Not intentionally racing when 6 months pregnant
The 3 plus 3 at Old Hidden Vale (QLD) - 12 - 13 July 2014
Last year at xmas time, my husband and I entered into the 3 plus 3 event at Hidden Vale. It’s a 3 hour XC race on the Saturday and 3 hours on the Sunday. Because we have 2 kids, the format suited us. We could ‘tag team’ the racing and parenting. The race was cancelled due to a few days of heavy rainfall and was postponed to ‘Xmas in July’.
Fast forward to July 2014 and I’m 6 months pregnant with our 3rd baby. Not ideal racing conditions, but our entries to the race were carried over from last year. So we figured we would still ‘race’ and camp on the Saturday night with the 2 kids (almost 4 and almost 2 years old).
I tested out whether or not I could still fit in my Sol Breads - Cyclinic
race kit. It was a tight squeeze, but achievable.
Riding when 6 months pregnant isn’t all that easy. Yes, I am smiling in the photos, but that’s because I love being out in the fresh air, and rolling over the rocks and dirt on my bike. The un-fun parts involve having a baby’s head pushing on your pelvis, lower back, ribs, lungs and stomach. You also have to make sure you don’t overheat, or push yourself into the red zone where you max out your heart rate. You also have to be careful with your balance and centre of gravity. Every week as the baby grows my balance seems to change. So you need to account for this when on the bike.
It is totally safe to ride when pregnant, but you need to know your limits, and listen to your body. Don’t push it!
I planned only to do 1 lap a day, leaving husband Tony to do the rest.
I set out on my first lap and got a few strange looks (‘is that chick pregnant, or did she eat too much of the wood oven pizza?” ). The Hidden Vale tracks were quite rough, loose and dry. The rocky decants were catching a few people out (4WD ambulances were working hard). So I made sure I was extra alert to read the trails ahead of me.
I spun my way up the climbs in granny gear to keep my heart rate down. There were some steep sections and drops that were a bit tricky due to the baby bump. I usually get quite far back over my seat/wheel (just a habit from downhilling). But with a baby bump in the way, this was hard! Baby would hit the seat, so I couldn’t extend all the way back.
My 4 year old smiled when I came back over the finish line and said “That would have been a bumpy ride for baby! Did it like it?”.
It was great to be out riding and camping. I can’t wait to race again properly; minus the baby bump!
Baby bump + bike