Biking with a Bump

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CyclingWhilePregnant

At my first midwife visit, I asked if it would be all right if I kept riding my bike while pregnant. My midwives said that as long as I felt good, didn’t push myself too hard, listened to my body, and felt safe, cycling was a great form of pregnancy exercise.

I’m currently in my 32nd week of pregnancy, and I’m still loving my bike. Here’s why:

Even though I’m in my third trimester and feeling tired, heavy and achy, cycling still feels good. It’s low-impact and (miraculously) makes my back feel better. It makes sense, when your back is being pulled forward all day by a heavy load, spending some time in an opposite posture (with a curved back) is a relief.

There is also something amazing about being able to zip around on a bike when I’ve become used to lumbering. I’m still able to move at a normal human speed on a bike, as opposed to when I’m waddling around on foot. Although I haven’t been swimming much, I imagine it’s the same sort of freeing feeling of being lighter and more agile. It feels wonderful.

Some drawbacks: I have to be much more careful about falls. This means that I find myself getting off my bike a lot more often, for safety’s sake. The people of Collingwood generally will not keep their dogs on leashes, and I have to be careful that no one darts in front of me while I’m riding. One woman actually told me, as I was slowly approaching her off-leash Weimaraner “Watch out, because she WILL run out in front of you.” So, maybe keep her on a leash whilst on this busy, multi-user trail?

Also, as the baby grows, we’re both running out of room and leaning forward is becoming difficult. I suspect that sometime soon the baby will just refuse to cooperate, and I’ll have to give it up. But until then, I’m going to enjoy this as much as I can.

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A Bike Post from the Bikeless

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I thought that I should probably write something about biking, since this blog is entitled “Bike, Banjo and Baby” and I have written approximately zero posts about bikes.  However, I am currently bikeless, so a bike post is a bit difficult to conjure up at this juncture.

This is what a bicycle looks like, or so I’m told.

To solve this problem, I told Pete that he had to do some crazy stuff on his bike to provide me with some material for the blog.  I took this back almost immediately.  I need him able-bodied for parenting purposes.  He came home from downhill riding the other day with scrapes and scratches on his knees and stomach from “not falling off his bike.”  That’s about as exciting as I’d like his riding to get.

We are working on getting a new bike for me.  C is old enough to be towed behind us in her chariot now, so the pressure is on.

Now that I think about it, I don’t think I’ve ever owned a bike that was bought just for me.  I inherited bikes from my sister, and usually those were well-used and/or ill-fitting.   I once inherited a bike from her after it had been stolen from our garage, taken to a nearby park, kicked around a bit and possibly set on fire.

So getting my very own, brand-new bike is very exciting.  I’ll be sure to post a photo once we actually pick it up from Pete’s friend’s bike shop in Toronto.

In the meantime, I’m going to keep blogging about trying to maintain some balance in our lives with a baby in tow.  This weekend, we’re heading to Algonquin Provincial Park to take C camping for the first time.  I spent my university summers working there, and I’m really excited to be bringing her there for the first time.  So excited, in fact, that I looked up some Algonquin Park videos on the Friends of Algonquin website.  They’re not quite as inspiring as the video shown every 12 minutes in the Visitor Centre, or as instructive as the Ministry of Natural Resources bear safety video (pro tip: yell “whoa bear!”), but they suited my purposes.

And now for a quick question: does anyone have any mountain bike recommendations for me?