I’m about 14 hours from running in my fourth half marathon–the Iron Horse Half Marathon, held in Midway, Ky. Even though this is my fourth, I think I’m the most nervous about this half marathon. Why? Well, a list of reasons…
- The biggest–I’m 22 weeks pregnant. I know I’ve been active so far throughout my pregnancy, but I’m just nervous about how much my body has changed and affected my running and recovery.
- Fighting a bruised heel. Ever since our anniversary getaway to Land Between the Lakes, I’ve had a bruised heel and haven’t run in two weeks. I’ve done some cardio workouts since then (rower, whatever we do in CrossFit), but it just makes me nervous. The heel is better–I’ve been icing it throughout the day and trying to keep from being on it too much. We’ll see how it holds up to 13 miles.
- The weather. All week I’ve been watching the weather like a hawk. It’s gone from 80% chance of storms to 40% chance of rain back to 80% chance of rain, now to 50% chance of rain. I’ve never really run much in the rain, let alone cold rain, so I’m not looking forward to it.
But I’m going to grit through the race. I have to keep up at least a 14 minute pace (they have a time limit on finishing), but I should be alright. I just can’t wait until I cross that finish line and get that awesome medal. Pics and wrap-up to come!
Last Wednesday marked 20 weeks, which, in a pregnancy, is a big step. Twenty weeks means you’re half-way done with with the pregnancy and half-way to meeting your baby. Twenty weeks also means the big ultrasound, where the gender can be revealed. For us, we just wanted to make sure Baby A&W has all four limbs, every organ that would be developed by now, and healthy. We had the ultrasound technician keep the gender a secret–we haven’t decided if or when we want to know, or if we should just wait until the birth. That part is driving our families CRAZY. And, admittedly, driving me a little crazy as well. How else can you plan for having a boy or a girl if you wait until the baby arrives??
I know I haven’t done any pregnancy updates on here since I announced everything, so I thought I’d just do a quick one:
I’ve been lucky–I haven’t really had any pregnancy symptoms throughout the past 21 weeks (no nausea). I have been physically active just as much as I was pre-pregnancy–but I have been cautious.
- Sand volleyball–I finished up the summer league with my team and then decided it was probably best to stop playing. I know some woman who played until 30 weeks, but I know myself and know that I can’t just sit back and watch a ball dropped. I knew it’d be hard to stop the instinct to dive for a ball, or go up at the net, so for the baby’s safety, I stopped. (Though I have been continuing to referee games, but that’s not straining.)
- CrossFit–as soon as I found out I was pregnant, I told my coaches because I wanted to be able to have someone keep an eye on me and make sure I was safe. Turns out, we have another girl at the box due around the same time as me, so Taylor and Brenton have gotten a crash course on how to handle pregnant women and workouts. 😉 I started being more aware of my heart rate and didn’t push it on AMRAPs or other workouts. I’ve only now just started doing modifications–20″ box step ups instead of box jumps at week 20, push-ups with my toes on a bench for handstand push-ups at week 14, knee raises for toes to bar around week 14, and ring rows instead of pull-ups at week 21.
- Running–I am so close to the Iron Horse Half Marathon that I can’t stand it!! I started running one morning during the week 3 miles and keeping with my long training runs with my running group on Saturdays. I slowed my pace from 9-9:30 to 10:30-11, which actually came easily. I’ve run up to 11 miles, and stayed around 8-10 for the past month or so. It’s become a lot harder to recover from the long runs (tired/sore legs, incredibly sore feet, feeling very tired). Also, it’s been hard to stay motivated for the long runs because they are more mental than they ever have been. I have one more long training run this weekend, then the half marathon. After that, I plan to keep with my 3 mile weekday run and a weekend run of no more than 6 miles…maybe. We’ll see how long that lasts.
- Dog agility–I’ve still be training the dogs and competing in agility trials. I come out of my runs with LaMesa (my younger, faster dog) more breathless than previously, but that’s OK. I’ve been warned to watch my balance with crosses and my feet. I will compete in a trial in October and November, and then be done until after the baby.
The most difficult part for me has been my growing belly. It’s been so hard to be excited for the baby because of my body issues. I was getting to a point where I was feeling fit and strong pre-pregnancy, fitting into my “skinny clothes” and feeling confident. Now, I barely fit in anything in my closet, and it’s hard to cover up the belly. For a while I was upset because I just looked fat, not pregnant, and I (foolishly, I’m sure) felt like I was being judged for the sudden weight gain. Now, at 21 weeks, there’s no sucking it in, there’s no forcing into my nice work pants. I’ve purchased my first pair of maternity jeans (which are currently a tad too big, but I’m OK with that) and been passed down some maternity shirts and pants from a friend that I’m thankful I hopefully won’t have to purchase too much. It has been hard with workout clothes, though. My boobs have always been big, but now they’re even bigger, which means even tank tops can’t be an option because I don’t want to flash my box full of guys.
The ultrasounds have been fun. At first I couldn’t see a baby, just a blob, but at our 20 week appointment, we actually saw appendages and the heart beating–that was pretty cool. M did a voice recording of the baby’s heartbeat and sent it to my mom, since they live too far to come to an appointment. That made my family’s day.
So far the tests have all been normal, which is really all that matters.
I’ve been reading Jenny McCarthy’s Belly Laughs on my Kindle, Running & Pregnancy, and a book on pregnancy and childbirth that was given to us by our OB/GYN. I’ve had one trip to Buy Buy Baby for a crash course in what to register for and what we probably won’t need, thanks to a great friend who understands all of my feelings.
We’ve finally come to an agreement that we’ll be making M’s office the nursery, and move his desk and office stuff most likely into our bedroom. Yes, it’ll be cramped in our room (though it is decently big and we don’t have much bedroom furniture anyway), and it’ll change things, but we needed to keep the guest bedroom for guests–especially for those first few months.
My feelings are starting to slowly soften and I’m starting to…accept (not sure if that’s that right word)…that in four months life will be completely different, whether planned or not. I don’t know if I’ll ever be totally prepared, but I’m going to do the best I can.