PPPR. Postpartum Personal Record.

Given the postpartum part, it could be a PPPPPR, but I’m doing okay (thank you, pelvic floor therapy!). I could call it a PP-no-PP-PR. 😂 That’s a win on so many levels. Mamas out there know what’s up.

I’ve run several races since Teddy was born, at various stages of my health, and I have decided that I need to stop competing with my former self, for now.

Every time I head out for a run, I’ve been criticizing myself.

For the short distance.

For the slow pace.

For how long it took me to get out the door.

For how poorly my running clothes fit around my new body.

I get out there and as my feet hit the pavement, I criticize myself for not buying new running shoes meant for heavy people and for running until I want to stop, only to look at my Garmin and see it’s been less than a mile. I criticize myself for not prioritizing myself and needing Brian to force me out the door.

It took my most recent race, the Sturgeon Shuffle, for me to realize how flawed that line of thinking has been. I worked really hard during that 10K. I had a legitimate concern that I would be last. I’m a long way from where I was when I placed third in my age group at this race just a few years ago.

I won a handmade cup for placing third, and I ran this race six days after finishing a marathon. It’s like I was a completely different person.

This year, I took some walking breaks. I thought about my form and prayed that I’m not doing any long-term damage by running while so heavy. I focused on my arms when my legs got tired. I kissed my baby when Brian brought him to see me on the course. Maybe Teddy drove himself?

I got so excited when I saw Teddy on the course- he squealed and smiled when he saw me and I just wanted to snuggle him. It gave me a little more motivation to keep going.

I still thanked all the volunteers on the route- some things never change. 🙂

When I turned the final corner and saw the finish line, I saw my little bear with his cute hat waiting for me!

Teddy watched me finish!

I was so proud when I finished the race this year, even though most of the other runners were long gone. The 5K runners had collected their bananas and cookies and were in their cars on the way home.

The finish line clock read 1:16:29, and the only people waiting at the finish line were waiting for me- Teddy, Brian, and my mother-in-law, Jean. The crowds were gone. It actually felt weird to have music pumping at the finish but be the only one there.

I walked around to catch my breath, saw the classic puke on the pavement just past the finish line, and thought, “At least I’m doing better than that guy!”

I wasn’t the last one to finish. There were a couple people behind me. I feel guilty for being thankful that I wasn’t last- someone needs to be last, and why is it such a big deal? Am I really that low in self-confidence? The jury is still out on this one.

I walked over to the recovery table and picked up some water, a banana, and a cookie. I tried to take a bite of the cookie but it didn’t sit well. It’s been a long time since I ran so hard/fast/long that I was nauseous. I coughed a lot as I warmed up. As I found out later that weekend, I had bronchitis and the start of pneumonia. Maybe that’s why I felt like I was working so hard. Or maybe it’s because I’m 240 pounds. Maybe it’s both. Either way, I was thankful to have finished- and so was Teddy. 🙂

I know many mamas who go on to lead amazing running lives. I see them- in the park, on social media, even when they pass me in a race pushing a double stroller while simultaneously feeding their toddlers fruit snacks. I have faith that I will get my body back, I have faith that I will get my running life back, and I have faith that I will get my spirit back.

I’m excited to raise Teddy in an active home. I want to be the family that runs 5K races on Thanksgiving and packs running shoes on vacation. I can’t wait until Teddy is old enough to cheer me on in a race with a sign drawn in crayon that says, “Go, Mama!” I want to be the healthiest mom I can be for Teddy so he doesn’t have to go through the shock of sudden loss I feel for my own mother.

In the meantime, I’ll be celebrating the small victories, and you’ll note my new acronym on my races page. PPPR, baby.

Huge thanks to my cheering squad!

As always, thanks for reading!

2019 pounds lost: 19

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