Posts

Training after a baby

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If I were to sum up my training after a baby in one word it would be conservative.    That may seem funny since I was able to return to racing at a high level on a short timeline (World cups in 3.5 months and Olympics in 6), but for me a big part of that success was from not pushing for too much too soon and risking getting injured.    Postpartum, your body experiences a lot of hormonal changes, breast feeding can reduce calcium and impact bone density, your pelvic region has been through big changes.... all of these changes, plus high fatigue levels warrant a cautious and steady approach on your return to form. Early days were all about recovery and snuggling My first month postpartum was spent recovering and rebuilding.   I was able to ride and ski until the final day of my pregnancy and do 10+ hours of easy volume/week.   The first week after having Dara was all about recovery, getting sleep when possible and bonding with Dara.   At the end of week 2 I was able to get on the trainer

Pregnancy Posts: Trimester Three November-January

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I have been writing these throughout my pregnancy with all it's up and downs as I know finding other pregnant athlete blogs really helped me.  So hope this helps some of you through your pregnancy or coaching. If you want to read from the start scroll down to my first post on Trimester 1. Trimester Three (November-January)  I actually felt fitter later in my pregnancy and loved being able to ski                                                                                   Photo: Andrea Heath Time flies when you’re feeling good! Despite gaining 25 lbs I feel really good in general and while exercising and the stress of month 3&4 feels like it was from a different pregnancy. I am back to being able to push pretty normal watts for aerobic rides after having watched them plummet and I feel really comfortable cross-country skiing. The round ligament stretching of trimester two has disappeared making me more comfortable too. I am still training at lower than pre-pregnancy volum

Pregnancy Post: Second Trimester (August-November)

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I had been pretty quiet about my pregnancy outside of a select group of friends and family until 19-20 weeks and yay, a month without bleeding and a gradual reintroduction of exercise.  I wrestled with this because when you have a complicated pregnancy you both want to keep it close because there is a lot of scary uncertainty you don’t always want to talk about, but at the same time you want to and should be able to celebrate what you are experiencing in the moment. So many families lose a baby in silence.  My hemorrhage luckily completely resolved and my baby’s growth is perfectly on target…actually some months I measured ahead! I have been able to start riding again knowing that my hemmorhage has completely resolved and that my placental blood flow is spot on and is giving the baby what it needs. I have to say it feels so nice to be outside moving again at any pace. Happily, my pregnancy has gone from really stressful to really joyful.  My energy is ama

Pregnancy Posts: First Trimester (May-July)

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That’s right, I’m pregnant!  It's really exciting, but also a little scary. I think pregnancy always comes with a bit of anxiety as there are so many unknowns and a lot of changes, but being almost 40 adds probably a bit more with its 50% miscarriage rate in the first 12 weeks (15-20% risk across ages) and geriatric status, but it’s also pretty exciting to be pregnant despite the unknowns, so I’m trying to enjoy that while also navigating some scary personal pregnancy challenges and what training or life can look like now and as my belly grows.    As a female athlete there never seems to be a good time to be pregnant and Covid19 and Olympic postponement definitely threw up some more question marks on timelines for me, but I felt ready to be a mom, a little nervous to wait to try any longer and that if pregnancy wasn’t in our cards to be able to go back into an Olympic year with renewed focus and no timeline doubts would be a good thing.  I do still plan to race next year, and race

Motivation

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Disclaimer:  The guy was on an E bike, but yeah stoke level was not high at this point ;-) I think a lot of us feel like we’re supposed to feel super motivated all the time. Lack of motivation isn’t admirable or strong.  Feeling unmotivated makes you want to judge yourself (“I’m not committed enough, good enough … what’s wrong with me?” versus “ugh I just do not feel motivated right now”), but whether you are a paid professional athlete or someone that demands and expects a lot of themselves you are still human. Sometimes life fills you with stoke and everything feels easier and sometimes it’s just tough and uninspiring.  What matters for most of us and reaching our goals is how quickly we can get unstuck and back to that bring-it-on headspace. Lapses in motivation may last a workout, a couple days, weeks or come and go. It may be just around training or seep into your everyday.  You may feel fired up one day and the next be wondering what the heck happened and find yourse

Epic Israel: Part adventure Blog, Part Race Blog

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  Israel is a country I think most of us come to with misconceptions of what it will be like. Without a bike race drawing me here, I doubt it would have made my list of places to explore, but I feel gratitude for the chance to have gone, lived with a lovely cycling family in a Kibbutz for several days and raced over 300km of roads and trails surrounding Acre (Akko) with a world class field of competitors. Above Haifa After seeing the dusty, exhausted faces in images from last year’s epic I was not sure it was one I wanted to tackle…. but the lure of a new country, an adventure, some UCI points and only 4 days of suffering was enough to prompt me to ask Haley Smith if she would like to partner up again.  I had just beaten her to the question by a couple hours.  We arrived several days early to acclimate and I actually participated in a C1 race on day 1.  I say participated, because after one lap at the front I blew in the heat and could no longer call it racing…just tryi