windmills, goblet squats, swings, and bent over rows.
Tuesday: 7 mile run
The weather was blissful: sunny and 50 degrees. My legs felt stiff and heavy from Monday’s strength workout, but running didn’t feel too bad. I maintained an easy pace in the 8:50s and cruised along for seven wonderful miles.
Wednesday: 6.5 mile run & strength training
Ollie and I explored a new route. He’s terrified of school buses and most of our current routes go past some of the local schools. Finally, we found a route away from school buses – which made the run less stressful for Ollie and easier for me. After running Ollie, I ran Charlie for one mile.
Surprisingly, my legs felt super snappy on this run. I somehow ran an 8:15-ish pace for a few miles. While my intensity ceiling is definitely lower, I appreciate these days where I can still run a bit faster without much effort.
In the evening, I joined Ryan for a strength circuit in our basement gym. I am so happy to have my energy back! This circuit consisted of offset reverse lunges, push-ups, single leg deadlifts, bent over rows, side planks, and deadbugs.
Thursday: Rest day
Thursday was an ideal day for a rest day. There was a high-wind warning throughout the entire day. Our gender scan was scheduled for the first thing in the morning. Once we learned that we were having a girl (my intuition was right!), both Ryan and I lost focus for the rest of the day. Our little Isla was kicking and somersaulting during the ultrasound.
We did enjoy a long walk with the dogs later in the day, once the winds subsided.
Friday: 4.5 mile run
The winds were strong again on Friday with 30 mph gusts. Between the wind and the unwise decision to eat a high-fiber muffin before my run, I ran shorter than I initially intended. There are times such as marathon training where I’d power through and finish the mileage but now is different.
Saturday: 3 mile trail run
Ryan and I finally ventured out to run the trails at another local park. This park is a popular location for collegiate cross-country races and trail running. We kept our pace easy, explored some trails, and even found some campsites. Time constraints kept the distance short, so we will definitely have to explore more in the future!
I will probably have to switch to prenatal Pilates next week. My range of motion is changing and I’m skipping certain moves (anything on the stomach). Beyond that, this short 20 min workout felt good!
How was your week in running?
Do you stick to a plan or are you more flexible with your daily workouts?