Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Tips for Running with a Baby

Today I traded blogs with Tayler from The Morrell Tale. She's going to share some great things with you about running after a having a baby. I was really excited about this post from Tayler because, as everyone knows, I love to run. But, I have always struggled with running with a stroller. So here are some great tips about that from Tayler.

Hey y'all! I'm Tayler Morrell and I blog over at The Morrell Tale. Like Jenny, I love running! While in college, I did it all the time. But, it got harder the more "grown-up" I was. My first year out of college was also my first year of teaching...I was busy out of the wazoo. But, thankfully, I had less than a 10 minute commute and was still able to run a few times a week. Then, my 2nd year, I switched schools (this time, 50 minutes away!) and was teaching a new subject. I didn't know what free time was anymore! I also got what I could and couldn't do was limited. Well, we moved closer to where I teach (now a 15 minute commute), and my son is almost 10 months old!

As soon as I was given the 6-week okay, I started working out again. Preferably, I'd go running, which was very hard since we lived in a hilly area, I was still super week, and my newborn didn't like being outside in the stroller for very long. This was how it was for a few months, but I stuck with it. Then, it got cold. And there was no way I was going to take my baby boy out to go running in chilly and cold weather. Finally, in the past two months, Utah has gotten warm again, Rhys is older and loves the outdoors, and I have gotten back into running again.

But, running with a baby (running with a stroller!) is far different than running by your lonesome. So, I have some tips for you new moms who want to get back into running!

1) Make sure your running stroller's front wheel is tightened before each run!
This can be a hassle, definitely, but I've had issues with my brand-new running stroller's front wheel. Sometimes, it'll come loose, and wobble as I run. This causes the entire stroller to shake and quake and it is hard to steer. Rhys doesn't mind it too much as an almost-10-month-old, but it's rough for smaller babies!

2) Always bring a blanket for baby!
Whether it is chilly spring or hot summer, bring a blanket! I love using thin, light-weight swaddlers as blankets. It helps Rhys realize it is calm-time, it'll be there to cuddle if he is getting tired, and it helps his arms if there is a sudden chilly wind.

3) Have snacks, a doll, and a pacy!
All of these will help make the ride more enjoyable for baby. I clip the pacy on him (we've had too many times of it being sneezed out, landing on the sidewalk, and not finding it until our return lap). Baby will also be entertained and won't complain about being hungry!

4) Do not turn your iPod music up all the way!
You won't really be able to hear your baby if they start to fuss. I can't run without music, but I want to make sure I am paying attention to Rhys.

5) Know your path!
While in college, I loved going out the door and not knowing where I was headed on my run. Sometimes, my runs would be shorter or longer as a result and it was always nice to explore new places. But, since you have a baby tagging along, make sure you are familiar with your route, or at least know the distance or time it will take.

6) Plan WHEN you want to go!
If you prefer your baby staying up, go long before nap time. If you think running will help them sleep, go pretty close to nap time. I've done both, but when I go close to nap time and he falls asleep in the stroller, I can't move him out or he'll wake up! So, weigh the pros and cons.

and most importantly...

7) Be flexible!
Stop when they drop a paci or a toy. Make sure the sun isn't in their eyes and that they are warm enough. Rhys isn't always calm and patient the entire run (and I like to run for 30-40 minutes...not that long!), so I have to be willing to turn back when he gets fussy. Sometimes, they just want to get out and play. Thankfully, I have a park right next to my house, so we'll stop there and I'll get him out. Then, I'll stretch and do some (an)aerobic exercises while he crawls along and pushes the stroller. Sometimes, I just have to cut it short, take him home, and put him down for a nap, then I'll stretch and do some exercises at home.

What other tips do you have for mommy runners?

Tayler Morrell blogs at The Morrell Tale. She loves to share her experiences as a teacher, wife, and new mother. Tayler and her husband both love to cook and share their recipes often on the blog. When she's not blogging, Tayler loves to read, play videogames with her husband, watch her baby boy, run, and play soccer and volleyball.

If you want to join the blog swap next month, we link up with Kendra from Open Spaces. The more the merrier! Come join in. 

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