Back in the saddle

by singlemomseeking on June 15, 2012

One year ago, I was cycling three nights a week after work, climbing some of steepest hills in the San Francisco Bay Area to train for our cycling honeymoon.

I was approaching 40 and probably in the best shape in my life. Whew, last year feels like another lifetime, pre-pregnancy, as I rode the Grizzly Peak Century, a total of 73 miles through the hills, and cried through the last mile, my tears mixed with sweat.

Anyone who has given birth (I think that most of my women readers here would raise their hands?) knows that your body doesn’t just, um, bounce back afterwards. Even if you didn’t tear or have an episiotomy (I’m so grateful that I had neither, and gave birth naturally), you need to be patient with yourself.

Recently, six weeks post-birth, I took a spinning class and watched in the mirror as my face turned beet red, but I was glad to be back. My husband says that he can’t wait to get the whole family out for a ride. I need time. To get back into shape. And to gear myself up mentally for cycling outdoors again.

The truth is: spinning indoors, without cars on a bike that doesn’t move, feels safe. With a new baby right now, I’m in mega-protective mode right now about everything. Germs. Pollution. Crossing the street.

When it’s time, however, we’ll all put on our helmets and peddle into the sunshine. Because it’s all about safety. Nutcase Helmets — a very cool company out of Portland Oregon that offers unique cycle, skateboard, inline and scooter helmets — just sent me this adorable watermelon Little Nutty helmet for our little one to wear when she’s old enough to get on the bike:

And now they’re giving away a hip I-love-my-brain helmet to one of you!

Tell me how you shed the baby weight and got back in shape. (Guys, you can enter this contest, too! After all, lost of guys gain “empathetic weight” during their partners’ pregnancies!) One winner — to be chosen by — will be wearing the Mellow Swirl helmet (above) out on the road soon!

So, how’d you get back into shape post-baby?

Or, if you’re exercising again (or, maybe for the first time ever), tell me about it!

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Natalie June 29, 2012 at 7:37 pm

After I had my son I got so skinny nursing…I didn’t really need to diet (I was 29) but I did got the gym three days a week for a few months to get out of the house. We also did a lot of stroller walking. Problem is I nursed for a LONG time and I ended up gaining weight when my son stopped nursing as often (he nursed until he was a little over 3). It was at that time that I really got back to the gym (elliptical, weight lifting, and biking) I also have dance parties with my son and we go out on bike trails with the tag along bike (he rides his bike attached to mine)…so now I am in better shape, few pounds lighter but still not post baby size…but I give myself slack I am in my 30’s now (:


Ashlea June 17, 2012 at 6:48 pm

Treadmill! You can jump on for thirty minutes any time of the day. No need to leave the house (or sleeping baby). You can set your own pace. It worked wonders for me after both kids. Mostly I speed walk at high incline…my knees weren’t made for running…. Anyway, when my motorized model broke I bought a non-motorized treadmill that folds up and goes in the closet between workouts. Love it!!!
Also, when you are cradling the baby, place your feet shoulder width apart, hold your tummy in (as much as possible for now) and twist back and forth, side to side. It’s a variation on A) those side twist stomach exercises we have all done B) those cool “put the baby to sleep” swinging/bouncing moves we have all done. I’m a musician and had to perform in my cousin’s wedding three weeks after number two was born. I did the tummy/baby twist constantly and no one at the wedding could believe I was the mother of the brand new baby 😉 Hang in there!


singlemomseeking July 2, 2012 at 4:26 pm

I love your idea to sway with the baby in my arms — thanks!


Ryan S June 15, 2012 at 7:19 pm

My kids are 8 and 6 and I never really got back into shape. But…I have started running and I am running my first marathon this fall. I have been able to take off a lot of weight from that. I also started strength training and riding my bike. It feels amazing!


Momma Sunshine June 15, 2012 at 4:15 pm

I did a LOT of walking immediately following the birth of my second daughter, and eventually began running again….really helped me to get into shape. Now, at almost 40, I’m in better shape than I was in when I was in my 20s.


singlemomseeking July 2, 2012 at 4:27 pm

I’ve been following your running routine. You’re amazing!


T June 15, 2012 at 12:40 pm

Wow. That is quite a change in one year, isn’t it?

Post baby I went on Weight Watchers. I was already overweight before getting pregnant. With a healthier attitude towards food, yoga and eventually cycling, I lost the baby weight and the extra weight to be myself again!

Glad you’re all healthy and getting stronger every day!


Brooke June 15, 2012 at 11:24 am

I’m working on getting back in to shape. I used to run before kids. And then shortly after my second baby I went through a divorce, and instead if loosing baby weight, I stress-ate and gained more. My “baby” is fast approaching 2 and I’m in week 9 of a 15 week training program for a half marathon this summer. I have a few years and 30 more pounds on me than the last time I dud a half, but I’m determined to cross that finish line!!


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