February 23, 2024

Reclaim Your Sense of Self with the UPPAbaby® Ridge® Stroller
by Katherine Emala

Author: Katherine, UPPAbaby Team Member & Mom of Two Boys

The excitement, joy, and sense of purpose that accompanies the anticipation of parenthood is unlike anything else. Throughout the months leading up to the birth of my first son, there were many friends and family (and even a few strangers!) who spoke openly about the positive life shifts I was about to experience with my newborn. And they were right about those. However, while I had been warned about the lack of sleep and the struggles of postpartum life, what I didn’t, and couldn’t, anticipate were the experiences that became the most revelatory in the long run.

And what is parenting if not a very, very long run.

Parenthood, it turns out, is a lot like training for a marathon. You’ll be struck with a love you never knew existed, but you’ll also find yourself sitting in the dark sobbing tears of exhaustion and despair. As a new mother especially, the physical and emotional changes can take you by surprise. The first walk I took after having my son ended after less than ten minutes because I was in so much pain. I felt defeated. “It’s been a month already, why do I feel like this?” Looking back, a few weeks is nothing. But try telling that to a new mom who saw an Instagram influencer running errands with her newborn two days after getting home from the hospital.

The healing is eventual, though, and along with it comes the search for your new identity and a strength previously unknown.

Yes you are a mom now, but where does your old sense of self fit within that?

It’s hard to feel like yourself when your maternity clothes are too big but your pre-pregnancy clothes are too small, so you’re all too often sporting stretched out leggings covered in dog hair and spit up. Leaving the house seems like an impossible feat because you can’t seem to get yourself (and all that baby gear) together. Or you’re craving the active life you once held so dear, but just can’t find the time to fit it into your ever changing calendar. We don’t usually see these lows on social media, just like we only see the marathoner crossing the finish line, instead of crying at mile 20 because they are not sure how much further they can go. Fortunately, there are simple ways to reclaim that sense of self; surround yourself with support and take on these new challenges with confidence.

Breaking Records With Ridge

A perfect example of this is Alyssa Puttkammer. Maybe you haven’t heard of her, but she is the new world record-breaking marathon runner who unexpectedly found herself as a single parent three months after the birth of her daughter, Blair. Alyssa wasn’t sure what her life as a single parent would look like—let alone how or when she’d return to running. She did know one thing was certain. No matter where or when, Blair was coming along for the ride.

Alyssa soon realized that she needed a stroller that could keep up with her, and with Blair. So she extensively researched what stroller would provide her with the best support on her journey. Enter the UPPAbaby® Ridge® All-Terrain Jogging Stroller. 

“Key features like the locking front wheel, rear brake, aerodynamic design, water bottle holder, adjustable canopy, reclinable seat, no-pump wheels, and large capacity storage made it perfect for training and racing a marathon. The Ridge is the pinnacle of running strollers,” says Alyssa.

“My whole life had been turned upside down, and I was about to get a piece of my old self back.”

What started as one mile runs here and there, eventually turned into full on marathon training. But it wasn’t always easy. Getting used to running with a stroller was an adjustment in itself, and like most babies, Blair had her own priorities that didn’t always include long runs with mom.  Alyssa’s struggles, however, were outweighed by the incredible bonding opportunity she experienced with her daughter, and the high of accomplishment everytime she put in the work.

Cut to September, 2023. Alyssa, Blair, and the Ridge entered the Pacific Northwest Marathon, breaking the world record for the fastest female running a marathon while pushing a stroller finishing in 3:02:54.


Seizing opportunities, and finding support along the way with the Ridge.

There are many opportunities to feel that sense of accomplishment depending on what makes you, you. Whether it’s putting on a pair of jeans, finishing that first pain-free family walk, or sporting baby gear that supports all the highs and lows with style.

UPPAbaby knows that reclaiming your sense of self, no matter what shape that takes, doesn’t always come easy. It’s why we create products meant to support you every step of the way. The Ridge is a great example, and luckily for many of us, you don’t have to be a marathon runner to benefit from its premium features and elevated style.  

With the Ridge, you can feel confident in how you navigate the uphills, tricky terrain, and long hauls of motherhood. The same features that make it the choice marathon stroller, are just as useful at the park, on a city sidewalk, or on a trail. With convenient adapters, you can easily bundle the Ridge with the Mesa® and Aria™ Infant Car Seats, or the Bassinet accessory, and it morphs into the only travel system you need to take baby where you want to go and back again.

The Ridge is now available in a newly expanded line of stylish fashions, Gwen and Theo, named after children of UPPAbaby employees and thoughtfully inspired by earthy tones found in nature. Both fashions are gender-inclusive, versatile, and timeless, so you can express your sense of style and put your personality on display.

Our free Swatch By Mail Program also makes it easy to decide which design is the right fit for you. Pick up to four fashions, and we’ll send complimentary swatches directly to your door, so you can take a closer look, and touch and feel the fabrics IRL.

Reclaiming your sense of self after becoming a parent can be one of the most difficult parts of the journey, but true to Alyssa’s experience, nothing compares to the triumphs no matter how fast or slow the pace. And UPPAbaby will be with you every step of the way.

Browse and shop our full line of UPPAbaby products and accessories online or at one of our Hub Service Center & Showrooms, so you can test and try before you buy!