TORONTO. February 5th 2014. Digital Champion Stephanie Xamin is an avid runner who started running to get back into shape after university. She has run what she calls the full circuit in the following distances: 5k, 10k, 15k, half marathon, 30k, and a full marathon. Last year the Toronto Yonge Street 10K was her first race running pregnant and this year she looks forward to running post pregnancy to keep sane and to get back into shape. Follow Stephanie on Twitter @stephanieruns.
I remember last year at this time I was asked to be a Digital Champion for the Toronto Yonge Street 10k. As I walked to the Canada Running Series office to pick up my official In-Training shirt, I was filled with excitement, but I also had butterflies in my stomach because I was pretty sure I was pregnant.
I was extremely excited to become a mom, but I wasn’t sure how it was going to impact my life. I have always been a very active person, running and going to fitness classes. I wasn’t sure if I’d be able to keep up my level of activity while being pregnant. When I crossed the 2013 Toronto Yonge Street 10K finish line I was beaming with pride I had completed my first race while pregnant.
Unfortunately I wasn’t one of those pregnant ladies that could blissfully keep running as my stomach expanded. I had to switch to walking, and yoga. After I gave birth to my beautiful daughter Sophie, I had to wait to get medical clearance to work out again. That was a long six weeks with minimal activity.
I’m not sure why, but in my head I pictured that my first post pregnancy run would be a blissful, perfect, fast-paced 5k. In my mind I was still my old, pre-pregnancy, fit runner self. That first run was a real wake up call. It was like starting from the beginning. I am slowly building up my mileage so I don’t injure myself. My body is different now; my joints are looser. Running feels different.
My training for the Yonge Street 10k this year is different from my training last year. My body is different and I need to tune in and listen to it. As a breastfeeding mother I have to plan my runs around my husband’s and my daughter’s schedules. I am no longer a carefree get up and go runner. I have to make every run count. But I wouldn’t trade it in for anything. Waiting for me at the finish line this year will be my adorable daughter. I hope she’ll learn to clap by race day.
When I’m out on the road for a run I’ll be humming Drake’s lyrics ‘started from the bottom now we’re here’ because I’m starting fresh again with running, but I know I’ll be back to my marathon self soon, one run at a time.