Running is still going fairly well at almost 22 weeks. It’s not necessarily blog-worthy – lots of slow miles – but I feel like I’ve learned some lessons along the way.
You never know how you are going to feel day to day. I used to map out my mileage and workouts for the week every Sunday. During the 1st trimester I still did that but then discovered it’s rather pointless. Good days and bad days come and go like the wind. These days if I feel good, I add miles. If I feel bad, I cut the run short. 6 milers can turn into 8 milers or 4 milers…it all depends.
I hold myself accountable for weekly miles, not pace. This sound like a contradiction to what I just said above. During the 1st trimester I was running 35-40 miles per week. Now I’m holding steady at 30-35 miles per week. I really strive to hit that weekly mileage for 2 reasons: (1) it motivates me and (2) why the hell not? If I still feel good, go for it. Things could change drastically in the next month. But pace is the one thing I cut myself some slack on. I stopped wearing my Garmin a long time ago. I’m slow and I’m getting slower. But if I hit my weekly mileage goal, all is good!
Lungs are fine, legs are sore. Some days there is so much tension that builds up in my legs (mostly my shins) that I have to take a short walk break to shake them out. I attribute this to the increased weight (concentrated in one spot) and probably gait changes as my body figures out the best way to handle its changing shape. The plus side is that I’m rarely out of breath (but I also run like a turtle).
The more support the better. I’m talking shoes here. I usually rotate between my Brooks PureCadence and Brooks Ravenna. A few weeks ago I noticed the PureCadence were not cutting it anymore. I could feel everything and I felt like my feet were working overtime. Again this is probably due to increased weight in one specific area.
Sundays are rough. I generally do my long runs (these days that’s 10-13 miles) on Friday or Saturday and, come Sunday, I’m just not mentally up for a run. Rather than take a rest day or bog myself down with a “longer” run, I do 4 miles and allow myself to walk/run. It allows me to get in a shake out run but also not set myself up for failure.
Motivation. I always thought running without training for something specific would be hard. I am running the Philly Rock n’ Roll Half in a few weeks but don’t really consider myself training for it. Instead, the biggest motivator (besides hitting my weekly mileage), is knowing that I’m doing good for myself and the baby. Cheesy, right? While I’m at it, I love running “with” the baby. He/she is the best running partner and our runs together are our special bonding time. I’m becoming a softy with this pregnancy!
Any running/exercise pregnancy lessons you can share?