Slowing Down and Shifting Priorities

Rocking the baby bump during a hike in Yosemite last weekend

Rocking the baby bump during a hike in Yosemite last weekend

It’s been a whirlwind month! To say I’ve been busy is an understatement. I’ve had running events 4 out of 5 weekends – the FCA 5k, Wanderlust, the Girls on the Run 5k and now Rock n’ Roll San Diego Half Marathon this weekend (and a wedding tomorrow!). I made a trip to Temecula for my mom’s  birthday and Mother’s Day, OC to visit a friend’s new baby, and Yosemite for Memorial Day weekend to visit my Dad and Step-Mom. On top of that we wrapped up Girls on the Run, I attended a training conference for work and hosted two dinner parties at our new home. It’s a great month of quality time with friends and family!

Normally, I push through busy times and still manage to get in my workouts, but lately I’ve been putting sleep at a high priority. I’ve noticed that I’m just slowing down in general. When people ask how I’m feeling (definitely a  top pregnancy question!) I say I’m feeling good (which I am! I still sleep mostly uninterrupted, have no back pain or swelling and am still running and exercising) but that I’m slowing down.

Meeting Baby Jameson!

Meeting Baby Jameson!

One way I’m slowing down is my running speed! Wow – I know I complained in the first trimester that I was getting slower but a high 9/low 10 min/mile was still an option back then. Now I’m lucky to have a run that averages in the 10 min/mile range at all – it’s usually closer to 11 or even 12 min/miles thanks to the walk breaks my body seems to ask for (oh yeah and the bathroom breaks, sometimes I have to stop twice during a 4 mile run). It’s not even necessarily that my lungs are having a hard time keeping up – it’s almost like my legs are just extra tired all the time! The good news is, I still have my endurance and was able to get in two 10+ mile runs in preparation for San Diego Rock n’ Roll.

Yesterday I went back to Xtend Barre for the first time in 2 weeks – a sad fact but with all of the busy days, travel and more emphasis on running given that I’m running a half marathon on Sunday, I haven’t put strength training at the top of my priority list. I’ve definitely canceled a few classes at 9 pm the night before, choosing more sleep in favor of a workout.

I’ve been averaging 8.5-9 hours a sleep a night (I’ve been tracking it using my new Pivotal Living band), yet I’m still tired! I rarely wake up refreshed these days. I guess you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to realize that a pregnant woman’s body needs more time to recover.

My Team at the Girls on the Run 5k

My Team at the Girls on the Run 5k

For the first time in my life, walking is now considered a workout for me. I’ve always been a big walker – Mike and I often take 30-60 minute (or more) walks but I’ve never considered them as part of my fitness. I have been taking some time at lunch the last few weeks to get in 20-30 minute walks and some days that’s all I have time/energy for. The weird part is how my mentality has shifted – because the effort of my recent slow 4 mile runs are seemingly the same as my previous 6-7 mile mid-week runs, I give the workout the same weight mentally. I used to consider a 4 mile run the easiest workout I could possibly do and now it’s one of the hardest. Pregnancy changes things folks!

Mother's Day

Mother’s Day

With less than 4 months to go in my pregnancy (wow!!!), I know things are going to slow down for me even more and I’m ok with it. I’m using this time to focus on relationships with family and friends and to learn as much as I can about my baby and parenthood as possible. In the evening when Mike puts his hands on my belly and his face lights up as he feels our baby girl kick – those are the moments I’m cherishing now.

How do you balance workouts with busy times?

Wanderlust San Diego

wanderlust events

Last weekend I got to experience “the worlds gentlest triathlon.” Instead of a thrashing swim, competitive bike and adrenaline pumping run, Asia and I started our Saturday with an untimed group 3.1 mile run, over an hour of yoga and 30 minutes of meditation. The backdrop for this peaceful morning was the beautiful San Diego harbor – the gloom in the photo above turned to sunshine by the time the yoga started and it was a beautiful day!

IMG_0022

I had no expectations going into this event. It definitely did not feel like a race – in fact I think there were way more yogis in participation than avid runners, and the vibe of the entire event followed suit. There wasn’t any competitive glances or sleek looking runnings doing warm-up sprints before the race – it was all about enjoying the moment and experiencing a morning of self love.

In lieu of the typical race shirt, we were given adorable adorable headbands/scarves to wear. There was no expo but race morning check in was a breeze. Don’t be fooled by the long line when you arrive – thanks to the fact that the race isn’t chip timed, there’s no frantic searching for bib numbers. You simply bring a printed or electronic copy of your race confirmation and after a quick scan, you’ll be handed a sticker bib and a scarf and sent on your merry way. There was a bag check available for yoga mats and bags before the 5k which as also convenient (although after the race there wasn’t a lot organization around getting the bags back to people so the line was very slow and I believe this caused the yoga to start late- one of my only complaints mostly because there also wasn’t any post-5k food and this preggo literally almost fainted).

IMG_0001

Group Stretch

The 5k started with a group stretch and then we were sent off in waves. No one was really racing or even really running very fast. We ran a very easy pace and weren’t being passed nearly as much as I would have imagined. The race course ran along the embarcadero and past Sea Port Village and back and finished under the Wanderlust sign pictured above. There was not clock at the finish line but lots of high fives!

Fun signs along the way

Fun signs along the 5k course

We made the mistake of being distracted by body art and we didn’t pick up our mats and bags right away. Soon enough, the line was crazy long and moving verrrry slow. That’d probably be my one logistics complaint about the whole event – but it wasn’t even that bad!

Asia's body art!

Asia’s body art!

Although a bit delayed due to the mat/bag pick-up situation, the yoga was worth the wait.  Yoga mats were sprawled all over the rolling green hills of the Embarcadero. MC Yogi got on the mic and pumped everyone up, prompting everyone to make their way to the front of the stage for a little dance party before the zen began. He did a pretty incredible job of getting everyone excited and ready to party. And then the yoga began. We all made our way to our mats for about 45 minutes (not sure on actual time) of yoga led by the MC himself. He incorporated some unique moves into the practice – such as having us all snap our fingers in unison or wave our hands from side to side while holding poses. The vibe was mellow and friendly.

wanderlus

Finding inner peace

Finding inner peace

MC Yogi was followed directly by local San Diego yoga instructor Amy Opielowski who led us through a fast-paced 45 minutes of yoga, starting with flow and wrapping up with restorative stretches. I personally didn’t love Amy’s teaching style – she moved quickly through complicated poses and used a lot of technical terms (and we couldn’t see her since there were so many so we had to go just based on what we heard). I could consider myself an intermediate yogi and I was confused at times. If you were new to yoga, you’d probably just be completely lost. A few girls behind us started snickering and then stopped doing the poses all together until they got up and left after halfway through, which I thought was kind of the opposite of the vibe of the event. I can’t say I wasn’t happy to see them go – they were interrupting my zen!

wanderlust san diego

The final savasana led straight into the meditation program which was led by Keith Mitchell a former professional linebacker for the NFL. I haven’t been to many live meditation events but I was surprised by the amount of talking and music that was involved in the meditation portion. I personally wasn’t able to really settle in and get into it (especially since I had to leave halfway to use the restroom) but it was still nice to lay on the mat with the sunshine and cool-wind on my skin.

all talents represented!

all talents represented!

After the official scheduled programming ended, there was an open festival with samples, vendors and other booths. We stopped by a few booths on our way out but didn’t stay too long. It was already nearly noon and we were starving for a meal (there were some food trucks there but not many) so we headed home after doing some ogling of the acro-yogis practicing their art.

IMG_0016

My overall impression of Wanderlust – great! I really enjoyed the event and would definitely recommend it to others. I’ll be back!

Have you participated in a yoga event like this before? Does it sound like something you’d be interested in? 

Lessons Learned Training for Half Marathons While Pregnant


IMG_6906

I’m currently training for the San Diego Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon and my training for this race doesn’t really resemble any previous training periods. That’s because I’ll be 23 weeks pregnant on race day. I’ve already run 2 half marathons while pregnant (week 6 and week 12) so I’ve learned a bit about what to expect when training for a long distance running event with a bun in the oven.

We’ll start with a disclaimer: All women’s bodies are different. I don’t recommend running a half marathon pregnant if you have never run one before (even if you’re run just one or two, I’d probably say you may want to reconsider running your 2nd or 3rd while pregnant since your body may not be used to the distance, but that is up to you!). I’m not a physician and all my advice here is based on my experience. Talk to your doctor and only do what is comfortable to you!

Surf City Half Marathon - 6 Weeks Pregnant

Surf City Half Marathon – 6 Weeks Pregnant

  1. Make Training Guidelines, Not Plans.  Why? Because you won’t follow it exactly and that’s ok. Instead, make weekly goals such as “run 3 times a week,” or  “try for a long run over 8 miles this week.”  Those loose goals were much easier to meet and also easier to let go of when/if they didn’t happen. Running while pregnant is a whole different ball game – sometimes your body just won’t want to run as far as you had hoped or even at all. I hope it’s also a given that unless you are a trained professional athlete, you shouldn’t be doing any tempo runs or track workouts so a training plan would be pretty vanilla when you’re pregnant anyway.
  2. WATER WATER WATER. Any doctor (or google search) will tell you that the most important things to consider if you decide to run while pregnant is to a) run slow enough that you can have a conversation and b) drink lots of water. This also means you’re going to have to pee a lot but it’s worth it for your baby’s health and safety! Hydrate! I bring a water bottle with me during most runs over 3 miles.
  3. Be Flexible With Long Run Distance. I don’t ever go out thinking “I MUST run 10 miles today.” In past half marathon training, I’ve run up to 14 miles on a long run before the race. However, that kind of distance is unnecessary when you’re going to be cruising along at a conversational pace on race day with all the bathroom, walk and water breaks you and the little energy-zapper inside you desire. Ideally, you’ll run at least one, if not two 10 mile long runs before the race (any longer is totally optional in my opinion and likely not worth the added recovery time), but don’t expect to follow a traditional plan where you’re building the long runs and doing something like 8, 9, then 10 miles each consecutive weekend. You may not feel up for 10 miles on the day you planned it, so it’s better to try for 10 miles about a month out from the race (assuming you built up for it a bit!). If you nail that 10 miler  – great! You can do another 10 miler in a week or two and feel good about your fitness. However, if you put all your long run chickens in the 2 week before-race day long run basket and then it turns out to be 100 degrees or your legs feel like you’re pulling them through mud that day, then you’re going to either push yourself too hard in a last ditch effort to complete the 10 miles (BAD) or you’re going to skip it all together and never get in a 10 miler (better, but ideally you’ll get one in!).
  4. Plan an Escape Route. Ideally during any run, you’ll plan a route that allows you to cut things short if need be (treadmills are probably a late in pregnancy best friend especially with a child playing monkey bars on your bladder). Also, plan a route with lots of bathrooms! If you normally do an out and back, park your car in the middle of the stretch that you run on and do two out and backs in each direction. That way, if you suddenly need to walk the whole way back to your car, you won’t be farther than 2.5 miles instead of 5 (on a 10 mile route example). And of course, always run with your phone so you can call someone to pick you up if something happens!
  5. Don’t Wear a GPS Watch on Race Day. I wore my Garmin during my first pregnant half marathon mostly because I also chose not to wear a timing chip (I was irrationally worried that someone would care to enough look up my time and know I was pregnant). However, the Type-A runner in me STILL looked at my watch. I created a goal for myself to not run a personal worst (my first half marathon was a 2:13) and didn’t fully let myself relax on the run course. However, at Zion, I ran watch free and it was SO much better. I still wore a timing chip so in the end I knew my pace, but during the race I could care less. I stopped three times for the bathroom, thanked the volunteers, chatted with fellow runners, stopped for photos and enjoyed every minute. There’s not point in caring about the clock while pregnant.
Zion Half Marathon - 12 Weeks Pregnant

Zion Half Marathon – 12 Weeks Pregnant

I’m sure you can see the trend in all of this advice – every pregnancy is different and every day during your pregnancy will be different so there is no way to have expectations or goals. Be ok with walking up hills (or walking at any time!). Be ok with thinking you’re going to run 5 mile after work and instead heading straight for the couch for a Scandal marathon. Be ok with wasting time in long porto-potty lines during the race if you have to go. Be ok with getting passed by elderly women and people pushing double strollers. The only goal you should have for yourself while running during pregnancy is to keep you and your baby safe. And hopefully have some fun in the process!

If you’ve raced while pregnant, what did you find that worked for you? If you’ve never been pregnant, do you think you’ll run races or skip them for the 9 months? 

Bumpdate – Weeks 18, 19 and 20

bumpdate pregnancy fit pregnancy running while pregnant

WE’RE HALFWAY THERE! Wow! Seriously time has flown by. In the beginning of my pregnancy the weeks draaaaaged. Probably because we weren’t telling many people and I was sick as a dog. But now, the weeks keep ticking on and I barely have time to update the chalk board and take another bump photo!

I can’t say that Weeks 18-20 were a walk in the park. First, I came down with a terrible cold which lasted 2 full weeks. After I was feeling mostly better, I went back to my normal workout routine. I think I overestimated my energy levels because by the end of last week after 3 days of Xtend Barre at 6 am and 4 runs (including a long run 8.5 miles) and a few long walks/hikes, I was pooped. I used Monday as a rest day and literally did 0 activity (this is rare for me – usually on off days I at least take a walk) and didn’t even feel like making dinner despite getting home plenty early enough to cook.

Also this week I started to feel a bit nauseous again (part of the reason I didn’t want to cook on Monday because nothing we had sounded good) – like the morning sickness was returning. Luckily it hasn’t been as severe, but I’m definitely not feeling my best. I’m guessing the baby is going through a big growth spurt (my belly has certainly grown a lot in the last week or so – although in the 20 week photo it’s hard to tell – the belly always seems to be way smaller in the morning) and it’s wearing me down. I was feeling lethargic, weak and unmotivated in my 6 a.m. Wednesday barre class so I canceled my Friday 6 a.m. class reservation in favor of another rest day.

Never had a chance to post the 17 week bump photo

Never had a chance to post the 17 week bump photo. My “Pregnant Chicken” weekly update told me the baby was the size of an iPhone – way more tangible!

How Far Along: Currently 20 weeks!

Baby Size of a: Banana (apparently starting at 20 weeks the fruits are based on head to toe length, rather than head to rump length, hence the fact that she grew from an orange to a banana in one week).

Movement: So far, I think I’ve felt some “flutters” from the baby, mostly at night when I’m lying still in bed and not every night. I felt some strong and more distinct kicks at my desk on Thursday afternoon. From what I’ve read, we won’t be able to feel movement from the outside til anywhere between 22-30 weeks but Mike has definitely been trying to feel it!

Maternity Clothes/Preferred Attire:  I’m still rocking a lot of pre-maternity tops (besides my Running for Two Tank!) but there aren’t many left that I can actually wear. I’m in 100% maternity pants/bottoms (I bought 1 pair of work pants, 1 pair of nice designer skinny jeans (AG brand from Pea in the Pod), 1 pair of black skinny jeans (H&M), and 2 skirts (GAP) on top of the 2 pair of jeans and 1 work pants that Allison let me borrow) which require long shirts to cover up the stretchy tummy portion and I don’t have a ton left that cover it. But….my belly is also not quite big enough to rock stretchy/tight tops so I’m doing my best to just rotate my flowy, long tops in until I can truly shop for/borrow some more maternity tops to add into the rotation. I also purchased a few comfy and casual maternity dresses from Old Navy which are pretty amazingly comfortable and are flowy enough to work now and also when my belly is huge (I hope).

Sleep: Having really detailed, weird dreams. Sleep is still pretty solid but a bit more fitful than before. I’ve been still sleeping on my back and am getting worried about the fact that I should be transitioning to my side now. I’m going to talk to my doctor about this at my doctor appointment on Monday – online research is mixed on this topic.

2nd trimester pregnancy bumpdate

Cravings and Favorite Foods: Cold fruit, smoothies and I’m still loving soda although I feel like it hasn’t actually been tasting as good when I drink it as I imagine in my head! Maybe that means I can wean myself off of it soon…  I also crave cheese and eggs and have been eating more dessert. I’m trying to balance indulgences out with a lot of home cooked, healthy and vegan/vegetarian meals. I’ve also been drinking vegan protein shakes (either SunWarrior or VegaOne’s new Protein & Greens) a few times a week to help with protein intake.

Food Aversions: I still won’t eat a KIND bar or any snack/protein bar of any type. Raw almonds are also a no and nuts just don’t taste as good as they used to. I also really, really don’t like anything jalepeno flavored – just the sound of any kind of bar, chips, cream cheese or dressing with this word in it makes me want to gag still. However, fresh chopped jalepeno is totally fine.

Exercise: As I wrote in my April goal recap post, I’m still able to work out about 6 days a week, a mix of Xtend barre, yoga and running. I’m training for the Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon, so am trying to get in 4 runs a week now.

Mood: Super excited for this baby girl! Occasionally crazy.

Purchasing: As mentioned before, maternity pants and dresses along with a Snoogle maternity pillow. I also purchased Mambino Organics Belly Butter which I’ve been applying morning and night (recommended by Kristen). I’ve been experiencing some itching from the skin stretching and this is helping! I also purchased a book about raising a vegetarian baby. I don’t plan to raise the baby 100% vegetarian – she will eat similar to us which is a diet with very limited meat consumption (at least that’s what I think now, I really need to research/think it all over and things could definitely change).

Symptoms: Sleepiness, tiredness, some round ligament pain, growing belly, a little nausea.

Missing: Tempo runs and track workouts. Running in the 8 min/mile range and it feeling easy (now even 11 min/miles don’t feel easy – no miles feel truly easy, ever).

Best Moment of the Last Few Weeks: Learning the sex of our baby girl. It was a moment I’ll never forget. Also, telling my mom and other friends, family and co-workers that she’s a girl were also special moments!

18 Weeks ! It's a GIRL!

18 Weeks ! It’s a GIRL!

Dreaming About: What our little girl will look and act like! Will she be shy like I was as a baby? Picky? Curious? Interested in sports? Will she take after me and have blue eyes or Mike’s green/brown color-changing eyes? One thing is for sure – she’ll be tall! The ultrasound tech said she has very long legs and is already “tall” for her age. I guess we can’t be surprised given that she has tall, long-legged parents!

FCA 5k Race Report

Ready to race in my new Running for Two tank!

Ready to run in my new Running for Two tank!

Last Saturday Mike and I ran the FCA 5K which is an event put on by one of my best friends Allison and her husband Tim in support of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the not-for-profit organization that Tim works for. It’s a fun, small race with a great community vibe. It’s un-timed and casual, but there are prizes for first place female and male in the student and adult category as well as a stroller division! There’s also a raffle for an ipad mini and given the size of the race, the odds are in your favor!

IMG_6905

The race was held at Crown Point in Mission Bay, the same as last year. It started at 9 a.m. and we arrived around 8:30 to sign in and get our bibs. I was thrilled to see two of my old Vavi Running Club buddies, Jen and Miranda. It was this time of year 4 years ago that we were all training for our first marathon together (Allison and Asia trained with us as well). 4/5 of us girls were unmarried and we were all childless  back in 2011. Miranda had a baby around the same time as Allison, we’re almost all married, and I’ve got a bun in the oven  – so to say that things have changed in the last 4 years is an understatement. It was fun to catch up with them!

Catching up with running buddies

Catching up with running buddies

Before the race started Tim announced that 3 out of 4 of the division winners were present and called us out each by name. I wore my Running for Two tank so I’m sure any competition realized I wasn’t going to be claiming the prize for first woman again! I’ve been loving these out and back 5ks (same as the Fast Times 5k) because I can cheer for fellow races on the course. This was me and Baby Doby’s third 5k together – that’s more 5ks than I have done in the last few years combined! I’m typically not a 5k girl but it’s been fun to do some community events.

Me & Allison!

Me & Allison!

As usual, I kept my pace conversational and stopped at the aid station to drink my entire water cup. I finished around 29:40 (I didn’t wear my watch and it wasn’t chip timed so I’m not exactly sure what my time was!). I was happy to hear that Mike had won the adult men’s division and was 3rd overall. The overall winner was a student athlete. I also won a really awesome glass water bottle in the raffle (a student won the ipad mini which was probably for the best!).

WINNER!

WINNER!

After the race and awards ceremony we headed over to one of our old favorite brunch spots in Pacific Beach near our old apartments. Fun fact: less than 4 months after we met Mike moved into a 1 bedroom apartment just 3 houses down from where I lived in Pacific Beach. Apparently he couldn’t stand to be far away from me for long! We moved into together 6 months later when both of our leases ended at the same time and the rest is history!

What is your favorite race distance? How often do you run a 5k? 

April Goal Recap and May Goals

Long Run With Asia in March!

Long Run With Asia in March!

Although I’m not training for a PR due to my pregnancy (19 weeks now!), I have been setting monthly fitness goals to keep myself accountable.

My goals for April were the same as March.

  1. Strength train 3x/week (Pilates/Barre/Weight Lifting)
  2. Yoga 1x/week on average
  3. Run 3x/week with 1 long run of 8+ miles

I didn’t run as much as I wanted to in April, and I missed some yoga since Yoga6 is no longer a part of Fitn and I haven’t bothered to try to find a new studio (there are sooo many to chose from on Fitn, I just need to pull the trigger!). I was sick for about 2 weeks in April and took 5 complete rest days in one week due to this. I rarely get sick and when I do, I tend to continue to work out through it because it’s always very mild. However, this cold knocked me off my feet. I was exhausted and so incredibly stuffed up. It was miserable! I tried to sleep as much as possible during this time, but I am so antsy that I was definitely on my feet doing things like running errands and cleaning more than I should have. We also moved in April and I visited a friend in San Francisco at the end of the month. All of these things meant less running than I hoped for but I’m ok with it!

View from my 10k run in San Francisco

View from my 10k run in San Francisco

Fun in San Francisco

Fun in San Francisco

April Totals: 

  • Miles Run: 56.2 (25 miles fewer than in March)
  • Runs: 13
  • Barre Classes: 8
  • Yoga Classes: 3
  • Misc Strength: 2 (1 Buti Yoga Class – this was an interesting experience!, 1 Yoga Sculpt- this was so hard, more like a boot camp)
  • Total Workouts: 26

Although I wish the running total was a bit higher (this is a sad 14 miles/week on average), I am still happy with the workouts I got in during April. I’ve been taking way more walks now as well. I’ve been walking about 2 times a week during lunch, just for 20 minutes (about 1 mile) but I am really enjoying it. Mike and I also have been taking walks on the trails near our house. The start of the trail is a very steep incline for about 1/3 of a mile so it feels more like hiking than walking! We are often out on the trail for 45-60 minutes.

Hiking Torrey Pines

Hiking Torrey Pines

I just purchased a Pivotal fitness tracker (it’s free with a $12/year membership – I’ll let you know how it is once I get it!) and I want to track my steps. Come June, I’ll start including walks in my monthly workout recaps, because I have a feeling I’ll be running a lot less by then and walking is going to start feeling more and more like a challenging workout.

As for May goals, it’s all about the half marathon! I’m running the San Diego Rock n’ Roll Half Marathon on Sunday, May 31 (if you still haven’t signed up, use code FITNESSFATALE for $15 off!). That gives me 4 weeks left to train for the race. My goals for May revolve on getting ready for that race (although, as usual, if I’m really not feeling a run or if I’m having any pain, I’ll skip it – the baby is more important than training or a race).

View from a morning run on the trail near our new house

View from a morning run on the trail near our new house

May Goals:

  1. Run 4x/week with at least 8.5 mile long run every weekend (ideally I’d like to get at least two 10 mile runs in. I had considered a 12 miler but considering how much work it is for me to run 12 miles, I think it’s better just to leave the 13.1 miles for race day).
  2. Strength Train at least 2x/week (this will probably be all Xtend Barre but I do have 2 Club Pilates classes left to use)
  3. Find a new yoga studio (or two) on Fitn and take class 1x/week

I’d love to set some nutrition goals but I’m not sure I’d actually follow them. I do feel guilty about my recent soda addiction (still not purchasing it at home or for days I eat lunch at the office so it’s not that bad) and I’ve certainly been indulging in some foods I used to never consider ordering at a restaurant (mac and cheese, grilled cheese…see a trend!?), but I’m not going to beat myself up about it. It’s about balance!

What do you want to accomplish in May? Are you more likely to set a goal related to fitness or to nutrition? Which are you more likely to follow? 

It’s a…..

 

IMG_6896Finding out the sex of our baby definitely made things more real. I knew this going into it and Idefinitely am feeling it now! Not to mention, the ultrasound that we did was an anatomy scan so we spent time reviewing the baby’s parts to make sure they all looked functioning and in order. The great news is, everything is healthy. In fact, our baby is super tall with long legs already and our ultrasound tech guessed she’ll come out on the long end of the spectrum.

And yes, she’s a SHE! We’re having a girl!

Our corny social media announcement.

Our corny social media announcement.

I am thrilled! I definitely want a girl, but I was going to totally be happy with a boy this time as well. Part of me liked the idea of having the older sibling be a boy to watch over a younger girl. We want two children, one of each, so I think the 2nd gender reveal will be a lot more significant!

Yesterday Mike and I went in for the ultrasound. We told the tech in advance that we didn’t want to know the sex right away but wanted her to write it down and give it to us. However, she didn’t have us look away at any point – she said basically that it’d be obvious to her but not to us! So we did watch the screen the whole time. About halfway through I said, “the baby better cooperate so we know the sex!” and she said “Oh, we already got it!” And she said said was 99.9% sure, so I believe her! She is the one who looks at baby parts all day, not me.

I said I wouldn't post any ultrasound photos...but 1 can't hurt! :)

I said I wouldn’t post any ultrasound photos…but one can’t hurt! :) 

However, once she said she knew the sex so easily, I assumed it was a boy! When we came out into the lobby, we were talking and a woman in the waiting room overheard us and said “are you having a boy?” and said how with hers the ultrasound tech took way longer to figure out it was a girl, so she assumed we were having a boy since it was so quick. As we drove away from the office, my mind was going back and forth – my intuition had said girl but now maybe I thought boy!

Heading into dinner!

Heading into dinner!

We went for a walk/hike on the trails near our house between our appointment and dinner and all we could talk about was the baby! Once we arrived at dinner at our favorite restaurant in Encinitas and the place where we celebrated our engagement, new jobs, promotions, anniversaries and birthdays, I was nervous! We agreed not to open the envelope until after Mike got his drink and we ordered our appetizer. As soon as that happened, I got even more nervous! I let Mike do the honors and he opened it up….it was written on paper and folded and all we could see was “Congratulations, you will be….” He opened it more and I couldn’t read it but he said “Girl!!” I said “seriously!?” and cried and laughed. It was a wonderful moment.

IMG_6891

There was an ultrasound photo enclosed but I cannot decipher girl parts!

We had a great dinner talking about our baby, our future (hello we have to pay for a wedding!? hah!) and names. We’ve had a girl name picked out for a while but never decided on it, so we’ll definitely be doing more digging before settling on it. After dinner we took a short walk in Encinitas along the 101 and called our parents and started texting friends. We went home and ate yummy dessert I picked up from my favorite bakery, Elizabethan Desserts, earlier that day. It was a great night!

IMG_6895

So now…. time to plan a nursery, register, and buy some cute bows and headbands!

Boy or Girl!? Gender Prediction Wives Tales

We’re finding out the exciting news TOMORROW in our 18.5 week ultrasound (given that the baby cooperates and shows us the goods) – will we be having a Baby Nicole or a Baby Michael (no, we are NOT naming our children after ourselves). I’ve been pretty surprised that more people have asked me “are you finding out what you’re having?” than “how are you feeling?” since announcing my pregnancy. It’s pretty funny! And the answer is yes, we are definitely finding out. As you know, I love to plan and I cannot wait to plan for a little boy or a little girl.

The Bump is Emerging !!!(excuse the terrible, low quality end of workday day photo)

The Bump is Emerging !!!(excuse the terrible, low quality end of workday day photo)

There are several wives tales which help predict the sex of the baby. All of them are pretty much BS but it’s pretty fun to think about them! Here’s where I stand on all the most common wives tales on sex prediction:

Chinese Gender Prediction Calendar: A chart based on mom’s age (Chinese lunar age to be exact) at conception and due date (try it here).

PREDICTION: Girl

Stolen Beauty: It is said that little girls steal their mo’ms beauty from the womb. If you’re  breaking out and your hair is breaking off, expect a girl. If you’re glowing and hair has never looked better, expect a boy.

PREDICTION: Boy (my skin is clearer than ever!)

Morning Sickness: Moderate-severe morning sickness would indicate a girl whereas little to no morning sickness would indicate a boy.

PREDICTION: Girl (I experienced non-stop morning sickness for about 7 weeks)

Cravings: Craving sweets indicates a girl and craving salty would indicate a boy.

PREDICTION: Undecided!  (My number one craving seems to be smoothies and soda which would be considered sweet, but in the first trimester I really wanted salty things like everything bagels, pita chips, and french fries and wasn’t that interested in sweets outside of smoothies).

Heart Rate: If the fetal heart rate is over 140  bpm, it’s said that the baby is a girl. if it’s under 140, it’s a boy.

PREDICTION: Girl (by a landslide – fetal heart beats have been 180s, 170s and 140s)

Husband Sympathy Weight Gain: If your hubby puts on weight along with you, it’s a girl. If he stays the same, it’s a boy.

PREDICTION: Girl (But we attribute this to the fact that we stopped marathon training right after we got pregnant and he was at a low in December).

Headaches: If mom has been having more headaches, she may be carrying a boy.

PREDICTION: Boy (Boo for headaches!)

Shape of Belly: If your belly is big and round, it’s a girl. if you’re carrying low and it sticks straight out, it’s a boy.

PREDICTION: Girl (Although I’m not showing much, my stomach seems to be expanding out in a bubble form more so than a low pooch form!).

Preferred Side to Rest: It’s said that if the mother prefers to sleep/rest on her left side, it’s a girl. If she prefers the right side, it’s a boy.

PREDICTION: Girl/Undecided (I say undecided because I favored my left side before pregnancy).

Mama’s Instinct: One study indicated that women who have a strong instinct about the sex of their child are correct 70% of the time! Also, a poll was created in my BabyCenter Birth Club forum and it showed about the same percentage of women were correct about their Girl.

PREDICTION: Girl (I just feel it!)

FINAL SCORE: 

  • Girl – 6
  • Boy – 2
  • Undecided – 2

So what do you think – is Baby Doby a boy or girl!? Either way, she or he is bound to be an athlete!

Mamas – was your intuition right about the sex of your baby? Do you believe any of the wives tales? 

Fast Times 5k Race Report – 17 Weeks Pregnant

fast times 5k

Last weekend I ran the Fast Times 5k. It was a big race for me – not because I PRed or put in some serious sweat sessions in the track leading up to it, but because it was the culmination of months of work that I put in via my company’s new wellness committee. I came to HR with the idea of a committee last year and early this year we put it together, forming a 12 or so person committee to help our employees live a healthier lifestyle. I was lucky that HR assigned a co-chair to help me because it has been a big, but awesome project!

Our first order of business as a wellness committee was to create an event that would get people together and also get them moving. I took the idea from Mike’s company, the Active Network, and suggested a Charity Challenge event. While Active is pretty advanced and actually trains for a sprint triathlon as a company, we figured a 5k was a safe and friendly bet for our first event. We ended up choosing the Fast Times 5k due to a few factors, but one big one was that it was a small race so it’d be easy to locate and cheer for each other on race day.

Although the Fast Times 5k does fund raise for it’s own cause, my company chose the American Diabetes Association as the charity of choice. Any employee who fund raised at least $100 would earn a paid for entry into the race (alternatively, they could chose to pay the $30-40 race entry fee themselves and still get the free company wellness t-shirt we designed). I am happy to say that we raised over $2,000 for the American Diabetes Association and we had a turn out of over 50 employees, family and friends at the race! Not bad for a first time wellness committee event.

The race itself was held in Mission Bay, specifically at De Anza Cove. De Anza Cove is one of the meeting places for the Vavi Run Club which I used to train for my first marathon so I had run this route quite a few times! Now that we live in North County San Diego, I rarely get back down to Mission Bay for a run but I’m always happy when I do because it’s spectacularly beautiful (one major reason we got married there).

fast times 5k

The race was small and the course was an out and back on the boardwalk. The boardwalk was not closed, but I didn’t see any issues. If you were one of the super speedy people leading the race, you probably had to dodge people on your way back due to the out and back factor, but you could easily run on the hard grass next to the path if necessary. For me, at 17 weeks pregnant, dodging people to get a PR as not an issue.

fast times 5k san diego pregnant runner running a 5k while pregnant

I took advantage of the out and back course and high fived co-workers and cheered them as we passed each other. Sadly I was quite sick with the aforementioned cold from hell at the race, but somehow I ended up running the 5k only 25 or so seconds slower than my Carlsbad 5000 time, coming in at 29:15, a 9:26 average. I kept to my “be able to talk” rule when running and even walked through the one aid station to gulp my entire cup of water. Going in to the race, a lot of my coworkers still didn’t know that I am pregnant and were expecting me to win the race (hah!) but I had to break the news to them that morning that it wasn’t happening.

After the race with my co-worker Arni

After the race with my co-worker Arni

I had a really fun time at the race and definitely would recommend this 5k to anyone looking for an easy (parking was ridiculously easy and close), no hassle (no expo and you could literally arrive 5 min before the race to get your bib if you wanted), fast (pretty much no hills), and small (i.e. podium!) 5k in San Diego.

Do you prefer big 5k races or small ones? If your company put on a 5k would you participate?

Boston Dreaming

IMG_6849

Today I am home sick with a nasty cold. I haven’t had a cold like this in years – I can barely breathe and food has no taste! And the worst part, I can’t take any medications outside of Tylenol. During pregnancy, the woman’s immune system is suppressed so that it won’t fight off the baby growing inside you. This means that my normally strong immune system didn’t stand a chance when my co-worker came into work sick last week. I haven’t had an illness that has knocked me down like this since I started to run – since Wednesday, I’ve only worked out one time! It’s very unlike me, but I’m trying to listen to my body and do what’s best for the baby growing inside me. And for now, that means lots of rest.

The good news about staying home sick today was that it’s Marathon Monday! Normally I follow the Boston Marathon via twitter/Facebook and am not able to stream it from my work computer but this morning I got to watch on our TV while simultaneously tracking my non-elite (yet seriously fast) friends running the race via the online athlete tracker. Despite pretty non-ideal conditions, everyone is racing their hearts out.

Of course, Boston race day always brings up some emotions for me. The last two years the emotions are both related to mourning over the bombings and regret for my own failed attempts at qualifying. This year is the 2nd year that I thought I might be able to race and next year will be the 3rd Boston in a row that I had imagined myself crossing that finish line on Boylston Street. I’ve only been able to make one Boston qualifying attempt per year due to various reasons and each time I’ve come out disappointed but with pride and more knowledge about myself as a runner.

And of course, this year there will be no attempt. 2015 will be the year of the baby. I’m not sure what 2016 will bring but I do hope to run another marathon. There’s no way for me to know how my body will react to pregnancy and child birth and I have no idea how long it’ll take me to recover and get back into the same shape (or better) that I was in for CIM. Or, maybe motherhood will change my perspective all together. So while I’m hopeful that 2016 will be a marathon year, I really have no way of knowing.

There’s really a lot of unknowns right now for me, which at times can be uncomfortable because I find so much joy in planning things out.  I’ve already started to wonder how my workout routine will even fit in with balancing working full time, childcare drop off and pick-ups, breast feeding/pumping and taking care of an infant (and the lack of sleep…). Luckily I have a very supportive husband who I’m confident will be bearing a lot of the workload along with me, but it’s going to be a big change no matter what. Fitness is a priority to me, and I know it always will be, but I also know my child will be the highest of all priorities. The thought of 4:30 AM treadmill runs to get in training seems daunting at this point. But, like I said, those 4:30 AM treadmill runs might not be necessary – I just can’t plan it now!

The fire inside me to qualify for Boston is not gone. I’ll definitely be in Boston one day, it’s just going to take more time to get there than I originally anticipated. Through this blog and my involvement with Oiselle, I’ve met so many incredibly inspiring (and wicked fast) mothers who prove that you can be a great parent AND a great runner. It might take some creativity and yes, some early mornings, but it is possible.

Congrats to all of you Boston Marathon finishers today! You inspire me.