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Just a few months after the Rio Olympics wrapped up, Gwen Jorgensen —who took Gold in the triathlon—announced she was pregnant and expecting a child in August. It is a known fact that Olympic athletes have rigorous workouts that test them both physically and mentally. But how many athletes do you know that run 70 miles per week, while in their second trimester of pregnancy? The ASICS athlete is not used to letting things slow her down and preparing for motherhood is no exception.
We caught up with Gwen Jorgensen to find out how she still keeps up with her workout routine, even as she looks ahead to the arrival of her little one (and everything that entails).
How has your routine changed as your pregnancy has progressed?
In general, running and training since becoming pregnant have changed drastically. Instead of waking up in the morning and checking my training for the day from my coach, I strictly go off what I feel like. I am really enjoying this time where I am just exercising. I feel the best during the day when I am running, so I have actually been logging more run miles now than when I was training for the Olympics.
What are the biggest lessons you’ve learned about your body as you’ve adapted your routine to pregnancy?
Since I have been pregnant, I have noticed that my body regulates speed differently than in the past. Some days I just cannot go below an 8:30 per mile pace. I believe my body is just taking extra energy and directing it towards building a healthy baby.
What are your favorite workouts to do now that you are pregnant?
I just love running at a slow pace. I call it exercising, not training and not a workout. I can now feel when the baby is awake versus sleeping, and it seems that the baby loves to sleep when I run. I think the movement rocks the baby to sleep.
How can other expectant mothers on how to stay motivated and focused on their health as their bodies change?
I still have goals during my pregnancy. My first goal is to have a healthy pregnancy and baby. My second goal is to stay relatively fit and healthy. I want to make a strong, healthy return and in order to do that, I hope to exercise and remain fit as close to my due date as possible. My advice is to find an exercise routine that works for you. For me, swimming has been challenging because I get sharp pains in my stomach when I try to go too fast. Therefore, I’ve been doing more running. Find what works for you and focus on that, and know that being active is good for both you and baby.
What has surprised you the most about pregnancy?
I am shocked at how much I am still eating even though I am not training at the same intensity or duration I did leading into the Olympics!