Moms RUN San Jose

For Moms who run, by Moms who run…Moms RUN this Town!

First time out

on June 20, 2012

This was the way I felt the first time I went out for a run by myself.  Hesitant, scared even – am I really going to do this? I did it quickly, without thinking really.  And once I was out of the car and over the bridge that led to the trail, once I realized I was running, actually running – by myself, for myself – it was the most freeing, most exhilarating feeling I had had in a long, long time.

And so my journey as a runner began in the Spring of 2003, after seeing myself in wedding photos looking not as great as I thought a bride should look like.  We lived in New Hampshire then, a lovely town that still kept a lot of it’s old world, New England charm.  I ran and worked out, on and off for several years, completing 5Ks and 10Ks – not quickly, but getting to the finish line just the same.  Then, I found a small group of friends who I started to run with. My true runner came out! I did my first half marathon in the fall of 2005. This half marathon became an annual tradition for me and my little running group. We would usually start training in the spring after the winter thaw and the forced end to our hibernation period.  

I ran this half marathon, on my own or on a 2-person relay team, every fall except for the ones when I was pregnant.  I wasn’t allowed to run or exercise during my pregnancies (more on that later).  But I was encouraged to run after my babies were born to lose that “baby weight” – which really, by than, had become “mommy weight”.  Nursing only helped me lose weight to a certain point. I thought for a while that I would be OK being heavier – I never wanted to be one of those “skinny moms” who didn’t even look like they had kids. I was a mom and I was going to look the part, mom jeans and all!!  But after my younger daughter was born, I realized I didn’t want to be one of those “unhealthy moms” either.  Plus, mom jeans really are NOT very flattering.  

So, back to running I went.  The 2nd time I went out for the 1st time after I had my younger daughter, was excruciatingly painful.  My heart and mind was not into running at all. I was working, had an infant and a toddler and a husband to take care of (I’ll let you figure out which one was the hardest to deal with!), plus I was constantly sleep deprived and my body and mind seemed to complain every time I put on running shoes.  My (single) running friends were understanding when I would cancel last minute or had another mom-related issues. They continued to consistently encourage me to run yet, I could tell, there were times when talking about poopy diapers during a run was just not their cup of tea.  I joined the local running club and gained an appreciation for running on the track and doing fartleks.  That feeling of freedom and empowerment slowly returned.  And I found I did have other things to talk to people about besides the color and consistency of poo.

Then in the fall of 2011, my husband got a job in San Jose, CA.  It was a dream job for him, but I was filled with trepidation.  I had always thought we would stay in our lovely New Hampshire home until the kids were grown. I had thought I would always run under leafy, wooded trails or on back country roads.  But we couldn’t pass this opportunity….and before you can say, “On your mark, get set, go!”…we had gone…

The first few months were really difficult – we didn’t really have close family or friends in the area and California is just different than New Hampshire.  The weather, the city, the people – it was a lot of change in a short amount of time and my waistline was a testament to the stress I was experiencing.  Slowly, I did start to build a community of friends.  My lovely husband got me sessions with a trainer for my Christmas present, but after those sessions were over, I was at a loss for what to do to continue being healthy and get back to a reasonable weight.  

I looked into and joined some local running clubs, but the times for their weekly runs just did not work for my mom schedule.  I wasn’t working yet, my older daughter had started preschool but my younger daughter couldn’t start until after she turned 2 (hence why I had put off finding a job).  I couldn’t do early morning runs because my husband left for work early. And because he didn’t come home until late, I couldn’t do the evening runs since I was getting dinner ready and the kids to bed.  I went to the gym to run and workout but as the weather got warmer, I knew I had to get outside and run.

But where? I wasn’t familiar with the local trails and the thought of running on my own with my kid, just didn’t appeal to me. I worried about safety issues and I missed the camaraderie of my old running group. I realized that at this point in my running, I needed others to keep me motivated and accountable.   I wanted that connection with other runners, specifically, with other moms who ran, who could relate to my slow pace, who wouldn’t mind stopping their run to change a diaper, or even examining the type of poo in said diaper.  

Enter “Moms RUN this Town” (MRTT) – a running club for moms, by moms! I stumbled across the website doing a google search and saw there wasn’t a club in my area.  The website was really adamant that being a chapter leader (CL) was something “easy”, no pressure, no stress, just fun and I would be able to find some moms to run with.  So, I signed up, got a Facebook page for the San Jose Chapter and even an email address.  I invited (OK, coerced!) some friends to join and soon had 5 moms in our little group.  We talked about when we were going to work out, met up to walk/run and encouraged each other in our healthy endeavors.

I would have been satisfied with that, until I started reading some posts in the MRTT Chapter Leader Facebook page about what some of the other CLs were doing – handing out flyers at their local running store, going up to moms with jogging strollers and talking to them about MRTT, wearing cool MRTT headbands.  I got infected with the enthusiasm of 150+ moms who run for so many different, inspirational reasons.  So, I started to spread the word around and even handed out some flyers and bought some cool bondi sweat/head bands with the MRTT logo.

Then, they started to talk about blogging. I hadn’t really even read any blogs.  Plus, what would I blog about? Being a mom? Running? There were tons of blogs like that already! But the thought continued to stay in my head, until today…I didn’t run today for various reasons, and as I sat down to check in on Facebook tonight, I googled WordPress instead.  I did it quickly and without thinking.  And once I had signed in, picked my theme and written my first paragraph, I was blogging – about being a runner, being a mom – and it was a freeing, exhilarating feeling….

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4 responses to “First time out

  1. kc says:

    Great post! I didn’t realize that you’ve been running for awhile!
    Looking forward to reading more of your posts!

    • sanjosemrtt says:

      Thanks KC! Glad you like it. Please let me know if you have any other comments or suggestions. Once you’re more available, I would love for you to do a guest blog! =)

  2. Kerry says:

    You are always inspiring bc of your passion for anything you do. Love the blog.

  3. sanjosemrtt says:

    Thanks, Kerry!! Hope you guys are doing well…

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