April Runs

… hikes, kickbikes, skis and more

Archive for the category “kids”

Run faster, mama!

This morning I woke up at 5 and did not want to sleep again. Mama woke up as well (somehow she always does when I start crying) and fed me and then we went downstairs to play a little. I think I fell asleep again because next thing I remember was mama in her running gear fastening me in a car seat. Well, at least I thought it was a car seat but it turned out to be a COOL stroller – not the regular one where I have to lie down with Sophie next to me. This was a single-baby one, red and shiny and it had huuuuuge wheels.Foto0052 The best part was that I could sit in it – well, my head was still resting at the back as I was reclining a bit but as we were moving, I could look out and watch everything around us.

First we walked down the street to get accustomed to the stroller and to see if I was comfy and how the breaks work etc. Once we reached the waterside, mama checked I was all set (which I was, no worries, mum) and started running. And that was great: so many things passing by so fast. The fishermen along the river, all smiling at us, the cyclists and joggers opposite us, geese and ducks and also sheep at ‘mama’s road’.Foto0050The best part was when mama let me go: you see this stroller rolls so easy that she can give it a push and it goes faster than she does and then she has to do her best to catch us again… And so we went on and on passing kilometer after kilometer, alongside nice and smooth biking paths with sheep, cows and goats to watch. I loved it so I smiled all the time!

After 4 km mama made a short break – it looked like she couldn’t catch her breath – and checked if I was still comfortable which I was. But she said it was enough for the first time and it was time to head home again. Fine by me – as long as we do this cool stroller running again.Foto0059 So all together we ran 6 km in about 38 minutes and I think we will be training some more together as I love running. Emma.

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Morning runs and Hortus

Back from Austria and Czech republic, we are slowly returning to the ,normal’ rhythm. Despite my original plans, July did not see me running more than 80 km and there was hardly any weight loss. The good thing is I feel I am getting stronger and what’s most important, the children are doing great. Now that their sleeping habits improved A LOT, I often have time to run after 8 pm and/or before 7 am. Hitting the 100 km mark in August therefore must be doable. Here some pictures from my Saturday (9 km) and Sunday (12 km) morning runs:Foto0029
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Foto0031And because one should do more in life than running, here pictures from our Sunday afternoon in Hortus Botanicus, one of the oldest botanical gardens in the world (and certainly the oldest one in NL).

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Finally summer!

It took quite a while this year but the weather finally makes us believe the summer has started. Of course we celebrated it by a proper bbq:010720131832
290620131811But before that, I managed my longest run of 2013 so far: 14 km on Friday night:
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050720131837And today of course it was a perfect day for a beautiful hike with the girls in the forests and dunes around Panbos:
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JD23: Family day

It is a tradition that we have established just a few weeks ago: we are trying to enjoy Sundays together, as a family.090620131712Today was no different: our plan was to sleep long (thanks, V!) and then get out to discover new parts of one of the parks in Leiderdorp, namely the secret garden. The weather was okay enough for me to walk downtown first and then to grab V and the girls and continue moving. And yes, finally we managed a real discovery tour: the secret garden was open (and the cheesecake and cappuccino at the nearby farm tasted excellent). All together a perfect computer-free day with a 10 km walk to log.
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JD20: On kids and mothers

The end of second third of Juneathon caught me on my retro/vintage city bike again, on my way to the ‘all you need for babies’ store, rambling.200620131757Our children are beautiful and sweet and great in everything they do (or do not do but are yet to learn…). We love them to bits despite the fact that:

– we no longer sleep. Sleeping just vaporized out of our lives after they were born.
– we can never leave the house. Ever. Not for one second.
– we cannot make ANY plans. Well, technically, we can – but we cannot stick to them.
– we are worried all the time. Anything can happen and can we be prepared for that?
– money rolls out of our pockets. There are ALWAYS necessary baby things to buy.FARSIDE26Luckily, there is still running.

JD7: Being useful

So far I managed to sneak out of our house every evening. The kids don’t notice my absence but aren’t I pushing it when leaving V behind, all alone with them? Time to adjust my strategy and actually combine the pleasure of Juneathoning with being useful.070620131703So tonight, I jumped on my black horse (=bike) and rode to Lisserbroek, a village about 13 km away from us. Why would I do it? To bring this beauty home:babybadjeThe result was rather impressive: Two hours outdoors, 33 km for Juneathon and happy babies!

JD2: Summer Day

Summer came after all and as it was Sunday, we planned a family day in the park.

020620131663In order to include some Juneathon excercise, I decided to walk with the twin stroller to the park while V was driving there. We met there and continued walking together.020620131664

Turns out we are not the only family with babies…

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Back home we even contemplated the idea of a barbecue but decided against it (all the BBQ gear is still rusty after the long winter and our laziness prevailed). Around 9 pm I ran 5 km.

10K in Leiden

E has just turned 11 weeks and S three weeks so I thought it was the highest time to return to racing. Ehm, can one do that without any training? Without any sleep or proper daily routine? I figured that a short race, just to get the feeling back, couldn’t hurt and so I convinced V to walk with me with both kids downtown yesterday and visit the marathon Expo in Pieterskerk 250520131627

and as we were checking some seriously discounted shoes (bought 4 pairs, the two of us – see the yellow/orange boxes under the strollers), I enrolled for the 10K of Leiden Marathon that was scheduled for today. DSC_0010

250520131628 The loyal reader knows that last year, me and V ran our fist 1/2M here in Leiden and as this year the 10K was practically passing our backyard, this was the one logical choice to do.

As if the kids knew that today I needed to be (sort of) fit, the night was wild. And so was the morning. By the time I had to leave home (14.00) to (hopefully) get to the start line on time, I was exhausted as if it were midnight. There was a lot of crying, no sleeping, refusal to drink…

Anyway, thanks to V, I managed to leave the house on time. The plan was to jump on the bike and get down town and walk to the start. I had about 2 hours to do that, run my 10K and return home. And believe me, I did not want to be late as the breasts would start hurting like hell and kids would yell.

How does it feel to wait there (I had full 2 minutes of time reserve!) at the start with hundreds of charged runners around me – after NO training at all? My last proper run was probably the 10M race in Amsterdam last September. After that, there was some more jogging and then between December and April nothing at all – just weight gaining, delivering babies, breast feeding and NOT shaving the excess weight off at all.260520131634

The first 2 km’s went ok. I somehow knew I was way too fast but I decided to enjoy the day, the crowd, the run, the feeling. Then after another 2 km’s my legs started to hurt. The good thing was that all it was were muscles – no bones or joints. There was a water station half way and a cup of water indeed came handy (normally I don’t drink when running 10K as the distance is simply not worth it…). Around 6 km, the crisis came. Why do I do this? What am I trying to achieve here? Oh nice, I passed a guy who was probably over 70 years old and now he passed me back. Time to quit, go home, feed the baby and stop pushing the limits.

Except that quitting does not show in my books. And so I went on, jogging over all the paths I know from my early morning city runs – except that now hordes of people were supporting me from the sidewalks. By the time I was at 9 km (took me an hour!), I knew I managed to book yet another minor personal victory. The last kilometer was of course an easy one, with crowds around, music, the perfect downtown Leiden racing atmosphere.260520131635And then the medal, the red ribbon hanging around my neck… of course it is dedicated to my 3 beautiful girls who were waiting for me at home.DSC_0018P.S. I managed to return home within the time limit for another breastfeeding session!

(Water) breaking news

We are proud to announce that our AprilRuns Team is now complete! Little Sophie was born this morning and both she and V are doing fine.baby runner

Btw, I am not going to run today.

Two mantras

What happened to me last Monday evening took me by surprise. It was a perfect moment for a run. E was asleep, with her belly round and full, there were no unfinished household duties (well, except for ironing but that belongs to a special category), I was all dressed and ready to go, the weather was not bad either…

But despite the fact that all the elements were there and the faith was on my side, I DID NOT FEEL like running. I did not want to go. As the matter of fact, suddenly I did not want to do anything at all. Just sit and stare in front of me (which was pretty much what I did for an hour or so). The thoughts playing in my head were getting more negative with the time: I am not a runner. I am not a good mother either. How did I ever get the weird idea to run, train almost daily and add distance and maybe once even make it through the marathon? What was I thinking? I am not even able to find out why my baby is crying at night, I don’t get enough sleep, I hardly manage to work… Isn’t it the highest time to cut the crap and start focusing on ONE thing at a time? Isn’t it the highest time to give up the ridiculous idea of getting back to shape and force my body (and mind) to run? The guilt feeling was growing quickly and so was the lack of motivation.

As I was sitting there, low on energy, staring and later on even crying, feeling sorry for myself, I seriously did not see any way out. That evening, I did not even walk with the stroller – just pushed E to the garden to be able to return to my sofa…  and to open a package of chocolate and let the time pass till I could go to bed.

And then, after a short night rest, after just a few hours of interrupted shallow sleep, suddenly  on Tuesday morning I got out of bed at 5 am and my state of mind was completely different. Somehow, magically, everything twisted around and there I was again, in running gear and all, on my way out. I ran over 8 km that morning, full hour, and it felt great. Suddenly, without any warning, I was a different person.

My mantra’s during this refreshing run were:  ‘Trust your body’ and ‘It is in your head’.DSC_0010

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Frankly, I don’t know what happened and how the switches in my mind work but I better write this down so that next time, when I feel down, I can read that the bad moments always pass…

And by the way, what exactly is my problem? E was born just 7 weeks ago and I am already running like I haven’t done in half a year.

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