Before I begin, please note that this was discussed with my doctor and I was given approval to run it.
Let’s start at the beginning. After finishing the 10 mile race in November, I knew I wanted to run the half. For a few weeks, I talked myself out of it, or tried to at least. However, I just love the Pittsburgh Marathon. Everything about it. Over the past few years, I’ve gotten so many of my family members to be apart of it, whether through the relay, or from the actual half. Most of them didn’t even run before I convinced them to do it! I knew this year my cousin Erin was planning to run it too, and we were both about the same speed, so it was perfect.
I didn’t sign up right away when registration opened. I still was torn about it, but then decided . I was in decent shape with my running, though my miles hadn’t been longer than 8 since the race in November. Once I found out I was chosen as an official Blogger for the Pittsburgh Marathon, I took it as a sign. I thought so at least and I signed up and got to planning.
Because I had a solid base of running, I chose to go with a shorter plan for training from the get go. Everything I have just said was all thought about and done pre pregnancy Would I have signed up if I knew I was pregnant? I’m not sure. My gut tells me no, but I’m stubborn so maybe. I had it in my head that this would be the year I would run it, and get a good time.
Then I got pregnant.
I would not in a thousand years trade this baby for anything. But, this next part is going to be brutally honest. I feel like if I’m having these thoughts, there has to be someone out there that can either relate, or has them right now, too.
Once I found out I was pregnant, I knew what I could and could not do with fitness, so I kept running. For a couple weeks, nothing really changed. I’ll go into fitness in detail in another post, but with running, I was still running on the treadmill at the usual speed I always did. I didn’t think much would change. I didn’t get in all my runs before I started training because I was sick when I got home from school or too exhausted.
Flash forward a few weeks, and my runs became significantly slower. I couldn’t keep up my original speed, and took it down quite a bit. My heart rate was getting too high, I didn’t feel comfortable, and knew I couldn’t maintain the speed for a while.
It was probably about this time that my dreams of a PR (I think 2:13:xx) and my goal time of under 2:00, closer to 1:45, fell out the window. I would be 100% lying if I said that was easy. I didn’t necessarily feel pregnant. I didn’t have a huge stomach reminding me I had a baby in me, I didn’t feel it, I wasn’t that sick. So to be dropping speeds and struggling at runs I should have been able to do was extremely difficult. I had a pity party for myself a few times before I was always brought back to reality that I did indeed have a baby in my belly and it was okay to not be running fast!
Week 9 was when I began really training. I did all of my runs, and though the speed got slower and slower, I felt really great. Running honestly made me get through the days without feeling sick. I felt like myself, and loved it.
I do now have a baby bump, though sometimes it just looks like I ate too much, but that constant reminder when I look down that Hey! I’m running still and having a baby inside of me is the reminder I need. I have definitely paid attention to what I can and cannot do. I would be lying, though, if I didn’t tell you I can’t wait for this to be over. I will be running the half in less than 3 weeks, and can’t wait to rest and relax, and enjoy the rest of pregnancy (not that I’m not right now! I totally am).
Training with being pregnant is extremely difficult. There are a lot of “ifs” that go into it, but I am very lucky I was able to continue running. Still, though, the thought of not seeing a time I want on the clock when I finish is hard. I’m thinking about just not even looking and not sharing the time because I’m trying to make it not about that. I crossed the 10 mile in 1:22, which would’ve put me on track for around 1:45 for the half. I know that isn’t going to be possible for me at this point. Sure, some people who are pregnant may still be able to do that, and I am very happy for them! It’s just not me and I am coming to terms with it, albeit slowly. Instead, I want to enjoy every minute of the race. Whether I run 11 minute miles, or 9 minute miles, I want to have fun. I want to cross that finish line and feel great so we can celebrate both my finishing, and Aarons birthday (what a gem cheering me on on his birthday, haha!). Races are usually about the time you finish in, which makes this entire thing a bit more difficult, but it’s something I’m working on.
I talked about how my long run didn’t work this weekend. My longest run so far has been 9 miles. I’m aiming for 12 this weekend, as long as my hamstring works again. I feel confident that if I can get a double digit run in there before race day, I’ll make it across the finish line. I may be walking up the last hill, but if that means I’m protecting my baby and finishing the race running for two, I am a-okay with that.
Please note there has been a lot of doubt in my mind over the past numerous weeks. I have never pushed myself further or harder than I could handle. My baby is my complete motivation, and worry, and I’m always thinking about whether what I am doing is okay for him/her. I have thought about deferring many times, but I truly do think I can do it this year and be ok (and I’d have to do it next year! ha). If something comes up with the baby between now and the race, I am not afraid to not participate. I would be sad, of course, but I’d be more sad if I did this and ended up hurting my baby.
I’d love to answer any questions you may have about this topic! Just let me know.