Friday, May 27, 2016

Friday Five: Pros and Cons of Running While Pregnant

Linking up today with MarCynthia, and Courtney for Friday Five.

I'm trying to keep running as far into my pregnancy as possible. I'm even doing an occasional (short) race! Obviously, it's been a fun hobby of mine for a while, and I'll be sad when eventually (whether that's at 6 months or 8.9 months) it will end up becoming too uncomfortable for the time being (and hopefully it'll be my choice to make, and no complications will make it inherently unsafe). But as much as I appreciate any time I get to enjoy it, there are definitely both pros and cons to continuing to run.

Con: No matter how many times you go to the bathroom before your run, you'll still start feeling like you have to pee no more than 10 minutes into your run. 

Pro: But you know the real reason you make sure to use the bathroom before a run? No longer that crucial. The lovely pregnancy symptom of constipation (which has actually been fairly mild for me) means even all the jiggling of your intestines on a run no longer makes a bathroom stop for #2 even remotely urgent.

Con: It can be a bit disheartening to know you're not going to set any PRs, and will in fact probably be getting slower each week. 

Pro: You don't have to train for a PR. No need to follow a set schedule - do whatever you feel like doing. A nap feels more appealing than a 5 miler? No problem, take nap! No need to do quarter mile repeats literally as fast as you can, pushing yourself to the limit of having to catch your breath. You get to just do the easy, fun, relaxing running. (Or push yourself when you feel like it, but only when you truly feel up for it.)

Con: None of your cute running shirts fit you anymore.

Pro: You finally have a use for the unisex or just too big (cause standardized sizing is apparently just too much to ask for) race shirts you've accumulated.

Con: In part due to those unisex race shirts, you spend a large portion of early pregnancy with a stomach that maybe kinda looks like you're pregnant, but could very easily just bea little extra weight. So presumably everyone who sees you run - so incredibly slowly - is assuming that you're a brand new runner trying to run off that beer gut.

Pro: Eventually, you'll have an obvious baby bump, and it will make sense to everyone why you're chugging along so slowly.

Con: Even if you want to challenge yourself, do some races, keep up with a modified race goal - your body often just isn't having it. Some days it's just going to be a slog fest no matter what.

Pro: Maybe you can't brag about a new PR, but everyone you talk to is in awe that you're still running at all. It's never been easier to be so impressive!

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Portland Parks 5k: Fernhill Park

Since I know I'm not going to be setting any PRs this year, I didn't want to spend too much money on races - but it's still fun to have an opportunity to push myself a little! Abe doesn't like spending money on races in general, but is focusing on trying to set a new 5k PR, so he signed up for several in the Portland Parks $5 5k series, and I figured I'd join him for a couple of them. The series does each race in a different park; the first one of the series for this year was recently in Fernhill Park. 

We were able to find parking pretty close in the neighborhood, and arrived about an hour before the race started at 9. Packet (ok, bib) pickup is just the morning of, as far as I could tell, but it's a small-ish event so it's not crowded or long lines. We quickly got our bibs, checked out the route map, used the porta potties, and tried our best to stay dry from the rain. (We could have gotten away with less lead time, for sure.) There was a kids' race of one lap around the track before the 5k started. 

The course was three loops (just over a mile each) around the park; starting on the track, going around on a sort of dirt trail, some across grass, then back onto some dirt trail to lead back onto the track. It was definitely a bit more of a cross-county type of race than I realized I was getting into, with some caution needed to avoid mud and tree roots, but I don't think it ended up slowing me down too horribly. 

Mile splits:
1 - 11:29
2 - 11:17
3 - 10:55
3.1 - 10:00 (1:14 time for 0.13 per my garmin)

Negative splits! Total unofficial time: 34:58, which is only 20 seconds slower than the Race for the Roses four weeks prior. For pregnancy, I think that's a sign of making progress. 

There were a few issues overall - they were out of bananas by the time I finished, when there must have been at least a third of the people still on the course. Though I don't actually know how many were really still on the course after me, though, because the timing systems somehow got messed up (they said because of the rain), and many people (including me) were left off all together, and others' were messed up (Abe has a time that looks like it only includes his first two laps, and shows an age of 116). I realize you can't expect tons for only $5, although I think their reaction to the issue (more jokey than apologetic) left a little to be desired - just because it's inexpensive doesn't meant people's times aren't important.

I'm signed up to also do the June 5k, so hopefully that one goes a bit better to at least provide an official time, but as long as that time isn't much slower than this one I'll be happy with it. 

Monday, May 23, 2016

Week of May 16 - 22


Monday: Run 2.3 miles (13:33 pace)

Tuesday: Run 2.15 miles (14:13 pace) + prenatal yoga (20 min)

Wednesday: Swim 1,100 yards

Thursday: Rest day

Friday am: Swim 1,200 yards
Friday pm: Half a round of disc golf + run 3.0 miles (13:31 pace)

Saturday: Prenatal yoga class (90 min)

Sunday: Run 2.75 miles (14:19 pace) 

Total swimming: 2,300 yards
Total running: 10.2 miles
Average daily steps: 10,024

From the prior Sunday's 5k and/or weights, I was still sore til Thursday, so taking a week off from the weight lifting!

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Bloomsday 2016

Previous Bloomsdays: 2013, 2014, 2015

Through three years of running Bloomsday, I've tried to talk my parents into doing it too (walking). My dad used to run Bloomsday (20-ish years ago), but doesn't run anymore. My mom has never done running, though she does walk a lot for exercise, but the longest she'd walked was the 5k Turkey Trot I convinced them to do last Thanksgiving. Finally I told them that if I was pregnant at the time for it this year, I'd walk it with them. 

I flew in Saturday (the day before the race), we grabbed a quick lunch then checked into our hotel (just a 10-minute walk across the river from the expo center and race start). Next we headed to the expo to get our race bibs. There was a mix up with my mom's bib, which we discovered later, so we ended up having to go back the next morning (they do packet pickup only for out-of-towners the day of the race - which, even though we were already in town before that, we did qualify for). 

That meant we were up a bit early, even though we were starting in the second to last wave. We went back to the expo, got my mom's correct bib, used the real plumbing bathrooms while we were there, then headed to the start line. Though it didn't get too hot by the time we were done with the race, it was getting warmed up pretty quickly, and we were starting to ditch layers while waiting. We got right in the porta potty line by our corral, then starting moving towards the start line, officially beginning around 10:15.

I'd been doing some training walks in the 17:00 - 18:00 mile range, and my parents said they'd been doing some in the 18:00 - 19:00, so I figured we'd end up around there, maybe slowing some on Doomsday hill. Whenever I looked at my watch, it seemed like the instant pace was much slower than that (22:00 - 23:00 or so), and the average got skewed (for actual walking pace) due to a long wait in a porta potty line in mile 2, so in the end I was surprised that our actual mile splits were closer to our goal than I realized. 

Approaching Doomsday Hill

I kept trying to be encouraging and get my parents moving  faster - my competitive side definitely made me a little frustrated, although I tried to just enjoy the time. There was lots of "come on, you can keep up with the pregnant lady", and "let's try to catch up with the grandma pushing the double stroller". I'm not sure my mom entirely appreciated my motivational methods...

Despite my mom feeling some pain in her knee (though her feet, which had been giving some trouble during training, held up fine), we kept up a pretty good time overall, ending with an official time of 2:45:10 and 22:08 pace. That included a long-ish wait for a porta potty at one point (not for the pregnant lady, I might add!), so my garmin shows moving time of 2:33:51 and moving pace of 20:01. I really wanted to come in at under a 20:00 pace, so we got close to that!

Still at least able to smile long enough for a photo, in the last mile.

Mile splits:
1 - 20:09 (a bit congested at the start, so hard to move as fast as we wanted to)
2 - 28:25 (includes about 10 minutes stopped, so awesome pace while moving)
3 - 18:57
4 - 19:42
5 - 19:45 
6 - 21:33 (Doomsday Hill starts at the end of mile 5 and into mile 6 - didn't slow down much!)
7 - 20:56
7.46 - 23:04 (15:31 time for .69 per my garmin)

We were all glad to be finished, and by the next day my mom was sort of able to say she was glad she'd done it (and her knee was feeling much better, no permanent damage as she'd feared during the event, and as I'd told her during the event would be the case). For next year, though, I've given her the out of asking her if she'll watch the baby while I run the race. 

Monday, May 16, 2016

NROLFW Phase 1 Week 1


Monday: 2.5 miles (13:11 pace) + NROLFW phase 1 workout A

Tuesday: Bike trainer 4.5 miles (13.4 mph, 61 rpm)

Wednesday: Rest day

Thursday: Run 2.7 miles (13:48 pace)

Friday: Swim 1,000 yards

Saturday: Unplanned rest day

Sunday: Portland Parks 5k (34:58 - 11:16 pace) + NROLFW phase 1 workout B

Total swimming: 1,000 yards
Total biking: 4.5 miles
Total running: 8.3 miles
Average daily steps: 10,523

Wanting to continue doing some kind of weight lifting during pregnancy, I decided to just restart the New Rules program. With some adaptions of course - so far leaving out some ab/core exercises, though I plan to do some looking into what alternatives I might be able to safely sub in.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Week of May 2 - 8


Monday: Run 1.6 miles (12:50 pace)

Thursday: Run 2.5 miles (13:36 pace)

Friday: Round of disc golf

Saturday: Run 2.5 miles (13:49 pace)

Sunday: Run 3.55 miles (13:38 pace)

Total running: 10.15 miles
Average daily steps: 9,043

Plus standing for 90 minutes x 3 choir concerts - it's seriously a physical activity! 

This week felt a bit hectic, with choir at the end of the week, and the beginning just felt like I was always catching up from being out of town the prior weekend. Hopefully this week I can fit in some more variety. 

Monday, May 2, 2016

Week of April 25 - May 1


Monday: Swim 1,000 yards + bike trainer 5.7 miles (13.4 mph, 61 rpm)

Nothing on Tuesday or Wednesday - combo of busy days with coming down with a cold - figured rest was probably better for me anyway than trying to fit something in at the expense of my bedtime.

Thursday: 2.25 miles (13:45 pace)

Friday: Half a round of disc golf + run 2.75 miles (12:50 pace)

Meant to do something Saturday if I had time, but busy traveling and seeing family - we'll call it a taper day.

Sunday: Bloomsday 12k walk

Total swimming: 1,000 yards
Total biking: 5.7 miles
Total running: 5.0 miles
Average daily steps: 11,869
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