Thursday, March 14, 2013

A Pregnant Running Update

I've been throwing you hints about my running lately, but since this used to be a running blog (though it does say Ricole Runs SOMETIMES) instead of a pregnancy / nursery-painting / cookie-eating blog, let's chat a little about running, shall we?  

Running sucks.  Let's be honest and just throw that out there.  Running and I seem to have gotten a divorce, and it's devastatingly sad.  I don't even think I can fully blame it on Rudiger (the baby's nickname), who obviously plays a large role in this, but I think the weather is also to blame, and maybe just lack of motivation that accompanies being signed up for no races, and a myriad of other things.  A perfect storm of sorts, let's say.

Let's back up a bit.  2012 started out great running-wise.  Although I hit some  lack of motivation mid-training cycle, I had a very healthy and successful marathon training cycle, and just missed a marathon PR by a bathroom stop and a few walk-breaks I couldn't convince myself not to take in the last 3 miles.  I was ready for an awesome rest of the running year, which started off with Ragnar.

Ragnar was awesome.  I had a blast.  Clearly.


But as the smoke cleared from Ragnar and my incredible soreness faded, a weird hamstring soreness did not fade away.  Apparently essentially 3 intense speed workouts in 30 hours was too much for my poor hamstring.

In retrospect, what I SHOULD have done in this case was to rest until the pain subsided, but given that Hood to Coast was quickly approaching, that just didn't seem possible.  So the hamstring issues raged on for the rest of the entire year.  I rested periodically, foam-rolled, used a lacross ball, went to chiro, got ART, did PT exercises, etc. etc. etc.  The rest periods were as long as I could make them, but I wanted to finish out the races I had previously signed up for, including my first triathlon and my first trail race (with the last race being the Seattle Half Marathon), especially since resting vs. running really didn't seem to matter.

I don't regret my decision to run these races AT ALL.  I DO regret being cautious and not just training and running the 50k, especially given my current "condition"!

So there we are.  Heading into December I had already been resting a lot and my fitness was extremely poor.  Then the thick of the first trimester hit [which deserves its own post at some point], and I was lucky to drag myself off the couch to walk one mile during Runcember.  Finally, the worst of Seattle's winter hit, in which days are short, the skies are dark, the rain pours down, and you never want to leave the coziness of your couch.

So there we are.  All of these things combined together into the perfect storm which has left me far from feeling stellar about running.

I'm actually 22 weeks today but don't worry - I look the same.

As my belly continues to grow, so do weird aches and pains and feelings.  Running is completely hit or miss - sometimes rarely I'll feel great and most other times I'll feel horrible and quit after one measly mile.  Apparently, the continuously shrinking space for my bladder also causing a near constant need to pee while exercising.  Finally, none of my running clothes currently fit, including sports bras and tights, yet I wear them anyway, leaving more uncomfortable feelings.

But I HAVE been running, and here is proof:

But you can see how low my mileage has been, especially considering Daily Mile's scale is quite skewed (look how tall that bar with 2 is!).  You CAN see an increase in the past month or so though!  I AM feeling better, the weather is getting better, the days are longer, etc.  Actually, I think the monthly miles graph sums it up a bit better:

And there you have it.  The most ramble-y post ever.  A million words all to say that pregnant running is not all that it's cracked up to be.  I'm certainly not the pregnant running phenomenon I always hoped I would be.  I'm just a lazy bum to prefers to eat cookies on the couch.  Pass the Samoas, please. 

Thoughts on pregnant running?  Advice?  How much did you run while pregnant? Did you run the whole time?