Today’s guest loves running and also uses it as an excuse to got out of the house from time to time.
She’s also a full-time mom of 5 kids, the oldest of which is 8, which may explain why getting out of the house once in a while to run is necessary!
I’m grateful Danielle Barker found some time in her busy schedule to go a few easy miles with me today.
Always a Runner
Danielle Barker doesn’t remember a time when she didn’t run.
From an early age she competed in track and as she got older transitioned to running less competitively.
It has only been in the past 3 to 4 years, that Danielle has gotten more consistent with her running again.
Previously running was never a habit or something she relied on.
Now Danielle tries to run 5 to 6 times a week.
Having gone through pregnancy 5 times and finding her free time diminish with each kid has had both positive and negative effects on her running.
Listen To Your Body
Danielle has found that each of her 5 pregnancies has been unique and the key to staying healthy is listening to her body.
With each pregnancy, she started out running.
For three of the pregnancies, she was able to run up until birth.
Danielle had to take a break from running much earlier during 2 of the pregnancies for various reasons out of her control.
Exercise during pregnancy has the potential to be extremely beneficial as long as you listen to your body.
Danielle experienced mostly positive feedback from people about running while pregnant.
There will always be some people that will be negative and view running or exercising while pregnant as potentially harmful.
She had to learn to tune out the negative voices and listen to only herself and the people she trusts.
Exercise Should Be Fun
Danielle’s husband is a teacher and the head football coach at a local school.
His career allows her and their family access to the football field, track, and weight room.
From early on, Danielle and her husband have tried to make being active fun for the entire family.
They often try to incorporate their kids into whatever exercise they’re doing.
Being an example for their kids is a top priority for both of them.
Danielle has found that it is common for people to underestimate what kids are capable of.
She loves seeing her kids push their limits in all areas of their lives.
As a mom to 5 young children, Danielle knows better than most how important self-care is.
Her experience as a mom with multiple children is much different than it was when she had one.
She used to take her child with her everywhere, including in a stroller on her runs.
Danielle never loved pushing a stroller and also realized that she needs to make herself a priority.
Running is her time to recharge and with 5 children it is the one thing that is just hers.
It has taken some time, but Danielle has learned how to not dwell on the “mom guilt.”
Saturdays are her day for long runs and she is able to recharge for the upcoming week.
Danielle tends to be budget conscious and doesn’t love early mornings so the lack of races in 2020 hasn’t been too tough on her.
She would love to work herself up to running a half marathon again when races do resume.
Eventually, she wants to run a Disney race.
For now, she is focusing on getting in shape post-pregnancy.
Danielle admitted that she is constantly balancing learning to be content with where she is and learning when/how much to push herself.
Her biggest competition is with herself and seeing what she is capable of.
Running has been one of the few things that Danielle has stuck with over the years.
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