Back in the dark ages days before kids, I was not really a runner. I ran, occasionally. But I was slender and fit.
How? I lifted weights three days a week and hit the elliptical, exercise bike and very occasionally the treadmill the other two days. Yes, 99% of my workouts were done during my work lunch hour, which meant the actual workout was never more than 40 minutes.
And I looked and felt amazing.
Fast forward to after Jones’ birth. I got smacked with Postpartum Depression AKA PPD. It was a rough time for me. Having a newborn is hard (especially when you get the non-sleeping version). Having a newborn while struggling with depression is a whole different world. (Not sure why it never occurred to me that it might happen, given that I’d always had wicked PMS and had worked through a few bouts of situational depression.)
Running saved me.
It wasn’t an instant fix, but from the very first 10 minute slog on the treadmill, I felt light coming back into my world. Slowly but surely, I ran back to myself.
I haven’t stopped running since then, in large part because I’m scared to fall back down that hole.
Until this summer. After 8 half marathons in about 3 months, my body needed a break. And the Virginia heat was pouring in and I haven’t exactly made it a secret that I don’t like hot. Or humid. So, after my last half marathon, I told myself I didn’t have to run unless I wanted to. I still had to workout 4-5 times a week, but I didn’t have to run. And it’s been working for me. I’m still a work in progress, but I’ve seen some huge improvements this summer…
Here’s what I’ve been doing:
- Best Body Bootcamp – I LOVE this! LOVE IT! My upper body and abs are more toned than they’ve been in years and I can tell my legs are getting stronger. I love that I can do all the moves in my basement with a few weights. I love that someone else does the planning for me. I’m almost through my 2nd 8 week session and I have every intention of signing up for the next session.
- Biking – not outside. Homey don’t play that. But I’ve taken a class at RevolveDC (loved it!) and I have a FitDesk in the play room. It gives me the cardio lift I still need.
- Being active with my kids – walking, hiking, playing in the pool, anything to keep them and me from sitting around in front of screens.
- White water rafting – possibly my best upper body workout all summer!
- Short runs – I’m pretty sure I haven’t run more than 4 miles at a time since my last half marathon.
It’s nearly time to start training again. After all, I have 5 more halves to run in 2013. But I intend to keep a much more balanced fitness lifestyle this fall. My body is thanking me for that!