In previous episodes of What Would Another Mother Runner Do (WWAMRD), we've debated with Megan whether she should run a marathon she's just not that into; we've grimaced with Kelin as she dislocated her hip at Mile 20 yet continued to run the Chicago Marathon; and we've marveled at the MacGyver-like cleverness of Ellison when a driver creeped her out mid-run. Now let us introduce you to Jessica, mother of one with another on the way. She wrote to us with a time-sensitive debate, thus the reason I am posting this even though Dimity is on vacation with her family. (This comes into play later.)
Jessica is currently seven weeks pregnant with a half-marathon scheduled for April 7. (I'll do the math for you: She'll be 8-9 weeks pregnant on race day.) She has trained diligently for this race. As she wrote, "I did hills, I did tempo runs, and I followed the training plan strictly. But now I just feel exhausted. I am freaking out that I will not be able to do this race."
A bit more background: Jessica ran all during her first pregnancy, despite feeling tired and nauseous during that first trimester, too. (Didn't we all!?) During this training cycle, she's been taking it one day at a time. Over the weekend, she ran 10 miles with her husband, James, who is also registered for the April 7 half-marathon. Her doc has given her the go-ahead. It's just, as Jessica writes, "The race has just got me scared now instead of excited!"
What would you do?
Sarah answers: I'd continue to take it day by day. I vividly remember during my pregnancies that just because I felt great on Tuesday, it didn't mean I'd feel good on Saturday--let alone Wednesday or even Tuesday evening. I'd hydrate extra-well the day before the race (hit the nuun hard, Jessica!), try to get some good shut-eye in the days leading up to the race, but then on race-day morning, I'd just see how I felt when I woke up. If I had some pep in my step, I'd line up with my man and go from there; but if there was a hitch in my giddy-up, I'd go heavy on the cowbell and cheer from the sidelines. (Sitting on the curb as often as I felt like it.)
Kristin (our new mother runner sidekick in Portland) answers (in lieu of Dim): First of all, congrats for running through your pregnancy thus far. That's a huge accomplishment. I remember, as if it were yesterday, my inability to leave the couch in my first trimester. GO FOR IT. You will be swept up in the momentum of the race: All the energy, excitement, and adrenaline will help carry you through. You've already done all the hard work. Don't deny yourself the celebration. Yes, it will be a slightly different race than you originally planned, but what an amazing story this will be for baby #2. Make sure your husband snaps some special pictures for the baby book. How many women get to say they have completed a half-marathon while preggs? You get to join a very special, courageous, and, yes, slightly crazy, group of women!
We'll have to stay tuned for Jessica's ultimate decision. But she's eager to hear from others.
What would you, another mother runner, do?
And if you’ve got a running-related moment you’d like some clarity on, via WWAMRD, feel free to email us at runmother [at] gmail [dot] com. Thanks!