Monday, March 17, 2014

Pregnant Half


I hope everyone has had a wonderful day.  St. Paddy's day has always been one of those days with mixed emotions for me.  As a kid, I loved the festive atmosphere and the chocolate coins, but these were also accompanied by the overwhelming fear that I wouldn't have enough green and I'd get pinched.  I even remember begging my mom at 10 years old to buy me a big, bulky green sweater from the Goodwill in November just so I'd have a good green item for the holiday.  This year, though, I celebrated things differently.

While I still wore a bit of green, I did the majority of my celebrating yesterday.  Yesterday, I ran the Shamrock Half Marathon.  Yes, I'm 27 weeks pregnant.  Yes, I had clearance from my doctor.  Yes, I finished.  Yes, I feel fine.  No, I don't think I'll shoot for another one this pregnancy.

This half did not start out well.  The day before had been a bit warm, and a heavy work load had left me very tired.  I was still a little swollen and stiff when I woke up.  What I really wanted to do was curl up in bed and sleep, and instead I was preparing to run 13.1 miles.  There wasn't the usual excitement.  In fact, if anything, I was cranky about having signed up.  I kept telling myself how bad ass I was, and that helped, but I really just wanted to call it a day.  

The first four miles felt miserable.  My goal was under 13:00 min/mile, and I was holding at around 12:00, so that was fine, but it just seemed so hard.  My legs hurt, I was out of breath.  My running buddies were far ahead of me (it's a race, so we don't stick together), and I was lonely.  I kept praying I would find my groove, and for the first time ever I actually wondered if I would finish the race.  

Then, around mile 4 I started to feel a bit of my old groove.  Things didn't feel so off.  And, right as I was starting to get comfortable, I saw a familiar site.  I saw a girl that I had run with on Marathon Training Team.  She's actually the daughter-in-law of one of Hans' coworkers, so there was that cool connection, too.  I ran up to her and struck up a conversation.  

Honestly, we must have both been needing a distraction, because we started to chat and continued to chat the rest of the way.  After that, the miles just flew by.  I ticked them off, one after the other.  Mile 6, mile 7, 8, 9, 10.

Feeling great around mile 7.

It was around mile 10 that general fatigue began to set in.  I was stiff and tired.  Luckily, though, I was a bit mentally prepared for this, as the same thing had happened in training runs.  I took in some extra fuel, had a bit more water, allowed myself to walk through a water stop, and continued on.  Mile 11, 12, 13...

And then, there it was, the finish line.  There were flags and balloons and tons of people.  As I crossed the finish, I heard the announcer call my name, and I cheered a little.  They don't call everyone's name, so I was just lucky to have mine announced.  It was like my own little victory.

I just finished!
So, how did I feel afterward?  Not bad.  Actually, I felt surprisingly similar to how I felt after my last full marathon- stiff, but able to move.  I could have felt better, but I also could have felt much worse.  That said, I definitely stiffened up more throughout the day, but food, water, and rest helped a ton.  Today, I'm feeling pretty good.  I still have sore spot or two, but not too bad.  I don't really want to do it again any time soon, but I'm still planning to continue running- just not that far.  All in all, I'm happy.

Oh, and just so everyone can see, here's a gratuitous belly shot taken the day before the race (Saturday).

1 comment:

  1. I absolutely needed the distraction, and I am more grateful to you than I can say for providing it for me. I'm glad your race went well and felt pretty good. Just for the record, you are extremely bad ass!