We Don’t Use The “F” Word In Our House

Full disclosure, before you think I’ve gone and become a tame mom, I still have moments of F-bombing.  I tend to do it under my breath these days, but the truth is, profanities still happen around here.  I have two kids, can you blame me?!

There was a word that was much more common in my daily vocabulary and I am doing my best to erase it ever since I became a mom.

I grew up as a competitive figure skater.  Like other sports and activities where lean bodies are ideal, as I moved up the ranks, this type of body and weight were encouraged.  Whether coaches and judges came right out and told you to lose weight, or gentle nudges were given, it was very obvious that this body was essential for success in the sport.

I spent a lot of time watching other skaters and comparing my body.  I sized myself up in the mirror at ballet.  I was athletic.  I had muscles.  This left me looking much larger than other girls with skinny little legs.

You hear people telling you that “muscle weighs more than fat” but when you hop on the scale and hear that other girls weigh “X” amount of pounds, you start to feel overweight.  Numbers run through your head and you compare yourself to others.

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The notion of diets came into my life at an early age.  Other girls were discussing them, family members were on various diets, and weight was at the forefront of my mind.  I even had a coach point out to me when I was 12 that I was developing because I was getting “fat” in my armpits.  At the time, I was tiny, but regardless it should have never even been discussed and was very inappropriate.

I spent all of my teenage years and much of my early adulthood obsessed with my weight, exercise, and foods that I should/shouldn’t eat.  While I was fortunate to never have an eating disorder, I definitely had a very unhealthy relationship with food, exercise, and body image.

Friends in high school were annoyed by my constant whining that I was “fat.”  I was always looking for someone to tell me that I wasn’t.  Even if I didn’t believe them, I needed that reassurance.

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I may not be able to protect my girls from the pressures that awaits them in the outside world.  But I am going to do my part by showing them a healthy relationship with my body.  My weight might fluctuate. I may not feel my best at times, but I will certainly never utter the “fat” word in our house or anywhere else.  I will enjoy my food and encourage our family to enjoy a variety of healthy foods.  We will also enjoy every delicious and tasty bite we get to discover along the way.  Food is not meant to cause guilt and exercise is not meant to be punishment for what we eat.  Sweat is NOT your fat crying.  It is the awesome bi-product of moving your muscles.

I will also do the best I possibly can to not criticize myself.  This can be difficult, but young impressionable children do not need to see a role model or anyone else feeling dissatisfied with their bodies.  Confidence can carry a person a very long way and I truly believe we can pass this attitude on not only to our children, but also to the people we surround ourselves with in our lives.

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I have many female clients who refuse to use mirrors to correct their form or to ensure they are properly doing exercises because they do not want to see their reflection.  I cannot tell you how much this saddens me.  These amazing women are wonderful people.  We should somehow be far past this discomfort with seeing our image.  There is much more to ourselves besides a number on a scale.  Beauty goes far beyond pounds or pant sizes.

Learning to love ourselves isn’t always easy, and there are years of adolescence and puberty to wreak havoc on young minds.  Being body positive is a great way to set an example for young girls and boys. Even better, this positive attitude shares the love with yourself.

Regardless of whether you have children of your own, try to take a moment of pause before you criticize yourself or use the “f” word.  Consider what it does to your own confidence and to the people around you.  It is very likely that you are loved by many people and we often forget that when we put ourselves down, it hurts their feelings and confidence too.  Let’s work together to raise a new generation of body confident children and to lift ourselves up at the same time.

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How do you like to set an example for others?  Share your confidence building ideas!

 

 

I Blame It On The Sleep Deprivation

Has it really been three weeks?!  I haven’t posted in nearly three weeks and it has also been that long since little Lucy came into our lives.  What a wild adventure.

I didn’t intend to step away from blogging, but at the same time, I felt so much pressure with our first child to continue blogging, get right back into running, and start work as soon as possible.  As I saw her grow so rapidly, I realized that all of that pressure was totally unnecessary.  It is most important to enjoy every moment we have with our families and children.  So I have been taking time to enjoy baby and toddler snuggles and everything else that comes with being a mom of two little ones.

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Despite arriving a month early, Lucy was healthy enough to come home with us after 48 hours at the hospital.  We were so excited to bring her home and get back to some sort of normalcy.

September is a busy time in our lives, as our fall session of classes in NYC starts.  A few days after we settled back at home, Rock had to take off for a week in NYC.  We had a feeling our baby was going to arrive early, but we had no idea when.  Both of us were sweating when he should head to New York.  He definitely didn’t want to miss the birth of our baby, but we also have business to take care of.  Once we knew that everything was fine, it was perfect timing for him to make a quick trip.

I was lucky enough to have some wonderful friends and family step in to help out.  Thank goodness because two kids present different challenges.  While big sister is loving her new role, she is also two and likes to test just how firm we are about rules.  Like any new sibling, it can also be a tricky adjustment.  Patient friends stepping in was a huge blessing!

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Last weekend we took our first road trip as a foursome to Chicago for a family wedding.  With our original due date being two weeks after the wedding, we were not sure if we would make the festivities.  Fortunately, we all were able to be there and Mary even got to participate in her first flower girl gig!

Lucy hunh out with a friend of ours for the evening and I got to dress like a normal human for the first time in a long, long time.  I missed my little girl, but had a fun few hours feeling fabulous.

Mary nailed her flower girl role (thanks to a lollipop down the aisle) and she later rocked the dance floor.  She recently started ballet classes and opted to hit the dance floor in her ballet slippers.

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On the running front, I have been busy with lots of runners preparing for fall marathons.  It has been so exciting to watch everyone’s progress and live vicariously through their training.  I have to say they are giving me major marathon envy and I have a few ideas for next year.

When we got back from Chicago on Sunday, I did my first run since I was told to take a break at 34 weeks.  It went surprisingly well.  Last time I got right back in two weeks after Mary was born and it was a bit too early.  I ended up injured and pushing myself too soon.  This time around I felt mentally and physically ready and had a great 3 mile run.  I’ve had a few other runs since then and am slowly increasing the mileage.

Today I am starting back to work with a few solid hours of personal training.  For the next few weeks/months I am going to stick to just one or two days of personal training a week and see how things go.  I am looking forward to getting back to work for a little bit, but want to make sure I take advantage of every baby and toddler moment I possibly can.

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I hope to start blogging with more frequency and getting back into what this blog was originally meant for; a little bit of my life and plenty of running/fitness related info.  Thanks for your patience during my hiatus.  No guarantees over the next few weeks that it won’t happen again!

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New Adventures

Happy Friday!  I have been absent for a few weeks.  My apologies but things threw me for a loop and I opted to take a break from blogging until life calmed down a touch.  Things really haven’t calmed down and at this point, I can assure you that they likely won’t.  But we at least have an action plan and feel back on track!

Two weeks ago, Rock had to leave town for the weekend.  Mary and I opted for a fun girl’s weekend (along with our dog Louie).  We spent our afternoons at the lake playing in the sun and had a super exciting movie night together.  Mary is really into Daniel Tiger (from my beloved Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood) these days.  It worked out perfectly that Saturday night there was a new Daniel Tiger episode about his family having a new baby and bringing her home from the hospital.  I had just hit 34 weeks and this was a perfect way for Mary and I to mark the occasion. How else does one really discuss with a 2 year old that things are going to be changing soon?!  I will also admit that I totally cried while watching this episode.

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Before Rock got home on Sunday I was able to get a great long run in on the treadmill while Mary napped.  I had a stellar week of running, logging 51 miles!  I felt fantastic.

However, by 8:00pm that evening I started to feel contractions and they held on throughout the night.  I figured they were just run of the mill Braxton Hicks, but when they lasted for over 12 hours and stayed close together, I gave my doctor’s office a call and they sent me to labor and delivery.  I was shocked to find out that we were in preterm labor and we spent 24 hours at the hospital getting the contractions to subside and some steroids to help the baby’s lungs mature, just in case.  If you’ve been a follower of this blog for awhile, you might recall that Mary made an early entrance into the world, and this was pretty much to the day that she started trying to arrive.

I was sent home on modified bedrest and said goodbye to running.  Not a huge deal.  Having been put on bedrest before, I knew that I likely wouldn’t be running up to my delivery date.  So instead, I worked at finishing up watching the entire series of Gilmore Girls on Netflix.  This show has gotten me through treadmill running during my pregnancy.  I am happy to report that I finished the series and made it through all but 20 mins of the Gilmore Girls reunion movie.

At 35 1/2 weeks of pregnancy, things were feeling great and I was certain we were going to make it the whole way through.  That was until my water decided to break in the middle of the night and we made a 3:30am drop off with a pajama clad Mary in the parking lot of a gas station.  We passed her off to my mom as the attendant watched us and I felt like we were doing some strange illegal activity.  Mary on the other hand, thought it was awesome to be wearing her pajamas in the car and chatted it up with us in the wee hours of the morning.

We arrived safely at the hospital, got settled into a room and had a super smooth delivery at 1:21pm on Thursday September 7th.  Little Lucy Carroll Dudek arrived healthy and happy at 6 pounds 1 ounce (just an ounce shy of her sister).  She may have been early but she came out kicking, screaming, and looking great.

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We opted not to know the sex of our baby and it was a wonderful surprise.  I spent my entire pregnancy, certain that we were having a boy.  In fact, every time I went to pick something up for the nursery, it took all my willpower not to go for a shade of blue or to gravitate toward some onesies for boys.  It was an awesome surprise to find out that I was wrong (and Rock predicted correctly…..insert joke here about men actually being correct sometimes).

We are all so excited and Mary was thrilled to come to the hospital and visit her new little sister.  Mary arrived in her “I’m The Big Sister” shirt that I picked up for her and with a stuffed animal that we took her to pick out a few weeks ago.  In return, I had a special Big Bird tucked away in my bag as a gift for the new baby to give to Mary.

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I know that it will be an adventure for the new big sister over the next few days and weeks but we made a few decisions over the past few months that I feel really helped with her transition.  Once we hit our second trimester and felt comfortable telling family and friends, we started discussing how we were having a new baby join our family soon.  Mary knew that there was a baby in my belly and she spent a lot of time over the past few months rubbing my belly and giving the baby kisses.

We also hit up Barnes and Noble and purchased several different children’s books about becoming a big sister and bringing home a new baby.  Mary loves reading books and when we would pick out something to read each night, she gravitated towards these.  Over the past few weeks, and as her vocabulary grew, it was reassuring to hear her discussing her new role as a big sister.Lucy6

There are also several Daniel Tiger and Elmo’s world episodes that touch upon babies and bringing new babies home.  I think these were also really helpful in educating our little one about the new changes that were to come.

Thank you to all of our friends and family who have been so helpful and supportive over the past few weeks.  Thanks to my runners who were patient and a huge thanks to my personal training clients who have been dealing with my hiatus!  A special thanks goes out to all of the awesome followers of this blog who have sent messages and kind words.  We are really blessed!

33 Weeks-Feeling Good(ish) Again

Happy Monday!  I hope everyone had a lovely weekend.  We finally had some nice weather around here and made sure to take full advantage of it.

Last week was cool and rainy for the most part.  Rock and I spent all day Friday in a First Aid and CPR certification course.  We are both working as trainers now and are fortunate enough to be provided with top notch training.  It was a full day course, but the weather outside was cool and rainy.  So we really didn’t miss much.  I needed to renew my CPR for several of my certifications and I always think it is a great idea to get a refresher before bringing a new baby into the home.

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I have witnessed several occasions where CPR has been necessary.  I cannot emphasize enough how great it is to at least have some knowledge of what to do.  You really never know when a situation will present itself.

After we left work on Friday, we stopped at a new grocery store in Traverse City called Lucky’s.  This place is a bit like Trader Joe’s and our new favorite spot to grab groceries.  I am a bit of a nut for really great produce and meats and cheeses.  The delicious baked goods don’t hurt either.  We stocked up, picked Mary up from daycare, and then headed to the lake for the weekend.

The weather wasn’t great Friday night but we wanted to be out there bright and early because the weekend promised to be beautiful.  Despite the cold rain, we enjoyed a nice warm fire and just chilled on the couch for the evening.

Saturday morning we were up and enjoying coffee and by 8:30am Mary begged us to put her swimsuit on and she was out playing in the sandbox.  I took my coffee out on the dock and just soaked in what felt like the last little bits of summer.

In the early afternoon we headed over to Shetler’s Dairy Farm for a new adventure.  Shetler’s is five miles down the road from our house.  They have a fabulous dairy store that carries bottled milk and other products and also does ice cream.  There is a petting zoo for children with calves and foals and a little area for children to play.  While I am not a big dairy drinker, I love giving Mary this healthy option and have to say that their chocolate, strawberry, and orange cream milk is delicious!

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Our friend Pete recently designed a huge corn maze on the property and we were the first ones of the day to arrive and give it a try.  The Shetler’s have numbered posts inside with paper punches as a scavenger hunt.  If you can find all of the posts with the different paper punches you can turn in your ticket for a prize drawing. Pete and his wife are runner’s and I told them that it reminded me of a much saner version of the Barkley Marathons.

The maze was fantastic but we came up short and couldn’t find one of the posts.  Mary had an absolute blast leading us around all of the paths and looking for the prizes.  We will likely be back because Rock wants revenge!

After getting some runs in during Mary’s nap time, we spent the rest of the day playing on the beach and in the sun.  We grilled up some awesome bacon cheeseburgers that we picked up at Lucky’s.  And to top it all off, during our morning walk a neighbor gifted us with some of their fresh corn.  We threw that on the grill too.  It was a perfect late summer barbecue.

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Sunday morning was even nicer than the day before so we took a family walk and made sure to hit the beach nice and early.  We played in the sun until Mary’s nap and then cleaned up the house and headed back home.   It was a bit sad to leave as the leaves are already starting to change and I am not quite ready for summer to come to an end.  Hopefully we will be able to return for a few more days again soon.

I finished the day off with a six mile run, leaving me with 43 miles logged for the week.  I’m super happy with that number as I am now 33 weeks pregnant.  While I feel better than I have in a few weeks, I also feel like I have a beach ball stuck to the front of me!  The third trimester is definitely an adventure of ups and downs.

How was your weekend?  Are you sad to see summer coming to a close too?

32 Weeks & Taking Time To Treat Myself

Happy Monday!  Thank you so much for the kind words last week about my rib.  I am happy to report that I am feeling much better.  I had intentions of updating last week, but our family vacation was so much fun that I decided to take a break and just enjoy being with family.

The start of last week was rough.  My rib was continuing to pop out of place and the most frustrating part was that it was happening while I was sleeping at night.  Who in the world gets injured in their sleep?!  I woke up on Saturday and Sunday nights at 2am and spent most of the night pacing and trying to find a comfortable position to sleep in on the couch.  We were sharing a house with family and we were sharing our room with our daughter.  I felt very disruptive and frustrated.  I know that soon sleep will be at a premium when the baby arrives and I would love to get some decent sleep right now!

On the bright side, I did get to see an incredibly beautiful sunrise at 5am on Monday morning over Lake Michigan.  I might have been exhausted but I now know what all of you early birds rave about.

Monday night I could feel a tight knot it my back and I decided to get online and see if there was anyone in the area that did prenatal massage.  As luck would have it, the Amira Spa at The Homestead Resort offers a prenatal massage.  I decided to bite the bullet and spend the $120 for a 50 minute massage.  I felt a little guilty but at that point I was so sick of sleepless nights, I decided it was absolutely worth it.

I was blown away when I arrived at the spa on Monday afternoon.  The Homestead is the largest freshwater resort in the United States and is located on the outskirts of Glen Arbor, Michigan.  To get to the spa you wind around and all the way up to the top of the large hill that the resort sits on (they have skiing in the winter).  When I pulled up to the gates of the spa, I was absolutely shocked.

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The entrance.

Upon entering, I was met with babbling brooks and streams that wound around the spa with ample seating in shaded areas.  Steps led up to an infinity pool overlooking a cliff out to Lake Michigan.  From there you could see the crystal clear lake and Manitou Islands.  Fountains spouted water across the pool and patrons lounged around the area in robes.

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The spa itself was small, but I was met by a lovely receptionist who had me fill out some paper work and then offered me a drink.  I was then lead to a small ladies locker room where I was given one of the most comfortable robes I have ever worn.  From there I was lead into a spotless room where I laid down on a luxurious heated table.  Laying down on the heat alone felt like it would remedy the pain!

My massage therapist was a new mom herself and was so helpful with finding tender areas and working out knots.  She noted that my upper back was extremely tense and my scapulae had very limited range of motion.  It felt so good to ease some of the tension I had likely been carrying around for weeks.  She finished my treatment with lavender scented oil.  I decided right there that lavender was my new favorite scent this pregnancy.

I left feeling refreshed and revived.  The receptionist offered me a drink and told me I was welcome to spend the rest of the day hanging out at the pool area.  I could have even had a glass of wine had I not been almost 8 months pregnant.  Let me tell you, it was tempting to cancel my plans and sit at the pool for the rest of the day.

I did find a shaded garden and waited for Rock and Mary to pick me up.

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Tuesday night was a bit better as far as sleep went but I was a tad disappointed that it didn’t immediately go back to normal.  I felt a little hopeless, but I noticed during the rest of Wednesday that my body was starting to feel loser and better.  By Wednesday night, I got almost a full nights sleep in my own bed!

Long story short, sometimes we forget just how much pressure we put on our bodies. Whether we are pregnant, getting daily workouts in, or spending hours at work each day, we need to remember that our bodies need some love and attention.  It might not be a luxurious massage that makes things better for you, but there are plenty of ways to treat your body.  Drink some extra water, take a yoga class, or foam roll for a few minutes each night.  Your body will appreciate the extra attention.

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It stormed one of the last nights in Glen Arbor and we were treated to this view!

The rest of the week was a huge improvement and I am happy to report that I managed to get 39 miles of running in.  I’m still taking a break from strength training and might wait until after the baby arrives.  But I am taking a little extra time to listen to my body and treat it when I need it most.

How do you take care of yourself when your body needs a little extra love?

Ditch The Focus-Run Easier

I’ve mentioned recently that I have taken to the treadmill more often as my pregnancy has progressed.  The flat, even terrain is easier for me and having a bathroom right next door is very helpful too.  Last time as my pregnancy progressed and we lived in the city, I got fed up with trying to deal with drivers who ran through so many stop signs.  It just gets to be too much.

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So you can imagine my disappointment the other night when my husband told me that a belt had broken on the treadmill and it would take a week for a new part to arrive.  I went into semi-panic mode.  Where was I going to run in our small town where I could find a bathroom?  I also insist that all runners carry their phones with them for safety reasons, which meant putting on my FlipBelt, only adding to the pressure on my belly/bladder.

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After a lot contemplation, I decided my best bet was to drive over to my parent’s house and run around their mostly flat and quiet neighborhood.  It is my place of choice for runs and I can easily get 5-10 miles in from there.  I figured that I could stick close to their house for an emergency stop and worst case scenario, I would duck into the woods.

As I headed out I did a nice easy mile and felt great.  But the fear of having to go was constantly on my mind.  So I looped back and ran into the house.  I realized that I had pushed the panic button a little early and I was actually fine so I took off and decided to head out a little further.  I got two miles out and that was when I needed to decide if I would turn back home or take a trail to another area for an extra mile before heading back.  I decided to go for it and then started doing the math in my head of how long I would have to make it.

That was when I realized that I was far too focused on the potential of having to go to the bathroom and how many miles I had yet to do.  Many of us runners tend to have a Type A personality, and even if you don’t one thing that running quickly impresses upon you is a focus.  We start focusing on goals, on distance, on paces, on everything.  Sometimes that can be just too much!  What I needed to do was lose my focus and just run.  So I turned up my music and just cruised.

Do you know what happened?  It felt great!  I sweated hard.  I enjoyed the sun.  And I got six really nice miles of outdoor running in.

Lesson learned is that for all of the great reasons to focus during training or as we progress, it is just as important sometimes to drop the intentions and just get out and enjoy running for the sake of running.

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Here are a few ways you can silence all of the noise in your head and get back to basics:

Ditch the technology.  Leave the GPS at home and run a route that is familiar to you if you need to know the distance.  Not worrying about your pace, the current distance, or what you have left to do is a great release for your mind.

Turn up the volume.  Put on some music or a podcast.  Don’t literally turn the volume up too much.  It is important to still hear what is going on around you such as cars, people, and animals.  But having something to listen to makes it pretty hard to pay too much attention to the details of your run.

Switch things up.  Change your route.  Do some research and then get in the car and try a new place out.  If you have the luxury, take a day trip and go explore.

Run with someone else.  Join a running group or enlist a friend to run with you.  Perhaps you don’t all go at the same pace.  That is okay!  Run at the pace that is best for the slowest runner.  Enjoy the conversation and remember that there are huge benefits to slow runs.

How do you like to lose your focus?

30 Weeks- Do You Want Worms With That

Happy Tuesday!  I meant to do a post for Monday but we had company Sunday night and we went to bed way past our bedtime.  It was a great excuse not to blog.

Saturday marked 30 weeks in my pregnancy and the end of another pretty good week.  I ran 42 miles last week and felt really great with my running.  It takes me a little longer to run these days and I have to take frequent bathroom breaks, so on days that I am feeling really good, I just break my run into two parts.  For example, last Tuesday I did a 6 miler in the morning and finished the day with a nice easy 5 mile run.

My stomach seems to be growing by the day which hasn’t made running too difficult yet, but it did throw me off a bit the other day when I tried to swim in the deep end of a pool.  Everything seems to have shifted a little bit!

Our treadmill is temporarily out of commission (a belt broke) so I am doing a few runs outside.  This isn’t my preferred mode of running these days, due to bathroom locations, but I leave myself the option of doing two shorter runs.

I’m still working several days during the week and that is going well.  But when I work a full shift, I am exhausted by the time I get home.  I plan to work through the month of August and actually will be picking up some extra hours at the end of the month to help out some co-workers.  However, after that I plan to really scale things back.  You just never know how those last few weeks will go.

On Saturday we drove to Traverse City for Mary’s swim lessons at the Y.  It worked out perfectly for me to get a few hours in with clients while Mary and Rock went for a swim and then a run together.  We then drove back home and loaded up the car and headed to our cottage at the lake for a week.

Rock asked me to stop on the way and grab some worms, because Mary is in love with fishing off of the dock.  When I stopped in the small party store, I decided to grab some butter for the next morning.  There is a tiny diner down the road from our cottage and they make the best pancakes.  I had big plans for take out the next morning.

When I went to pay at the counter, I set the worms and butter down and the girl who rang me up asked, “Is that your weird craving?  Worms and butter?”  I had to laugh.  Some people say the strangest things to you when you are pregnant (such as the woman at TJ’s who proclaimed I was definitely having a boy last time), or just help themselves to a belly rub (not cool).  I appreciated her sense of humor and it made me smile all day.

While summer weather has been a bit odd here in Northern Michigan (lots of rainy days and cooler weather) we had a splendid weekend.  I sat out on the dock and worked on training plans for clients Saturday evening.

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Sunday was bright and sunny and after a giant serving of homemade cinnamon bread and pancakes from Shirley’s, I got a slow 6 mile run in the sun.  It felt great and I now consider any run without the need for a potty break to be a major success!

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Not super pretty, but I had to cut them up for full syrup coverage!

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I admit that this is also how I wrapped up my run.

Afterward we had some friends out to play and grill.  It was a perfect day/evening and we went to bed way too late.  Isn’t that what summer is all about?!

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How was your weekend?  What are your standards for a “successful run?”

29 Weeks Pregnant, Awesome Running, & An Identity Crisis

Happy Monday!  I hope everyone had a great week and weekend.  We had less than stellar weather around here, but we made the best of it.  Summer has been flying by with lots of work and tons of family activities.  I honestly hate to see it going by so quickly, but we are certainly trying to enjoy every moment.

This weekend marked 29 weeks in my pregnancy.  I’m feeling pretty great for the most part.  I had a fantastic week of running and logged 42 miles.  I was pretty excited about that.  The only bummer is that I have moved most of my runs to the treadmill at this point because of my frequent need to make a run to the bathroom.  Fortunately, we have a treadmill at home and I am able to run at the gym at work during my breaks.  Despite my growing belly, I am still feeling pretty good at this point.

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Now that we are into the third trimester I am definitely starting to notice some changes.  I am getting tired more often and try to grab a nap whenever I get a chance.  My belly is certainly getting bigger and my running is starting to slow just a little bit.

However, on Friday morning when I left to go run some errands I was hit with a major hungry belly.  This hasn’t really happened to me and I haven’t had any cravings at all during this pregnancy.  I was going to be on the road for a bit and my urgency for food took me through the Burger King drive-thru.  I never eat fast food.  To top it off, as soon as I got my bag of food, I drove off and later realized I left without my change.  I was that hungry.  My breakfast sandwich was delicious but I did wonder what was happening to me with my bizarre urgency for fast food!

Beyond that, I do have to say that pregnancy brain is a real thing.  I am a list maker.  I live by lists and sticky notes.  But now, more than ever, I rely on these lists to keep my life in order. I can’t recall a darn thing I say I will do or have planned.  Last week at work I was making an appointment for a client and quoted them a time that I thought they gave me.  The client laughed and said we hadn’t yet discussed a time but the one I gave them would work.  I felt a bit foolish but she said she was an OB and knew what was going on.

When I got home from work that night I pulled in and thought I closed the garage door.  Later in the evening when Rock went to take the dog out, he asked why both garage doors were open.  Apparently I opened the other door instead of closing the one I parked at.  Doh!

Besides work and running, we have been spending a lot of time as a family doing fun activities.  We hit up a great charity event last week and I scored some awesome silent auction items.  I had a brilliant idea to put Rock’s name on the items I bid on so that he would have to pay for them.  But he had to run an errand when they announced the winner and I was left forking over the cash.  He made a point to snap a pic of me with one of my winnings.

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We also got to spend an evening with my family out on Torch Lake.  If you have never heard of this lake, I encourage you to Google it.  Torch Lake is huge and has a beautiful sandbar right in the middle where you can park your boat and play.  The water is crystal clear with colors reminiscent of the Caribbean.  You can rent a SUP on the sandbar, even get a burger from a boat that grills right there, or call and have a pizza delivered from nearby.  It’s a boater’s/pregnant woman’s paradise.

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Life may be slowing down but work is getting busier and busier these days.  The gym is keeping me plenty occupied and I am having such a fun summer with so many runners preparing for races this fall.  I almost wish it could be summer year round!

It rained a lot this weekend, but we took advantage of the indoor time and got a bunch of cleaning and errands taken care of.  After naps yesterday we pulled out the finger paints and Mary went to town.  It was a huge mess and we enjoyed every moment of it.

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How has your summer been going?  Are you as big a fan as I am?

Running Through Pregnancy

It is hard to believe that we are almost 2/3 of the way through this pregnancy.  People aren’t lying when they say that the second time goes much faster.  I guess when you already have one little one to chase around, there isn’t much time to spend thinking about much else!

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I have been very fortunate to run through both of my pregnancies.  One thing I think is very important for everyone is to have a doctor that you feel you can trust and has your best interests at heart.  If you enjoy running, find a doctor that respects and understands the sport.  Not everyone can run through pregnancy and each case is different, but having a doctor who is on the same page with you is key.

Here are a few tips that have helped me.  Please note that I am a RRCA Certified Running Coach and ACE Certified Health Coach.  These tips are from both my experiences and training.  However, you should always consult with your physician first.

Don’t start anything new.  If you ran before getting pregnant, it shouldn’t be a problem to continue if you have a healthy pregnancy, with your doctor’s consent.  However, it is not recommended that you pick up a new activity during these months.  If you are new to running and want to give it a try, wait until after the baby has arrived.

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Keep moving.  One of the best things for mom and baby is staying active.  A minimum of 30 minutes, 3 days a week is a great start.  However, getting some sort of activity in each day is ideal during this time.  Some days can and should be lighter than others.  But some activity can lead to a healthier pregnancy for both of you.

Hydrate!  I made the mistake of not taking my hydration seriously enough early on.  It lead to a calf tear and some very uncomfortable weeks.  Hydration is more important than ever during pregnancy.  Dehydration is one of the leading causes of early labor.  Drinking plenty of fluids and electrolytes can also help ward off calf cramping, which likes to show up in the middle of the night!

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Know when to kick up your feet.  While being active is important right now, so is rest.  Make sure you take time each day to kick your feet up and elevate.  Proper rest will help you recover between workouts which will hopefully make everything more enjoyable and long lasting.

Take it slow.  Running during pregnancy is all about enjoying yourself.  You need to keep your exertion and heart rate down.  You don’t ever want to overheat you or the baby.  If you find that you worry too much about your pace, leave the GPS at home and run a route you feel comfortable with.  You will have to slow down and your body will also force you to slow down.  Enjoy your time on the road (or treadmill) with you and your little one to be.

Did you run through pregnancy?  Do you have any tips?

27 Weeks Pregnant, 13.1 Race Miles, And I Swallowed A Bug

Happy Monday!  I have posts ready to go, but was without an internet connection last week.  Hopefully this week fares a little better.

We had a fabulous weekend here.  On Friday we drove back from Northern Wisconsin, just in time for some of our Chicago area friends to arrive for a visit.  We were super excited to see them.

It was a quick turn around for Saturday as we ran our traditional Cherry Festival Of Races in Traverse City.  For years we have done the 15k (I love the distance).  But this year I wanted to avoid one of the massive hills, and was looking for a little challenge to push me through the summer.  So we signed up for the 1/2 marathon.  Saturday also marked my being 27 weeks pregnant.

Later, I remembered why I never did the half marathon.  The race starts at 7:00am and you have to take a bus from the local high school out to the end of the Old Mission Peninsula by 6:15am.  We also live over a half an hour from the bus location, making for a very early wake up call.

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On the bus to the start.

However, I decided half way through this race that we would be doing this one again each year.  Despite the early start, I loved the drop off point for the race, a local winery!

The first two miles weave up and down and all around this local vineyard.  It was a bit of a challenging trail race to start.  Then the race pops out on the road that runs along the shore of West Grand Traverse Bay, all along the peninsula back into town.  It was flat, cool, and just beautiful.  The weather was nice and dry and the early morning temperatures were perfect.

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I stopped at mile 6 to use a port-a-potty (I e-mailed the director to make sure the course would have plenty) and was super appreciative of all of the water and Gatorade along the course.

Funny story:  Around mile four, I was breathing through my mouth when a bug flew in and I had zero chance of not swallowing it.  My gut reaction was to start heaving.  However, being almost in my third trimester, I started freaking out because the hacking was making me have to go to the bathroom.  I managed to pull it back together but it was a rollercoaster of emotions there for a minute or two!

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I absolutely love how this race comes off of the peninsula and right into downtown Traverse City.  People are lined up along Front Street to cheer on all of the runners and wait for the Grand Royale Parade to start.  You go from a quite run along the lake to feeling like you are in a big city race.

The finish ended with beautiful medals, water, bottles of cherry juice, bananas, cookies, cherries, and a food truck handing out chocolate milk and granola bars.  Busses were also there to deliver you back to the parking lot.

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I was also really impressed with the beautiful technical shirt in our goodie bags.  Even better, the local winery had a stemless wine glass for all of the participants, along with coupons for tastings.  The race was truly well thought out.

My goal was to finish in under two hours, with my B goal being to finish in under 2:10.  I was thrilled to cross the line at 1:53:03.  That is a time that I am really proud of.  Being pregnant and running is truly a great gift.  After being injured in May, I had been afraid there was no chance I would be able to run 13.1 miles by this weekend. In fact, I was worried I might not even be running again by now.

What made the run even better was having Rock by my side the entire race.  He ran ahead a few times to take some pictures of me and for the rest, he held back behind me and gave me some space.  He knew this was a special time for me to get one big last mileage push in during my pregnancy.  He was there to support me, but also gave me my space to run as I wanted.  I feel so lucky to have a partner like him to run with!

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A special thanks also goes to my parents who hosted Mary for a sleepover Friday night so that we could get up and on the road super early.  They brought her to the finish to cheer us on.  She promptly asked for my medal.

Did you race this weekend?  Ever get a wine glass for a run?