Triathlon Friends Make the Best Pregnancy Friends Too!
No matter what I encounter in my life, it’s always wonderful when someone else is experiencing something similar. Having the chance to share my feelings and having someone else give me that “oh-I-totally-know-what-you’re-talking-about” nod can be so comforting! That’s when true bonds of friendships are born.
I will never forget my first half ironman. I was standing on the beach next to one of my Endurance Sisterhood (a local online group of women who compete in endurance events) sisters. Both of us were thinking, what the heck are we doing? But instead of panicking, we just hugged each other. I will forever be connected to her because of that experience.
The two of us hugged and then we went out and ran our own races—each of us having a different on course experience. Just as I love sharing similarities, it’s also fun to hear how people’s experiences can be totally different from mine.
That’s the experience I recently had with another one of my Endurance Sisterhood sisters, Adrienn Balazs. In some ways she and I are so much alike: We’re the same age, both pregnant—with boys, due a week apart!—and we’re both type A triathletes. However, she and I are having completely different pregnancy experiences.
When Adrienn and I met Saturday morning for some girl talk and shopping she had just finished running seven miles. I had just finished a number seven from McDonald’s. Besides a couple of odd food cravings, Adrienn has not only been able to maintain an extremely healthy diet of lean proteins, fruits and vegetables and clean grains, she’s found her stomach can’t fit as much food as the baby is now taking up prime real estate. Her portions are smaller and she’s actually lost (!!!) a few pounds in the last 16 weeks.
The weight loss might also have to do with the workout routine she’s maintained. She swims three to four times a week and around 3,900 to 4,000 meters a pop. Those are Ironman distances! Which should really not surprise you because she completed an Ironman in 2011 with a fantastic time. She also runs and lifts weights three times a week.
It was Adrienn’s husband Jay who kindly asked her to discontinue biking on the road after the handful of local cyclist accidents this winter. After all, she is carrying precious cargo with her! She gets her biking in on the trainer now.
Adrienn and her coach are now working on her running and swim form since her little (and I mean little) baby bump is slowing her down just a bit. She’s totally taking advantage of her slower pace to perfect her techniques; genius!
The part of our conversation that I found most fascinating was when she told me that she feels her Ironman training has prepared her for what she called “becoming an Iron-mommy.” When she trained for Ironman, it required such dedication, mental strength and discipline. She plans to approach motherhood the same way. This time however, all the hard work will go into her new family.
Honestly our pregnancies could not be more opposite. However, there are two important things that Adrienn and I have in common: First is the pure joy and excitement to meet our little iron-baby boys. The other is our drive and determination to find our healthiest, most balanced, fit selves when it’s all done. Will it be another half or full Ironman? Neither of us are sure. However, we both are sure that we’ll continue looking for the next fun fitness thing to try!
Ultimately, the takeaway is this: No matter what your nine months of pregnancy is like (and no two pregnancies are the same), the real fun begins that unforgettable moment when your baby is born. I know that for both Adrienn and I, these little guys will help inspire us to be great athletes and role models for our new families.