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Archive for April, 2012

*sigh*

With only one week to go until the Vancouver half-marathon baby #2 has decided enough is enough.

S/he is apparently done with running long distances, which means I am done running long distances (until after the baby is born of course).

I’m frustrated to say the least.

I knew it could happen but I guess I wasn’t as mentally prepared for it to actually happen as I thought I would be. I think what bothers me the most is how well things were going up until this past weekend and why they had to change just one week away from the race.

One week!

Don’t worry. Nothing is wrong. It’s just that baby has gone through a growth spurt and it is very uncomfortable to run right now. My ligaments are stretching and it feels like the baby is pushing on my stomach from the inside and it is not a pleasant feeling. I explained to Andrew that it felt similar to the way our three-year-old son pushes his feet into our backs when we are asleep; also not a pleasant feeling.

The pain goes away when I rest and relax so I am taking it as a sign that I need to scale back on the activity for now. Running 13.1 miles on Sunday would be the exact opposite of that so I have made the decision to not run the race. I’ll still be there though to cheer on my friends and the other runners who have worked so hard to get to the finish line. I may not get to run but there’s no way I’m missing out on a girl’s weekend to the city!

I admit that it freaked me out but I’m lucky that my Mom is also an obstetrics nurse and only a phone call away.

My running may be on hiatus but looking back I know I have a lot to be happy about with respect to being a pregnant runner.

I’m 25 weeks pregnant (in my 26 week) and I have been running up until now. For the past 6 months I have been able to keep running and I can’t forget that.

I ran the Vancouver Sun Run 10K in a time of 1:18.

I participated in the 25th Anniversary Rick Hansen Relay (recap coming soon but I wanted to get this post out-of-the-way first).

I’ve inspired two friends to train for a 10K in October with me as their coach. I plan to run this race with them – it will be my first race post-baby and I’m already excited!

And at the end of the day a healthy, happy baby is way more important than another half-marathon finisher medal.

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On April 28, 2012 the Rick Hansen 25th Anniversary Relay will be making its way through Midway and I am honoured to be a medal-bearer for this event.

Rick Hansen is a well-known Canadian who had a dream twenty-five years ago to make the world a more accessible and inclusive place, as well as to find a cure for spinal cord injury. Rick Hansen suffered a spinal cord injury in 1973 when he was thrown from the back of a pick-up truck and became paralyzed from the waist down. He did not let his injury slow him down and later went on to become the first person with a disability to graduate from the University of British Columbia with a degree in Physical Education. He has won 19 international wheelchair marathons, the world title four times, nine gold medals at the Pan American Wheelchair Games, and he represented Canada at the 1984 Olympics.

On March 22, 1985 (I was four-years-old) Rick and his team began the Man In Motion World Tour. For 26 months they wheeled over 40,000 kilometres (the equivalent of three marathons every day) through 34 countries, raising awareness of the potential of people with disabilities. I have no memories of the actual event because I was so young but I do remember learning about Rick Hansen in school growing up.

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In 2010 the celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the MIMWT began. On April 24, 2011 Rick and his team began retracing the Canadian segment of the MIMWT relay, beginning in Newfoundland, moving from one Man in Motion to Many in Motion. Over the course of nine months, Rick and his team will have travelled 12,000 km and visited 600 communities across Canada. Over 7000 participants will join the relay in their communities as a representation of the original relay. Each medal-bearer will carry and hand-off the Rick Hansen Medal as it makes its way across the country.

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Communities had a chance to submit names for potential medal-bearers but a contest was also held to select participants.

I decided to take a chance and submit my name. I thought it would be a great opportunity to be a part of something uniquely Canadian and an experience I would always remember.

Opportunities like this don’t come around often and I am thankful to live in a small community where something like this is possible. Midway is home to 620 people. For Midway to be a stop on something as significant as the Rick Hansen 25th Anniversary Relay is a privilege and honour. I will be joining two other medal-bearers in Midway and I know it will represent something different for each of us.

I do not have a disability myself but I am grateful every day that I am able to move freely and do what I love: run.

If the relay is heading to your community please take the time to cheer on the medal-bearers. I’ll be sure to post a recap once the relay is over.

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My first race of 2012 is complete (at 23 weeks pregnant). I ran the Vancouver Sun Run on Sunday (a 10K race that attracts nearly 50,000 participants) and it was a fun and interesting experience. When I registered for the run I was already pregnant and had to submit an estimated finishing time. I was conservative and submitted a time of 1:40. I am happy to report I finished in a time of 1:18! I was skeptical of the reading on my Garmin but my official time on the Sun Run site is an exact match.

During the race I didn’t pay attention to my how fast or slow I was going and just ran a comfortable pace – considering the vast number of people in the run it was a good thing I didn’t focus on my Garmin because I had to make sure I didn’t run into any of the walkers (who obviously missed the multiple signs along the route asking them to stay to the right).

This was taken from the purple corral. There was one group behind us. The start line is far in the distance. That, my friends is what they call a lot of people.

The official start time of the Sun Run was 9 am. My heat didn’t get across the start line until almost 10 am. This was over half an hour after the first place male crossed the finish line (in 29 minutes!). In hindsight we left too early and I spent too much time standing around. Thankfully Julie stuck around to keep me company and found me a bathroom before I started running. At first I thought I would just wait until I arrived at the first bathroom stop along the route but I’m very happy I didn’t. The line up was huge and would have added on an additional 45 minutes to my finish time if I had stopped. I decided to suck it up and focused on avoiding people instead of thinking about peeing. The funny thing is I didn’t pee until almost an hour after the race ended. Mind over matter.

Remember my last post where I said I was going to wear my Asics? Yea, I don’t know if it was the matching race bib colour or what but I decided to go ahead and wear my Sauconys. Thankfully it all worked out wonderfully. I guess I was correct, writing about something is one way to make the opposite happen ūüôā

There were performers all along the route and my favourite was the group of Native drummers who kept chanting “You are awesome. You’re so awesome. If you were any more awesome you would be triple awesome!” as the runners ran by. It definitely made me smile.

Overall I had a good experience and am happy I decided to enter the Sun Run. I ran the whole way and it was nice to run a different route with people instead of my usual route solo.

The best part about the race was at the end when I felt like I could run another 10K, because in a few short weeks that’s what I’ll be doing.

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I had planned to write about the topic of my feet and running shoes last week but something told me to wait on it. It’s a good thing I did because this post has gone in a different direction than originally planned.

You see, a couple of weeks ago I took the dog for a walk and decided to wear my old¬†ASICS GT 2160 because it was kind of muddy on the trail and I normally don’t like to walk too much in my running shoes.

Almost immediately after the walk my ankle started to ache and my IT Band flared up. Being the running shoe expert* that I am, I concluded that my feet had become accustomed to my Saucony ProGrid Kinvara 2 (a minimalist running shoe) and therefore the added support from my ASICS was causing my feet to move abnormally, hence they hurt.

I mentioned this to my husband.

I mentioned this to a good friend while on a walk (wearing my Kinvaras) and even offered to give her my old running shoes because I was convinced they were no good for me.

Thankfully I did not mention it on the blog because it turns out I was wrong.

The evening after my walk with my friend I went for a short 3 mile run. I wore my Kinvaras like I normally do. Unfortunately, something was not right. My feet immediately started to ache and my arches felt like they were on fire.

It was not fun.

I stretched and foam rolled and wished I had a massage stick because foam rolling has become significantly more difficult with a belly.

The only way I could describe how my feet felt to my husband was that they needed more cushioning (or something).

In an effort to work out a knot in my calve I got the rolling-pin and massaged the night away.

Side note: I have never used a real massage stick before but the rolling-pin was a great (and cheap) substitute.

Fast forward to Saturday when I was getting ready for my 8 mile run.

I decided at the last-minute to wear my ASICS knowing I had the option to change them when I looped back to the house to pee.

My feet immediately felt great.

Much different from the walk I had gone on.

I ended up wearing them for the entire run and had no problems, aches or pains during or after my run.

Hmmmmm.

This led to a google search on foot changes during pregnancy.

Turns out a woman’s feet can be more prone to pronating during pregnancy and may require more support as their bodies grown and change. I also think that because our centre of gravity changes during pregnancy so does our running form. Running in a minimalist type shoe requires its own changes in form so the combination of the two was not working out for me personally. I had basically written off ever going back to running in a shoe other than my Kinvaras. It’s amazing how things can change once you vocalize something. For now I will continue to wear my ASICS and save my Kinvaras until after the baby is born.

Because I really do love them.

And they have treated me well up until now.

But at 22 weeks it’s time for a little more foot support, especially since the half-marathon is in less than 4 weeks.

I wore these same ASICS for my first half-marathon and now I will wear them for my second.

The only difference is this time I’m wearing them for two.

* ha, ha. Not even close.

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