Tuesday, August 30, 2011

You know you're a runner when...

After tweeting with @Dubyawife this morning it really got me going and thinking of all the great little gems we do, see, and learn as runners. I will list several of my own and several more compiled from twitter runners. Hilarious stuff and I'm guilty of most. Please comment on my blog or tweet me with your own and I'll add them!

You know you're a runner when:
  • you know how long it takes for a black toenail to grow out.
  • you know how long it takes for a black toenail to fall off.
  • you have painted the skin where you toenail should be.
  • you are an expert in anti-friction creams...and not for dirty reasons.
  • you think compression clothing is sexy.
  • IT stands for Illotibial Band, not Information Technology
  • you can hold your own with any medical talk regarding piriformis, illotibial, popliteal, meniscus, plantar fascia or medial tibial stress.
  • you have a specific "race fee" fund set aside in your budget every year.
  • you logged more weekly running miles on your shoes than you did on your vehicle.
  • you can easily convert kilometers to miles in your head.
  • breakfast is followed by 2nd breakfast and lunch is followed by 2nd lunch.
  • you actively analyze the color of your pee.
  • you refer to a new race distance as your "first" race at that distance (as in..I'm running my "first" marathon this year).
  • your outside training motto is similar to the US Post Office "neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow...

  • your nips are like fine grade sandpaper. I use them for finishing work. ~@jeffswain
  • your kids' bedtime story is just about "bunions" and a blue ox, no "Paul" ~@razmataz6969
  • you mistakenly put on Body Glide instead of your deoderant. ~@Jen423
  • you look down your nose at the folk out running in cotton t-shirts. ~ @Lochrie
  • you see runners when you are driving and feel compelled to shout to them that you are also a runner. ~@eobeara
  • the first item on your hurricane evacuation list is a long run. :) ~@Gemini_Runner
  • you find bodyglide in your purse and don't question it. ~@rshill37
  • you quietly judge people taking leisurely bike rides as they pass you while you are running. ~Nicole
  • snot rockets are totally acceptable during a run. ~@acokertx
  • you get excited to see a bruised toenail (true story from last night) ~@DubyaWife
  • you have more running clothes than regular clothes in the laundry pile. ~@DubyaWife
  • you spend more time looking 4 run routes than other stuff when traveling 2 a new place. ~@DubyaWife
  • you hear PR and you think "personal record", not "public relations" ~@DubyaWifeyou
  • your holiday wish list includes nothing but running gear. ~@DubyaWife
  • your runs take longer than your commute to work! ~@DubyaWife
  • you get jealous when you're driving in your car and pass runners. ~@DubyaWife

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


As a sufferer of knee issues (meniscus tears, IT band issues, popliteal issues, osteo-arthritis...) I've dealt with my share of running limitations. I've had orthopedists tell me I shouldn't be running. Luckily I found a GREAT one here who is an athlete himself. He is constantly surprised at the amount of running and compensation I'm able to do with the shape my knees are in (he actually asked to use my scans for teaching at LSU...yeah, they're that jacked up). But he never dissuades me. He encourages me and helps me stay on the road. He understands the need to keep the body moving and pushing one's boundaries. Physical therapy, listening to my body and ibuprofen gel have worked miracles. With this I have been able to keep at the activity I have grown to love and depend on: running.

Although I have chronic aches and pains (what runner doesn't?) I push through them. I ice. I stretch. I rest. I run. I have never felt "limited". If my body wouldn't cooperate I would compensate, adjust and keep on moving - keep on pushing. With this pregnancy this is the first time that I have truly felt limited. I have to be more in tune with my body and Baby Z's little developing body now. This has been a real mental struggle for me. I struggle with the issues of feeling less worthy, less committed, less of a runner if I don't fit in at least 30 miles a week, if I don't push my runs to the brink, if I don't have several races on the horizon.

I have had a super smooth pregnancy so far. I'm healthy. Baby Z is healthy. I'm fortunate that I'm able to move at all. But I feel like I'm getting sidelined more and more. Heartburn, fatigue, round ligament pain, bladder pressure, the heat....they all have been run killers lately. When I found out I was pregnant I vowed to keep running, so long as my doctor cleared me. I was able to keep my mileage up and even train for and run a half marathon well into my second trimester. As I approached my third trimester my runs became less and less frequent. And now at 33 weeks I just feel blah: slow, flabby and blah. I feel all the past years of running progress and training slipping away from me. I feel limited.

This became even more evident when I couldn't participate in the New Orleans Red Dress Run this weekend. After chatting with Katie (of KatieRUNSthis) on my way downtown she advised against participating. It was hot. The crowd was huge and drunk. Not really a good place for a pregnant lady. So, I opted out, turned around and drove back to the house, again feeling limited. Only good thing is I have a fabulous red outfit for my next half.

I have to take a step back though and realize how unlimited my body really is though. I am producing billions of cells a second and I actually feel great while doing it. I am able to move. I am able to smile. I am able to breath. I am able to create life. I am blessed. Instead of being a running brat I'm trying to readjust my attitude and be thankful for and recognize the things where God has shown me that I am truly unlimited.

Yes, my running career will have to basically start over, but look at who I get to start it over with...Baby Z! What a great prize.

So from here on out I plan to focus on the positive:
  • Starting over and starting fresh means I can concentrate on my running form more and practice on my mid/fore-foot strike.
  • Recovery running will help me melt away the post-baby lbs.
  • Yes it will be tough, but I gain a greater satisfaction from a difficult job well done than one that comes easy.
  • It will be fun to see my huge race PRs from races immediately post-baby to future ones as I am getting back into pre-baby shape.
  • I already have 3 post baby races lined up. Great motivation!
  • I already have a great race outfit! (see above pic) :)
Although I may be somewhat limited right now, my plans for the future and positive outlook can make me limitLESS.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

...But you're so tiny!!

This will be somewhat of a blog rant. This has been festering in me for a while now so if you do not want to be subjected to the rants of a crazy, hormonal pregnant lady please stop reading now.

I am pregnant. I am over 31 weeks along. No, I am not HUGE. YES, I am healthy!!

One of the first things people say to me when I tell them how far along I am is "But you're so tiny!" I have heard it over and over and over and over...ad nauseum...to the point where I am now self conscious about it. I have even gone so far as to ask my OB/GYN on SEVERAL occasions whether everything is on track for me and Baby Z. I am healthy, have gained a healthy amount of weight and Baby Z is exactly in the 50% for his age. Perfect! Right where he should be. In addition, I am one of my doctor's most trouble free patients. I have been blessed with an easy and healthy pregnancy.

The problem is, after the "tiny" comment I often get "the Look". The one where they size me up and down and you can see the thoughts forming in their heads. Yes, I eat. In fact I eat a LOT. Ask my husband or anyone who follows me on Twitter. I'm eating constantly. But I also exercise. I walk, I swim, I hit the elliptical, I run, I play with my dogs. I also watch what I put into my word hole. I try and make healthy choices but by no means restrict what I can have. If I want ice cream, I eat ice cream. In fact I've been craving ginger ale floats like crazy lately. I don't drink sodas. I haven't regularly drank them in years! But, since I'm craving them I listen to my body and give in...in moderation.

My friend Katie's blog post on mommyrexia really got my blood pumping too. She said that the Today show implied that running moms are mommyrexic. That. Is. Ludicrous!! I completely agree with Katie in that most running moms that I've had the privilege to know and associate with are also some of the most healthy people I know. The benefits of exercise throughout pregnancy are huge and documented over and over. An active pregnancy can equal less complications, less stress, less fluid retention, better rest and easier labor and delivery. All of this means happy momma and happy baby. If you are medically cleared to exercise through pregnancy, then by all means, get your booty moving! It does NOT mean that you are mommyrexic.

Being an AMA preggo (*gasp* Advanced Maternal Age) I was worried about how I would be able to physically handle pregnancy. My OB was even worried at first. I was considered high risk early on, but have blown every test out of the water. My doctor now calls me his "easy patient". I truly believe that my exercise habits and active lifestyle are major reasons I've had such a great pregnancy.

So before you judge a pregnant woman by what you perceive her size should be, just remember that ALL pregnancies are different. All women are different. But the one thing we have in common is we really don't want to hear your opinion.

P.S.: HUGE shout out to For Two Fitness for the AMAZING pregnancy running tank. This thing fits like a glove, is SO comfy, doesn't chafe and is cute as a button!! Definitely a must have for active moms-to-be. Check them out here!