Guest Post: Running with Katie

I’m excited to welcome Katie Brown today as a part of my REAListic Beauty and Fitness Challenge. Katie is a busy mommy, wife, birth doula, runner, and is co-blogger at TheMommyMiles. You may remember me joining the GetFRESH Challenge for April, yes? Well, Katie and her co-blogging friend Jess are the brains behind that operation (and the reason my tush is so sore at this moment). She’s here to share with us some exercise inspiration from her own life. Be sure to scroll down to the bottom for her Five Tips for Beginning Runners. Thanks for joining us, Katie!


THE EARLY YEARS


I was never a particularly “sporty” girl. I was tall and skinny and awkward (still am!), but I did always enjoy one sport or another. Even so, I was never the best and never truly excelled at anything in particular.

I never considered running cross country in high school, I did not see myself as a runner and thought those people were crazy! But when I went off to college something switched in me. It was probably due to the lack of discipline and the “freshman 15” that was quickly accumulating but I started running. 
Once I married and moved to Vancouver with my husband, fitness became very important to me. I joined a gym, I worked out 4 days a week in addition to running once or twice a week. Honestly, I was in the best shape of my life. It was easy to find the time without kids and with a busy, student, husband. 

I remember so clearly the day I ran my first 10k. It’s funny, because I don’t remember “training” for the race, per se. I remember running with the knowledge that I had an upcoming race, but actually training was a foreign concept. I ran the race in the rain, by myself, and it felt so good to cross that finish line. 

I guess I was hooked!  A few months later I accomplished two more 10k races. All I can remember from that time is that I enjoyed it; I chose to run because I wanted to run. No one made me, no one expected it of me, and none of my friends were runners so I ran alone. Somehow during our 3 years in Canada, I became a runner


BABY BRINGS CHANGE


Later that year, my husband and I moved overseas to Scotland. We’d been married for four years and had spent the last year trying to get pregnant. For some reason things were not happening as they should and I had concerns that maybe I was exercising too much and my body was not taking to getting pregnant.

Exercise came in waves after that. I think my mind was distracted and confused by the fact that we were not conceiving. I ended up having a minor surgery in March 2009 and in July, I got pregnant!

We were thrilled to finally have a baby on the way after two and a half years of waiting. But as you mamas know, pregnancy is not the best time to get fit. I walked lot (because we had no car, I didn’t have a choice!) but that was all.

The pregnancy went well and in March 2010 our beautiful baby girl was born. I was one happy mama! Eager to get back in shape, I set out for a run when she was only six weeks old. Bad idea.  Apparently I had not fully healed, if you know what I mean. That painful experience turned me off for awhile but I knew I would run again, even if it wasn’t as soon as I was hoping!


When my daughter was three months old we moved back to the U.S. and I started walking hills and running again. I ran a 5k our first Thanksgiving after returning home and never looked back. 


FINDING THE TIME


Last year I ran my first half marathon and I am currently training for my 2nd. I am not the fastest or the best and I certainly struggle. But despite my struggles, I am proud to call myself a runner.

Remember a few paragraphs ago when I said it used to be easy to find the time to exercise? It’s amazing how much easier it was to make time for exercise when I worked full time and had no kids than it is being a stay-at-home mama. Finding the time is challenging, but since my husband works from home I go running during nap time or early in the morning while he watches our daughter.

One day at a time, one mile at a time, is all I can do. When my daughter sees me put on my running shoes and knows exactly what I am doing and she gets excited to be pushed along in the stroller, I know I am making a lasting, healthy impression on her. If my own health wasn’t worth it already, she sure is.




Thanks for reading.
–Katie

KATIE’S FIVE TIPS FOR BEGINNING RUNNERS
  1. Set a goal (5k is a great place to start… but any goal will do!)
  2. Make a plan (there are numerous training guides online, find one that suits you and your schedule)
  3. Have support (both at home and a running buddy or two)
  4. Forgive yourself for the times you’re not able to stick to your plan, just skip it and keep going. 
  5. Don’t give up! (Starting over is much harder than continuing on)
Katie Brown is a runner, birth doula and co-blogger of www.themommymiles.blogspot.com. She is currently living in Bend, Oregon with her husband and raising a crazy yet very happy 2 year old. 

Comments

  1. says

    Wonderfully encouraging! Maybe I’ll be a runner yet! 5k…hmmmm. Anyone know of a good one coming up in Southern California (far enough out to start training for it)?