Thinking of Joining USA Triathlon?

Be a part of our 550,000 member community of multisport athletes. Membership benefits include a subscription to the quarterly USA Triathlon magazine, discounts from USA Triathlon partners, inclusion in the national rankings, excess accident insurance at events, and savings at races. To see why you should join or renew today, visit the membership benefits page. Already a member? Login below.

Forgot Password | Help Renew Membership Become a Member

Featured Poll

How many World Triathlon Series races will Gwen Jorgensen win in her career?

Photo Essay: Returning to Triathlon as a New Mom

Rate

(0 votes)

The 2013 XTERRA West Championships on April 13 at Lake Las Vegas, Nev., was the first race of the U.S. Pro Series — five races total, finishing with the XTERRA USA Championships at Snowbasin, Utah. I had placed third at the race in 2012 and had high expectations for the season before discovering I was pregnant and choosing another path.

2013 would be a different story. The race would be my first triathlon back after giving birth to my son and first child, Torin, on December 18. Returning to training and racing hasn’t been easy; just getting to the start line would be an accomplishment, let alone finishing. I was very fortunate to have Torin’s aunt Vanessa drive down with me from Park City and also to have Torin’s grandma meet us in Las Vegas.

More than anything I tried to appreciate being able to race again and enjoy all aspects of competition from the travel to the preparation, to the actual race and celebrating after. I’ve been recognizing it was something I chose, so I should be happy doing it. 

I wasn’t the only new mom in the pro field racing that day. Kelley Cullen and Lauren Harrison also had baby boys less than a year old. In fact, almost half of the women’s pro field were moms, including Danelle Kabush, Brandi Heisterman, Caroline Colonna and Rachel Challis. So I hope this inspires all the moms out there!

I would like to thank my sponsors: Specialized, Salomon, Champion System, Probar, GU and Blue Seventy.

You can find out more about my journey back to racing as a new mom by checking out my website, emmagarrard.com, or following me on Twitter: @emma_garrard.

emma
Leaving the snow in Park City. If you think you already have enough stuff to pack for a triathlon, try throwing a baby into the mix!

emma
Bike, check, baby, check! We would be driving 300 miles to Lake Las Vegas.
emma
We’d have to make some stops on the way to feed Torin as he eats every three hours, so we took our first stop at the Fillmore Hotsprings.
emma
We arrived a few days before the race and took a trip to Lake Mead so I could test out my new wetsuit and get my first open water swim in for the season.  
emma
Torin hung out on a blanket with his grandma while Vanessa and I swam.
emma
Heading back to the hotel taking full advantage of the amenities – robes!
emma
Getting in some last minute cuddles before heading out on a pre-race ride on the course.
emma
It was still winter in Park City so we took full advantage of the pool.
emma
Torin enjoying some rays.
emma
It was a perfect setting for Torin’s first dip in the pool!
emma
Race morning! Not a bad view.
emma
A happy baby hanging out before the race.
emma
Eating my pre-race breakfast as Vanessa watches Torin.
emma
Getting my Specialized Fate ready, pumping the tires up to 20psi.
emma
Number on the bike...
emma
And GUs on the bike.
emma
Torin wishing me luck before the start.
emma
Feeling somewhat nervous!
emma
The pro start at Lake Las Vegas.
emma
Exiting the swim at the front of the second pack of swimmers. The swim felt pretty long and I certainly wasn't ready for it, but I felt better than I expected.
emma
On the bike, it would be hot, windy, dusty and hilly out there.
emma
It was so windy my number blew off my bike!
emma
Spectating is hard work! Torin and his new buddy take a nap.
emma
Heading out on the run, a good hill right from T2 and lots more to come!
emma
Crossing the finish line in seventh, the top half of the pro women's field and good enough for some prize money.
emma
But the real prize was getting to hold my son again!
emma
Relaxing on the couch, enjoying cooler temperatures indoors, a smoothie and my boy.

Comments

Active.com