And I'm also happy to report that I'm starting to feel this little Baby Girl wiggle more and more. I made myself slow down a bit this week due to a foot injury, and my reward has been some sweet wiggles and somersaults each evening while I ice my foot.
But let me back up. Around this time last year, I was realizing that I had to do something to stay active since I was no longer breastfeeding. I nursed Ella for 15 months, and I joke that it was the most gratifying diet and exercise plan ever--simply because I could eat whatever I wanted, I didn't have to work out (other than lifting and carrying and caring for a growing baby), and she simply sucked every last calorie right out of me! But once I stopped, I knew I had to do something to stay healthy and keep my cycles relatively normal. Before Ella, I did yoga every morning and spent 20-30 minutes on the elliptical at night. But now, I get up at 5:00 am to get us ready and out the door on time, so I can't imagine getting up any earlier. She's too interested in the elliptical for me to get any use out of it while she's awake, and I'm simply too tired by the time I put her to sleep. We live too far out of town to make it worth it for me to get to a gym. So I started running as a way to get a really quick workout into my routine, with or without Ella.
Let me state for the record that I always hated running. When I played soccer, I was what they call a "cherry-picker", meaning that I was a Forward who hung out as close to the Defenders as I could get and waited for the ball so that I could make a quick run and score. When we were registering for Baby Shower gifts for Ella, I intentionally stayed away from the snazzy jogging strollers because I figured I would never use it for its intended purpose.
And yet, I remember feeling the urge to run as early as when I was on maternity leave with Ella. I was pushing her in our travel system and wearing flip-flops, but I still felt myself wanting to run. I probably looked pretty silly as I bounced along at a barely-faster-than-walking-pace to the corner.
Our development is made up of two blocks, and we live on the corner of the "big block". The whole perimeter is only 1.2 miles, which is nothing for the running world, but feels big to a novice. I was surprised at how quickly I was able to build up the endurance to make it all the way around the "big block". I'm definitely winded halfway through the run, and panting and "glistening" by the time I make it back home, but I started doing it more and more regularly. I usually just do the 1.2 mile "big block" most evenings after work, but I'll sometimes push farther on the weekends.
While heading into the final leg of a run sometime in January, when I was somewhere around 10-12 weeks pregnant, I was somehow inspired to run 100 miles before the baby came. I hate the word "goal", and yet, I find myself working towards achieving this milestone. I was proud to hit the 50-mile halfway point before I hit the 20-weeks pregnant halfway point.
On days when my husband is home, I run by myself. But there are plenty of days--like this whole month--when I bring Ella with me. And up until just a week ago, I was pushing her in that exact same travel system stroller. With a new Baby Girl on the way, I finally splurged and bought myself a fancy new convertible/in-line jogging stroller that I love!
My husband left the first weekend in March. That weekend, I hurt my foot--not by running, but by simply walking around the mall shopping! I should have stayed off of it right away, but I kept telling myself that it would heal on its own. On our trip home to California, I took advantage of having my parents around to watch Ella and pushed myself hard, running 12 miles in five days.
|Early morning run along the Sacramento River.|
Today's blessing--besides running again--was the chance to make some new curtains for Ella's new room. I admit that they aren't perfect, but I was quite pleased with how they turned out--and it was great to see her excitement. We still have quite a way to go in making her room feel put-together instead of just hodge-podge, but they are definitely a start! I'll post pictures once the room is finished.