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Posts Tagged ‘BMO Vancouver Marathon’

One week from today (Sunday) I will be running a 10K at the BMO Okanagan Marathon.

There are a couple of reasons why this race will be a special day:

1. This is the same event where I ran my first half-marathon last year. I will be retracing the first 10K of that race and I’m sure it will bring back some memories.

2. This is my first race since having Teagan. I ran one 10K when I was pregnant and although I have no time expectations for myself I would like to beat my pregnant-self’s time.

I’m not in the same shape I was a year ago but I am excited to surround myself with other runners, and to cheer on my two friends who are both running the half.

Even though I am not in the same shape as a year ago I am happy with the progress I have made with my running in a short time. The mere fact that I am running 4-5 times a week makes me happy and feel strong.

I ran 5 miles on the weekend and felt great. My pace is improving with every run (my pace on my Thursday night run was a full minute faster than my pace on my Tuesday night run) and I love being able to push myself again.

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I have been doing a run/walk ratio since I started back into running but my goal for Sunday’s race is to run the entire 10K. I know that being surrounded by other runners will inspire me to achieve this goal.

Even though the number on the scale did not change this week I am feeling stronger and more toned. My muscles are sore and remind me that I am moving in the right direction.

I am trying not to look at the big picture of how much weight I have to lose and this next big milestone is going to help me focus on the small things:

I have officially registered for my first FULL marathon!

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I am running the 2013 BMO Vancouver Marathon and just like it would be silly and discouraging for me to think of the end goal ( to run 26.2 miles) I can’t focus on the overall weight-loss I want to achieve.

I have to start small to end big.

Expect to hear a lot more about the marathon once training begins.

Oh, and I won’t be doing it alone. My friend Krista is joining me on the marathon journey. We live over 2 hours from each other but have set out a game plan that will see us running the same pace during our training. Theoretically, this means we will be on the same level come race day because we have decided to cross both the start and finish line together 🙂

A big thanks to Tara for sending me the marathon training plan she followed for her first marathon and for being such a big inspiration. The plan brought her great success and I know it will do the same for us.

Any tips for a first-time marathoner in training?

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*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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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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…is to listen to your body.

Whether  you are pregnant or not pregnant, a new runner or an experienced runner, and everything in between I believe it is important to listen to your body at every stage of the game.

Being pregnant has made me realize this more than ever.

When I was training for my first half-marathon last year there were times I ran through the pain even though I knew deep down it wasn’t what I should be doing. I took ibuprofen before runs so my knees didn’t bother me as much and as a result I had to take a week off in the middle of my training to work out some IT band issues.

Yes, at times the pain or desire to skip a run is more mental than physical but I think as runners, and as humans, we always know the difference between the two. How we choose to handle these situations is what’s important.

The only person we are hurting by running through an injury (or potential injury) is ourself.

The only person we are going to let down by not running on any particular day is ourself.

The only person who will think the fact that we only ran 3 miles instead of the scheduled 5 miles is some kind of failure is ourself.

We need to cut ourselves some slack when it truly matters.

If running while pregnant has taught me anything it’s to really listen to my body.

And for the first time I am truly listening.

On Saturday I had a great 7 mile run.

The weather was perfect, I was able to run on my favourite trail, I only had to stop once to pee and I did it all without listening to music. I didn’t push myself and I didn’t watch my pace obsessively. The only time I glanced at my Garmin was to check my distance. When I hit 6.5 miles I realized I was exactly where I needed to be to meet the finishing time I submitted for the BMO Vancouver Half-Marathon.

It made me smile.

I came home, foam rolled, stretched, drank some water and chocolate milk and enjoyed the rest of the day with my family.

Fast forward to today (Sunday).

I headed out for a 3 mile run.

As soon as I started running something felt off with my body.

Instead of running through the discomfort I decided to walk the 3 miles instead.

And it didn’t bother me at all.

I still got in 3 miles and I still got my much-needed and enjoyed alone time.

I’ve learned to listen to my body and take it one run at a time.

I can’t guarantee this newfound knowledge will always follow me after the baby is born, but at least the seed has been planted.

I’ll try those 3 miles again tomorrow on my lunch break.

If it works in my favour?

Great.

If it doesn’t?

No big deal.

There’s always the next run.

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I’ve been keeping a secret from you all (OK, so maybe not all of you, but definitely some of you) for the past few months.

It has to do with running and it also has to do with my ultimate New Years goal/resolution that I have yet to share.

You see, for the past few months I have had a running partner that I haven’t mentioned.

Now this running partner is like no other.

Instead of encouraging me to get out and run it has been making me want to sleep on the couch.

Instead of challenging me to pick up the pace it has made me a whole lot slower.

And instead of helping me fit better into my clothes it has sent me running to find something that fits comfortably.

The best part though is I’m absolutely Ok with all of it because I’m really just grateful my new running partner is allowing me to run at all, which brings me to my ultimate New Years goal:

I want to be a pregnant runner.

Yep, that’s right, I have Another Runner on Board 🙂

I’m still amazed at how quickly my body reacted the second time around – where the heck did that belly come from?!

It’s been tough to keep this part of my life a secret on my blog, which probably explains why I have been absent more than usual, but I needed to get into the second trimester before making the big announcement. I am due at the beginning of August and since Lincoln decided to arrive almost two weeks early I suspect this one will arrive in July.

So what does this all mean for my running and the races I am currently registered for?

Not much really, except I have no time expectations and I am running according to how I feel not by how fast my Garmin tells me I am running.

It’s actually a nice mind shift and although I do know how fast (or slow) I am running it hasn’t had the same effect on me that it normally would.

I also have the full support of my husband, family and midwife to keep running throughout my pregnancy as long as I feel good.

At first I contemplated not running the half-marathon in May but decided that even if I have to walk some of the course I’m still going to try. I have been in touch with the race organizers and they have informed me I can leave the course at anytime If I need to. I have checked out the course map and am familiar with the area but at the same time I am confident that it will be a fun experience.

As for the 10K in April, well, that is notorious for attracting a lot of participants so I’m already prepared to go slow just because it will be so crowded!

So what does this all mean for the blog?

Not much really, except instead of me writing as Another Mother Runner, I’ll be writing as Another Mother Runner with Another Runner on Board 🙂

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Sometimes the winter weather prevents me from running outside because there is too much snow and the temperature is too cold. Under these circumstances it is not much fun to run outside so I take it to the treadmill.

However, Sunday was a perfect day to run outside but the weather still prevented me from doing so.

Such is the life of a skier’s wife.

Andrew was gone skiing for the day so I couldn’t run outside but I still completed my 4 miles thanks to the treadmill and a napping 2 1/2 year-old.

I have started covering up the display on the treadmill because I hate watching the time and miles slowly tick away. One of the great things about running outside, even with a watch or my Garmin, is I don’t have my time/ miles/pace staring me in the face all the time. If I want to know how far I have gone or how much time has elapsed I have to consciously make the decision to check.

Not so much with the treadmill. Even if I am watching TV or a movie my eyes are always darting back and forth between the screen and the display.

And it’s just like the old saying goes: “A watched pot never boils.”

Or in this case: “Watched miles never go by fast.”

TV helps but if I have the time staring me in the face it makes the whole process seem longer than it actually is.

My “long run” was fueled by a breakfast of waffles, strawberries and fresh whipped cream.

I have been wanting waffles for a while and everyone else seemed to be eating them except me. So I borrowed a waffle iron from a friend, found an easy (and yummy) recipe online and made a delicious Sunday breakfast for me and the boy.

Andrew doesn’t know what he missed.

Actually he does but that’s OK because the recipe made a lot of waffles so I froze some in the hopes that they will taste just as good after a few minutes in the toaster.

Later that day we enjoyed the snow and built our first snowman of the season.

Lincoln wanted to help me roll the snow into balls but what he really meant was he wanted to smash the snow and destroy all my hard work.

The snowman is more of a cross between a snowman and scare crow, which is OK since we have a lot of crows around our house.

The treadmill is on the schedule for this week but my fingers are still crossed for a beautiful Sunday so I can hit the trails.

Don’t worry treadmill.

It’s not you, it’s me.

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Part of the reason I went back to the same training plan for my second half-marathon is that it worked so well with my schedule the first time around.

The second time is no exception.

Not only do I like that Friday is rest day, but I also like that Sunday is my long run day.

There just always seems to be time for a longer run on Sunday because we generally don’t make plans.

In a sense, it is our family’s rest day.

The only difference right now is I ask Andrew to take Lincoln somewhere so I can have the time to myself to complete my run on the treadmill. That darn machine is just too interesting for a 2 1/2 year-old so it’s basically impossible to get in a peaceful run if he knows I am down there.

And believe me, he always knows.

Yesterday they went swimming and I ran my 4 miles while catching up on an episode of Pan Am.

It’s funny how my outlook on distances has changed since my first training experience because 4 miles doesn’t seem all that long anymore.

In fact, I remember one day after I had completed a 3 mile run outside (before the snow and cold settled in) I sent a message to my friend Jillian that read:

“Remember when we thought 3 miles was long? Now we eat them for lunch!”

And at that time we did, almost literally, eat them for lunch because we were both running on our lunch break.

Sure, there are still days where those 3 miles seem to take forever but I usually finish them and think to myself:

“Yea, I could do that again.”

I have a few extra weeks until my half-marathon than my 12-week training plan and have decided to repeat the first couple of weeks. The distances are shorter but at least by the time I get to the longer long runs I will be back outside.

I like the treadmill but something tells me an 8 mile run will feel a whole lot longer than a 4 mile run on it.

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