We are highlighting #motherrunner journeys over the next 2 weeks. In sharing these beautiful and challenging stories, we are reminded to move forward with compassion. Everyone’s experience with motherhood (and LIFE) is different… compassion for all mothers, mothers to be, mothers who have lost babies, and those trying to conceive. There is far more than meets the eye when it comes to judging another person. We hope reading the stories over the next two weeks moves your heart, inspires you to keep lacing up, motivates you to make time for yourself so you can be the best for others, and help another mother out whenever possible. We are stronger and better together.
Thank you for sharing your journey with us! Let’s get chat…
Hi! My name is Anne. I have been married to my husband, Russ, for almost 14 years. We have three children, a 6.5 year old son, Ryan, and 4.5 year old twins, Jonathan and Lissa. We also have one fur-baby, Lindy, who is my running partner almost every day!
She.is.beautiful: When did you start running and what inspired your entry to this movement?
Anne: I originally started running back in high school for cross country and track. However, my asthma was getting worse and harder to manage. During college, I stopped running competitively, only ran very occasionally, and eventually stopped altogether. Fast forward almost 10 years, after the birth of our oldest, I needed something to help me lose weight and to get me out of the house. Enter stroller running! And I have never looked back.
SIB: If you ran before having kids, how has your relationship with running changed since becoming a mother?
Anne: In high school, my running was all about the competition with the other athletes in track and cross country. Since having kids, it has changed into something I do for my health and my sanity! It is also something that has gotten me through our struggle with infertility and miscarriage. It has been a way to run off the stress and emotion that comes along with that journey.
SIB: What has been or is your biggest challenge with running since having children?
Anne: The logistics of what to do with the kids is the hardest part. We have gone through many phases … stroller running (with a single, double, or a triple), treadmill running with them playing around me, early morning running. My husband is a veterinarian and works long and sometimes strange hours. So it can be tough to get in a routine, but we always seem to make it work!
SIB: How has having child/children changed your relationship with your body?
Anne: In high school, I was stick thin. I ate like a horse, but had such a high metabolism it didn’t matter! As I got older and stopped running, that all changed and I gained 50 pounds and was very unhappy with my body. Having kids was probably the best thing that could have happened. After I started running again when our first was 6 months old, I lost all of the weight within the next six months (thank you breastfeeding!) and found a whole new appreciation for what my body was capable of. I fully embrace the #sportsbrasquad mentality and am proud of the stretch marks because they tell my story. There are definitely days where I wish the extra stomach skin from having twins and the saggy boobs that fed my three babies would go away. But I am not ashamed of the way I look and would never change a thing about what got my body to where it is today!
SIB: What do you admire most about other moms?
Anne: I love how strong and resilient moms are. We all have different struggles and challenges daily. But somehow we manage to make it through each day and wake up the next to do it all over again. And on the days when I feel like I am failing, it helps to know there are other moms going through all of the same things!
SIB: How has your children inspired you (in running or in life)?
Anne: My kids make me want to do my best and go for my dreams. I want to be able to show them that anything is possible through big dreams and hard work. And I want them to know that it’s ok to fall short of those goals and take a step back sometimes. But to ultimately never give up! I know my kids aren’t completely old enough to understand what a Boston qualifying time is, what a PR is, or if Mama won a race or just got a medal. But they pick up on way more than I think they do. And I want to be a good example to them in as many ways as possible.
SIB: What is something you are proud of in your running and something you are proud of as a mom?
Anne: I am proud of surviving the first year of our twins life with a 2 year old at home too! I know that may sound silly, but 3 kids in 2 years is hard! And I feel like we made it through strong. I know we had plenty of days that were hard (and still have hard days!), but I feel like we had way more good days than bad in a period of life where relationships and families are tested.
In running, I am proud of finding a way to make this whole running thing work with 3 young kids at home. There are so many things that I could have used as an excuse to not continue. There have been countless miles with movies on the iPad, and runs with pitstops at the park, but we have made it work even if it’s not ideal!
SIB: What is the best advice you have for other runner moms or runner moms-to-be?
Don’t ever feel guilty for taking time for yourself. Whether you just want to run a few miles at a time to stay active or you want to chase down a big time goal in the marathon, the time you give to yourself will be so worth it.
SIB: Fill in the sentence “I mom so hard I___________”
Anne: I mom so hard I____have to run away sometimes____.