My, my…I’ve been busy! After a hiatus from running, I got 15K in this past week! Not that I recommend going about it that way because today is my first day of not being sore in about 5 days.
On Thursday, I remembered that I signed up for Not Fast Just Fabulous‘ Virtual 5K benefiting the Challenged Athletes Foundation, a non-profit that provides support, rehabilitation and access for athletes with physical challenges. So hit the gym for a lunch time run. It took me forever to finish, a symptom of my lack of keeping up with my running stamina. All I was hoping for was that I finished in under an hour and I did (in 56 minutes).
This was a pretty strong indicator of how my 10K would go on Saturday. Several months ago, a friend of mine proposed that we try out a 10K together. I was all for it until I took this little test that let me know I’d be completely wiped out for the next 3 months. And wiped out I was! I signed up for the Chicago’s Perfect 10K and within a week or so I was dealing with first trimester exhaustion and nausea and I set aside pretty much all fitness. I had gone into it with a 30 day plan to get my mileage and strength up but I could barely get out of bed for work most mornings, much less a run. Fortunately, these two races happened as soon I was feeling normal again but unlike my last pregnancy, I’m much bigger much sooner this time and I’ve just had to roll with it the best that I could.
So I finished this bad boy in under 2 hours (look at that! 2 of my 5K’s put together!) and I was hurtin’ for certain until yesterday afternoon. My nutritionist warned me that running while pregnant could be risky since my joints and ligaments are more malleable and more likely to be injured under a lot of pressure and strain. Boy, my hips were hurting by around mile 4.5 and by the end of Saturday night, my knee was throbbing and stiff. I’ve since then iced and heated everything plus rested and hydrated (and ate all the things too) and I feel like myself again!
I’m really glad I went through with these runs. I had a moment as I was nearing the finish line of my 10K on Saturday when I started to get really emotional. I thought about my last pregnancy, where I was in my life then and how I would have never in a million years considered doing something like this on a normal day, much less pregnant. I was near tears as I crossed the finish line and realized I just did something huge. I ran/walked 6.2 miles along the lake with the Chicago skyline in the background, one of my biggest fitness accomplishments to date at a time when I could have easily excused myself from such a challenge. Let’s just say, it took everything not to burst out in tears!
As for the race itself, I really enjoyed it! We started at Navy Pier and ran along the lake front path until we reached the museum campus and started the turn by running around Grant Park. Sadly, I took no pictures of the gorgeous Chicago scenery, I really couldn’t stop or I’d never start again! It was the perfect day for a race though, mid 50’s, no clouds in the sky, plenty of sunshine. It was wonderful! My only complaint is that the run back was along the lower lake front path and the cement was severely damaged making it a dangerous path for those that needed to stay to the right. I couldn’t really run along this part if I wanted to, I was too nervous I’d twist my ankle with my floppy ligaments and all. One thing I will say is that trying to run to the end of Navy Pier is like a mind game! You keep thinking you’re close and then there’s like a mile and a half left. You get to the first big ship that’s docked on the water along the pier and think, yeah! almost there! Crap! Half a mile left! So that part was pretty grueling but I probably would have felt that way no matter where I was running. I just reeeeally wanted to finish and this picture was that exact thought crossing my mind:
All in all, I’m really friggin’ proud of myself! Holy cow, I did a 10K! I did a 10K while pregnant! I think it’s safe to say I’ve arrived on the other side of “would never do it” to “challenge accepted!”. And now I’m a 10K finisher and I know I can only go up from here 😉